Personal Experience Of Losing A Friend

1267 words | 5 page(s)

Shock, disbelief, and regret filled my body. The newspaper article read, “The boy was riding his bicycle and pulled out in front of a truck. He was killed on impact.” I cannot even say I lost a friend, because I was never a friend to him. The events that took place earlier that week made this loss even more difficult. It also changed my mind on bullying, and what exactly that meant. I never beat any one up, or was intentionally mean, but I was still a bully. That was a horrible feeling, and it was too late to change that.

Laughter filled the room while all attention was focused on one boy. His pants were a little short, his hair a little ragged, and he was often the one that the bigger boys picked on relentlessly. The day that scarred my mind was the probably one of the worst days of all. The other boys chose to put dog poop on his chair as he sat down, then ridicule him for “pooping his pants”. The boy sat there and tried to fight back the tears. Even worse, he had to go the entire day wearing pants with dog poop on them. He may have tried to clean them, but it was not successful. I have to admit I had participated in laughing before, at many different situations and at many others expense. But I never thought about the fact that that made me just as much of a bully as the guys who were physically doing it.

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There were at least thirty kids in the room the day that this took place. The teacher had excused herself for something, opening the door for the boys to put into action their prank. Boys will be boys is true, but not to this extent. I have seen them put this same boy in a locker, put his head in the toilet, and many other things that they were they just “being boys”. Those actions clearly could be defined as bullying. When the teachers could catch them in the act, the bigger boys were reprimanded. But there were so many times that they got away with it, and no one protected or defended that boy.

My day went on fine. I ate lunch with my friends, played in the hallways, and packed my backpack to head home for the day. Never once did I think back to what happened earlier that day in the classroom or how that boy’s day went after that happened. As I walked out to catch my ride, I saw the boy sitting on the curb. I had stayed late to make up a test, so I know that he had been sitting there for a while. I made small talk with him for a minute while I impatiently waited on my ride. In the conversation, I asked him if he was waiting on his ride. He told me he was going to walk, but he was waiting for it to get a little darker before he headed home. I never asked him why just said good-bye and hurried to get in my car as soon as it pulled up.

My home wasn’t that far from the school, but that day the ride home seemed to take forever. I began to think about what the boy said about walking home and waiting till it was darker. At the time, I was just making conversation, I didn’t really take the time to hear what he had said. As I thought back, I wondered if he was waiting till it was dark because he had dog poop on his pants. Who knows how far he lives from the school, but he probably didn’t want any more people laughing at him. I began to think how hard would it have been to offer him a ride home. To be a kind break in his daily ritual of being the kid who will always be bullied.

That night I couldn’t get his face out of my mind. I just kept seeing his eyes filled with tears and his strength that kept them from falling down his face. How many times has he had to fight those tears? Why was this kid the focus on everyone picking on? Does he have parents and friends who love him? Does he go from one bad situation in school to a bad situation at home? I never ever took the time to think about what goes on in others’ lives. I was popular enough that I could have been a voice to protect that boy. I could have been a friend and been a kind word in his horrible day. But I laughed at the prank instead.

For some reason I could not get that day off of my mind. I put myself in the situation and how I personally would feel. There were times that I had fumbled words and been the focus of my classmate’s laughter. That didn’t feel good. I was embarrassed, and I just wanted the experience to be over. In my experiences, when it was over that was it. I had never been the focus of being bullied. I got along with everyone and had a lot of friends. I could not relate to that boy because I have never truly been in that situation. But I imagined that it would feel horrible.

The next day, I went out of my way to say hi to him. He responded with a big smile, but seemed hesitant like I was getting ready to do something mean after that. When the guys did things to make others laugh at him, I didn’t participate. I just gave him a sympathetic smile. I knew that wasn’t enough, but I was trying. Friday came soon enough and my focus on trying to be nice lasted all week. I could have put more effort into it, but it always seemed like I have more important things to do. But at least I wasn’t bullying him.

My weekend was great, and Monday came too quickly. In the first class of the day, we were given the news of the boys passing over the weekend. The entire class was quiet, and I felt this knot in my throat that I could not swallow. It was my turn to try to fight back the tears, but I wasn’t nearly as strong as that boy was. I didn’t have another day to try harder to be a friend. To make conversation with him. To offer him a ride home. He was gone, and I had to live with the feeling that I could have done more than I did to prevent bullying.

Bully comes in all shapes and sizes. I have directly participated because I failed to separate myself from it. My experience was with a boy named Danny. He came from a foster home because his real home was so horrific the state pulled him out of it. Danny’s foster parents didn’t have a lot of money, and they worked all the time. He had a bad home life, he didn’t have friends, and he was the object of bullying every day that he went to school. My personal experience is that it is not enough to not just participate in bullying, I need to stand up against it. This life changing experience came too late to help Danny, but I know I can be a voice for others in the future.

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