When we see Joshua Rush on television – we see strength, smiles, and positivity. However, when J-14 sat down to talk to him for an interview – the Andi Mack actor, who plays the character of Cyrus Goodman, wasn't shy to tell us about a time when school life was pretty rough.
The 16-year-old Disney Channel star tells J-14 exclusively, "I think everybody feels different once in a while. I, myself, feel different from my peers and I've been bullied. But I think the most important thing is to take after Cyrus and be unapologetically yourself. He's always him no matter what anybody tries to do to bring him down. So, I think everyone can strive to be a little more like Cyrus."
The school bullies that picked on Joshua in school did some pretty cruel things.
"They'd say plenty of things, but I distinctly remember the day I wanted to leave real school. It was in 7th grade during gym class when the teacher wasn't around. I was picked up, had my shoes taken off and tossed on the roof of the school, then I was thrown upside-down in a trash can and wheeled around the basketball courts. It was one of the lowest points of my time in school," Joshua reveals.
The star continues, "I wish I could show the kid who got thrown into a trash can where I am now. Everything that pushes me down can only make me stronger, and every new experience is something I can draw on in the future, whether it be in work, school or anywhere else."
Joshua is in a really good place, and he knows that those experiences will never keep him down. However, he does have some advice for those who could be dealing with something similar.
"In my case, the kids who bullied me were never punished for their actions, and I regret not trying to hold them accountable. Don't make the same mistake I did. Make your voice heard!"
We're so glad Joshua overcame bullying in such an inspiring way.
You can find this full story and more in the November 2018 issue of J-14 – on stands now!
Reporting credit: Shanon Maglente