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THE letter by Boarding School Survivor published by New Sunday Times (July 9) made me want to share my story and how karma keeps receipts.

Bullying cannot be stopped. I don’t see how it could, and it is rampant. It doesn’t just happen in schools, but in workplaces as well. I came across an article that said people bully because of their troubled backgrounds that create “ initiators” or “ imitators”.

In boarding schools,the seniors would bully the juniors, by tormenting those whom they feel cannot fight back.

In the cases of naval cadet Zulfarhan Osman Zulkarnain and teenager T. Nhaveen, how could they survive if they were outnumbered? These bullies are nothing but cowards.

My son’s confession, one fine morning during breakfast after the incident of these two cases of bullying, made me almost fall off my chair.

He told me that last year, when he was in Form Five, he had asked one of his juniors to carry him on his back to the third floor of their hostel. That was about 54 steps to the top floor.

While his mother is strongly against bullying, her son enjoyed a piggyback ride on his junior to the top floor.

When I asked him if he felt big for making others feel small, his answer was a definite “no”. He said it was done in jest.

My son said he experienced hazing by his seniors and had followed the tradition.

Unlike girls, boys are tight-lipped. He did not reveal anything to me in those years. This was his payback time.

How are we going to put an end to this? Soon, his junior will treat new students the same way.

Talking about karma, his victim was his bully’s younger brother. It was an arbitrary pick as he was the only boy who passed his dorm that afternoon.

My son was imitating the initiator. He and his victim eventually became friends. I have taken them out for makan-makan during outings. It was a mild case of bullying that ended well.

For teachers in boarding schools, you know what goes on in the students’ blocks behind your staff residence. Be on the alert to arrest the “harsh bully”.

For parents, let your children know that karma has no deadline or menu. If you thrive in life, your future generation may have to pay on your behalf.

Ask your elders if they would like to see their progeny end up with the fate they created.

My advice to the seniors in the boarding school is to be smart. Don’t start bullying. What goes around, comes around.

And to my son and his friends, there’s no gain being a bully.

Nazly Ahmad, Langkawi

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