Today’s post is written by Megan, a 13 year old girl from Oklahoma. She helps run a Twitter account, @Help4Teenagers. Megan was kind enough to share a story with us about a time she decided to speak up for one of the best friends who was being bullied. Instead of being a bystander who witnessed the harassment and didn’t say anything, she decided to speak up and talk to a guidance counselor at school. While the decision to talk to an adult wasn’t necessarily an easy one (one of Megan’s other close friends’ boyfriend was the one doing the bullying), she decided to go with her gut and take a stand against something she knew was wrong. Read Megan’s story below! :)
Hi — My name is Megan. I’m 13 and from Oklahoma.
I’ve never personally been bullied very much and it doesn’t matter to me as much as my friend’s story does. He’s a boy, and you know how they often are about ‘you have to be sporty’ and dress this way and act this way, but for my friend, it was completely different. He talks different, not because he’s from another country or anything, but it’s just how he talks. Some boys and yes, even girls say that he sounds “Like a girl on their period”. It broke my heart to see that the awful way these people were treating him. My friend is on the heavier side and they make fun of him for that as well. His hair is naturually dirty-blonde, but he bleached it blonde in the front and it’s longer there. A lot of boys will come up to him and say “Why don’t you just keep it one color you fag?” and all he does is walk away. A lot of people call him gay for the way he walks, talks, and dresses but what is the point? At one time he told me “Sometimes I don’t feel safe in my own home because I’m attacked. I want to die..” It broke my heart.
On day, our school counselor came to talk to us about how to help out a friend if they are suicidal. He showed us a video of survivors who have tried to harm themselves and showed families of children who have killed themselves. He warned us that if your friends are being bullied and are telling you, “I rather die than go to school today” or “I want to die at times” that we needed to tell someone right away. Well, I started to freak out because everything I saw in the video was what my friend was acting like. I mentally broke down in class and was asked to leave. The counselor took me down to his office and told me to spill out.
Our counselor has now been talking to my friend for 3 months for me and because another friend reported to our principal that my friend was being bullied. Our counselor sat me down and told me that the way I feel about it is normal and that my friend is in pain because of the way people bully him. He asked us both to come down to his office during our elective classes and I brought along our other friend, who is also bullied and very much involved in my friend’s situation as well, we talked it out and things got better.
You see telling someone and talking to someone brings light into your life very quickly. My friend has been a fighter and has been dealing with this since he was in Kindergarten and yes, I’ve been with him every step of the way. If you see someone being bullied I advise you to tell someone even at the risk of them disliking you. When I had to report his bullying, I lost my best friend because her boyfriend was the main person bullying him. It hurt, I’ll admit, but at times I look back and say “I saved his life. He would have killed himself without this kind of help”, and I’ll be the first to tell you it didn’t just change his life, it changed mine. Whenever I see someone being picked on I walk right over to the bully and set them straight. I “kill them with kindness”. I take the victim in my group of friends and make them know I’m here and they have someone to rely on. Bullying is SERIOUS and it needs to stop. But we need everyone’s help. If anyone sees bullying happening you must report it not for your sake but for your teachers sake,your principals, and the victims. It makes their job and the victims life so much better. Believe me.
If one of your friends is being picked on, please do what Megan did and tell an adult. Sometimes it can be really hard for people to seek out help for themselves. They might be embarrassed or think that the problem will just go away if they ignore it. Be a friend and get help! School guidance counselors, teachers you trust, and your parents are all great people to talk to, and if they don’t do anything about it, go to the next adult! Thanks again for sharing this story, Megan!!