By now most of the modern world has heard about the tragedy of Amanda Todd. A young British Columbian girl who took her life last Wednesday, as a final escape from the torment others were putting her through. The kind of bullying this poor child had to endure, was awful. She had made some mistakes as a child, unfortunately they had very long lasting effects, her mistakes followed her, because we as a society allowed them to follow her.
In the days of all this cyber bullying you simply can not get away from it. Once a photo or video is out there is is out there for ever. Even if you personally delete it some one may have already taken a copy. Though there could have been a stop to the torment and bullying. If people stopped "sharing" before they think, maybe this could have been stopped. If we as a society said no! No more, this was something that happened in the past lets move on.
When I was in school the internet was really just starting to catch on. There was nothing like Facebook, closest you got was Myspace. When someone made a mistake you were at times judged and picked on, but the once it got old it usually stopped. If it was so bad that you had to move schools very rarely would it follow you. Now though, simple click and shares, run your torment not just through your personal life but the entire world.
Still even after this poor child has done away with her life to try and get away from this, now her family is having to endure the torture. Every day there are new groups of people, commeters, who are keeping the violence going. Harsh words like "drama queen", "Glad she is dead", "slut", "she deserved it", are still continuing to be said. This is awful and brings tears to my eyes and pain in my heart. I can only begin to imagine what her mother feels reading these words about her lovely baby girl. This needs to stop and there needs to be a real change. It needs to start in the home, in all of our homes.
We need to change our world and our views. We need to not just say " stop bullying" or wear a pink shirt. We need to think, think about our actions. Think about the words we say to our children and each other.
We need to stop judging others where we may have also failed. We need to stop allowing victims to keep being victimized. We need to stop the continual cycle of saying it's okay and that you were justified in what you said.
We need to speak to our children in ways that teach them how to speak to others. We should not abuse our spouses or others around us. We need to model the behavior we want our children to show. If we want our children to use kind words and appropriated language to other then we should use it towards then. Our words need to start showing in our actions. We need to lift up, instead of pull down.
I have been a victim of bullies, school yard bullies and a bullies in my very own home. I know the pain of having someone tell you that the world would be better off if you were dead. I have been hit, threatened, screamed at, and made to feel like nothing is worth living. I have been to the brink of thinking about ending it. It is no a fun or joyous place to be. It is dark and very scary. The physical scar is faded but the one on my heart may never truly heal. I am now in a place where those thought are not permitted in my mind because I know right now what I have to live for, that I matter.
Though for a young child a teenager who is tormented sometimes when enough people make you feel like shit and just keep telling you to die. That looks like a real option. Please change you attitudes, change your words. This does not have to happen anymore. It doesn't matter why they are being bullied, it NEEDS TO STOP.
This starts right now with me, and can continue to you. Are you just going to say the words or are you actually going to make a change in this world?