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Sunday, October 3, 2010

It Gets Better. My $500 Pledge Has Now Grown to $775!


Today I will not have my usual WTFckery Sunday post, but instead I feel the need to bring to light a very sad and heartbreaking epidemic that has swept the nation this week. This is in regards to bullying and the consequences that the victim of a bully will do to themselves, as a final last resort because they can no longer take the pain and suffering due to the heartless and cruel acts people have done to them in return.

The last straw for most of these victims is suicide. This is with the recent suicide deaths of young gay teens who feel they have no other choice but to take their lives because those who have bullied them have driven them to it.

The cases reported this week are tragic:

15-year-old Billy Lucas hanged at his grandmother’s house himself because of being tormented for years due to his possible sexual orientation.

13-year-old Asher Brown shot himself in the head with his stepfather’s 9mm Beretta after constant harassment during an 18 month period from students at his middle school because Asher was gay.

13-year-old gay teen Seth Walsh hung himself because he could no longer deal with the bullying.

Tyler Clementi, an 18-year-old Rutgers University student jumped off the George Washington Bridge to his death after he found out that his roommate allegedly filmed him twice during a gay sexual encounter and transmitted it online.

My heart breaks for these young men, who because of the selfish and petty actions of others, ended their lives because they thought it couldn’t get better, and that they believed they will always be the victims of small minded people, who lash out because of their own self-esteem issues and fears over someone being different.

I’m here to tell you that it does get better. I’m living proof of this. I’m a survivor of bullying. My bullying started when I was 6 years-old. I wasn’t bullied because of my sexual orientation, but because others thought I was awkward looking and found a reason not to like me period, I was spit on, told I was stupid, ugly, fat and no one wanted to be my friend. At 9-years-old I was forced into a school bathroom and almost raped by an older boy who bullied me every day. It escalated to the point that by the time I was 12, I was told by more than one person that it would be better if I kill myself because no one cared if I was alive.

Me at 12-years-old with constant thoughts of suicide

I took those words to heart and almost killed myself twice. The first time was almost walking into traffic and hoping a car will hit me and kill me. The second time, which I have never mentioned until now, was when I took a knife from my kitchen drawer, went up to my bedroom while my parents were downstairs, sat on my bed and placed the knife against my wrist. I sat there with tears rolling down my cheeks, ready to slit my wrists because the bullying grew so bad. I sat there with a million thoughts running through my head. How much will it hurt? How long will it take me to die? Will my mother ever forgive me after I’m gone because of the bloodstains on the sheets? I kept thinking, I’m only 12, it has to get better… it has to get better… it must get better.

I then lay back on my bed and thought of all the things I wanted to do that I wouldn’t be able to do it I killed myself. I thought about my parents and my sister who did love me and wouldn’t want me to do this. If I killed myself, I wouldn’t be able to learn to drive a car, go to college, see the world, write a book and go back to Disney World a second time. And that one phrase, “it will get better” repeated my head. With that in mind, I put down the knife and decided I wanted to live. I refused to be a victim to those small minded people. My revenge against my abusers would be to live a full life. If it pained and disgusted them for me to be alive and for them to see me, so be it. I had won against my abusers simply by living and them having to see me every day. It took me a very long time to be comfortable in my own skin and to be proud of the person I am. But this is who I am, and no one ever again will make me think less of myself.

The first two decades of our lives should be the most amazing ones we will ever live. A child, who then becomes a teen should not have to go through such abuse. Those years are supposed to be the happiest of our lives.

Suicide is not the answer. Those who bully will feel no remorse over their victims taking their own lives. Suicide isn’t a cure. Ending your life isn’t the answer. Living your life on your own terms and loving who you want and in your own way is the answer. There will always be small-minded people, as well as bullies in this world, but the way to combat them is to not feel  worthless. Even though you feel you are all alone and no one will understand, I’m here to tell you that there are people who do care will stand beside you regardless of who you are, what you look like, and who you love.

Thanks to LB Gregg and Kris at Kris “n” Good books, they made me aware of a new momentum rising up called “It Gets Better” started by the columnist Dan Savage because of the suicide of Billy Lucas.

“I wish I could have talked to this kid for five minutes. I wish I could have told Billy that it gets better. I wish I could have told him that, however bad things were, however isolated and alone he was, it gets better.

But gay adults aren't allowed to talk to these kids. Schools and churches don't bring us in to talk to teenagers who are being bullied. Many of these kids have homophobic parents who believe that they can prevent their gay children from growing up to be gay—or from ever coming out—by depriving them of information, resources, and positive role models.

Why are we waiting for permission to talk to these kids? We have the ability to talk directly to them right now. We don't have to wait for permission to let them know that it gets better. We can reach these kids.

So here's what you can do, GBVWS: Make a video. Tell them it gets better.

I've launched a channel on YouTube—www .youtube.com/itgetsbetterproject—to host these videos. My normally camera-shy husband and I already posted one. We both went to Christian schools and we were both bullied—he had it a lot worse than I did—and we are living proof that it gets better. We don't dwell too much on the past. Instead, we talk mostly about all the meaningful things in our lives now—our families, our friends (gay and straight), the places we've gone and things we've experienced—that we would've missed out on if we'd killed ourselves then.

"You gotta give 'em hope," Harvey Milk said.

Today we have the power to give these kids hope. We have the tools to reach out to them and tell our stories and let them know that it does get better. Online support groups are great, GLSEN does amazing work, The Trevor Project is invaluable. But many LGBT youth can't picture what their lives might be like as openly gay adults. They can't imagine a future for themselves. So let's show them what our lives are like, let's show them what the future may hold in store for them.

~Give 'Em Hope, Dan Savage”

I want to do my part not only for the “It’s Get Better” initiative, but to bring to light that bullying in any form is despicable and sickening, especially against those teens who are trying to come to terms with their sexual orientation in some places where being gay, unique and wonderfully eccentric is frowned upon and thought evil.

For every comment left here, I will donate a dollar a comment up to $500. 

This just in...**I'm pleased to announce that now the donation is $600 thanks to JMC of bookrelated (@jmc_bks on twitter) will donate $100 on top of my $500.**

**Author Carrie Lofty will donate $50 on top of my donation to The Trevor Project**

**M/M author Alex Beecroft will donate $100 on top of my donation**

**Author Leah Braemel will denote $25 on top of my donation**

500 comments = $775


$250 will go to The Trevor Project, “the leading national organization focused on crisis and suicide prevention efforts among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) youth.”


