Sunday, November 6, 2011

Celebrities who were bullied as kids

Bully-phobia: a deep-rooted fear of returning to school after summer break, due to potential hecklers and unprecedented taunts. Yeah, we've been there. So have some of the most successful humans on the planet. If you're wondering how you're going to survive another year of trash-talkers, look to the stars. They fared pretty well, despite the endless cruelty of their classmates. It seems to be a running theme: get bullied in high school for being different, become a huge success as an adult.

Exhibit A: Robert Pattinson, better known now as R-Patz. Before he was double-fisting MTV movie awards, he was getting slammed against lockers. As a kid he had bigger problems than fending off vampire impulses.

“I got beaten up by a lot of people when I was younger,” Pattinson, said in an interview with Parade. What made him a target, of course, was the same thing that made him a famous: acting. “I liked to behave like an actor, or how I thought an actor was supposed to be, and that apparently provoked a lot of people into hitting me.” Nowadays, it just provokes throngs of women to mob him.

Taylor Lautner

"I was never extremely confident," Lautner said in an interview with Rolling Stone. "Because I was an actor, when I was in school there was a little bullying going on. Not physical bullying but people making fun of what I do ... I just had to tell myself I can't let this get to me. This is what love to do. And I'm going to continue to do it." Good choice.

Christian Bale

Here's how Bale remembers his childhood: "It was not a great time. I was a victim of bullying and had other kids kicking and punching me every day." You'd think a child star, who shot to fame in Steven Spielberg's "Empire of the Sun", would be an instant locker room celebrity. But in Bale's school, it put a bully bullseye on his back. "He had a tough time at school," Bale's mom Jenny has said. "The bullying was quite bad and made him very sad. It really put him off the film and stardom thing." Spoiler alert: it didn't put him off of it for very long.

President Obama

"I have to say that with big ears and the name that I have, I was not immune. I did not emerge unscathed," Obama said at a press conference addressing the problem of school bullying. Now that he's grown up, landed on the cover of GQ, started a family with as fashion icon, and got a really, really, really good job, those bullies probably wish they were a little nicer to him.

Winona Ryder

But as a kid, her unique style made her a social outcast. "I was wearing an old Salvation Army shop boy's suit," she said in an interview. "I heard people saying, 'Hey, f----t.' They slammed my head into a locker. I fell to the ground..."

But like they say, it gets better. "Years later, I went to a coffee shop and I ran into one of the girls who'd kicked me, and she said, 'Winona, Winona, can I have your autograph?' And I said, 'Do you remember me? Remember in seventh grade you beat up that kid?' And she said, 'Kind of'. And I said, 'That was me. Go f*** yourself.'" Slow clap followed by uproarious applause, please.


As a scrawny 9-year-old, Marshall Mathers was so viciously bullied, his mom sued the Detroit school system. One particular Elementary School rival split his lip and knocked him out, according to the Smoking Gun. In another instance he came home beaten and bruised, after an encounter with his bully in a bathroom. One time he was hit with a snowball, believed to be packed with a hard enough substance to give him a concussion. It got so bad, his mom testified in court that the trauma caused him "nightmares and anti-social behavior." This was long before bullying became a national issue, worthy of serious intervention. So Mathers had to wait it out, and vent on paper. The result was the song "Brain Damage" on his chart-topping album, which publicly called out his childhood nemesis. Moral: Don't mess with a scrawny kid, or he'll have to call in the music industry for backup.

Christina Aguilera

As an aspiring teen pop star, she was the object of ridicule among her Staten Island classmates. A few tormenters would slash her tires to prevent her from getting to gigs on time and mess with her microphone to embarrass her on the stage. "There was a lot of resentment and I think there was a bit of jealousy involved," Aguilera revealed during her 'Behind the Music'. "There were threats that were made on me and my mom. They would thrash my tires if I would win a certain competition... I just remember (thinking), 'I gotta get out of here, I gotta go make my dream out there."

Mila Kunis

"I was always the smallest in my class," Kunis said in an interview with OK Magazine. "I grew into my face. I had a very funny looking face when I was little. I had like big eyes, big lips, big ears. But when I was little I was constantly being made fun of for having big eyes and that was awful. I used to come home crying: 'Why do I have big eyes?'" Turns out they come in handy on screen when you need to draw attention away from Justin Timberlake.

Lady Gaga

Gaga remembers that time not-so-fondly, as the era she was "teased for being ugly, having a big nose, being annoying." Her classmates also made fun of the way she dressed and wore makeup, because they totally knew better when it came to fashion. Yeah, right.


"In high school I wasn't a hippie or a stoner, so I ended up being the weirdo. I was interested in classical ballet and music, so the kids were quite mean if you were different," the First Lady of Pop told Vanity Fair. "I was one of those people that people were mean to."

So, as they say in the entertainment industry, she 'used it'. "I decided to emphasize my differences...If your joy is derived from what society thinks of you, you're always going to be disappointed." These days, she's rarely disappointed—not because she doesn't care what society thinks of her, but because she's freaking Madonna.

By The Bully Blog with 1 comment


These celebs who were bullied when they were kids grew up and turned out fine, while their tormentors now see that these celebs are famous and have a lot of money - and as a result, the tormentors themselves are overlooked, ignored, and sometimes even asked "Do I know you?" by someone they used to pick on, especially if that someone happens to be a celebrity.

In my mind, that's pretty neat. :)

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