I don't think anyone on this forum quite yet understands why I am the way I am or how I came to be that way. I figured since many of the members on here are Americans of Polish descent, they would certainly be able to relate about being untouchable when they are in certain places and they have a funny name. Part of my situation probably has to do with my recent "immigrant" ancestry and part other reasons, like the fact that we are working class, but we're more culturally like upper middle class people.
Both my sister and I had similar experiences in grade school growing up (she is in her early thirties and I am just 20). We were ignored and shunned out of basic kid social interaction, no matter how interesting or funny we tried to be, starting basically in kindergarten, although it was far less extreme then. I believe that children sense when something is a little different about another child, and they naturally exclude them from everything. When I was little, I had friends, but I was still treated as an outsider. For a time my sister went to a black school because they lived in the city, where she was basically tortured because she was intelligent and white as could be, while the few white children's parents didn't want their kids to go to her house because they thought she lived in a "bad neighborhood." We actually lived in kind of an interesting neighborhood with the upper middle class Jewish people and the poor inner city folk, some black, some white. Then when we moved and she went to the district I went my whole life, she still had no real friends and what few acquaintances she had would try to conspire against her. I had similar problems with semi-friendly acquaintances conspiring against me, except with me it was about my blonde hair and looks instead of my SAT scores. For a time (before I was about 13 or 14) I still liked people and I believed that if I kept trying I would eventually make friends. Then the reality hit, and I became an angry, surely, confused and eventually fragmented and identity stripped person.
After taking a leave in my second semester of high school, where people shouted for me to kill myself in my face, threatened me if I sat on a certain bench near them, and spread vicious rumors about me loud so that I could hear, I was seeing a shrink because my parents didn't know what to do about my wild behavior and near-serious anorexia (a good deal of this had to do with knowing I had no control over my situation at school), which naturally only made things worse. My parents didn't really understand my situation and I had no one that I could truly relate to that I felt a connection with that I could confide in, so it felt like I was in this internal prison. About a year later, I finally broke free from my confusion and turned into a realist. I wasn't bothered at all by sitting alone, in fact, I looked forward to it. My apathy towards having "friends" actually made people like me a little more. And for a time, I would make jokes and say things that people thought were so hilarious and they admired. So much so that some of the popular people came up to me and said that they never really got a chance to know me, and that they're sorry, although they never made any effort or showed any interest in letting me into their crowd. It kind of reminds me of the book, "The Hundred Dresses" in fact, it's almost exactly like my situation except it's in a different time period and culture.
I look back now and I realize how sadistically I was treated, by both adults and children, and realize how horribly WRONG I was about who I thought I was. I really believe that I am a victim of the monstrous biases in society and that I should see myself that way so that I don't lose sight of things. It's just another thing swept under the rug that is an example of how sick our culture is. What happened to me is not really bullying, it's a whole different kind of uncommon situation. I should have figured this out long ago, but my psychological problems kept me from seeing it. I think deep down all those years I was semi-aware of the truth, and I desperately wanted to face it, but with all the stress of being a social outcast and not completely understanding everything was too much. So basically because we're not of a southern baptist background, we were (and I still am) pariahs everywhere we go in this community and there is nearly nothing I can do or we could have done to change it, because once you're a pariah, it's really hard to come out of. It isn't anything that's wrong with me, it's the mob rule of our sick culture that is what's wrong. Our family has no connections to the people around here and consequently I am cut off from almost everything in society. Now the shit is really starting to hit the fan and I am freaking out because I can't make sense of my fragmented identity. I just can't understand the person I've become, it's not who I imagined I wanted to become in some ways.
It's all I can do but to cling to my "Polishness" and everything that has brought me into my situation. I want nothing more than to feel familiar with someone, which I think I would with many Polish-Americans. We tend to look similar, have similar kinds of families and interests, and sometimes even react in the same ways or have the same mannerisms. Everything is genetic, it just is. It would help reunite my sense of identity and I just hope that my special traits, my looks and my creativity, will be able to get me out of my situation somehow like my sister's smarts did for her. Whether it's attracting a good guy whose love can help fill in the holes in my life by joining in with his friends and family and establishing meaning and connections or having my own business or becoming a famous novelist I just pray that something will change.
When I look back at some of the pictures of myself when I was young it's creepy how skinny I was. I remember you could see my ribs and my face looked so gaunt. My expression was like I was in a fog from the low blood sugar I had. I was SOO delusional about my body it was just obsurd. Southern baptists tend to be fat because they eat a lot of unhealthy food, and I looked at them with disgust and was afraid of being like them. I really wanted to be accepted, but on the other hand there was a side to me that disliked them.
Polkatagalong,Try to keep your posts in the 100 - 120 word range,your first post is way too long.I'm not coming down on you;just asking you to keep that in mind.Fair enough?
I'm not offended. I can't explain my situation in 100 words, and I was using this forum partially as an outlet to rant about things I can't normally talk about in real life with people who are not Polish. Is the problem the amount of content you have to read in the thread, or just the post itself having too many characters? I can break up my posts in the future if that is what the problem is.