Silent Taunting


Michelle Wallace

It wasn’t the boy who hurt me. It wasn’t the action that hurt me. It wasn’t who it was that hurt me (that bad). It was the laughter. It was the taunting. It was succumbing to the pressure to cry. It was giving the bully exactly what she wanted.

I had never experienced bullying before. I was normal enough to never get hate from somebody who didn’t know me, right? Only people who were seemingly outcast get bullied, right?

I’ll admit, I indulged in the dirt of the situation by reacting to her Instagram post.

‘Cute couple’ I said. Harmless enough, but still potent enough for her to see it was hurting me. But it wasn’t worth it.

‘Thank you!’ she said. Followed by an almost sinister smile emoji.

That was okay; it was expected. But what came next was unprecedented.

[insert name here] liked your post.
[insert name here] liked your post.
[insert name here] liked your post.

It was a silent taunting. She didn’t even have to say anything to completely shred me to pieces and leave me more broken than I ever had before. She had already won him; why did she have to keep on bothering me?

It ate me alive, the embarrassment. Knowing she was sitting at home laughing at me. Her friends, laughing at me. His friends, laughing at me. Everyone knew all along except me, and that is the worst feeling I’ve ever felt. How could people be so cruel?

I had never experienced bullying before. But this night, I felt the weight of a word that used to be obscure to me, in full force. It made me think, what if I hadn’t had friends comforting me or parents ready to start a fire storm for me? Some people aren’t lucky enough to have a support system like I have and it’s not fair that anyone has to feel this way and deal with it alone.

Living in this age of social media has made it easy to tear somebody down without thinking twice about it because you can hide behind a screen. But this has to stop, something must change. We can’t continue to hurt each other like this, as a generation. We have to learn that hurting somebody else should never make you feel better about yourself.

The smallest action can change a person’s whole life, so please. Think before you act, and walk in kindness in your life. It’s the best legacy you can leave on this world.