Andy is the quiet member of our bunch. He was not very confident after having a few bad bullying experiences at school. He took up Tae Kwon-do, a martial art, two years ago to improve his confidence and raise his self esteem. He passed his grading last month and now has a red tag belt. Congratulations Andy! He is competing in the TAGB World Championships in September where he will perform his favourite pattern Yul Gok. Good Luck Andy!
This is Andy Apricot’s story in his own words:
Hi, I am Andy Apricot and I used to be bullied. There used to be a gang of boys at school who teased me and kicked me. It made me feel really sad and lonely. It gave me a real drop in my confidence and made me worried when they came near me.
One time they got me in the school toilets and they tried to hurt me but I ran outside. One of the boys caught me and they kicked me and punched me.
The leader of the gang went to a club outside of school and he was put in my group. When we were having problems putting a tent up, he blamed me and teased me. This made me worried and I didn’t want to go back to school again.
I got all this sorted out by telling my friends and we told a teacher. They spoke to the bullies and sorted the bulling issues out.
I still had a major drop of confidence though. This is when I started Tae Kwon-do where I learnt to defend myself and it put my confidence right up. I am now a black tag belt and I have entered two competitions and won one trophy.
Andy could not understand why a group of children could be so horrible to him when he had done nothing to them. He thought it was his fault, that he was doing something wrong. Bullying is NEVER the victim’s fault but it has taken Andy a long time to realise this.
Andy was very brave and went to his first Tae Kwon-do class in May 2008. He was very nervous and watched the first few classes before eventually joining in.
Since that time, Andy has gone to classes regularly two to three times a week and loves it. He now stands tall, shoulders back, with confidence and his self esteem has steadily increased.
His achievements include:
Andy is very proud to be a black belt.
Andy is now in his second year of Edinburgh University studying Computer Science. He still does get nervous sometimes but on the whole he is confident and has lots of friends. He is loving his new life!