Bullying in Lebanese Schools

When I was in my early teens, I was constantly bullied at school. It used to bother me at first. Those words hit a spot at first. And then that spot hardened.

And I just didn’t care anymore. The insults kept coming as I grew older. And I didn’t care even more. They eventually stopped when those “friends” decided they had better things to do. But I was lucky because some people never decide they have better things to do.

That’s what’s happening to someone I really care about now in his last year of school. The words keep coming and those classmates, with their better than thou attitude, keep going unpunished. And it has been going on for a few years now.

How long should we tolerate until our schools step their foot down in the face of bullying? Why is it that the person I care about has to consider changing schools to escape the toxic environment spread by two assholes while the easiest thing would be to expel those two bastards?

Why is it that the victim of bullying in Lebanon has to be turned into submission even by the school? Why is it that our schools, with their “we are such a good environment for you kid” attitude, don’t actually care about being a good environment for the kid and turn a blind eye to what’s happening in the heart of classrooms with their beyond docile measures if faced by the kid’s parents?

The thing people tell a bullying victim is that it gets better. You tell them that those kids will always be kids. You tell them they’ll soon change. You’ll tell them that they will find people who will see them for what they are: awesome people. And they won’t believe you. And they’ll think you’re just lying to make things better.

But it really does.

My uncle was a victim of bullying. He’s now a top shot doctor in the United States, making more money than his entire class combined.

I was a victim of bullying and I now write one of the most read blogs in Lebanon in between my studies at medical school. I can’t say the same for most of those “friends.”

My late uncle was bullied because an accident when he was younger led to him losing an eye. And despite him being a brilliant student at school – they even got him to skip one class – he had to drop out because he couldn’t take it anymore. And still he managed to do well with the little time he had by making a family and starting a business that is booming today.

I have a friend who faced the same bullying because of a medical condition during middle school. And things didn’t let down until he found a bunch of friends mature enough to understand what he was going through. He’s now a top notch architect.

And the person I care about? He’ll soon go to a university that those assholes would never dream of entering and he’ll become a success in the field that he chooses.

And we’ll all go back to our school reunions and tell those suckers: Fuck you. With emphasis on every single letter. Because, well, fuck them and their demented brainless heads.

And fuck those schools that never empower the victim for fear of losing the tuition of other students. Because that’s how you build a country: by letting the weak ones be weak forever and letting the “strong” ones feel strong. Always.

Congratulations Lebanese education, you teach people three languages and a shitload of math they won’t need. But you don’t teach them compassion or tolerance or anything that they would benefit from later on. I salute you and your teachers.

Sticks and stones can break my bones but names never hurt? Yes, it’s always easy to preach. But my advice to those being bullied is the following: don’t always turn a blind eye and deaf ear as you hurt inside.


8 thoughts on “Bullying in Lebanese Schools

  1. I would have to say, it is very, very encouraging to be reading your thoughts about this matter… because I have gone through a lot of bullying in school as well…

    Basically because of my advanced knowledge of 4 different languages with perfect accent in all four! so whenever the English class begins (and I was in a french educated school), everyone would joke about how my accent is so american, and how I show off, when I actually wasn’t…

    Well let’s just say that right now, I am one of the best teachers in a school in Saudi Arabia, teaching English and soon starting a Spanish club as well… and I’m pretty damn sure that I’m getting payed a hell lot more than 90% of my senior year class.

    So, I bet they all wanna be losers like me 😉


  2. Same shit happened to me, i always had the higher grades in my classes (since the classes grades began to be considered), and i am perfectly trilingual, with the accent and stuff. Well it happened that sometimes i got afraid of participating in class from the fear of sustaining vulgar comments that i show off, comments sourced of jealousy or to get completely isolated by my classmates.

    Now as for my opinion on your post, the bullying matter is a problem everywhere, not only in Lebanon. The flaw here is that most bullying classmates are complete morons, and commit into much more delicate matters (constant class expulsions, disciplinary problems, and low grades). The schools must look into these matters to ban those students (instead of fearing to lose a paying family) for everything they have done; and this will help greatly in reducing the bullying problem in every establishment.


  3. umm, okay i seriously can relate to this..
    im in high school now..but in primary classes i was bullied.
    even in the bus.
    they called me fat, ugly, loser, a cow which is “ba2ra” in arabic. and much more hurtfull words
    i used to go back home, cry alone in my room..
    and yes..i was a shy person
    and, i never participated in class..and i was isolated by my class mates too..
    i had low self-confidence, and always felt ugly and always thought that if i die no one would even notice.. so one summer(which is 3 years ago) i decided to change, to try..to change..
    my way of dressing changed, my way of talking, i had new friends, and i expressed myself no matter what.. L.i.f.e changed a 180° and i was happy..very happy.. now no one remembers the old shy me..
    in my class now, we still have what teachers call “the clown of the class”, well..he’s not a clown he’s a stupid kid whom bullies people..
    when i see people bullying someone now, i go and back that motherfucker off because that person (that i may not know), im sure is better then him, no doubt.
    i wish i can do anything to stop this, but unfortunately lebanese ‘people’ think that teenagers can’t change something, unlike westerns..

    a blogger xxx


  4. Hi
    I would like to ask if there is any program or if there are expert people who can make presentation to students in school about Bullying?
    thank you


  5. I’m 13 . i haven’t experienced bullying maybe a little but not much. I was inspired by what you’ve written and I think there should be some type of rule in every school defending each student getting bullied instead of forcing the bullies to say sorry and later on bulling him/her over and over again. I think we should start working for this and notify schools that this is a serious matter.


  6. It’s everywhere. The united states is just as bad and even worse. In Lebanon your whole family can interfere and do some beating with “Wasta”, however in the states, if the victim defends himself then he is at fault. I worry about my children a lot, but quite frankly I,don’t give a shit, I teach my kids to know when to defend themselves and even beat up a bully even if it gets them suspended from school. I am also a feisty parent and would probably lose my shit at the school and open a case and sue them….i will not tolerate this crap.
    Back in the day, kids had some respect in lebanese schools but I was raised in mount Lebanon so most village kids were well mannered. I know in Beirut, they think their shit don’t stink. I was in LPS for 3 years, I was very young, but I,remember the kids were show offs,their parents were Assholes and the teachers were bullies.



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