It Gets Better. My $500 Pledge Has Now Grown to $775!

Oct 3, 2010 by

Today I will not have my usual WTFckery Sunday post, but instead I feel the need to bring to light a very sad and heartbreaking epidemic that has swept the nation this week. This is in regards to bullying and the consequences that the victim of a bully will do to themselves, as a final last resort because they can no longer take the pain and suffering due to the heartless and cruel acts people have done to them in return.

The last straw for most of these victims is suicide. This is with the recent suicide deaths of young gay teens who feel they have no other choice but to take their lives because those who have bullied them have driven them to it.

The cases reported this week are tragic:

15-year-old Billy Lucas hanged at his grandmother’s house himself because of being tormented for years due to his possible sexual orientation.

13-year-old Asher Brown shot himself in the head with his stepfather’s 9mm Beretta after constant harassment during an 18 month period from students at his middle school because Asher was gay.

13-year-old gay teen Seth Walsh hung himself because he could no longer deal with the bullying.

Tyler Clementi, an 18-year-old Rutgers University student jumped off the George Washington Bridge to his death after he found out that his roommate allegedly filmed him twice during a gay sexual encounter and transmitted it online.

My heart breaks for these young men, who because of the selfish and petty actions of others, ended their lives because they thought it couldn’t get better, and that they believed they will always be the victims of small minded people, who lash out because of their own self-esteem issues and fears over someone being different.

I’m here to tell you that it does get better. I’m living proof of this. I’m a survivor of bullying. My bullying started when I was 6 years-old. I wasn’t bullied because of my sexual orientation, but because others thought I was awkward looking and found a reason not to like me period, I was spit on, told I was stupid, ugly, fat and no one wanted to be my friend. At 9-years-old I was forced into a school bathroom and almost raped by an older boy who bullied me every day. It escalated to the point that by the time I was 12, I was told by more than one person that it would be better if I kill myself because no one cared if I was alive.

Me at 12-years-old with constant thoughts of suicide

I took those words to heart and almost killed myself twice. The first time was almost walking into traffic and hoping a car will hit me and kill me. The second time, which I have never mentioned until now, was when I took a knife from my kitchen drawer, went up to my bedroom while my parents were downstairs, sat on my bed and placed the knife against my wrist. I sat there with tears rolling down my cheeks, ready to slit my wrists because the bullying grew so bad. I sat there with a million thoughts running through my head. How much will it hurt? How long will it take me to die? Will my mother ever forgive me after I’m gone because of the bloodstains on the sheets? I kept thinking, I’m only 12, it has to get better… it has to get better… it must get better.

I then lay back on my bed and thought of all the things I wanted to do that I wouldn’t be able to do it I killed myself. I thought about my parents and my sister who did love me and wouldn’t want me to do this. If I killed myself, I wouldn’t be able to learn to drive a car, go to college, see the world, write a book and go back to Disney World a second time. And that one phrase, “it will get better” repeated my head. With that in mind, I put down the knife and decided I wanted to live. I refused to be a victim to those small minded people. My revenge against my abusers would be to live a full life. If it pained and disgusted them for me to be alive and for them to see me, so be it. I had won against my abusers simply by living and them having to see me every day. It took me a very long time to be comfortable in my own skin and to be proud of the person I am. But this is who I am, and no one ever again will make me think less of myself.

The first two decades of our lives should be the most amazing ones we will ever live. A child, who then becomes a teen should not have to go through such abuse. Those years are supposed to be the happiest of our lives.

Suicide is not the answer. Those who bully will feel no remorse over their victims taking their own lives. Suicide isn’t a cure. Ending your life isn’t the answer. Living your life on your own terms and loving who you want and in your own way is the answer. There will always be small-minded people, as well as bullies in this world, but the way to combat them is to not feel  worthless. Even though you feel you are all alone and no one will understand, I’m here to tell you that there are people who do care will stand beside you regardless of who you are, what you look like, and who you love.

Thanks to LB Gregg and Kris at Kris “n” Good books, they made me aware of a new momentum rising up called “It Gets Better” started by the columnist Dan Savage because of the suicide of Billy Lucas.

“I wish I could have talked to this kid for five minutes. I wish I could have told Billy that it gets better. I wish I could have told him that, however bad things were, however isolated and alone he was, it gets better.