$250 will go to the Matthew Shepard Foundation was founded by Dennis and Judy Shepard in memory of their 21-year old son, Matthew, who was murdered in an anti-gay hate crime in Wyoming in October 1998. Their mission is to “educate and enlighten others on the importance of diversity, understanding, compassion, acceptance and respect.”

Please help me reach my goal. I would love to be able to send out these checks by the end of the month.You can simply comment with a greeting, or tell your own story as a survivor of bullying, or knowing others who have bee bullied.

And by putting down that knife and not cutting my wrists I was able to learn to drive a car, go to college, see the world, went onto to not only write a book, but to publish five in total so far.

And not only did I go back to Disney World twice, but a third time, almost ten years to the day I decided to live and where IT DID GET BETTER!

Dan Savage and his husband's video on how it got better for them:




Update:
Mandi from Smexybooks has decided to donated $50 on her own to The Trevor Project.
J.P Barnaby, author of  the GLBT YA book Enlightened (Little Boy Lost series #1) , will donate half of her royalities for the month October to The Trevor Project.
Fiction Vixen has decided to donate $50 on her own to The Trevor Project.
Author Lila DiPasqua has decided to donate $40 on her own to The Trevor Project.

Katiebabs

531 comments:

jedisakora @ The Little Corner of the World said...

How very sad to hear.

Wendy said...

It saddens me to see this happen.. Bullying should never be allowed! Great cause, Katie. *hugs*

Dee Carney said...

Thank you for doing this.

dafaolta said...

I was bullied too, in grade school and I though of suicide. We have to help kids who can't see that the dark tunnel has an end, to find the corner that leads them out.

heidenkind said...

Brilliant, KB! I hope you get 500 comments. Bullying in schools is definitely something that should not be tolerated, especially by school officials.

Pam said...

Thank you for doing this.

shayera said...

Wonderful causes, Katie. Thank you for this.

Stacy~ said...

Kate you've always rallied for those less fortunate or those in pain. You are a kind-hearted woman with a courageous spirit. Let's help end the hate and show some love.

lbgregg said...

As a mother of two children who were bullied in middle school--I commend your money where your mouth is attitude, KB. I learned of The Trevor Project through my Gays of Our Lives friends, most particularly from Dennis Grabosch himself who took my hand and said--we have to do more.

Thanks KB.

Those who can, please consider donating or spreading the word about the vital work of both TTP and the Matthew Shepard Foundation.

It gets better.

xo

LB

Marq said...

I am in tears. No child should have to suffer because they are different. I have a son who just started middle school and bullying is my number one fear. I've spoken to him many times about bullying, telling him to not participate regardless of what his friends are doing and if he is being bullied, to us immediately.

Again, great post and thank you for sharing.

RKCharron said...

Thank you for the honest heartfelt post. I hope a lot of bullied children and teens get to read it. It speaks heart-to-heart.
Thank you very much for sharing,
Love & Best Wishes,
Rob

Fiction Vixen said...

Thank you for sharing Kate and thank you for your commitment to speaking out and doing something to help. xoxo

Anonymous said...

Delurking just to say: This is a powerful project and it's wonderful that you're participating in this way. There are so many kids who feel isolated and it is our responsibility as adults and the ones who survived to show them the way through. Warmest regards! -SB

merith said...

Thank you for posting this. I too was bullied, not quite to the extend you have or to the extend Billy, Asher, Seth and (possibly) Tyler has.

Good luck! I will spread the word.

Kate Richards said...

Big hugs Kate! These kids need all of our support.

Penny said...

Great, courageous post! Good luck reaching your goal!

MsM (Elizabeth Jules Mason) said...

What a touching post about learning for yourself that "it gets better"- the message needs to get out there, as does the message that bullying is WRONG and needs to stop!
(((big smooches KB)))


MsM

Blodeuedd said...

I am so sorry that happened to you katie *hugs* and even more it breaks my heart what bullying led to with these boys.
Brave post. I wish people would stand up when they see someone bullied

Liza said...

Go Katiebabs!!! Awesome post. Unfortunately bullying is a huge problem. Maybe with more awareness, one day it will no longer be an issue.

Tina Donahue said...

No child should be bullied for any reason. Thanks for your wonderful project, Kate. :)

Laura McMeeking said...

I'm so thankful that I was never a victim of bullying. I was never popular, but I was never bullied either. I was lucky. It's so very sad that these kids felt they had no where to turn and no recourse to the bullying that was done to them. Thank you for telling your story and being a total inspiration!

Jambrea said...

Thank you for sharing and putting this out there. What a wonderful thing you are doing.

That video is great. There is another I saw too that is awesome.

It is so sad that there is still this much hate in the world. People should be able to be who they want to be with out worrying over what others will think.

ParaJunkee said...

This is a great project, Kate. Good luck in your endeavors.

My cousin actually committed suicide and it leaves nothing pretty in its wake. The reason was not bullying, but the outcome is the same. There has been a dark shroud on my family that is just beginning to lift. Anything you can do to talk someone out of suicide should be accepted. Why wouldn't they allow people in to talk to them. I mean they allow everyone else - including companies to do marketing directly to children, why not people that want to help!

pattepoilue said...

This is a great cause. It should never happen again. Kids should never feel like they'd be better off dead.

Paul Chaplin said...

Thank you for posting this, Katie. It really does get better.

Carolyn said...

This is truly an epidemic. I thought the bullying incident in Massachusetts was hard to handle. I wish there could be some stiff penalties for the abusers - other than having to live with the guilt that they drove someone to kill themself. Sadly, I don't think this is the last we will hear of such tales.

kimnik said...

Thank you for spreading the word, Kate.

Nicole Kimberling
Editor
Blind Eye Books

Erin said...

Kate, thank you so much for sharing this message and for allowing all of us who read your blog to be a part of making things better.

Tam said...

You're an amazing lady. Thank you for sharing your story. I can only imagine the pain some kids have to endure. I will spread the word.

GABY said...

I don't know why people is so mean....But they are. Always finding something to bother you, just because they are idiots who doesn't have anything else to do in life.

I'm happy to hear that it got better to you, and I hope more people will read you and understand.

Mary Brebner said...

Thank you so much for sharing your bullying experience. So many adults are of the mindset that, well, it happened to them and they survived, it's part of playground behavior, they're just being kids...no. Just no.

One of the topics we're discussing in my 8th grade class is cyberbullying: what it is, how to recognize it and how to prevent it. Hopefully, it will open their eyes to what can happen.

scooper said...

I was never really bullied at school because I learned early how to read people and not rock the boat, however life was hard growing up biracial with an alcoholic parent. I tried to cut my wrists, but the little bit of pain always shocked me enough to make me stop.

