In My Youth

When I was in grade school, bullying must have been occurring all around me, but since it did not involve or affect me, I paid it no meaningful attention. Then just the other day, a little girl was crying in the hall way of my building as I picked up my mail, overheard her tell her mother that she was being bullied at school, it was then that my mind raced back to my grade school days to what I now know was bullying in my very presence. In my neighborhood there was a group of women, then called housewives, who had children, whom are now referred to as ‘stay at home moms’, its these children that were in the bullied group, because they were separate from us, regular students with working mothers. Every morning as a group, these mothers and children would walk to school, hand in hand, almost all together, the mothers would hand their kids their home-prepared lunch before they entered the school building. After the school day, those mothers, would be standing around the building again, almost as a group, often exchanging thoughts, waiting for their children to walk them home, hand in hand. These children were a tightly held together group, so, at recess, they clung together, as they did at lunch time, not having to eat cafeteria food like the rest of us. During the day, if it should rain, those mothers would be waiting outside, with all sort of rain gear to protect their children during the walk home. In view of all the above, if a disturbance broke out it would involve one of those kids with a stay at home mom, because they were separate, and not like the rest of us, as they kept very much to themselves, it’s that separation that breeds bullying. No one ever really got the know them, even after and often attending some of the same classes together. I now imagine them all arranging to do their home work together, something few of us other kids did, we stayed out way past dark at play until called up for dinner, that we sometime cooked for our selves or just heated up what our mothers cooked before or after work. A very different kind of life style from the bullied kids of my youth.

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