Walk Away
Jenna spent some time on the B.U.L.L.Y. Blog. It was starting to get a lot of views. Her club had only met twice now, but the word was spreading. Mira had come to both meetings but hadn’t said very much. Jenna wasn’t sure if she was embarrassed or afraid to talk about her experiences being bullied. At least Mira was coming to the meetings. So many viewers wanted to know what they could do to stop bullying. She, Mary, and Katie had come up with a list of ideas. Such as:
1. Ignore bullies, walk away, or tell them calmly you are not interested in what they have to say. Bullies want the satisfaction of making you feel as bad as they do. DON’T give them the satisfaction!
2. If you can’t get away from the bully or are being physically hurt, protect yourself the best you can until you can get away.
3. ALWAYS tell a trusted adult. Tell your parents, teachers, principal, counselor, friends, even police if necessary (the bully doesn’t have to know it was you that told). If an adult does not take it seriously, then find another. Be your own hero and find yourself the help and support you need. You are that important!
4. Try to find a humorous way to deal with a bully. If you think of how absurd bullying is maybe you can think of something humorous to say to the bully. It will make you a less interesting victim if they don’t have control over you.
Suggestions by Katie:
-“Go ahead and keep talking, but just so you know I’m not listening.”
-“Your parents must be so proud.”
-“I’m in a hurry so can you just say, ‘I’m miserable so I want you to feel the same only worse.’ I’ll say ‘No can do.’ Then we can both move on.”
-“Are you going to waste my time like this every day?”
-“Sorry I forgot to pencil you in to waste my time. And, it looks like I am booked through college.”
-“Oh how cute, you thought I was a victim! Sorry to disappoint you.”
5. Get involved in activities you enjoy and make friends. It always helps to have a friend or two nearby. Some kids take karate which teaches self-control, to NEVER fight unless you must defend yourself until you can get away. Plus it really is fun, keeps you in shape, and you get to wear white pj’s. (A Gi!) ~ Mary
6. Just like the bully, be relentless by telling EVERY time! Tell, tell, and tell again until they stop.
7. NEVER respond to messages from cyber-bullies. Print out and save all texts, messages, and screenshots. Do not be embarrassed or afraid to tell. This way you have proof for parents, teachers, or even police.
8. Try changing your attitude about bullying! Some kids may just be mean; however, bullies are often insecure, unhappy, frustrated and may be bullied at home or elsewhere. Some bully when they are stressed or overwhelmed. So try seeing them as a person who needs help and maybe a friend.
9. Focus on the positives in your life. Maybe even make a list to read when you are feeling down, because we are ‘ALL’ important and awesome. Stuff like:
-I’m a good friend.
-I’m honest.
-I’m creative, or good at sports, or a great singer or musician, etc.
-My family loves and cares about me.
-I am an awesome baker.
Jenna read a bunch of comments from kids asking, “What if these things don’t work for me?”
“What do I do if no one listens to me or helps me out?”
Or even worse, “I told my teacher, the bully denied it and I got in trouble for lying!”
Jenna started feeling overwhelmed. She didn’t have all the answers! She wanted to have the perfect answer for everyone but she didn’t. Was she in over her head here? She wanted to help and make a difference. She texted Mary. Mary texted back, “Just be supportive and tell them to keep looking for help.” That really was all she could do, but it didn’t seem like enough.
She turned off her computer, got into bed, and grabbed a book off her nightstand. A good book always helped her escape her own worries and problems.
Jenna stood in the middle of her class in her pajamas. Objects were flying around the room like paper wads, paper airplanes, and a book! An eraser barely missed her head. Kids were yelling. It was complete and utter chaos. Some mean looking kid was standing on a chair holding another boy upside down by his feet. Another boy was holding a live chicken and yelling at another kid, “I told you I’m a vegetarian!” A soaking wet boy walked up to Jenna. “I got a swirly, it wasn’t an ice cream cone.” He sat down at a desk.