As an adult, I don't think about the past. I try to forget the utter despair I felt just living, but the recent news has brought much of it back. I can't imagine being a child in the world today, especially if I were "different."

I'm proud of you for taking a stand which will help kids by telling them they aren't alone and things do get better. Thank you.

MicheleKS said...

My heart breaks for every one of those boys and I hope that others who are suffering hear and believe what we're telling them now. All it takes is one person to make a difference in someone's life. And I also want to say that you are a very brave and courageous woman for sharing your story and proving that it does get better.

Jess. said...

I was bullied all through jr high and highschool. I tried more than once to kill myself, and almost succeeded. I thank the heavens above every day that I didn't because it does get better. Life does get better. I proimse.

Chris said...

As someone who was bullied for being smart, gangly, and socially awkward - thank you for sharing your story and doing this, KB.

Shiloh Walker said...

Lovely post, Kate.

astridamara said...

The need to get positive support for these kids is so critical. Thank you for posting, donating, and making a difference. You are wonderful!

globewriter said...

It is wonderful that so many people , many of us victims ourselves, are speaking out now. A few lives will be saved just by us giving them hope that it does, indeed, get better.

Val said...

Thank you for doing this. :)

limecello said...

Love the "It Gets Better" project.

Jodie said...

How could anyone watch your story and not feel inspired? I like that you show how absolutely 'normal' you are.
I am heterosexual and have been married 17 years and have 4 kids. We have a silly story about how we met. We Adore our children. We like family vacations. We are dedicated to one another. Our families 'sometimes' accept us and our ways..lol
I just don't get how people think gay families want anything different than straight families.
I have a niece that struggles. A common conversation we have goes like this..."So, Kelly, do you want to have children?"
She replies "Aunt Anne, I'm gay...."
And i say, "Thats nice sweetheart. So, How many children Do you think you and your wife will have?"
She seems to think that shes excluded from certain life experiences because of her sexuality.. It baffles me! I always say.."Who has filled your head with such nonsense? Of course you can...(fill in the blank).
So anyway,... I like to hear stories like yours. It gives hope. It presents the reality that your lives and Your dreams are the same as most peoples.

Scorpio M. said...

Life should be about light & love. I support your cause.

LesleyW said...

Chris - I was bullied for the same reasons as you. :( Although at the time I didn't really understand why I was being bullied.

It started when I was 8 and didn't end until I left high school when I was 16. Unfortunately I wasn't one of thse people who once they left school and went to college everything was suddenly fine. The bullying had repercussions into my twenties (I didn't tell anyone I was bullied until I was 24). It took a long time for me to deal with it.

It was only when I reached my thirties that I think I finally got things sorted.

Bullying is a real problem which I fear is still underestimated in schools.

Bridget Locke said...

As a victim of hard-core bullying, I know how hard it is to believe that life will get better...but it truly does. Life is never going to be perfect or even easy, but it does get better.

I think this initiative is a great thing. I truly hope you hit that $500 mark & know that as a fellow victim, I'm rooting 4 you to succeed. *hugs*

Kara said...

What's even worse than kids bullying at all is that it seems as if these kids being made victims aren't being taught the skills to cope with that kind of vitriol.

Whether a child is bullied for being poor or overweight or gay or simply different -- the reason for the bullying shouldn't matter, but rather the fact that children are being made to feel that they're somehow less than human, worthless, or unwanted at all.

When I was a kid, I was always told "ignore them and they'll go away," and in retrospect, that was probably just the weakest, worst advice ever. I was teased, insulted, and made the butt of jokes along the lines of "I know someone who ~likes~ you!" because, really, nothing's funnier than the chubby girl actually thinking someone could possibly be interested in her.

What I wish I'd been taught instead was to stand up for myself, instead of fearing my bullies and bending over backwards to avoid them. To understand that these people were small, hateful, ugly people not worth my time. I wish I'd been able to figure out earlier that those nitwits would mean absolutely nothing to me ten or twenty years down the line. But it's so hard to see the big picture when you're that young -- everything feels completely overwhelming.

Unfortunately, there will always be people who need to feel better and bigger than someone else, and who do so by turning someone into a target. I don't have a lot of hope for changing that, but I do have hope that those of us who find ourselves in a child's life can convey to them that things aren't as hopeless as they may seem -- to be that person who'll listen and be there when things seem insurmountable.

Jason said...

Life has done nothing but get better for me. I hope that message can get out to all the kids going through hard times. Just hold on!

~smooches~
Jase

Emeraldjaguar said...

you rawk. luff yew! ♥

Christie (The Fiction Enthusiast) said...

What a great cause!

It breaks my heart to know this is happening. A local 13 year old recently committed suicide during class in our community. Bullying is said to be the cause. Devastating! I have a 10 year old and I sat him down after it happened & told him if he is ever bullied or experiences suicidal thoughts he must tell me, and that I’ll do everything in my power to make it better. It is something I need to make sure I remind him of constantly. I wish someone had been there for all these children who felt they had no other choice but to end their lives.

Calila1988 said...

I was bullied when I was in elementary school because I was overweight and did well in class. It didn't last for very long and it never got so bad that I contemplated suicide but I'm still working on my self esteem because of it. I'm so glad Dan Savage started this project. My uncle was gay and my cousin is gay. It never factored in to how much I love them or how much they love me. I really hope you reach the goal you set. Your post was great and I'm so glad you had the strength and courage to pull through and live your life well and happily.

Estella said...

Great cause!

Maybe one day there will be a law against bullying.

Silverwing said...

Thank you for doing this. It makes me terribly sad to think we're still living in a day and age where sexual orientation is a cause for suicide. >.<

I hope that this effort will help to change this in even a small way.

Eyre said...

This is a wonderful cause. Thank you.

Mandi said...

IT GETS BETTER!!!

Smash Attack! said...

Thank you for sharing your story with us. It was brave, and it is people like you that show others that IT GETS BETTER! *hugs*

Melissa said...

I've always hated bullies. You rock in what you are doing here.

Lots of hugs and <3

Julie M said...

Thanks you for doing this. My son is 13 and different (Asperger's syndrome) and I worry about bullying. Thanks to everyone who is trying to make a difference.

Kim in Hawaii said...

Mahalo, Katie, for bringing this issue to light. Bullies hurt children, teens, adults, and seniors. Indeed, it will get better if we all remember and repeat that mantra.

LorelieLong said...

*cuddle & hugs*

I was an awkward kid too, and I was also the daughter of a gay woman. For me, things got better before I left school, but mostly because I learned to hide who I was.

Thankfully I don't have to do that anymore.

Gini Koch said...

