Even people that have known me all my life, do they remember it, the way I do? I remember being picked up from school, when I was about seven. A little while after having spent three days in the hospital for testing. I asked how long I'd have to get shots for. I began sobbing upon being told that it would be every other day, for upwards of ten years. I don't know if I was crying about all those needles, or if it had more to do with realizing that this wasn't something that would be cured and put behind me. This was going to be a part of my life, for quite a while.
Starting second grade, at eight years old, I looked like I was maybe five. Due to hiccups in getting treated, even my little sister was bigger and appeared older than me, by the time I was nine. It wasn't that I was short. My physiological development was entirely stunted, so I looked and sounded much younger than I was. Adults seem to have trouble grasping just how much three years matters, to little kids - and even not-so-little kids.
Getting bullied was not the issue. It felt more like I had no peers at all. A more cheerful extrovert might have been able to make up the difference, but a more cheerful extrovert, I was not. The older I got, the more this seemed to impact my social life. Not just because kids are assholes, but because it was also shaping my psychological development. I had trouble relating to them, anyhow. I sometimes wonder if hormonal deficiencies can impact neurological development, as well. The older I get, the more that seems to impact my social life.
Though I hate to admit it, I think on some level, I'm still that little kid. By the time I was fifteen, I was almost catching up. An emotional trainwreck, but just a little on the short side. The science being poorly understood as it was, I was then taken off treatment. My epiphyseal plates had just about closed. That isn't even remotely all GH does however, so I got to spend the next twenty years looking maybe fourteen years old. Least I never had to shave.
I don't know how much of my life has been shaped by that, itself. It didn't help that my mother thought it was a good idea to move from state to state, while raising kids. The few friends I did make, left behind. Again. I think all that might have fried some of the social receptors in my brain. Which then became self-reinforcing, over the years of rewiring around it.