Have you ever been fat shamed by a teacher?

Yes, indeed, by the Wicked Witch...a horrible old shrivelled up nun called ‘Sister Elaine' (nicknamed Sister Pain.)

Keep in mind I was just turned ten years old.

This teacher had a clear mental disorder and enjoyed being cruel and bullying towards her students. It wasn't just ‘disruptive' kids, it was all of them. If you were ‘too quiet' she hated you just as much as the class clowns, and would deliberately try to get a rise out of you by insulting you-and if you responded, you would then get a detention.

Anyway, for someone always bleating that children didn't do enough work in school, she wasted parts of our day with useless things like making us recite the lyrics in the choir's songbook, with those not in choir having to lie with their heads on their desks, writing out a story in our reader line by line in our own words or parading about learning ‘how to look like proper young ladies' (the boys got out of this, they just sat and sniggered.)

So...she decides to have one of the days when us girls had to stand in front of the boys and show we were ‘becoming young ladies.' There we were, the shy ones, like me, cringing and mortified, as we were told how to stand and improve our posture. "Hold in your stomach!" barked Sister Elaine to all of us.

A bully classmate saw a great chance to put the boot in then. Smirking smugly, she jabbed me in the gut,and said, "Yeah, hold in your stomach!"

I was a little chubby as many girls are at that age but hardly grotesquely fat. Next year I would grow at least 5 inches, lose 20 lbs overnight, and hit puberty.

Every damn kid in the class burst into hysterical laughter as if it was the funniest thing ever. I stood there mortified, trying to force back tears which would make me the target of even more jibes.

I looked over to Sister Pain-she was a strict disciplinarian, she would tell them to stop and threaten them with detentions if they didn't.

Well, Sister Pain, who was rather stout herself, stood there with her hands folded over her bulging belly, doing nothing. I looked at her face.

She was laughing.

I wrote her into my YA fantasy novel MY NAME IS NOT MIDNIGHT as the antagonist. A few folks have had trouble reading the ‘school bullying' scenes because they felt uncomfortable with them, but all were based on real events.


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