Originally, I put this down when I was thinking up possible topics for Peaceful Rampage and I have to admit, that until now, I hadn’t put much thought into it. Like most of the world, I know that bullying between the sexes has been going on since the beginning of time and neither gender has the monopoly on it. It’s just the way the bullying is implemented that is usually different. My worry here is that going over the normal ground will just be a case of preaching to the choir and that is something I don’t want to do here. Therefore, since I did put it down on my list of topics, my Asperger’s induced sense of that I have to talk about it is why I am posting about it. I have come to the conclusion that writing about it will help me to understand it more.
Maybe the best way to understand inter-gender bullying more is to start by highlighting the instances where it occurs in “He Was Weird.” After all, many of Mark’s experiences in the book were taken from my own. One doesn’t have to read very far into the book to get the first occurrence of this. While walking home from his second day at his new school, he is accosted by two girls who walk behind him, pushing him from behind and trying to knock his books out of his hand. Having been told never to hit girls, he just takes it. He has further such confrontations with one of those girls and it one of those instances, when he tries to seek redress, he is the one who ends up in trouble. He has problems with other girls throughout the story as well although most of them aren’t the physical type of bullying. Most of it is teasing and there are a couple of instances where a girl in the company of a good number of boys, verbally lays into him.
Since many of Mark’s experiences in the story are based on my own, it has me thinking as to why it happened to me. The answer here is simple, no gender is better than the other is picking out potential victims and since throughout most of my life, I must have had a big neon sign that read “VICTIM” above my head, girls picked up on it too. It has appeared in my adult life as well, especially when I was a younger adult.
So, what have I learned from today. Well, it has reaffirmed that because of my sometimes lack of social skills, I came across as a target to both genders and because of those skills combining with what some would say an old fashioned upbringing, I didn’t know how to deal with the situation properly. Fortunately, through experience and often painful trial and error, I am better equipped to deal with these things. Still, it would be a whole lot better if people just didn’t bully at all.
Next post: My Asperger’s and the Opposite Sex