Before Rachel turned to Singapore Children’s Society, she had low self-esteem and was very pessimistic.
At the tender age of 11, Rachel had to deal with the pressure of being bullied in school. Like all bully victims, Rachel was often filled with terror and dread when she had to report for school. At her wits end, she decided to turn to Tinkle Friend Helpline, where she knew a listening ear would be waiting for her. There, she poured out all her sorrows and worries about the problems she had been facing.
Her nightmare started when she was asked to move her seat to the front of the classroom due to her being unable to see what was on the board. That fateful day was when Joyce and Terrence, the two classmates seated right in front of her, decided to terrorize Rachel. She pleaded with Joyce and Terrence to leave her alone, but to no avail. Both her bullies said they would only stop if Rachel gave them 30 cents every single day. Afraid and at a loss for a solution, Rachel agreed to give them a portion of whatever little pocket money she had every single day.
This went on for three months before Rachel decided to open up and confide in a Social Worker from Tinkle Friend Helpline. Previously, Rachel would often verbalise thoughts like “things would be better if I don’t exist”. However, since contacting Tinkle Friend Helpline, Rachel finally found a supportive confidant whom she could pour her grievances to. Our Social worker taught her positive self-talk to boost her confidence, and gradually changed Rachel’s perspective towards her problems.
From our social worker’s support and guidance, Rachel started believing in herself again and learnt how to take charge of the situation instead of avoiding it. She finally plucked up the courage to relate her problems to her Form Teacher. Talks of punishments soon ensued; however, Rachel decided to forgive her bullies and made peace. She even rejected her two classmates when they offered to return her all the money they have taken from her. Due to our social worker’s guidance, Rachel even managed to befriend her classmates who used to be her bullies.
In Rachel’s own words, “I am not afraid anymore and I feel very happy now. It feels as if I have regained my freedom. I have also learned how to stand up for myself. I wish to thank my helpful social worker.”
*Rachel’s name has been changed to protect her identity.