As we know in the last couple of weeks we’ve been hearing about the dangers and pitfalls of Social Media and Cyber Bullying. Especially when it’s come to school kids, a number of whom have been driven to suicide. Not to mention the recent cases of Charlotte Dawson seemingly having a breakdown (still haven’t heard exactly what happened with her) then of course Rugby League player Robbie Farrah receiving disgusting comments about his late mother. Though it’s since been revealed that he isn’t exactly a clean skin.
But back to the schoolyard so to speak. In hearing about these cases it has just made even more grateful that I grew up and went through school in an era before social media even existed and when the Internet as we know it was still in it’s infancy. Because as somebody who was bullied and taunted throughout High School I don’t know what I would have done had I not had the sanctity of home. It wasn’t the sort of taunts that would be considered “Water off a ducks back” it was deeply personal and well and truly below the belt stuff for example insinuating that I engaged in incestuous activities. Also back in 2001 when I was at TAFE somebody hacked into my Yahoo profile and made out that I was a pedophile. I can’t prove who put my finger on whom it could have been but I can narrow it down to one of lowlife bastards I went through school with.
It wasn’t just words either. There was one particular incident when I was in year 9 where I had been led to believe that the girl I was mad about liked me back and I should ask her out. To cut a long story short I found out the hard way that it was all bullshit. These were people who I thought were friends. So to those who say why do these kids add them on Facebook if they’re a bully? Well it could well be a case of they got led to believe they were their friend only to have them turn on them. Well for me that particular incident ended up being the straw that broke the camels back and that afternoon I tried to end it all. Which leads me to say that when bullies drives people to suicide they also need to be held accountable. They don’t get charged with murder or manslaughter, well maybe they should be because they’re culpable.
Suffice it to say that anytime they decide to have a High School Reunion I’ll be too busy rearranging my sock drawer. I’ve had the odd Facebook Friend Request from some of those individuals, all of whom I’ve refused. I’ve managed to survive but I believe that it was that particular incident that has contributed to being a complete fish out of water when it comes to women. It was only when I started punting that I started to get the idea of being able to form a relationship.
Had social media been around back then I don’t know what might have happened. With mine I have Facebook which I use to keep in touch with family and real friends and do not add people who I don't know personally, and I have since closed down my Twitter account because
a) I didn't use it all that often anyway and
Until such time as they are held accountable it was my way of protest.
I'm not call for them to be blocked like some people are but sadly like a lot of things in life there are people out there who will abuse it. In fact I do wonder where are the three Billy Goats Gruff when we need them.