I was bullied as a young teenager. Not for sexual orientation or anything -- just because I was picked out as the weakest (being raised as a non-violent Quaker does put a target on you in a variety of ways).

What everyone seems to forget is that the bullied child's friends tend to scatter the moment the bullies appear. It does make you feel alone and isolated, because no one who matters (your friends, your peers) seems to want to support you. Telling the adults gets you branded as a narc, and many times, worse payback later. So you don't tell.

I put up with it for half a year, then fought back, mostly with curse words. They do indeed have power, and they backed everyone off of me. (F**k you! when I was in 7th grade, really held a lot of oomph.)

New school in 8th grade, new bullies. But I'd learned that fighting back, usually by out talking and out thinking my opponents, tended to work in my favor. Do I recommend it? Well, I recommend anything other than suicide, honestly. Unlike many who were bullied, hurting myself was never in my mind. Hurting the bullies was. As I got a little older I realized the truth: living well and being happy really IS the best revenge.

Great cause, KB. Thanks for helping bring these foundations more exposure and support. You rock.

HistoricalRomanceJunkie Rita said...

It's terrible, the things kids can do to one another (and some grown adults as well). Some parents should make sure they've done their job by their kids and taught them the right things, before packing them off to a college. We all have to live on the same planet, it's not right to do this to someone. Drive them to the point of suicide. Who you love is up to you, not society.

-Hope my comment can count for something! It's great what you're doing, Kate. And everyone with the 'It gets Better' initiative!

Many Blessings everyone!

Qwill said...

Great post! Thank you.

JenM said...

This is a great cause. So many of us were either bullied when we were kids, or were so terrified of it that we suppressed our individuality to try to blend in and not draw any attention to ourselves.

I try hard to live my life by the Golden Rule. If only everyone else did the same, the world would be a much better place and there'd be no room for this nonsense.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for doing this. I was already a fan of Dan Savage, but now I'm a super fan!

Julie James said...

Great post and cause, Katie! Hope you reach the 500!

Julie

Emilie said...

I was bullied in school, mainly because I had no social skills. It got a lot better for me in college. Thanks for doing this, Katie!

jerzygirl45 said...

Thank you so much for sharing what you went through, and for pledging to donate.

Has said...

Great cause and post Katie!!!

Lesley said...

Thank you for helping get the word out about this important issue. Suicide is never the answer.

Jax said...

I wish more people would stop thinking bullying is just something that is a part of childhood and start letting the bullies know their behavior isn't going to be tolerated.

Good cause!

J. P. Barnaby said...

Half of my royalties for October are going to the @TrevorProject. I almost didn't graduate from high school because of bullying - every day I tell myself there is a reason to get out of bed. Somedays have better reasons than others.

I'm sorry for what you had to go through, no one should have to deal with that. I know we're all happy that you made it through to be with us now.

Bullying isn't just a part of growing up, it's violent and hateful and wrong.

- J. P. Barnaby

Jenre said...

I was a victim of school bullying too, Katie, and although I never got to the stage of wanting to commit suicide, I can sympathise with those who have. I'm glad you are here today to tell your story and it saddens me that these young people felt that there was no other option but to kill themselves. It does get better, and as the two delightful men in the video said, often as soon as you leave school and the playground mentality behind.

Netreal said...

I'm a 50 year old woman who was bullied all through my childhood by people including family members. All I wanted to do was disappear and crawl into my self and hide. I still struggle with self esteem and self worth. It got better for awhile but that didn't last. Last year it was discovered I had a brain tumor, after surgery to remove it I've decide to finally live my life for me and I'm finally capable of hope. Dan started a wonderful project that hopefully will help countless people. Your post was incredibly touching and I hope you get the 500 comments. Reading all the posts has been amazing and I hope people continue sharing.

Marg said...

My son is 12 and it is horrifying to think that some of his peers are so unhapppy that they can't see any other way out other than suicide. At this age they should be still being carefree kids.

Good cause Katie.

CupK8 said...

KB -

This post had me sobbing by the end. Thank you for sharing your story with the world. I've seen so many people using these tragedies as a way to declaim the "gay lifestyle" rather than focusing on the real issue - which is bullying in schools and the lack of proper support for young gay students and others who feel they might be better off dead.

I was fortunate enough not to have to put up with too much bullying. I was fierce, and fought back when my guy friends were criticized for wearing makeup or skirts. I got into it with a girl on the bus who told my brother he was going to hell. Both of these times, I got in trouble with the bus driver, because he agreed with the students doing the bullying.

Both times, my mother told me she was proud of me for standing up for my friends and brother, and had an amusing talk with the school about her skinny little daughter "shoving" the star of the high school wrestling team to the point where he fell down.

We managed to get homophobic words added to the "bad list" while I was at my high school, thanks to our incredibly open-minded and wonderful principal, who is sorely missed on this earth. I wish there were more school principals who were willing to post posters (back in the late '90s) that promoted diversity and included sexual orientation. I'm sure if he were with us today, he would add gender identity in a heartbeat.

With the internet, cyber-bullying especially has become such a problem. Too many teens have committed suicide thanks to cyber-bullying, many due to homophobic abuse. Thanks for using your blog to help spread the love.

I've said this in other places, but it bears repeating. The human race has to STEP UP. This kind of treatment towards our children - that we let go by because we're not comfortable with how to "handle it" - is a disgrace to a civilized society.

Michelle said...

This is such a wonderful thing you're doing. I commend you on spreading awareness... this needs to be confronted, not put aside. Thank you!

woubie said...

Thank you for this post. My daughter was bullied last year and although her school did a good job of addressing the issue, the parents of the bullies just didn't seem to care. "Kids will be kids" was their typical attitude about it. I wish there was a way to put responsibility back on the parents.

Samantha Gail said...

Hello Katie! Thanks so much for supporting this worthwhile cause!
Hugs,
Samantha

Em Woods said...

Awesome post, KB. Here's to a better way...

Tumperkin said...

You are well on your way, KB! Well done you.

T

Michelle M. said...

You are an inspiration. What a great way to draw attention to such an important issue.

B. A. Binns said...

I am so glad I found this blog, and this cause. Thank you for your honesty and message of hope.

Nalini Singh said...

A powerful post, Kate.

Sarah S. G. Frantz said...

Thanks for this, Katie. I'm so glad you still around, because you're helping us out next week, even though you don't know it :)

In celebration of National Coming Out Day and in the spirit of the It Gets Better Project, on Monday, October 11 Dear Author will be hosting a "Gay Writes" day, in which we'll be giving away many MANY GLBT romances donated by presses and authors, one of which is LOVESTRUCK, donated by Noble. So it's wonderful that you're still around to see this. :D

sonomalass said...

