I was bullied ceaselessly and mercilessly as a child.
Every day at school was hell and I spent my time trying to maintain as small as profile as possible, a necessary strategy which robbed me of all kinds of academic and sporting activities I would’ve been damn good at.
Years, and lots of therapy later, I have largely left the pain of all that bullying behind – who wants their life to be defied by that kind of small-minded cruelty? Not me, thank you – but this deeply-affecting and insightful comic series from Canadian artist Meghan Lands encapsulates in a ways that I can’t even articulate how it feels when you discover the monsters of your childhood are now seemingly normal human beings.
In your mind they’re anything but; still as Lands beautifully describes it, you have to grapple with the fact that these people actually had happy childhoods unlike large slabs of your own.
In my case, it’s watching all the time on Facebook as people who made my childhood a miserable living hell talk to each other about the wonderful times they had at school, like they’ve forgotten how exclusionary and hateful they were.
It leaves me gasping and amazed that they could forget that I was never invited to any of their BBQs, their outings, their big nights out – NONE OF THEM. It’s startling and shocking and dismaying and man, if Lands doesn’t capture it perfectly.
Agonisingly, poignantly, thoughtfully perfect.