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Monday, April 2, 2012

You know how I feel about bullies.



Thanks to The Bully Project for sponsoring my writing. Visit their website to join the movement and learn more.

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Just recently I wrote about bullying. When I wrote that post, there was a resounding theme in the comments--many of us went through the same thing. Different stories, yes--but a form of bullying to some degree? Absolutely. Many of you have been there. Many of you know how difficult it is. Many of you, like me, fear for your children growing up in a world where bullying exists so hardcore.

A few of you even mentioned to me about The Bully Project. To go watch the trailer, because, dude, this totally applies to what you wrote. And so I did. And it moved me. And then a few days later I saw the family who this film is based around (whose son took their life due to extreme bullying) on Ellen. And it moved me.

And so, I want to share with you this trailer today, and it's only a few minutes long--but you've gotta check it out. Go see the documentary, but to get a feel, watch this first:



I was part of a school district while teaching who was big, big, big on Anti-Bullying. I know many schools are continuing this trend, some having anti-bully coordinators and such, leading school events about bullying, having a zero-tolerance rule when it comes to bullying, etc. I have to say, it's refreshing to know that some schools are going the distance for our kids. They're doing what they can. And yet, there are still so many that are not. I believe strongly that this also has to do with parenting. Educating your children on respect, differences that exist, and that differences are OKAY.

Me. Halloween. About 5 or 6 years old
It's hard to imagine a kid at only 5 or 6 years old is getting bullied by classmates, so called friends, or even family (cousins, etc). But? It happens. It needs to stop. Let's become a world that doesn't tolerate this anymore or just brush it off as kids being kids. It's a poor, sick excuse--and we can all do our part.

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I was selected for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective. Find showings in your area for The Bully Project and buy tickets here.

13 comments:

  1. Such an awful trend happening! My brother's girlfriend went to a Catholic high school and was beat up in the locker room. They have it on camera and they know EXACTLY who the kid was who did it? Did they do anything about it? Not a thing. Her and her brother transferred to another Catholic school in the area and are much happier. Another girl I know went to the same high school and was raped. She didn't tell her parents immediately because she was scared. After admitting to what happened, multiple other girls came forward saying the same guy raped them too. The school did absolutely nothing about it. So sad and it needs to stop! Thank you for writing about this!

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  2. I took a grant and proposal writing course a couple semesters ago and the grant I proposed was to get funding for an anti-bullying program for a school district outside of Harrisburg where a young boy killed himself by walking 2+ miles to a highway and jumped in front of a truck (not sure if you remember that story in the news). At first I attempted to write it for a school district in our county, or one close by, but since this area seems to be funded better (or more wealthy) then our neighbors in central PA, every school had an anti-bullying program in place (which was good to know). But then I came upon the story of this boy from Harrisburg and in my research I was pretty surprised at the lack of action of the school.
    Also, my dad has been working on research with a writer who is writing about Polly Prince, the girl in Massachusetts that committed suicide after being bullied.
    Where am I going with this? I don't know. It is just a topic that is discussed a lot in our family and something that needs to change but to do so, awareness and education has to be available for everyone. Thank you for doing your part and spreading the word on the importance and devastation that comes with allowing bullying to go on.
    *ps. in my dad's research he found that a higher percentage of the time that kids commit or attempt to commit suicide, it is not just for because of the bully(s)themself, but also for their "friends" that just stood by and did not say anything (mostly because they are afraid of being bullied themselves) so we need to teach not only about not bullying but to stand up for someone who is and speak up. Which I am sure is much easier to do as a 30yo then a 12yo.
    and feel free not to post this because I rambled on and it is long and I should have just emailed you!
    xo!

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  3. That trailer gave me chills. Bullying worries me so much from BOTH ends!!! Will my boys be bullied? Will they be the bullies?!? The whole "boys will be boys" is a load of shiznit! This starts at home. Teaching our kids to respect one another, themselves, adults....all starts in the home. No one person is better than another. It breaks my heart to see that pic of "5 year old Katie" and to know there are little ones being picked on. :( Gosh. So so horrible!

    I pray my boys grow up to be the good people the Lord intended them to be w/ our guidance. The not so fun part of parenting.

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  4. Thanks for posting this and the movie trailer. I must live under a rock because of had never heard of this before. I WILL go see this movie. The trailer moved me. It saddens me to think that things like this could happen to my girls and I am trying to educate them on how to deal. Knowledge is power. Thank you.

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  5. I cannot understand this trend of kids thinking it's cool to beat people up and post it on youtube! Especially among girls! Violence seems be getting worse among teens. We need to teach that bullying is unacceptable from the youngest age possible.

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  6. This is, #1, my main goal for my boys. To teach them to be KIND to others, regardless of differences. It's why I send them to the school I do, where many, many children with varying abilities and disabilities go. It's why we talk openly and respectfully about people with differences that we see out and about. Am I perfect at this? Absolutely not. But nothing makes me prouder than when the boys' teachers tell me that they can always count on both of them to be kind to their friends. I'll take that over perfect grades and awesome sports talent any day. A to the men, sister. Preach on.

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  7. I pray about this problem every single day of my life. At the age of 7, my daughter told me that she wanted to kill herself. It was the worst day of my life to hear those words come from my precious little girl. Life has been so very hard for her at school. I am happy to say that with our help and with the help of the school, we are making strides, but I worry about her every day and I hate that I can't be by her side at school and out in the world. Kids can be so harsh and mean sometimes and I just fear it will get worse for her as she gets older (she is almost 10 now).

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  8. HI Katie,

    While I see that you taught in a district that promoted the whole anti-bullying thing. Please don't say that every school follows suit.

    My sons who are now 15 and 12, have been bullied to the point where my son, the 15 year old, thought about ending his life because of it. The teachers told me time and time again that this stuff just doesn't happen in our schools and he is making this up. Wrong on SO many levels. I had (and had no other choice) but to pull him from public school and home school him and his younger brother.

    I went to the administration, the teachers, principal, school board members and got the same answer "We will look into it" or "this stuff never happens in front of us" The bullying will not happen in front of teachers and the like.

    I want to see the movie that you have in the post, but I think it will hit a horrible nerve with me. I appreciate you doing a post on this.

    Kelly
    Who was also a "survivor" of being bullied for 12 years in school and beyond.

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  9. Dude, I just bust out in tears after watching that. Kids are so so cruel and it all starts at home. Makes me sick. The rage that builds up inside me thinking about that happening to any kid, but especially MY kid, is UNhealthy and certainly UNchristian. Now I need to go calm down and love on my girl...

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  10. This kills me. I was bullied pretty hardcore in Middle School. And I just pray that Chloe doesn't have to deal with the same stuff when she gets older. It's hard to deal with. And I was even at the point where I would cry everyday to my Mom that I didn't want to go to school. But I had to. It wasn't fun.

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  11. can't wait to see this movie! hope it actually changes some of those mean kids.

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  12. I've actually seen the movie as I work for a company that shows pre-screenings of movies and I have to say it is incredibly heartbreaking. It is a great movie but it was hearbreaking and you will definitely cry.

    Bullying is something that I struggle with so much having working in schools with bullies so this movie hit home in a major way.

    I highly recommend it and I think its great that you are bringing awareness to it! :)

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  13. Thank you for posting this Katie!

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