I know a number of people who are making videos for Dan Savage's project. This is an important cause; kids need the strength to stand up to bullies, and for that they need to know that they are not alone, no matter how much it feels that way.

Nice work, Katie.

KMont said...

I can't think of a better thing to do on a Sunday afternoon than commenting here for this cause. This is so heartbreaking, but I'm so glad you're doing this to help bring light to a terrible situation and the kids that could be in this boat and still reached before it's too late. Big hugs and kudos, KB, for sharing your personal story and more big hugs to anyone who's felt hopeless in the light of bullying. You are not alone!

EC Sheedy said...

A thoughtful and thought-provoking message, KB. I despise bullies of all stripes, but, I'm pretty sure, if you haven't been bullied as a kid, it is difficult to fully understand the pain they cause. Thx

Anonymous said...

Awesome post, hope you reach your target :)

Sarah said...

I'd be willing to donate myself to this project if you're looking for donations. Else, I'll go with the organizations you listed. I am just beyond saddened that this has happened, four times alone, that we know about, this September. It's beyond tragic and should not be happening. Great and inspiring post.

Lusty Reader said...

kate, im so glad to know you now. you are an amazing woman for so many reasons.

while i love your fictional stories *wink wink* this type of honest and amazing writing of yours just blows me away. and brought me to tears.

if i could talk to gay teens being bullied i would tell them - as far as im aware being gay is COOL.

Keta Diablo said...

Katiebabs, Kudos and heartfelt appreciation for helping to bring this horrific situation to light. Bullying has always existed, but lately it seems to have quadrupled. My heart also goes out to those who not only have put up with this heartless bullying, but took their own lives because of it. People commit suicide when the pain is so overwhelming, they'd do anything to end it. And, they see no way out.

I was not bullied during my childhood, but even then I couldn't tolerate cruelty to others in any form. In senior high I was expelled from school for 3 days for fist-fighting with the captain of the football team. He picked on a young boy (an albino) one too many times in the lunch line and I finally had enough. The expulsion was well worth the shiner the bully walked around with for a week or more. I like to think it was the most embarrassing moment of his life that a 5'2" sophomore fought back and left a mark for all to see.

Bullying in any form is intolerable, and only when bystanders stand up against it will it diminish. Thanks so much for standing up, katiebabs. I salute you,

Best, Keta
http://www.ketadiablo.com

Adriana said...

Thank you Katie for doing this, and for sharing your story. No one deserves to be bullied, for any reason. It has to get better - and it needs to get better now, not just in the future, but at the very least we can offer hope.

Nikki-ann said...

Wow, what a thing to do! I was bullied when I was in high school, so my heart goes out to all those who are or have been bullied.

A wonderful cause for money to go to and a big thank you to you for doing this :)

nikkibrandyberry said...

What a good cause to bring light to. You have my full support!

Tori [Book Faery] said...

I'm SO tired of hearing about all these suicides. It's sickening to hear that college students are acting that immature, too. I almost expect it from a younger child, because they "don't know better", but a college student? TWO? 5 years is not enough time for them to be in jail for what they did.

What pisses me off most is this "Oh they don't know any better" mentality that authority figures adopt. Or, if they're in a conservative community, they look the other way. How can you do that as an adult? Doesn't everyone get picked on at one point in their lives? Doesn't everyone feel really shitty at a young age at one point? Why would you want to make someone else feel that way? HOW can you, when you see what young teens are resorting to?

I know people do it to make themselves feel better... but shit. I feel like the media should do something to help promote all these foundations. All we hear about are the suicides, but we never hear anything about how we can educate our youth to realize that this behavior is unacceptable.

I really fear for the direction our country is headed. A vast majority of America's youth are already so spoiled and bratty and out of control. If I ever acted the way these kids do now when I was a kid... well a teacher can't touch me, but you can be sure as hell none of them would have accepted my shit. And then when my parents found out? Holy crap I'd probably be grounded for life after getting a severe ass kicking.

Heather S said...

I've never really been the victim of bullying but while growing up and now working on a college campus I see it. Unfortunately it is not always the most obvious thing happening to the outside world. I pray for all of the people (young and old) who have to go through that just because of the insecurities of others.

Amanda S. said...

Thank you for posting this and for sharing your story...It DOES get Better!
I hope you reach 500 posts and I'll be posting this on my facebook to let others know that aren't aware of your blog or whats going on :)
Good job {{hugs}}
Amanda S.

Tigris Eden said...

My heart truly goes out to all the families that have become a victim of bullying... And Katie your right it does get better!

My son who is now 13 was a victim of bullying because of his eyes.. He suffered from cataracts and surgery to have his lenses removed and replaced so now that is a glossy almost like glass look to his eyes and he has to wear glasses that transition to darker in the light because his eyes are so sensitive.. Kids can be so brutal and everyday he would come home with a story of how some one made fun of him and I don't know if he ever had thoughts of suicide but we talk everyday just so he knows that he is loved and that it does in fact get better. My husband on the other hand was like the dad that attacked the children on the school bus.. Only he went to school with my son for a whole day and after the kids attempted to harass our son he took them each aside and pointed out that no ones perfect and that how would they feel if someone berated them in the fashion they were berating our son.. Things have calmed a bit but in no way has it gotten better. The school isn't very helpful either and although these children that did end their lives should not have to be made an example.. I am hoping that everyone is now getting the message loud and clear.
Big (HUGS) to you!

Maureen said...

I have several little great nieces and nephews and I worry so about them once they enter the schoolyard... And I look for things to be better for them.

Maureen

Bryl R. Tyne said...

Thank you, Katie. Very worthwhile cause.

Monica Burns said...

Hey doll, Baby was bullied physically and verbally last year in 6th grade. Took the school SEVEN months to listen to us and only when they caught a little @(#*$ on video hitting her.

EXCELLENT POST! and I'm proud of you for facing the demons rather than giving up. I blogged, tweet and FB your post. I hope you get 500 comments too, because it would mean that people are listening.

kammgirl said...

I am here from a tweet made by Larissa Ione. It does get better.

Lillie said...

Intolerance in this country has to stop and thanking you for taking steps to help that happen.

Jeaniene Frost said...

Great cause and post. Come on, 500 comments!

Elyssa Papa said...

What a heartfelt, honest post, Katie. Thank you so much for sharing such a difficult time, and for doing this.

Bells said...

I think this is a wonderful thing that you are doing. Your own story touched my heart and while reading it I soon had tears rolling down my face. I am so happy that you didn't take your life, for our book community wouldn't be the same without you! We love you!

Kate said...

