A new week, a new category in the A-Z! Bullying; a cause, rather than a symptom. Something that we often carry into our adult lives, be it low self-esteem or social anxieties. I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone who hasn’t had some form of bullying and it remains a serious issue both in our children’s lives as well as for us as adults. 

Back in the early 90s, mental health was still in its diagnostic infancy. I was what was described back then as a ‘worrier’. Anxiety wasn’t something I or my family had ever really heard of in terms of happening to every-day people like us. I wasn’t suffering from panic-attacks, and there was still an overriding trust of doctors’ diagnoses back then. A time before the internet and Daily Mail health scare tactics.

I have never felt ‘normal’. Having always been naturally very shy (who would have thought this loud mouth was shy!), I would always turn bright red whenever anyone talked to me – something I still suffer from to this day! This made me too embarrassed to speak up in class, and meeting new people was distressing. A vicious circle ensued, where the more I became aware of my social awkwardness, the worse it got.

I hated myself for not measuring up to what appeared to be societies expectations of me.

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