I'm Not Emo

  • Dedicated to Victims of Bullying
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I’m not emo. No matter how much you call me that, I have clean wrists. What’s to gain from this? I don’t know. You’re clearly just a bully, but let me tell you how this has affected me and changed my life. I’ll start at the beginning and show you the end you created.

   My name is Zak Evans Avery; I’m sixteen in the tenth grade. I was born and raised in East Hampton, Connecticut. For as long as I could remember I had no father. My mother was away a lot too, and I don’t know why. If I’m not mistaken, I do believe my grandma raised me for the most part until cancer took her away.

    I was given an unfair card in life, but it didn’t really bother me. I was young and adaptable. People say it must’ve been hard growing up without a father and mother around, but it’s really not that bad. I assume you adjust to the household situations you are put in?

    Of course, nothing happens until elementary school. That’s where all the fun in life begins. Waking up in the morning, excited to see friends. Riding the bus, throwing paper balls at everyone. Dreading homework that I’d say my dog ate even though I’ve never had a dog in my life. Playing on the playground after naptime.

    Such was the ecstasy of young school life. I didn’t really have much of that. Early off kids noticed I wasn’t like everyone else; I was extremely skinny and way too pale for my midnight black hair. I was called almost every single little insult we knew back in those days, including the forever famous ‘loser’ insult while making an ‘L’ on your forehead.

    Around fifth grade, is when real bullying came into play. I couldn’t afford designer clothes due to my mother being away so much and making so little, and to be honest, a black off-brand looked much better than a striped polo. And so began the taunt of “goth”.

    But I could deal with that. It wasn’t much of an insult anyway. I did have friends, though, so it wasn’t the whole elementary school taunting me. They were strange kids, the ones that never had girlfriends nor went to sleepovers.

    Next came the wonders of middle school, where all the elementary kids were advanced into one building. Yay! 

     This was the start of excessive bullying. I was pushed around and got beaten up in the bathrooms. I was picked on daily for my dark clothing. You know in middle school is when cliques start forming? Needless to say I didn’t fit into any of them. The jocks really liked talking to me, though.

    So the bullying was pretty moderate during early middle school, but during late middle school, the last year of it to be exact, came the existence of a new insult. I’m not sure where it came from or who made it, but it was spelled E-M-O and stood for almost anyone in dark clothing and different than most others.

    This word for some reason became very painful. I’m not sure why… maybe it was the way people said it, with so much hatred it made my stomach turn and my eyes burn.

    Here is my favorite part. Freshman year! Oh yes! We finally made it to the last school in our forced education! There was so much freedom and options, it was great. Thought elementary was the ecstasy of young life? Try high school. There are so many clubs, friends, and vibrant clear signs of young love in the air. It’s wonderful!

    If you’re not an ‘emo’.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m not an emo as stated before. “You are what everyone sees you to be,” said someone. It was the summer before that when the definition of ‘emo’ actually came out. Here, let me write it for you, straight from Webster.

    Emo – noun – \ˈē-(ˌ)mō\ - a style of rock music influenced by punk rock and featuring introspective and emotionally fraught lyrics – Short for ‘emotional.