What a beautiful, moving and inspiring post! I lost a schoolmate my senior year of high school, when he was just months away from getting the heck out of our small minded town, and I still think about him all the time, even though we weren't close. I didn't tease or torment him, but I didn't reach out to him either. It's been over 15 years and I still feel haunted.

Like you, I've been appalled and saddened by the recent suicides in the news, and in particular of the story a few years back where the mom of one of the bullies actually faked being a teenage boy to torment one victim. I wasn't very popular, and like almost every kid I was bullied at times, but I was able to realize that things would get better, or at least different, like you. Books taught me that.

Hopefully this post will reach some of our younger bloggers out there, and remind them that the future is wide opened, things will get better. Thank you so much for sharing your story, it was an honor to read it!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this post. I normally don't get too involved in things but this is an amazing cause. I too have had suicide thoughts and was bullied and yes I am better now. I just wish these boys had, had the chance to.

Diane P said...

As a former teacher, we saw it in school & tried to make changes. It takes a whole community to make the change happen-from comments at the dinner table to pulpit sermons to recognizing or saying "hi" to the lonely. We all can do our part.

Twimom227 said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story and getting the word out and for being so incredibly generous! I pray that your support will help at least one child. They all deserve to know that they are loved and are important!

Sherry said...

Thank you for such a heartfelt and thoughtful post. It makes you wonder how the bullies parents are if they are bullies too. I think most parents of bullies make excuses for them.

Emily said...

The only way tragedies like these can be prevented is for everyone to band together and make it clear that targeting people for any reason is not acceptable. Providing resources like this is a definitely step in the right direction. I applaud your efforts!

Mary said...

Love your Post Hope you can get up enough Money to help em out :)

T.L.L. said...

I can relate as well. Here's to 500 posts!

Deena Remiel said...

Thank you for sharing your story and continuing to keep the issue of bullying and its devastating effects on people at the forefront of our minds.

Lee Rowan said...

Here's another comment: I was bullied as a kid--for thick glasses and being 'too smart.' They say being bullied either makes you timid or fierce. I'm not timid.

And... I know it's not noble, but I can't help thinking it's a shame Asher shot himself instead of the kids who bullied him. The parents of those kids will probably never accept their own role in anyone's death, and I doubt any of them, parents or children, will ever change. Yeah, I know, they're only kids -- but bullies don't change when they get older, they just get meaner and more clever about disguising it.

Kerrie T. said...

Thank you so much for sharing. Retweeting now.

Anonymous said...

It breaks my heart to hear of children and teens taking their own lives for something that can be prevented.

It does get better!!

Louise said...

Thank you so much for doing this!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your voice and for your hard work and dedication.

Kassa said...

It's a rough time but thank god for the support networks. Every dollar counts.

Cherry said...

I use to be bullied as well, but never too the point where I wanted to kill myself. My bullies were...friends?...of mine who after picked on me because I was the skinny, quiet girl who would never fight back. That was until I fought back and knocked them all over their heads, quite a few times. Now they smile when they see me and try to be my friend. Teehee

Nichelle Gregory said...

This is terrific! Thanks for sharing your story.

Diane said...

I hate bullies; when my son was young, he got bullied at school. Why? Because he is small. To this day he is 5ft5 and weighs 115 pds.He will never be tall. I remember one day him coming home from school and he wasn't wearing his favorite hat. Some kid had taken it and told him he could have it back if he could reach it. So mean!

Jesilea said...

My heart goes out to the victim's of bullies. I especially hope that gay youth will understand that their lives are worth living. They just need to hold on through the teen years. While discrimination still exists with adults, it will be easier to handle and they will be able to build their own community of support. Don't give up.

stacey said...

I know all too well that it does get better. I was bullied for all sorts of reasons all throughout school..I was smart, one of two jewish kids in my grade, wore glasses from a very early age shy...etc.

After an extremely horror-filled 8th grade class trip, my parents sent me to sleep away camp...where I discovered 'me'-the social butterfly that was waiting to break through the shell years of bullying had covered. I made close friends, and remembered there was more to me than the kid I was on the first day of kindergarden.

I was lucky...not everybody is. I had supportive parents who served as the kind of understanding barrier to the world that a severely bullied child needs. For the ones who aren't as lucky, it does get better. And for the ones who are as lucky, remember to listen to the things people are telling you: it does get better. I'm living proof of that.

I hope you get to 500 KB!

Stacey

The Book Vixen said...

This is definitely a topic that needs to be talked about. Thank you for sharing your story.

And that's a great mantra: It will get better!

Laura K. Curtis said...

I've been there, too, Katie, with the knife and the misery. My class was so mean to each other in general that our school re-instituted uniforms for our class and forbade field trips. My problem was my own--I have suffered from crippling depression most of my life--as opposed to a concentrated bullying that was worse for me than for any of the other kids in my class.

But I hope you get all 500 comments, because you're giving to such worthy causes.

Kris said...

I was also bullied as a teen.

The first time was in my first year of high school (US middle school) where I was one of the first girls to develop breasts. The sexual harassment I got from a small group of boys was unbelievably awful as you can probably imagine. It went until for some time until an older family friend at the same school stepped in and the situation came to a head.

The second time was after we had moved and I was enrolled in an all girls' school, which I sometimes think my parents did because of what happened to me at the mixed school. Strangely, it was not the girls who bullied me but rather the headmistress. She singled me out because I refused to conform to the assembly line private school girls they were trying to produce and because I always stood up and befriended the girls who were different.

It was this situation that helped shape the person who I am because, despite the fact that I hated every second there, despite her constant bullying and degradation of me in front of my peers, despite being offered numerous times to get pulled out and put into a new school, I refused to give in. I refused to let her win.

I think I did that because, firstly, deep inside I knew it was wrong for someone to want me to change the person I was/am and, secondly, that I knew I would be out of there. I knew as soon as I left high school I would never see her again and it WOULD get better.

And it did. :)

I love you, Katiebabs chook.

Amanda McCabe/Laurel McKee said...

What a wonderful thing you're doing here, KB! I've also been saddened and appalled by what's been happening in the news (and remembering my own difficult adolescence). Hopefully this will help show people they are never alone...

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your story. It's an amazing cause.

Ally said...

This is brilliant Katie! I'm more than happy to comment to help support this.

I'm sorry for what you went through!

I was sadly bullied too from the age of 11-14 by an ex-boyfriend and his two friends but with help from friends I managed to stop them before it could get worse. And I will be forever greatful for having lovely people support me!

A Buckeye Girl Reads said...

Thank you for sharing. Adding my comment for this important cause.

John The Bookworm said...