But gay adults aren’t allowed to talk to these kids. Schools and churches don’t bring us in to talk to teenagers who are being bullied. Many of these kids have homophobic parents who believe that they can prevent their gay children from growing up to be gay—or from ever coming out—by depriving them of information, resources, and positive role models.

Why are we waiting for permission to talk to these kids? We have the ability to talk directly to them right now. We don’t have to wait for permission to let them know that it gets better. We can reach these kids.

So here’s what you can do, GBVWS: Make a video. Tell them it gets better.

I’ve launched a channel on YouTube—www .youtube.com/itgetsbetterproject—to host these videos. My normally camera-shy husband and I already posted one. We both went to Christian schools and we were both bullied—he had it a lot worse than I did—and we are living proof that it gets better. We don’t dwell too much on the past. Instead, we talk mostly about all the meaningful things in our lives now—our families, our friends (gay and straight), the places we’ve gone and things we’ve experienced—that we would’ve missed out on if we’d killed ourselves then.

“You gotta give ’em hope,” Harvey Milk said.

Today we have the power to give these kids hope. We have the tools to reach out to them and tell our stories and let them know that it does get better. Online support groups are great, GLSEN does amazing work, The Trevor Project is invaluable. But many LGBT youth can’t picture what their lives might be like as openly gay adults. They can’t imagine a future for themselves. So let’s show them what our lives are like, let’s show them what the future may hold in store for them.

~Give ‘Em Hope, Dan Savage”

I want to do my part not only for the “It’s Get Better” initiative, but to bring to light that bullying in any form is despicable and sickening, especially against those teens who are trying to come to terms with their sexual orientation in some places where being gay, unique and wonderfully eccentric is frowned upon and thought evil.

For every comment left here, I will donate a dollar a comment up to $500. 

This just in…**I’m pleased to announce that now the donation is $600 thanks to JMC of bookrelated (@jmc_bks on twitter) will donate $100 on top of my $500.**

**Author Carrie Lofty will donate $50 on top of my donation to The Trevor Project**

**M/M author Alex Beecroft will donate $100 on top of my donation**

**Author Leah Braemel will denote $25 on top of my donation**

500 comments = $775

$250 will go to The Trevor Project, “the leading national organization focused on crisis and suicide prevention efforts among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) youth.”

$250 will go to the Matthew Shepard Foundation was founded by Dennis and Judy Shepard in memory of their 21-year old son, Matthew, who was murdered in an anti-gay hate crime in Wyoming in October 1998. Their mission is to “educate and enlighten others on the importance of diversity, understanding, compassion, acceptance and respect.”

Please help me reach my goal. I would love to be able to send out these checks by the end of the month.You can simply comment with a greeting, or tell your own story as a survivor of bullying, or knowing others who have bee bullied.

And by putting down that knife and not cutting my wrists I was able to learn to drive a car, go to college, see the world, went onto to not only write a book, but to publish five in total so far.

And not only did I go back to Disney World twice, but a third time, almost ten years to the day I decided to live and where IT DID GET BETTER!

Dan Savage and his husband’s video on how it got better for them:

Update:
Mandi from Smexybooks has decided to donated $50 on her own to The Trevor Project.
J.P Barnaby, author of  the GLBT YA book Enlightened (Little Boy Lost series #1) , will donate half of her royalities for the month October to The Trevor Project.
Fiction Vixen has decided to donate $50 on her own to The Trevor Project.
AuthorLila DiPasqua has decided to donate $40 on her own to The Trevor Project.

Katiebabs

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531 Comments

  1. It saddens me to see this happen.. Bullying should never be allowed! Great cause, Katie. *hugs*

  2. Thank you for doing this.

  3. I was bullied too, in grade school and I though of suicide. We have to help kids who can’t see that the dark tunnel has an end, to find the corner that leads them out.

  4. Brilliant, KB! I hope you get 500 comments. Bullying in schools is definitely something that should not be tolerated, especially by school officials.

  5. Pam

    Thank you for doing this.

  6. Wonderful causes, Katie. Thank you for this.

  7. Kate you’ve always rallied for those less fortunate or those in pain. You are a kind-hearted woman with a courageous spirit. Let’s help end the hate and show some love.

