Life Advice



Ask Amy: Trauma survivor wants to confront bully

By Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear Amy: I had a horrific childhood with an alcoholic, violent father who physically beat my mother, sisters and me on a regular basis. l would get so scared I would literally pee in my pants during the beatings because I thought that he would kill me, or them -- it was that bad.

When I was 9, the sexual abuse started. No one protected me.

To make matters worse, when I started the fifth grade, there was a girl who bullied me consistently, and beat me up a couple of times. She made my days hellish.

I recently found her on Facebook under a different (married) name.

I am told she is a nice person now, but I wouldn't know, because our paths haven't crossed since the end of fifth grade.

I feel such rage when I see her picture. I want to contact her and let her know about my home life and how horrible she made me feel for an entire school year.


I want to say that I never forgot her cruelty and that I am now a grown, successful woman who would "kick her behind" if I ever saw her.

She caused me so much pain, it is only fair that she suffers for what she did to me. Unfortunately, I start getting anxious. I revert back to the child that was terrified of the bully, and my monster father.

My father died suddenly, so I never got the chance to stand up to him.

I don't know if I am a coward or being kind to myself by letting sleeping dogs lie.


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