Suddenly Tara was standing right in front of her. Evil Tara, with her wild medusa-like evil hair, and her evil glaring eyes, and her evil purple shirt. “I heard about your silly club Jenna,” said Tara evilly. “You will never change things. You are just a loser like the rest. My friends and I will always be more popular, beautiful, and cooler than you.”
“Get over yourself, Tara! You are just a mean girl. In fact, your name backwards says you are ‘A rat’!” Said Jenna.
“You are going to regret that big time!” Said Tara angrily. “Girls!”
Jenna looked over just in time to see Tara’s friends delete the B.U.L.L.Y. Blog from her computer! “Noooo!” Yelled Jenna. She tried to run to her computer but she couldn’t. Some jock was holding on to the back of her shirt. Tara laughed her evil laugh and her friends dropped her laptop into the fish tank and joined in circling around her. Mira joined them too.
“Mira?” Jenna gasped.
“If you can’t beat them, join them!” Mira said and laughed along with the others.
“Jenna, help me!” Yelled Mary. She was in a big highchair and a mean girl was smashing cupcakes all over her face telling her to eat them.
Katie was cowering in the corner as a tennis ball machine was sending ball after ball her way.
“Jenna! Fix this right now,” yelled her science teacher Mrs. Rodriguez. Jenna looked around until she found her teacher. She was hiding under her desk! “Young lady stop all these bullies!”
“How? I need help!” Yelled Jenna. “I can’t do this alone!”
“You are head of the B.U.L.L.Y. Club, you fix this! I need order in my classroom!” Mrs. Rodriguez screamed as the chicken ran under the desk with her.
The speaker came on, “Will Jenna please report the to the principal’s office immediately! She has been given a life-long detention.”
“This isn’t my fault!” Jenna yelled.
Her parents stood in the doorway. “We are very disappointed in you young lady,” said her father.
“Mom, Dad! This isn’t my fault. What do I do?” Cried Jenna.
“You are the one in charge,” said her mother. “At least we still have Steven. He is such a good boy.”
“Mom!” Jenna yelled as her parents left the classroom.
“Cameron, please help me!” Jenna called to the kid in the corner with headphones on.
Jenna tried to walk toward the door which seemed to be moving away from her slowly. She could barely move her feet. She looked down to see the boys’ gym teacher holding onto one of her legs and some girl with headgear and frizzy hair holding onto her other leg.
“Please help us!” Cried the gym teacher.
“What do we do?” Asked headgear girl.
“Yeah Jenna,” said Tara standing in front of her with her arms crossed. “What are you going to do? Cry maybe?”
Jenna tried to tell her off but she had no voice. She tried to yell but not a sound came out. She got more and more frustrated as she tried to make herself heard. She couldn’t make it to the door dragging the gym teacher and headgear girl. She had no voice. She was so upset tears started to stream down her face.
“Stop it!” Jenna screamed. She looked around confused. She was sitting up in her bed, in her room.
“Jenna sweetie,” said her mother rushing over to her. “Are you okay?”
Jenna hugged her Mom. “I had the worst dream,” she cried. “I don’t have all the answers. Please don’t be disappointed in me.”
“Honey, I’m not disappointed in you,” her mother assured her. “What in the world were you dreaming about?”
“The school was in complete chaos. Everyone needed me to stop the bullying and I couldn’t,” Jenna explained.
“It was just a dream sweetie,” said her mother as she rubbed Jenna’s back. “You don’t need to have all the answers.”
Jenna slowly fell back to sleep.
The next morning Jenna sat at the bus stop.
“It looks like someone woke up on the wrong side of the bed,” said Katie as she sat on the curb next to Jenna.
“You wouldn’t believe the dream I had last night,” said Jenna.
“Oh really? I had a dream once that I was Prairie Dawn’s sister on Sesame Street, we moved to Canada to become famous hip-hop artists,” said Katie. “Our Agent was our old elementary school janitor.”
Jenna laughed. “Strangely that may even be crazier than my dream,” said Jenna. She told Katie all about her dream. Then had to repeat it again at school for Mary.