  8. As a mother of two children who were bullied in middle school–I commend your money where your mouth is attitude, KB. I learned of The Trevor Project through my Gays of Our Lives friends, most particularly from Dennis Grabosch himself who took my hand and said–we have to do more.

    Thanks KB.

    Those who can, please consider donating or spreading the word about the vital work of both TTP and the Matthew Shepard Foundation.

    It gets better.

    xo

    LB

  9. I am in tears. No child should have to suffer because they are different. I have a son who just started middle school and bullying is my number one fear. I’ve spoken to him many times about bullying, telling him to not participate regardless of what his friends are doing and if he is being bullied, to us immediately.

    Again, great post and thank you for sharing.

  10. Thank you for the honest heartfelt post. I hope a lot of bullied children and teens get to read it. It speaks heart-to-heart.
    Thank you very much for sharing,
    Love & Best Wishes,
    Rob

  11. Thank you for sharing Kate and thank you for your commitment to speaking out and doing something to help. xoxo

  12. Anonymous

    Delurking just to say: This is a powerful project and it’s wonderful that you’re participating in this way. There are so many kids who feel isolated and it is our responsibility as adults and the ones who survived to show them the way through. Warmest regards! -SB

  13. Thank you for posting this. I too was bullied, not quite to the extend you have or to the extend Billy, Asher, Seth and (possibly) Tyler has.

    Good luck! I will spread the word.

  14. Big hugs Kate! These kids need all of our support.

  15. Great, courageous post! Good luck reaching your goal!

  16. What a touching post about learning for yourself that “it gets better”- the message needs to get out there, as does the message that bullying is WRONG and needs to stop!
    (((big smooches KB)))

    MsM

  17. I am so sorry that happened to you katie *hugs* and even more it breaks my heart what bullying led to with these boys.
    Brave post. I wish people would stand up when they see someone bullied

  18. Go Katiebabs!!! Awesome post. Unfortunately bullying is a huge problem. Maybe with more awareness, one day it will no longer be an issue.

  19. No child should be bullied for any reason. Thanks for your wonderful project, Kate. 🙂

  20. I’m so thankful that I was never a victim of bullying. I was never popular, but I was never bullied either. I was lucky. It’s so very sad that these kids felt they had no where to turn and no recourse to the bullying that was done to them. Thank you for telling your story and being a total inspiration!

  21. Thank you for sharing and putting this out there. What a wonderful thing you are doing.

    That video is great. There is another I saw too that is awesome.

    It is so sad that there is still this much hate in the world. People should be able to be who they want to be with out worrying over what others will think.

  22. This is a great project, Kate. Good luck in your endeavors.

    My cousin actually committed suicide and it leaves nothing pretty in its wake. The reason was not bullying, but the outcome is the same. There has been a dark shroud on my family that is just beginning to lift. Anything you can do to talk someone out of suicide should be accepted. Why wouldn’t they allow people in to talk to them. I mean they allow everyone else – including companies to do marketing directly to children, why not people that want to help!

  23. This is a great cause. It should never happen again. Kids should never feel like they’d be better off dead.

  24. Paul Chaplin

    Thank you for posting this, Katie. It really does get better.

  25. This is truly an epidemic. I thought the bullying incident in Massachusetts was hard to handle. I wish there could be some stiff penalties for the abusers – other than having to live with the guilt that they drove someone to kill themself. Sadly, I don’t think this is the last we will hear of such tales.

  26. Thank you for spreading the word, Kate.

    Nicole Kimberling
    Editor
    Blind Eye Books

  27. Erin

    Kate, thank you so much for sharing this message and for allowing all of us who read your blog to be a part of making things better.

  28. Tam

    You’re an amazing lady. Thank you for sharing your story. I can only imagine the pain some kids have to endure. I will spread the word.

  29. I don’t know why people is so mean….But they are. Always finding something to bother you, just because they are idiots who doesn’t have anything else to do in life.

    I’m happy to hear that it got better to you, and I hope more people will read you and understand.

  30. Thank you so much for sharing your bullying experience. So many adults are of the mindset that, well, it happened to them and they survived, it’s part of playground behavior, they’re just being kids…no. Just no.

