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by Jesse Starling

Well this one is a little personal and to be honest a little hard to write without it bringing up memories of a time that wasn’t great but I know somewhere, someone needs to hear this.

This may not only happen in school, it can happen in the workplace, the sports arena or even within a local community. 

For me it was the schoolyard, school for most people will hold some of their very best and worst memories. For many, school is a place of laughter, fun, learning and growing alongside some lifelong friends. Not everyone gets the joy of this their entire schooling life. Globally 1 in every 5 students gets bullied, and only 30% of these students are brave enough to report their experiences. 

I have been in a place where I didn’t feel brave enough to stand up for myself with what was happening to me. Where I cried each morning begging my parents not to go to school. Where I was made to feel worthless, alone and without a voice daily. Where that final school bell was never near enough.

These are a few things that I know now that will hopefully help you see that there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Firstly, in 3-5 years time you will be a completely different person, so all those times you think to yourself that you’re never going to get through this and the crying and pain won’t ever stop, trust me it will. 

Now I know that’s hard to believe but I am a completely different person now to who i was back then. I was a fragile little girl, who had her self confidence stripped from her, someone who was too scared to stand up for herself, never in my wildest dreams did think I would actually finish school.

Now I am a strong woman who isn’t afraid to stand up and speak for herself, I don’t care about what other people say, I am confident, beautiful and I know my self worth and as of last year I completed high school and this year created my own online Mag with my sister.

Surround yourself with strong women or men in your life, i was lucky enough to have 4 beautiful strong women who helped me get through my hard times. They are a constant reminder that life does go on and that school isn’t the be all and end all. They taught me that I am worth so much more than words thrown out of others’ mouths and that I can own my own choices and who I surround myself with is who I become.I have since grown that circle of 4 to many more amazing humans and couldn’t be happier.

If you haven’t already, find something that lights up your soul. Use the ocean or somewhere that feels like a home away from home as an escape mechanism. For me without the ocean I wouldn’t be where I am today. I dove into it everyday letting the salt water balance me and cleanse away any negativity from the day.

Another great daily ritual is a gratitude book. Every day I wrote down three positive things about my day because it can be easy to get stuck in a negative headspace. It could have been as simple as the sky was blue but it was just enough to raise my spirits a little. 

Last but definitely now least Please remember that you are not a problem, nowhere even close to being a problem. But if someone is causing a problem for you please do not be scared to reach out to someone because nine times out of ten they can help you. If you don’t have someone close that you feel like reaching out to such as a family member or a friend, just remember that there are other options out there such as beyond blue and lifeline hotlines.

Sometimes life throws weird little curveballs at you. Those times, those girls even though they hurt me so much, moulded me into who I am today. Strong, confident, patient and full hearted. Ready to take on the world and help others do the same.

Remember you’ve got this, you will get through this and you will be stronger for it xo



  • Good for you Jess ❤ It sucks so bad that you’ve had to experience that, and be treated that way but never doubt the amazing woman you’ve become xx

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