Katie, this is an awesome post. Bullying can make you think crazy things, especially as a teenager. I feel for you, and thank you with all of my heart for doing this to help lgbtq teens. We don't get all of the help non-lgbtq ones do, and that makes it even more appreciated.

Anonymous said...

I don't know if it gets better, but we're supposed to hang in here so that's what I'm doing.
Thank you for posting.

Serena Yates said...

It is sad that ths sort of initiative is necssary, but I applaud you for taking it on. I will mke my own donations separately, but I wante to show you my support here as well.

May there come a time when bullying is an unheard of cruel behavior whose only place is in the history books.

Gehayi said...

I was bullied as well, from elementary school through high school, and it never got easier. I remember teachers dragging me out onto the playground during recess to "play" with the twenty to thirty-odd bullies armed with baseball bats and hockey sticks. I remember being convinced that the bullies would murder me and get away with it because they were kids. I remember being eight years old and considering ways to kill myself because it was never going to stop--and I would probably be able to kill myself in a way that hurt less than being beaten to death.

No kid should be in a position where he or she is thinking of suicide as the best possible option.

Serena Yates said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Serena Yates said...

It is sad that this sort of initiative is necssary, but I applaud you for taking it on. I will make my own donations separately, but I wanted to show you my support here as well.

May there come a time when bullying is an unheard of cruel behavior whose only place is in the history books.

Bronwyn Green said...

It does get so much better, though there were moments in my childhood that I couldn't imagine that was possible.

It's my most sincere hope that every kid will get the chance to realize that it does.

Thank you so much for doing this.

AKM Miles said...

I wirte about this stuff. The book I'm currently writing deals with bullying in high schools. These stories break my heart. Thank you for the efforts you're making and for giving others a chance to participate. AKM Miles

Shanyn said...

I love this post and the steps you are taking to reach out to those in need.

Steph said...

You will have a place in the heart of everyone who reads your post. In New England north we constantly fight against people who think the gender of the person you love matters. The people against equal civil rights use horrifying and evil rhetoric that preys on the less able to determine for themselves to understand the lies for what they are. So, sad that people don't understand what equal civil rights are.

Kerry said...

I'm behind you 100%. A wonderful cause and thank you for standing up with your story. It does get better, but that can be a hard promise to hold onto at the time.

A friend of mind sent me a link to that video. It's absolutely amazing.r

B. said...

Incredible cause! Thank you for sharing your story and doing what you are to draw more awareness to the issue.

Anonymous said...

Delurking to show support for this important cause and to say to all the people who have contemplated suicide for any reason that it really does get better. Hope you reach 500 comments

Melissa said...

Thank you for doing this! And from someone that had a horrid time in school I want to say that it does get better.

Destiny said...

Thank you for sharing your story! I hope you reach 500 and beyond.

Anonymous said...

I'm shocked that such a terrible thing would happen. I'm behind this cause 100%.

Andrea Dickinson said...

Thank you for bringing this to the attention of so many. I hope at least one child sees this and decides to believe that things will get better.

Kimberly Gardner said...

Thank you for sharing your story. I tweeted and facebooked about this issue and I'm glad to find another way to help.

Julia said...

Katie - A big hugs to 12yrs old you. I'm sorry it happen to you. I think that this is awesome pledge! I believe in you and your heart to make the world a better place. And...it does get better! :)

WickedLilPixie said...

Kate you rock! xoxo awesome thing to do!

Kelly Yeakle said...

There will always be someone who thinks they are better than you, smarter than you, prettier/more handsome than you. You have to find your inner light and let it shine regardless of what others think. My heart goes out to the people who have lost their loved ones because of the cruelty of others.

Dakota Rebel said...

What a great idea and such a noble gesture.

The Trevor Project is my favorite charity. I donate as often as I can to this fabulous project.

Thank you so much for shedding light on this growing epidemic.

XoXoXo
Dakota

T.A.Chase said...

Great cause, Katie.

I'll definitely spread the word..not only for your goal, but for Dan Savage's as well.

TA

Sotheara said...

I'd like to thank you for sharing your own personal story. It takes a lot of courage and strength to go through what you did and not only survive but thrive. IT GETS BETTER!!

Cynnara Tregarth said...

This is a fantastic post. I've put it up on Facebook and hope that many people will see it and know that it does get better. I've suffered from bullying as I know many other of my friends growing up did. But it DOES GET BETTER. You just have to learn how to survive. Plus, in this day and age, schools have anti-bullying laws and special programs about it. We need to make sure we participate in those programs wholeheartedly and make sure they continue, even in schools that don't often get a lot of support.

Hilcia said...

Great post and The Trevor Project is a worthy cause.

Mrs. DeRaps said...

You are awesome. My students and I were just talking about this very topic on Friday...I urged them to wait and talk with someone if they ever feel like they can't make it. That it might not feel this way now, but when you grow up sometimes feelings of hurt lessen. Sometimes. And, that if someone's asking for help or to be heard, that we listen.

Thanks for this.

KL said...

Wonderful post, thanks for sharing. I endured my share of bullying as well in my youth, and overcame it. I now find success with what I want to do - the bullies, I later learned, didn't turn out as good. The best revenge is living well.

Anonymous said...

As a parent, I worry about my daughter being bullied. Studying to be a teacher, I worry that I won't see it soon enough to help a child at school.

Melina said...

Wow. What an incredible post.

And what an amazingly noble thing you're doing.

Bridget Locke said...

Here's my take on bullying & what happened to me. http://bridgetlocke.blogspot.com/2010/10/your-help-is-needed.html

Indigene said...

Thank you for this post and for sharing your story. Both very worthwhile and unfortunately very much needed organizations.

Julie said...

Wonderful post Katie. You are quite the survivor! And this is a wonderful thing you are doing.

Brad Jaeger said...

Another dollar for the cause.

K. Z. Snow said...

You are phenomenal, KB! Thank you so much for taking this incredibly generous and important step.

I mentioned the Trevor Project in a guest post I did at Jessewave's some months ago. It, as well as the Shepard Foundation and other, similar affirming groups, are critical to the well-being of GLBT youth in this society.

As you pointed out, even capricious bullying seems to have reached epidemic proportions in the U.S. Makes me wonder how the hell people are raising their kids--a depressing thought.

You go, girl!

Rory G said...

I think the teen years are difficult enough - and this is a wonderful message for all teens. Thank you! Interestingly enough my verification word for this post is "reject"

JacquƩline Roth said...

It does get better. Thanks for doing this. As a teacher I see bullying all the time and it can feel overwhelming for me as an adult to do what I can to stop what I see. However, the older kids are, the better they are at keeping the bullying underground. I know there is so much more than I can see.

