Honestly, I really didn’t realize how many sensitive subjects were in my book until I was offered a guest appearance on this beautiful website. I was trying to think which of these subjects would be the most intriguing, detrimental, highlighted, newsworthy, or whatever key words are used to gather people’s prying or curious eyes. Then as I sat back and thought moment by moment and hour by hour, I realized one simple thing. This article shouldn’t be about what’s going to catch everyone’s attention or how to wow the people. This article shouldn’t be about creating such a severe curiosity that you feel almost desperate to read the book to find the details of what I’m talking about. This article should continue to be what the book expresses so deeply. REALITY!!!
Every day our children go to school (siblings if you are in the chosen few not to have children) and every day we wonder what they will teach our children or bring to their attention or create a curiosity on. Every day we watch that little one head out the door and hope we’ve done something right in their life to the point that whatever they are faced with during their day, they will not only have the intelligence to handle it but also have the strength to endure it. What we don’t count on however; is the many times during the day that our children get bullied. This is such a problem in today’s society that it’s been covered on just about every news channel, in every state, throughout all classes on a flyer of some sort, and some schools have actually gone as far as having a guest speaker.
Back when I was a child, bullying seemed at its worst. There were so many circumstances I fell into that brought me face to face with humility, shame, hatred, anger and so many other different types of feelings that a little girl should not have to face alone. The bullying started with my race and moved onto my heritage. Growing up in Garden City ID in a rundown trailer park with little to no sober supervision as a Native American little girl, was the absolute chance for boys and girls to destroy any sense of hope I had when I went to school. Not knowing how “different” I really was actually became quite the road block when I tried to make friends or even talk to people. The constant goal of my everyday life was just to make it through the day as a small excerpt of the book shows an example below.
Kids these days are so much worst with their knives, bathroom meetings, and so many other things I’ve encountered with my own children. Then we as parents find ourselves in a mental trap. How do we stick up for our children when there’s only so much we can do as human beings? Painting a picture with a full time 40 hour job, 3 beautiful children, keeping appointments, and paying bills makes it real hard to stay on teachers and principals to take bullying serious. I personally believe there should be bullying classes just like Anger Management and AA. There should be worksheets and tests to go over with someone focusing just as much on that as they do on drugs and pregnancy. The little girl in my story goes through many things as a child and gets mentally tortured, but somehow finds a way to survive another day like many of our children today.
The really sad part comes in when reality hits that the bullying in our country, society, world, nature, daily lives doesn’t stop there. Children get older, wiser, meaner, and more judgmental of their surroundings and start showing a serious interest in their own opinion of people. High school is said to be one of the cruelest environments out there. Everyone always warns their children to be ready for High school since that’s when people “don’t care”, “get real mean”, and “have to fit in”. You get judged by the brand you are wearing, who you are hanging out with, what your hair looks like, and even how you talk. If you aren’t apart of the cool crowd right off the top, then you have a whole world of trouble ahead of you. This isn’t even including all the peer pressure of smoking, drugs, drinking, sex, and who we hate or like today. The book excerpt below only hints at the type of details I’m talking about.
The intelligence of the main character in this truly heart breaking story becomes clouded as she slowly but surely finds more reason to lose hope in her little world of people that were supposed to be friends. She finds out through some pretty severe situations that the only friend she can truly count on is herself. This is a familiar find in a lot of high school situations. Ever have your children come home and not want to tell you something or claim everything is great, when you know something is wrong and keeping pushing until they finally look at you and say, “you wouldn’t understand!”? I know these words all too well today, yesterday, last year, and in my own childhood. The bullying has gotten so bad in our society today that our teen suicides have gone up tremendously in the last year alone.
The words and accusations get more specific and hurtful as children get older. The subjects of disapproval of their peers become extremely close minded and they become numb by their own heartless words and actions. Sexuality is more realized and if there is a boy or girl becoming an adult and getting to know themselves, the peer group will track that person down with their group and terrorize that child. What happened to the parents of these children? Why do they allow such extreme and cruel behavior toward another child? Religious belief? Moral belief? Personal belief? Why should any of that matter? Why should the actions and words and thoughts and feelings of a person have so much effect on another that hatred and anger are allowed to be acted upon that person? How is it fair to these children when they don’t have a shoulder to cry on or an ear to tell their secret to that they can trust and because of it, they are ridiculed and destroyed in every way possible?
The thing we can look forward to as we get older is coming home to family right? Coming home to the open arms and loving hearts we have become accustomed to as little ones. The best feeling in the world is having the worst day with all the ridicule and judgment and name calling and just plain torture in all aspects and knowing at the end of that miserable day, you can come home and be loved for who you are… right? Again bullying comes in all shapes and sizes in all of our walks of life and unfortunately it doesn’t stop at our schools. There are many families out there who are dealing with some type of loss of their child or family member because the bullying got too much. They say, “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me”, but they do hurt especially when they are said by family.
It’s sad but it’s very true! Children and people in general should have that comfort zone that they can just come home and know their parents, siblings, or other family members love them unconditionally and always will. In so many cases this isn’t the truth. We judge by looks, religion, intelligence, sexual orientation, and so many other things that are so ridiculous to even let cross our minds. We get so caught up in what we envision for our children, parents, siblings, elders or other that when that line of difference is crossed… we attack! So what if your son is Buddhist! So what if your daughter is Goth! So what if your little brother is feminine! So what if your aunt is a lesbian! So what!!!! Why does it matter? Why do we focus so much on what we want for our family and friends? Why can’t we love and adore and support them for who they are regardless of what that is?
Our society has become so unreal and severely judgmental that we actually sit back and wait to see what people are going to think before making our decisions on what we support. What if the judgment or accusation doesn’t make any sense to the child or family member? What if you’ve got it all wrong and everything you just said or did was out of pure impulse and stupidity? What would you do? How would you feel? The excerpt given below will make you wonder if the adult FELT stupid, bad, wrong, or plainly just didn’t care. I’ve even asked myself… how could someone do this to a child?
How do you correct a behavior that’s so engrained in our society that it’s become habit to pick up popular magazines just to read about it? How do you apologize for something that was said in the heat of the moment or discern of belief, when a similar subject hit the 9 o’clock news and the entire world reacted the same? When is it considered too much? When does it stop? When will we take bullying as serious as we take sexual harassment or drugs? The news and media definitely comes in handy on cases where parents and family members are trying to take a stand for their belief against the bullying, but does it out weigh the other side of the story that the world would prefer to focus on? Why do we become uncomfortable in our own skin as an individual when the light is shined on us as doing something wrong? Why do we fall prey to our peers and what they think of what we believe or want?
How will the character in my book overcome the challenges in her life? Does she ever get to breathe and be proud of who she is? Will she ever find a final destination to her own self worth? Is that personal acceptance really as easy as everyone says it is? Who is the one person who completely unexpectedly shows her an open door she never thought she would see? What blast from the past made a final mark on her life that would last forever and was it a good thing or bad? The world can be a very cruel and downright evil place to be if you don’t know who you are. The path everyone takes is their own with many ups and downs and sooner or later we all learn some type of a lesson. What’s yours?