Bullying started for me when I was about 7 years old. In Primary School my classmates used to pin me up against the wall and kick my legs. While doing this they would laugh at me. This really affected my confidence. Luckily it stopped when I went to Secondary School.

However after Secondary School I began to get bullied when I started working in a new job. This time the bullying was verbal. I was continually mocked with put-downs by some of the people in work including my supervisor. Even though it wasn’t physical bullying, to me it felt equally as bad. I believe I was picked on because I was shy and quiet. I had low self-confidence because I suffered with dyslexia from an early age. I was an easy target.

One day I went to the manager to tell him what was going on and how it was affecting me. He laughed at me and said that the supervisor could do what he wanted. He said it was none of his business.

This didn’t help me at all. It made me feel more isolated. I really wanted to leave the job but I stayed on. The bullying continued. It actually got worse as they had more ammunition to bully me. I felt really depressed and lonely. I felt like I had nobody to turn to. I was afraid that I would be laughed at again. I started to have suicidal thoughts. I wanted to end my pain whatever way I could. Eventually I left the job but it still affected me. I decided to see a counsellor which helped. I was advised to attend a GROW Mental Health support group. This really helped as I realised that I wasn’t alone and that there was help out there. Listening to similar stories from other people was comforting. After a while I told my story as well which gave me a great boost in confidence.

Tom's Tips

Don't bottle up issues
Do talk about with someone you can trust
Try to get help as early as possible
Just because you're being bullied doesn't mean you're weak