Simone Anderson said...

What an excellent post.

I too was bullied and teased from first grade through my senior year in high school, not because of my orientation, but because I was breathing. I too thought of suicide or at the very least running away, but in the didn't.

Someone else mentioned they also were told to ignore it - which never worked. I'm not sure I know anyone that it's worked for.

There is nothing worse than the pain you feel when you are going through it. And at 12, 13, 14, 15, 18, the only thing you want is for that pain to end. And it doesn't matter how.

One of the best things I did was join the military and then go to college. The best revenge against bullies is to live. Not just to live but to thrive. To live life to its fullest, to chase whatever dream you have and succeed at it.

While the pain of those years will never completely go away, it helps to form the strong person you will become. And then it ceases to matter. You are able to do things others can't or won't, because of your strength.

It does get better.

I have traveled through out the world where many of those who bullied me never left the city.

It does get better. And it's worth striving for.

Lila DiPasqua said...

Thank you for bringing this wonderful cause to people's attention. And thank you for sharing your inspiring story, hon! You've done more than survive. You've triumphed. No one should end their lives because of the cruelty and ignorance of others. My daughter and I will be donating to The Trevor Project.

Wishing you all the best---and 500 comments!

Kate, you're the BEST. :)

Randi said...

Thank-you for sharing your story. I hope you reach 500 comments.

Sally said...

I have been bullied. (Not for the same reasons as the people mentioned in the post of course) And it sucks.

People dont see the harm that they do. There is no justification in hurting someone because they are percieved to be different. Especially if the hurt that they feel and experience is bad enough to make the person involved take their own life.

I am right behind anything that helps publicise this matter and gets people the help that they need.

I live in hope that one day the world will allow us to be who we are.

Until then organisations and iniatives are of vital importance.

pj schnyder said...

As a survivor of bullying, I thank you for sharing your story and for supporting such a cause.

It truly does get better.

lia said...

I've had a lot of people tell me that "suicide prevention" is a joke- there's no way to prevent someone from taking their own life. I don't believe it, I think there's a reason behind people making the choice to commit suicide and that reaching out can help. Letting someone know it does get better helps.

Tiffany said...

It does defiantly get better. I have never understood prejudice and bigotry even though I have seen so much throughout my life. Some pointed to me and some to others.

kylie said...

Growing up is tough enough but to add being bullied? My heart goes out to those who are going through this and I send thoughts of healing and strength. Thanks for doing this, Katie.

Anonymous said...

Great cause - it's a sad thing when the only way a bully can feel good is to make someone else feel like cr*p.

Lissa

MissKris said...

I am 56 years old and I, too, want you younger people especially to know that IT DOES GET BETTER!! I endured horrible bullying, not only thru middle/high school but also at home. I seriously contemplated suicide many times. But, if I'd gone thru with it I wouldn't have been blessed with a wonderful husband who is my best friend in the entire world...we've been married 36 years. I wouldn't have two phenomenal children, a wonderful daughter-in-law. I wouldn't have my two precious, gorgeous, beautiful, darling grandsons. I wouldn't have this wonderful life. And all those bullies? Who knows where they're at now? Who cares?! I know I don't. And someday hopefully you won't either. TALK to someone. Talk, talk, talk. How does anyone know what you're enduring if you don't inform them? Come 'talk' to me on my blog...I'll listen! Seek help!!!!!! Especially now, with so much of this happening, there are a lot of caring, concerned people out there who can help you out. Don't suffer in silence! There is strength in numbers and the more who speak out, the stronger this endeavor will become. Life is a gift, it truly is. Treasure it.

Faith Estelle said...

Me, nor my friends have never been bullied. However, it is saddening to hear of the various stories. Great cause, hope you reach your goal =)

KimArr said...

Great post and great cause Kate. Thanks for doing this!

Nigel said...

I was mercilessly bullied at school, because I was effeminate. I am blind in one eye as a result.

It's shameful and evil that adults don't intervene to stop bullying, and to explain to bullies why it's wrong.

Jeanne said...

Thank you!

LVLM(Leah) said...

Katie- what a cool thing you're doing.

My sister is a lesbian and my nephew is gay. Fortunately for them, they weren't bullied for any reason- nephew was very overweight as well.

Also fortunately, both were and are supported by friends and family unlike these poor kids who have no one to turn to.

Good for you in spreading the word and positive vibes.

Vivi said...

You're doing an awesome thing!

kelly said...

thank you - it's a wonderful message. good luck on your way to 500! :)

RRRJessica said...

Commenting for a great cause.

Kate Davies said...

Great post, great cause. Thank you so much.

P.A.Brown said...

I lived with names like Woody Woodpecker since I had bright orange hair. I was also called a lesbian in high school because I had a very close female friend and never went out with any of the boys in school. Bullies need to face more consequences for their actions, but it's not just children who are doing this, there are adults who engage in public bullying from the pulpit of television and radio and the written word. Those are lousy role models for our children.

Ava said...

People can be cruel. Best you can do is survive and be the best of yourself. That is the best revenge.

Great cause.

Carolyn said...

What also saddens me is how often I hear about school officials who did NOTHING to stop bullying they know is happening.

We should not tolerate that.

Marianne Strnad said...

I was tormented endlessly by bullies in grade & high school. Through the years the bullies became older versions of what they always were, common thugs. In their wake, they left carnage in their own lives, fatherless children, broken homes & marriages and even bodies from drug abuse. I have been married to the same man for over 26 years, and save lives in the medical field. Some showed up at my parent's wakes when they passed, and they now know how I turned out & what I do for a living. Time is a healer; it evens out all scores and reveals everything!

Melissa Taylor said...

You're almost at 200! And, I'm so sad that so many people have been bullied - obviously our system is failing to protect children's basic human rights.

You go!

Amy said...

What a great thing that you are doing. Our system is broken, and it is horrible. I'm so glad to see what you are doing, and the response that you are getting. Thank you.

bookloveroh said...

Kate

Thank you for being brave enough to share your story.

I hope you reach your 500 comments.

Lynn

Cat R. said...

Thanks for spreading the word.

Anonymous said...

Action must be taken to eliminate bullying/intimidation. Other forms of harrassment are not acceptable and these should not be either.

IT DOES GET BETTER

Anne said...

Thank you! It's heartening to see all the supportive responses. Best of luck reaching 500.

Stephani Hecht said...

Thank you so much for spotlighting this cause.

Dark Faerie Tales said...

Great post, Katie. I can't even believe how often this all still happens. There is no justification for this type of behavior, and it's just so sad.