Children have been bullying each other since the beginning of time, but a recent trend of bullycide (suicide perceived to be caused by bullying) has emerged to the forefront of the media. With the recent suicide of Rutgers University student Tyler Clementi and many other bullycide stories we’ve heard over the past few years, I began thinking about the bigger meaning of life.
As I began thinking, I remembered all the times I was bullied for having “big lips,” talking “white,” having a flat ass, as well all the times I bullied other kids. But there was a reoccurring question that wouldn’t leave my thoughts. Since when has bullying become an excuse for committing suicide?
I know I might piss a lot of people off with that question, and yes, some people won’t agree with everything I discuss in this blog, but this is a question WE as a nation HAVE to answer.
MORE ABOUT TEEN SUICIDE ON THE NEXT FEW PAGES!
As a recent college graduate, I feel far removed the issues that plague the average American teenager. Because just six years ago, I was a high school senior who didn’t have to worry about someone making fun of me via Facebook (although we did have MySpace) or sending out mean spirited text messages (because most us didn’t have hi-tech devices). When I was growing up, bullying was something that happened each and every day. You either dealt with your offender or got over it! Period! No thoughts of suicide or slitting one’s wrist. But teens today are so far removed from reality on how to deal with life’s perils. They live in a world where face to face communication outside of school is almost non-existent, causing them to be socially awkward and limited.
Bullying is apart of adolescence and apart of life. When I experienced bullying, I often wondered if I was the person ‘they’ said I was. Was I overweight or was I ugly? As I realized that these bullies were absolutely miserable on the inside, I began to define myself as a person. Even when I wanted to hide, I carried myself with confidence and fought back against the tongue lashings I received on the daily. Never once did I ever contemplate hurting myself or the drastic decision to end my life. The only thoughts I had were kicking MAJOR ass to any kids who tried to push me into an emotional breakdown. But with that said, I realize all kids are NOT created equal but I wish they were! Not everyone is a fighter and not every kid had the same family structure and love I had.
So where do we begin? Who’s to blame? Should we be placing sole blame on the bullies? I think not, because then we’d be bullying the bullies. If you ask any self-proclaimed bully they, too, would probably tell you that they were a target of bullying at one time or another.
Let’s start addressing the issues of America’s future. Youth today don’t understand that they are thrust in this world where they are actual people and not avatars, and they don’