As terrible allegations of school violence and bullying pile up in the Korean entertainment world, thought it might be a good time to share one from the other side, as a schoolmate of TVXQ’s Yunho recently recalled the time when Yunho stood up for him after he was a victim of school violence.
There are a lot of bullying allegations against celebrities and athletes these days. It’s because of these cases that I remembered my own personal experience with bullying that I had forgotten about. It happened in middle school. I have always been introverted and shy. Due to my personality, even if my friends joked around and hit me, I never got upset or said anything. Now that I look back on it, I realize how foolish I was.
One day, a classmate of mine hurt my arm with a knife-like instrument. I was so stupid that I didn’t realize that I was a victim of school violence and just brushed it off as a joke. Eventually, our homeroom teacher found out about it and that’s when I realized I was being bullied. After receiving counseling, I found out that I was a victim of school violence and that was painful to admit. I felt so stupid that I cried uncontrollably. I thought about dropping out of school. Perhaps the most difficult part about the entire situation was thinking about my classmates’ reactions. They looked at me like I was stupid and that thought was more painful than the actual violence.
To get to the point of my story, Yunho went to the same middle school. We weren’t in the same class so we were never able to become close. He was the popular guy at our school and he always danced for all our school festivals. He was an idol-like schoolmate. One day, he saw my injured arm and grabbed it. He asked me, ‘was it that guy who did this to you? Do you want me to punish him?’ I was shy and embarrassed so I told him it was okay since it happened in the past. His words, however, became a tremendous strength in my heart. It was thanks to him that I did not drop out of school and that I was able to graduate safely.
Now I have a beautiful family and I am living well. The reason I decided to write these words was due to the rising bullying allegations in our nation. School violence needs more attention and the bullying victims need support from people like Yunho. I wasn’t able to thank you back then so here I am saying it now. Every time you come on my television screen, I cheer you on. I wanted everyone to know what an amazing and loyal friend you were.
Along with the story, the former schoolmate attached a photo of their middle school yearbook as proof.
Yunho has always seemed like a cool dude, but his response did make me think he was gonna go murder the dude.