This coming Wednesday… [sigh] I won’t lie. I’ve had a stomach ache for days about it. For lots of reasons, I guess, the biggest of which is that it’s the most revealing and most troubling thing I’ll have ever posted here on Single Dad Laughing.
As you might remember, I started posting “Bullied. The Forgotten Memoirs” a few weeks ago. These were memoirs that I wrote in the wake of my post Memoirs of a Bullied Kid, and I never could finish them because they were far too difficult to get through. Too dark. Too depressing. Too… oh I don’t know. All happiness was sucked out of me while I was writing them. So I stopped.
Later on, I posted two of them here on SDL. They were two of the mildest of the fifteen forgotten memoirs.
And, ever since I posted them, the whole thing hasn’t sat right with me. No, it just wasn’t right to post them one at a time. All fifteen need to be posted together, as a collaboration.
So that’s what I’m doing on Wednesday.
The problem with posting them one at a time is that I wrote the memoirs in a very intertwined fashion. The discussion as a whole that can be had from these memoirs simply can’t exist when I share them one at a time (especially when they’re spaced a week or more apart from each other). The pieces of the puzzle can’t be connected. And so, when I post them one at a time, each memoir becomes a story. A narrative. Nothing else. It loses its greater value.
And that isn’t what I intended when I wrote them. I wrote these memoirs and I’m sharing these memoirs because I wanted to be completely real about what goes on in the bullying world and in the adult lives of those who are bullied. I wanted to offer a valuable resource to those who could use it. I wanted to add meat to the discussion that might actually help the greater bullying problem.
The problem with posting them all together is two-fold. It makes for a very, very long post. I mean, we’re talking fifteen memoirs plus a lengthy (and hopefully valuable) discussion to start them off. I hope that the content and the conversation will be important enough to get past that. I hope you’ll read each of them and really join in on the conversation. I hope our kids are worth “real” conversation about bullying and the time it takes to have it.
But that’s not what gives me the most anxiety. What gives me the most anxiety is what lies within those memoirs.
I didn’t hold back any truth. I didn’t censor the reality of any of the situations. I didn’t withhold details from any part of it out of fear that it might put me in a bad light. In some of the memoirs there is very strong language. There are very scary truths. There are parts of my past that I would be so thrilled for nobody to ever know. Things that I’ve buried and hidden for years from fear of seeming like a whack-job.
And I guess in the end, I fear that once the world really knows the darkest parts of my past, I’ll be rejected. I’ll be defined by that past. I’ll be worthless once more.
But I’m posting them anyway. You see, I believe so strongly that I have been given a voice for a reason in this world, and a big part of that has to do with bullying.
I suppose that everybody has some dark parts of their past that they have also worked to hide. I suppose we’ve all done or said things in the past that would make us appear crazy, unstable, or mentally unhealthy to others. I have hope that revealing the honest truths about my past will push the bullying conversation to an incredible place where we can all connect above and outside of the surface-stories that the individual memoirs hold.
You see, as I work to make myself a good person, a better person, and the best damn person I can be, I have learned that all the darknesses of my teenage and adult life have been connected in one way or another to the bullying that I received when I was younger. I believe the bullying discussion shouldn’t end at high school. It shouldn’t really end at all. And anybody who has been bullied in the past who will tell you that it doesn’t affect them now, is simply unaware of how the pieces connect in their own lives. Because once you’ve been bullied, to some degree it affects you forever.
So, please take some time with me this week to have a real discussion about this with me. I hope that I’ve created Wednesday’s post in a way that makes it very simple to read and come back to when needed. I think I have. It’s all one post but it will be separated onto several different pages within that post.
Gosh. It’s honestly the scariest thing I’ve ever published. Please go easy on me when you read them.
Can you tell I’m feeling a little bit vulnerable right now?
Eepers. I’ve gotta get off the computer for a while.
Dan Pearce, Single Dad Laughing