Ever since I moved to Kansas in 3rd grade I have been picked on. Well, I call it "torture" because it is. Being made fun of day in and day out is torture. In my old school I was popular, happy, had a lot of friends; but at my new school I was a "geek" "fatso" "nerd", etc. Even the teachers seemed to hate me.

Slowly but surely I endured. Scared to go to school each day, where I would have to face my torturers, then I would go home each day sit in my closet with the lights off and cry. Sure I had friends but they left "dumped me" because they got popular and I ruined their cherished reputations.

By the time eighth grade rolled around and I had my share of pervert boyfriends and so-called friends who now call me choice names behind my back I had finally begun to learn and stand up for myself. I had finally realized that I couldn't go through life just putting my head down and never talking. What kind of existence would that be?

I am now almost done with my 10th grade year. Guess what? Last summer was the very first year that I had friends that had lasted through the summer. They are still my friends and I am happy because I have learned that I can't go through life with my head down and made myself believe that I am better then anyone who has ever made fun of me will ever be.

My advice is to believe that YOU are better than anyone who has ever made fun of you is ever going to be, have a vision for yourself (meaning visualize your goals: want to be a vet, have a husband and two kids and live in the suburbs of Chicago?) visualize it, because if you believe that it can be achieved (which it can no matter who you are) then you can do it.

There are tons of ways to get where you want to go, you just have to be persistent because it's a hard world out there and everyone wants to have the power. You have to make sure that YOU have the power not them. It is not ok to let them win any battles. It is very important that YOU win ALL the battles so you have the war 110%.

By Megan L., Age 16 --- Kansas