Andrew Garfield is ''thankful'' he was bullied at school.

'The Amazing Spider-Man 2' actor had a tough time growing up and started to read comic books when he was picked on as a schoolboy in Surrey, South East England.

He told the Daily Mail newspaper: ''I like to say I was thankful to my school bully, because without him, I wouldn't be in this position now.

''I thought that [being sensitive] was a weakness, but I realise now those sensitivities can be real strength. Today I celebrate my sensitivities.''

The 30-year-old star, who is dating co-star Emma Stone, claims he was a ''skinny, sensitive kid'' at school and he will never forget the experience of being bullied.

He said: ''[It was] a defining experience you never forget. I have not forgotten who bullied me, but I'm not going to name and shame them.

''I know now that it goes on everywhere, and I also have more understanding of what makes a bully. They've been bullied before.''

Andrew realises today's school children also have to deal with cyber-bullying and he ''hopes parents realise what their children have access to'' on the internet.

Despite his success with the comic films, the actor also revealed he's still not often spotted by people.

He added: ''I'm not recognised much in life, which I appreciate in this age where we're so fame-obsessed. It's gone bonkers.''