Sex Education’s Aimee Lou Wood Confronted High School Bully Who Mocked Her Teeth
Sex Education’s Aimee Lou Wood said she would advise people to contact their school bullies, after she recently reconnected with someone who mocked her for her teeth.
The 25-year-old, who plays Aimee Gibbs in the hit Netflix show, opened up about her insecurities and childhood experiences in a recent interview, where she described confronting her bully as ‘cathartic’.
Aimee admitted she immediately related to the character of Aimee in Sex Education but, even so, she auditioned to play Lily – a role that was given to Tanya Reynolds – because she thought Netflix ‘wouldn’t cast someone with goofy teeth as the popular girl’.
Speaking to The Guardian, Aimee explained:
Aimee is one of the popular girls and I just had this complex.
Though she explained her love for acting flourished while at school, it was also there Aimee faced some more difficult experiences.
Wood grew up in Stockport, UK, and was sent to an independent secondary school where the kids were ‘all posher’ than her.
She described how the mother of one of her friends would ‘take the p*ss’ out of her accent, adding:
I was getting so badly bullied, but I pretended none of it was bothering me.
One boy in particular mocked Wood’s teeth, with the actor recalling how he called her ‘Bugs Bunny all the time’.
Years later, Aimee decided to reconnect with the boy and confront him about the cruel things he’d said – a decision which turned out to be very beneficial.
I messaged him and he said he thought about it a lot and felt guilty. It was a catharsis. I would advise people to talk to their school bullies. The chances are they are now adults who feel really bad about it.
At school, Aimee managed to make friends by ‘being the class clown’; a persona that led to acting. She went on to the Oxford School of Drama, then to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA), where she enjoyed surrounding herself with new people.
I thought everyone was going to take the piss out of my Stockport accent again, but my group couldn’t have been 28 more different people. My best friend had been to prison. I thought it was amazing, and I felt way less alone.
Starring in Sex Education helped further boost the actor’s confidence, as the nudity required in the show encouraged her to reveal ‘certain parts of [herself]’ which she previously hadn’t thought ‘worthy of being seen’.
Aimee’s experiences are certainly relatable, and will no doubt inspire people who have struggled with self-confidence and bullying. Her looks, accent and personality are all vital to who she is.
If you’ve been affected by bullying and want to speak to someone in confidence, contact Bullying UK (part of Family Lives) on 0808 800 2222. The helpline service is open 9am–9pm Monday to Friday and 10am–3pm Saturday and Sunday.