it is unbelievable how far people will go to hurt others. it is infuriating to me to read things like this story about a 15 year old girl who hung herself after being bullied online, via text messages, and in school by 9 of her classmates. why did they bully her? because she was different.
phoebe prince had just moved with her family from ireland to western Massachusetts. seeing she was different, these 9 students took it upon themselves to ridicule and torment her. three months enduring horrible rumors and grief from these people, she took her life by hanging herself from a stairwell.
on the day of her death it was found that students had harassed her in the library, the lunchroom and the hallways, and someone threw a canned drink at her as she was walking home from school.
these actions disturb me, but they remind me of my own troubles as a teenager as well. i was harassed in very similar ways for the simple fact that i was different. i was not a christian, i did not go to church, my family was not rich, and we were very quiet people. i was beaten up daily, from second grade, all the way up to my last years of highschool. my little brother dropped out in his senior year due to the treatment he endured, and i at one point had to be escorted to classes by the school police officer in order to make it from class to class without being shoved against lockers or have things thrown at me.
my senior year of highschool, i wrote a paper that shocked a lot of people, but also opened the eyes of the faculty and student body. my paper was entitled "why columbine happened." yes it was written partly to shock people, but also because i believe that things like that, and these suicides, could be prevented, if the school system, and parents, did not turn a blind eye to bullying.
the two boys that opened fire on their classmates on april 20, 1999, were mentally disturbed, however, their situations were worsened by the fact that their classmates ridiculed them, and abused them so severely, that they lashed out the way they did. its like throwing things at a wild animal.
some people lash out violently. some people go home and hang themself. i was strong, and i held my head up and i said:
you can call me any name you want.. but at least i'm not a bully.
bullies are everywhere. not just in high schools. there are even so called adults who do these things as well. i have learned that people who bully others are nothing more than attention starved people, who most likely have low self esteem themselves. they feel they should push others around to make themselves feel big. in truth they are very small.
so, if you are being bullied, threatened, harassed, anything... please keep your chin up, and remember that at least you are not a bully. and please also remember that harassment online is a serious offense and depending on your state the people who are harassing you can be fined a large sum of money or even go to jail.
if your child is being bullied in school or anywhere, take action. don't just sit there and let it happen. go to their school and demand something be done to put a stop to it. my parents were at my school so many times to stop people from bullying me, but when i was a teenager they didn't have the laws that they do now. these days bullies can be punished, and laws have been set up to protect people from harassment.
i am proud to be a part of pink shirt day in second life (please contact December Dollinger for more information) it isn't until April 14th but i read that article today and i was appalled, and i wanted to write something.
also YES you have permission to use this! spread it around! NO MORE BULLIES!