Posted this on my Instagram page which reminded me of a girl back in Primary School- Grade 2; she was teased and bullied all the time. She was obese and suffered Down Syndrome, back then we didn’t even know what that was and thinking back, it seemed our teachers did not know either. Her name was Jennifer but due to her size, her name was changed to “Fat Jennifer” which in our local dialect, a ridiculing term for fat people is ‘obolo’ so we called her ‘Jennifer Obolo’.
I get infuriated now when I think about how the teachers used to treat her and did not do anything about the incessant bully and tease from her peers. You’d think that the teachers should have known better but no! they were absolutely ignorant and added to her plight. She was beaten whenever she had low scores in her assignments and tests. It was obvious how unhappy Jennifer was in the school but for some reason, her family who probably was ignorant as well dumped her in the boarding house like some trash that didn’t matter.
A song she often sang that we used to sing along as we followed her everywhere, laughing at her; the song was in her local dialect which went like, “Ateco, Ateco. I will go home, I will go home. I won’t come again. I won’t come again” She repeated that over and over and sometimes danced to the tune. It was obvious how unhappy she was in the school and still baffles me why nothing was done.
Peers in school can be so cruel and sometimes it baffles me why nothing is done about issues such as these. No education is done about the detrimental effects that bullying and teasing has on many children even many years after when they become adults. You cannot begin to imagine what being mistreated by your peers and sometimes teachers and those older could do to a human being for the rest of his life.
I can never emphasize enough the need to educate people on mental illnesses or conditions. Teach our young ones to be kind and loving especially towards those who seem to be different from them. Because I truly believe that loving someone who is the same as you is not as strong demonstration of love as loving someone who is seems very different from you!
Lets learn to love. If you agree with me please share this to someone special to you! Let’s try to make this world a better place with one deed at a time. The first one could be to click a share button. Peace to the world!