Facing the truth

A story about bullying with the victim and the bully's view.

Nadia has bullied Jessica since Year 7. Now in Year 10, Jessica has learnt to hide it. What she doesn't know is why, why Nadia bullies her. This story shows both sides of the story.


1. jessica



It was the pearl earrings that pushed Nadia over the edge.

Mum let me get them done on the weekend. We hadn’t been able to get anything since she lost her job but she paid almost a hundred pounds for my earrings just so I could get something nice for once. Nadia must have seen the picture I uploaded on Facebook with me wearing them. She stormed into school on the following Monday shouting abuse from the other end of the corridor.

“What do think you’re playing at? What are those in your ears?!”

I tried to laugh it off but my laugh was uneasy and awkward.

“Nadia! How was your half term?” I giggled nervously. I had been playing along like this for years; pretending that we were the best of friends just so no one would notice what was really going on. Sometimes she would play along, other times, she wouldn’t care what people thought, like that day. She gripped my wrist digging her ragged nails into my skin and dragged me down the corridor to the bathroom.

It was empty but in my opinion, she was so angry, I think she would have done what she did even if there were people around.

When we got inside, she pinned me against the wall and screamed at me.

“Look at you. You think a pair of cheap earrings will make you look pretty?

I shook my head.

“Good. ‘Cos they don’t. You’re ugly. You’ll always be ugly, got it?”

I nodded.

“No I don’t think you have got it, take those earrings off”

I hesitated, biting my lip.

“Take. Them. Off.” She ordered,

I raised my shaking hands to my ears and slowly undid them.

“Too slow” she sneered. She grabbed my ear and ripped the earrings out roughly then headed inside a cubicle.

“No” I cried out, “Please…don’t!”

She paused and looked at me, a smile breaking out on her face, “Aww, does little Jessica want her earrings back?”

I nodded.

“Too bad.” She threw them inside the toilet and reached for the flush. It was then I snapped; I thought about my mum sitting at home, depressed and ashamed, how she just wanted to buy me something special for once and how she’d react when I lied to her, telling her I lost them, how she’d feel knowing she could of spent that money on one more week of basic needs.

I lurched forward and locked my arms around Nadia’s neck. She yelped with shock and started to swear. I didn’t know what to do next; I had never been in a fight. Before I had a chance to think, Nadia bit my arm and I let go, clumsily falling to the floor.

She got on top of me and began punching my head.

“You think you can fight me?” she kept repeating as she started to claw my face. At one point she stopped and stood up but pulled me up with her. She kneed me in the stomach and grabbed my shoulders as she banged my head continuously against the bathroom tiles.

I fell to the floor crying.

“I’m sorry” I sobbed

“You should be, you’re pathetic…a pathetic little bitch” She spat on me and walked out leaving the door swinging after her. It took me three tries to stand to my feet; the first two times, my knees crumpled and I fell to the floor. I couldn’t bear to look in the mirror but I had to see.

My right cheek had turned purple and my head pounded in my ears. I had a scratch from my nose to the corner of my lip and my chin was covered in blood that had spilled from my mouth. Those were just the visible scars, inside, I felt like a nobody, almost empty.

She’d beat me up before, given me a split lip, a purple eye or a few scratches but not as bad as this.

I gathered my earrings from the toilet bowl and washed them off; flinching every time the hot water entered the cut from where Nadia ripped one of my nails off.

I told myself I deserved it. That was the worst thing. I told myself it was my fault for being so ugly, for wearing my pearl earrings, for attacking her.

It wasn’t that I didn’t know the truth, that it was Nadia’s fault and that I wasn’t to blame; it was that I couldn’t face it. 

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