Bullying is all too common. On Reddit, user Ok-Session9685 asked: “Why were you bullied?” The answers were heartbreaking. But they remind us how hurtful words can be, and that kindness is always better than meanness.

Here are some examples people shared about why they were bullied:

  1. “Everyone knew I had autism before I did.” – u/Allergicwolf

This one hits home for me. Often our differences make us targets, especially when we don’t even realize how we diverge from the norm. I can imagine how confusing and painful that must have been, to have a diagnosis that everyone else knew about except you.

  1. “I was shy, LOL.” – u/ideedeem

I get this. As a shy kid myself, I tended to be an easy target. Bullies homed in on my quiet nature. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with being shy or introverted. But some kids will pounce on any vulnerability.

  1. “I was quiet and kind toward everyone. Guess some people saw that as a weakness.” – u/Aliasiaa

Isn’t that awful? This person sounds lovely – quiet and kind. But those traits got exploited instead of appreciated. Some bullies try to squash any goodness or light they see in others. But kindness is such a strength.

  1. “Having big boobs in middle school.” – u/Pleasant_Lemon6687

I feel for her. Going through puberty is hard enough without getting shamed for your changing body. Curvy girls often get mocked by cruel bullies.

  1. This story from u/FreedomFinallyFound is heartbreaking. She found comfort in routine, only to get teased for being “too poor” or “too stupid.” Kids seized on her autism, undiagnosed for so long. I wish she’d had support back then.
  2. “I was weird as hell.” – u/Lopsided-Club6628

u/Separate_Article_756 could relate, saying he zoned out and seemed gloomy. Weirdness is subjective, but they clearly struggled to fit in. I wish their peers had been more accepting.

  1. Being overweight as a kid stings. u/among_shadows found peace knowing her bullies struggle with weight more now. Still, those taunts left scars.
  2. u/kabekew got targeted for his small stature. The bullying sounded traumatic, with physical abuse. I’m glad he found distance from that “friend” at the reunion.
  3. Even acne got weaponized by bullies for u/Throwawayaccount-CC. Such a normal part of growing up, yet they used it as ammo.
  4. u/ElSolRacNauj ticked every bully’s box – weight, grades, new kid, liking girls. They’ll attack any difference.
  5. u/saltyeleven got tormented just for lacking money, which is beyond their control. Poverty should garner empathy, not bullying.
  6. “Ugliness” was the excuse for u/Glittering_Offer_69. Beauty is subjective, but bullies often pick on looks. Their words embed deep hurts.
  7. Short stature doesn’t bother u/Sven_88 now, but it made them a target back then. Kids can be so cruel over uncontrollable things.
  8. u/heyjudemarie touches my heart. With an unstable home life, she got bullied for shabby clothes and awkwardness. That betrayal by peers stings.
  9. u/SinfulPurr got picked on for virtually every aspect of her looks – hair, teeth, brows, clothes. Bullies are relentless in exploiting insecurities.
  10. As u/locoyou20000 said, some bullies just target vulnerability without any reason. Their harm is very real, though.

If you or someone you care about has experienced bullying, know there are places to turn for support and resources:

  • StopBullying.gov provides helpful information on bullying prevention from the federal government.
  • Stomp Out Bullying has a free, confidential helpline you can call or chat with online.
  • The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) helpline at 1-888-950-6264 offers referrals too.
  • GoodTherapy.org connects users with qualified, vetted mental health professionals.
  • SAMHSA’s National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357) is a great option for substance abuse issues, among other resources.

Please don’t hesitate to reach out. You deserve to feel safe, accepted, and supported through any past or present struggles. There are compassionate people ready to listen, whether it’s online, over the phone, or in person. You aren’t alone.

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