At lunch, Jenna saw the tall guy that the Jocks tripped one day. She asked him if he would like to sit at their table for lunch. He said, “No thanks,” and went off to his corner table at the back of the room. Jenna was confused why he wouldn’t want to sit with them.
She sat down with her friends. Freddy, Kevin and their friend Colby joined them. They talked about the tennis team and the B.U.L.L.Y. Club.
“You should join the B.U.L.L.Y. Club dude,” said Kevin to Colby. “He was bullied a lot in elementary school.”
“Yeah, what can I say… my waist measurement was practically the same as my height measurement. Plus, add on thick glasses and the unfortunate fact that I ate paste in Kindergarten. It was brutal,” said Colby.
“Now my man’s a lean, mean, fighting machine! Okay, that doesn’t sound right. Let’s forget that,” said Freddy.
“So…who’s going to see the new Spider-man movie this weekend?” Asked Kevin.
“Me!” said Freddy and Mary at the same time. I looked over at Mary surprised. Since when did she like superhero movies? Then I saw her smile at Kevin and it made perfect sense.
“We should all go together,” Kevin suggested.
“I’m in,” said Colby.
“Me too!” Said Katie. “How about you Jenna?”
“Sure,” Jenna said.
“Cool, it’s like a triple date,” teased Freddy.
“What? We can’t date yet!” Jenna said as she had a mini heart attack.
“I was kidding Jenna! Not a date-date. Just friends going to a movie,” laughed Freddy.
“I knew that. I was just kidding around,” Jenna said embarrassed.
After lunch Mary, Katie and I walked to our lockers.
“That was not cool Jenna,” said Mary.
“What?” Jenna asked.
“Telling Kevin, I mean the guys that we can’t date,” said Mary.
“But we can’t…” Jenna started.
“They don’t have to know that,” Mary snapped quietly. “Why can’t I have a little fun and just think it’s a date?”
“Are you serious?” Jenna asked shocked. “Are you really mad at me right now? We can’t date! Your parents wouldn’t let you go if you said it was a date, and you know it.”
“No one needs to know that Jenna!” Mary said as she slammed her locker shut and walked away.
“Mary!” Jenna called after her.
“Walking away!” She said without turning around.
“Whoa,” said Katie.
“What was that?” Jenna asked Katie.
“I don’t know. I mean, she likes Kevin. Maybe she wanted him to think it was a date,” Katie guessed.
“But we can’t date,” Jenna explained. “I freaked out and wanted to make sure it wasn’t a date. Am I wrong?”
“Don’t worry. Mary will chill, get over it, and everything will be copacetic,” said Katie.
“I hope so,” Jenna said worried.
After school Jenna saw Mira. “Hi, Mira!”
“Hey…um, I don’t think I can go to the club meetings anymore,” Said Mira.
“What? You have to. I mean you don’t have to, but I really want you to,” Said Jenna.
“Well, it’s kind of for your friends. It would probably be better if I wasn’t hanging around,” explained Mira.
“No. It is for everyone, Mira. I hope we can all get to know each other and become friends. Please keep coming?” Asked Jenna hopefully.
“I don’t really have much to say, though,” said Mira.
“That’s okay! You can talk or not talk. Whatever you want, just be yourself. Maybe someone will come up with an idea to help stop those mean kids from bugging you,” said Jenna.
“I don’t know….” Mira started.
“Maybe you will come up with an idea to help yourself and others! You never know,” said Jenna. “You can help us make bully awareness posters?”
“I’m not a very good artist,” said Mira.
“You can help us hang them then,” said Jenna.
“I’m too short,” said Mira.
Jenna couldn’t help laughing, “You are killing me here Mira. We will get you a ladder.”
Mira couldn’t help but laugh herself. “I’m afraid of heights!” She added.
“We will find something you can help with, I promise,” said Jenna. “Just please, please, please come!”
“Okay,” Mira finally agreed.
“Thank you!” Jenna said hugging Mira. “I have to get to tennis practice. Have a great weekend.”
“Bye,” said Mira.
Jenna hurried off to tennis practice happy that she had fixed one problem.
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