*** This post may be triggering if you are suffering from depression and are sensitive to negative news events ***
Boy, am I ever late in writing this blog post, with only 2-1/2 days left to October! Things have been ever soooo busy in my neck of the woods! While there are so many articles out there about bullying from not just this one month but in general, I wanted to focus on a few things right here, right now. It took me a couple weeks to process the Amanda Todd story and feel ready to post my thoughts in a blog post.
1. The frequency of bullying is increasing.
2. Parents and other adults are crucial in role modeling and raising the younger generation to be empathetic.
3. Twitter and Facebook must find a way to help monitor activity for suicidal warnings. There must be a way for these 2 extremely popular and key social media sites to partner with an organization like National Suicide Prevention to intervene when there is a clear risk for suicide in a tweet/post. Either that, or it’s simply a matter of parents and/or other loved ones who also use these sites to “friend” their kids on Facebook and open a Twitter account to “follow” them (plenty of people use pseudonyms).
Teen Tweets/FB posts s/b monitored for signs of depression/suicide! Yet another suicide that could've been prevented! bit.ly/UUDxDO—
Ivy Shih Leung (@ivyshihleung) October 28, 2012
4. Parents need to be engaged and aware of their children’s activities, especially their online activities (including blocking inappropriate sites that are a breeding ground for disaster when it comes to their own children’s well-being and–should their children be the ones tormenting someone else’s children online–the well-being of other children).
5. Bystanders–be it other students, people online (if this relates to cyber-bullying), and/or teachers–should speak up when they witness any bullying incidents. If everyone maintains the attitude that it’s “Not my concern,” we will stay in this rut that we find ourselves in, with children feeling unnecessarily alone, desperate, and hopeless….and feeling like they have no other options to help them escape their torment and pain but to end their own lives.
The Amanda Todd case raises awareness of how relentless cyber-bullying can be and how vicious people (kids, teens, adults) can behave when it comes to someone whom they DON’T EVEN KNOW. Her case is an example of how a misunderstood teenage girl felt so alone in her suffering, was unfortunate enough (and to this day I don’t even know how this got as far as it did….where were the parents in all this?) to have encountered what was likely a pedophile (the police are still investigating and I truly hope they find this scumbag) who stalked her–and whose actions of taking advantage of a young girl online–started her off on a road of torment, harassment, and constant school moves to try to escape the kids who made fun of her and even beat her up.
EVERY SINGLE PERSON who contributed to Amanda’s torment must be held accountable and receive punishment befitting their involvement. Their actions led to the death of someone. In my book, it’s equivalent to a gang of bullies physically beating someone to death with their bare hands. And the countless hate pages that went up after she died? Instead of letting her spirit rest in peace, they are hell bent on tormenting it even after death. These people are so rotten, so malicious, and so vile. The pure evil and hate that exists out there is horrific. How these people can stand to behave like this and feel good about themselves is beyond me! Let’s just say that if justice doesn’t prevail with the police knocking on their doors, then I pray that KARMA will!
You may wonder how all this has anything to do with postpartum depression (PPD). It’s important to remember that many cases of depression surface during the teenage years and follow you throughout life. One of the primary risk factors of PPD is a history of depression. I delve into relevant statistics and risk factors in my book.
And you may be interested in checking out my prior posts relating to teenage years, some of which do specifically address bullying as an epidemic in this society (scroll down to see my links to Anti-Bullying/Teen Resources on the right side of my blog, along with all my other links):
- Bullying and Suicide…Teen Angst and Depression
- The Mental Cost Behind a Nomadic Childhood Experience
- Depression and Teen Suicides…It Will Get Better
- You are Perfect to Me, Says the Parent to the Child
- Empathy Makes the World Go Round
- New Jersey Leads the Way Yet Again
- Disturbing Teenage Trend…Hey Stranger, Do You Think I’m Ugly or Pretty?
- 121Help.Me – A 24/7 Youth Helpline
- I Am Titanium
- Join the Anti-Bullying Movement
I’m going to end this post with the following food for thought:
All of us have the power to make a difference. We just have to work together to effect positive change. Please. Let’s stop this horrible epidemic. Now.