Oops, I Forgot
Getting left out hurts. It can destroy someone’s self-esteem and make them feel alone. Whether it’s obvious or not, this is a type of bullying. Being left out is not physical, it is emotional. It hurts just as much as name-calling or anything else.
When done intentionally, it’s a type of bullying. However, the person may not be aware that they are leaving you out. Tell them and talk to them about how you’re feeling. I know it’s scary but if they don’t know, then they can’t fix it. If they do know, and it’s intentional, then you need to reevaluate their place in your life.
I have been this person before. I have been left out of something intentionally and when I confronted this person, they gave me some on-the-spot excuse. Being left out makes people feel unwanted and alone. But a lot of the time they feel as if they have to seem unfazed, like it doesn’t hurt them inside. Some people get left out so often that they ‘have gotten used to it’. They no longer expect to get invited places and they have gotten to a point where, once they find out that they were left out yet again, they don’t care. It can look like it doesn’t faze them and that may seem like a good thing but it’s not. That person had to be excluded so many times that they have given up on a social life and having friends. They have been bullied into silence; they don’t want to stand up for themselves.
Emotional bullying, in my opinion, is the worst kind of bullying. It’s not something people can see on the outside. It’s not the type of bullying you notice in the hallways. Because it’s so low-key, it doesn’t get reported and people can’t stand up for it because they don’t see it. It’s easily hidden and disguised and it can be looked over and dismissed because it’s your word against someone else’s and excuses can be made up to defend the bully. It’s tricky and sneaky and it’s something we need to control.
People can get left out accidentally sometimes but it is ridiculous how many people get left out for no reason or just out of meanness. Kids need to be taught that although sticks and stones can break someone’s bones, words leave permanent damage and once they’re out there, they can never be taken back. So, think before you speak and talk to the kid who always sits alone at the lunch table because I can promise you, they don’t want to be alone.
“We are trying to construct a more inclusive society. We are going to make a country in which no one is left out.” –Franklin D. Roosevelt
And it starts with us.
Madison McDermott is a 13 year old actress, living her dream in Los Angeles, CA. A naturally creative type, she also loves writing, drawing, and has an innate love of music. She is an 8thgrader at California Pacific Charter Schools, a virtual school that allows her flexibility for her busy schedule. In her free time, she is also a volunteer for the LA based organization, Beyond Bullies (www.beyondbullies.org). Madison is extremely passionate about the anti-bullying movement and is using her creativity to bring attention to bullying as well as helping those who are being bullied.