A New Plague

I just watch a video someone shared on Facebook of this young girl named Amanda Todd who had just committed suicide because of bullying.  In her video she explained her entire story, how everything started with cyber bullying and then she was physically assaulted which lead to her first suicide attempt.  Over the summer she overdose and was brought back once again, but this last time she succeeded in taking her life.

I honestly don’t even know what to say about this, honestly if you are so pathetic you feel you have to bully someone or physically assault someone, I don’t even have words to describe how I feel or describe what kind of person you are.  Amanda, in her video she said her first suicide attempt she drank bleach and survived, but for 6 months after that, people were posting picture on Facebook of bleach saying things like “maybe she should try another kind and do it better this time” and saying they hope she dies.  Whoever said that is honestly the lowest person on the Earth.  How could you ever say that to someone, how are you that cold and heartless that you say that to a person, a living, breathing person.  She was a beautiful, young girl who had a beautiful singing voice and people were saying I hope you die?  I don’t even understand how anyone say that to someone else.

With everything that’s changed in the world, the increase in technology and accessibility to everything, it is so important for the family to become involved. I’m 21 and I’m not a parent or even close to being one, but I can tell you from my experience, my family monitored most thing in my life up until a certain age.  Now I didn’t have things like Facebook or Twitter or anything like that, my computer was about 2 feet deep and made the dial-up noise when you turned it on.  Sometime I feel like, this is just from what I’ve seen with other families, parents are afraid of their kids hating them and would rather be their friends, but if somethings going on with your kid, get involved, check their Facebook to see if your kid is being bullied so they don’t become another victim, talk to them, be with them.  Even things like having a family night or just keeping the family connected to each other is important, just knowing that there is support at home of people who love them and connect with them can make a world of difference.

If you’re a friend and you see them start to change or know something is going on but they asked you not to tell anyone, tell someone.  I would much rather have my friend be mad at me and alive than thank me for not telling anyone and have them commit suicide.  It’s going to be so hard to do, but saving your friend’s life is beyond worth it.

Friends and family are the most important thing that can prevent or solve problems like this.  I’ve never been bullied nor have I ever bullied someone, but I have gone through and still going through problems she explained in her video, anxiety, depression, cutting and I also starved myself.  I’ve done that and it’s hard for me to admit it, but I’ve cut myself and felt like there is no hope.  I’ve starved myself too.  I got down to about 800 calories a day and most of that was juice, not because of weight but because it was something I could control when I felt my life was just spinning out of control.  I never told anyone until after, after I had done all of this and found a way to come out of it.  I’m so thankful to my friends and family, they never knew what was going on, but they were just such a strong, positive force in my life it made me want to live.  When you’re friends abandon you, that’s really hard, even if you have the most amazing family in the entire world, once a peer abandons you, one who you thought you could trust, it’s devastating because you feel secure that your family can’t and won’t reject you because they’re your family, but friends are different.  That’s the outside world, outside of your safe family bubble saying something is wrong with you and you are not worth being around, and that’s hard to deal with, I know from experience.

Of course I’m not trying to say anything about her family or saying her parent weren’t there or were bad parents.  I’m sure they did everything they could to save their daughter and my heart goes out to them.  I hope that some way they can get through this and remember their daughter and all of the beautiful moments with their her, maybe even turn what happened into a moment of light, spreading awareness of bullying like so many other parents who have lost children to this epidemic have done.

I thought about what I would say to her parents if I ever met them and I have no idea.  I think I’d just look into their eyes and start to cry because I know what it’s like to lose family, but not my baby girl due to bullying, due to the fact that multiple people said things so awful, it lead her to commit suicide.  I can’t even begin to imagine what that pain feels like and I feel so sorry for them.  I just wish there is something I could do for any parent, grandparent, sibling, aunt, uncle who have lost members of their family to bullying or suicide in general.

This is a new disease that has become a plague in our society and need to be recognized.  You can’t just look at this and remember Amanda’s death for a certain amount of time, any suicide has to be in our memory constantly and talked about and remembered or this will only escalate and get worse.  These tragedies tend to fade away after a certain period of time and that can’t happen.  Tell anyone, friends, family and loved one about what is going on in our society and make sure they know that you are a safe person who will never judge them or hate them or leave them and you are always there to talk to.

This is not just a problem for one family, it is a problem for all of us and we all need to help our children, whether it’s our own kid, a neighbor, a family member.  Life is so easy to take away, so we have to fight for it and fight to make sure no one ever feels that suicide is an answer and that no one ever causes those feelings in someone else by bullying them.  This needs to stop now.

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2 thoughts on “A New Plague

  1. Your post is thoughtful and thought-provoking. And I appreciate that you share some of your own personal story as well. Congrats on finding your strength.

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