I am in the process of wriitng my second novel titled "He Was Wierd." It is about a boy with Asperger's Syndrome and a condition known as DAMP who moves to a town and gets bullied by everyone for being different and wierd to the point he eventually shoots up the school.
Many of the instances of bullying being mentioned in the story actually happened to me. What I would love to do is to use the actual names of the children who bullied me, the schools and the town where it took place. However, I have been advised by several authors and an attorney that I would not be legally allowed to do this. If I named anyone, I could be sued for defimation, especially if I named the schools or the town. As I result, I have substituted names, but they are only disguised enough that a clever person would catch on to what I am referring to.
My worry is that is this enough. I suffered for three years and part of me believes that because I face lawsuits if I name names, that in a way, the bullies win again. They may never read about what they did and so they get away with it and will never appreciate nor repent for what they put me through. I realise that I am coming across as playing the victim here, but I just feel that it is a little bit unfair.
Let me know your thoughts.