06 April 2010

Twenty Years later...it does get better.

I think lately many of us have been in mind of young Phoebe Prince, the poor teenager who took her own life after a long period of bullying at school. I myself have joined the Facebook group Young Adult Authors Against Bullying, where a bunch of YA authors write our feelings about bullying and how we can stop it. We find that many of us were the victims of teasing or bullying in our own youth, which may explain quite a lot.

This whole new phenomenon of kids killing themselves because people harrass them literally to death is terribly disturbing, and I really wish I could just talk to those kids out there that are being bullied.

It does get better. Not that I condone bullying on any level or in any form whatsoever. And I know what it's like to be teased over your hair, clothes, glasses, weight, intelligence, and things that people just make up to say about you, just to make themselves feel superior. I have been there. Years and years and years of it. I was tortured by various and sundry people over every little thing. Called names. I know kids are used to adults saying they understand when they really don't.

I really do.

But I want to tell all those kids out there to just hang on, to just tune it out or do whatever they have to to survive. Because it will get better. I'm about to attend my 2oth High School reunion. I've seen quite a lot of my classmates over the years, and history tends to rewrite itself after two decades. The guys that wouldn't give me the time of day, the jocks who teased, walked up to me and hugged me as if we had been best friends. Those perfect girls, the ones who seemed to have it all, peaked in High School. It was all downhill for them after that; not in a necessarily bad way, but they don't have the power that they used to.

At my 10 year reunion I actually had someone come and apologize for how he treated me back then. We all grew up. I talk to so many people now that could have easily thrown me off the deep end back then if I had let them. That's the point. Eventually High School ends. Eventually you all move on and grow up and get married and have families and when you meet again you are different people. But if you end your own life because of them, then they win. Don't get me wrong, there are still some people that remain bullies. I know of at least one that still is, but the rest of us are adults now, so they don't have any power over us. They're just annoying now.

You need to be able to grow up and see how it all turns out twenty years from now. It's worth it.
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