    One of the topics we’re discussing in my 8th grade class is cyberbullying: what it is, how to recognize it and how to prevent it. Hopefully, it will open their eyes to what can happen.

  31. I was never really bullied at school because I learned early how to read people and not rock the boat, however life was hard growing up biracial with an alcoholic parent. I tried to cut my wrists, but the little bit of pain always shocked me enough to make me stop.

    As an adult, I don’t think about the past. I try to forget the utter despair I felt just living, but the recent news has brought much of it back. I can’t imagine being a child in the world today, especially if I were “different.”

    I’m proud of you for taking a stand which will help kids by telling them they aren’t alone and things do get better. Thank you.

  32. My heart breaks for every one of those boys and I hope that others who are suffering hear and believe what we’re telling them now. All it takes is one person to make a difference in someone’s life. And I also want to say that you are a very brave and courageous woman for sharing your story and proving that it does get better.

  33. Jess.

    I was bullied all through jr high and highschool. I tried more than once to kill myself, and almost succeeded. I thank the heavens above every day that I didn’t because it does get better. Life does get better. I proimse.

  34. As someone who was bullied for being smart, gangly, and socially awkward – thank you for sharing your story and doing this, KB.

  35. Lovely post, Kate.

  36. The need to get positive support for these kids is so critical. Thank you for posting, donating, and making a difference. You are wonderful!

  37. It is wonderful that so many people , many of us victims ourselves, are speaking out now. A few lives will be saved just by us giving them hope that it does, indeed, get better.

  38. Val

    Thank you for doing this. 🙂

  39. Love the “It Gets Better” project.

  40. Jodie

    How could anyone watch your story and not feel inspired? I like that you show how absolutely ‘normal’ you are.
    I am heterosexual and have been married 17 years and have 4 kids. We have a silly story about how we met. We Adore our children. We like family vacations. We are dedicated to one another. Our families ‘sometimes’ accept us and our ways..lol
    I just don’t get how people think gay families want anything different than straight families.
    I have a niece that struggles. A common conversation we have goes like this…”So, Kelly, do you want to have children?”
    She replies “Aunt Anne, I’m gay….”
    And i say, “Thats nice sweetheart. So, How many children Do you think you and your wife will have?”
    She seems to think that shes excluded from certain life experiences because of her sexuality.. It baffles me! I always say..”Who has filled your head with such nonsense? Of course you can…(fill in the blank).
    So anyway,… I like to hear stories like yours. It gives hope. It presents the reality that your lives and Your dreams are the same as most peoples.

  41. Life should be about light & love. I support your cause.

  42. Chris – I was bullied for the same reasons as you. 🙁 Although at the time I didn’t really understand why I was being bullied.

    It started when I was 8 and didn’t end until I left high school when I was 16. Unfortunately I wasn’t one of thse people who once they left school and went to college everything was suddenly fine. The bullying had repercussions into my twenties (I didn’t tell anyone I was bullied until I was 24). It took a long time for me to deal with it.

    It was only when I reached my thirties that I think I finally got things sorted.

    Bullying is a real problem which I fear is still underestimated in schools.

  43. As a victim of hard-core bullying, I know how hard it is to believe that life will get better…but it truly does. Life is never going to be perfect or even easy, but it does get better.

    I think this initiative is a great thing. I truly hope you hit that $500 mark & know that as a fellow victim, I’m rooting 4 you to succeed. *hugs*

  44. What’s even worse than kids bullying at all is that it seems as if these kids being made victims aren’t being taught the skills to cope with that kind of vitriol.

    Whether a child is bullied for being poor or overweight or gay or simply different — the reason for the bullying shouldn’t matter, but rather the fact that children are being made to feel that they’re somehow less than human, worthless, or unwanted at all.

    When I was a kid, I was always told “ignore them and they’ll go away,” and in retrospect, that was probably just the weakest, worst advice ever. I was teased, insulted, and made the butt of jokes along the lines of “I know someone who ~likes~ you!” because, really, nothing’s funnier than the chubby girl actually thinking someone could possibly be interested in her.

    What I wish I’d been taught instead was to stand up for myself, instead of fearing my bullies and bending over backwards to avoid them. To understand that these people were small, hateful, ugly people not worth my time. I wish I’d been able to figure out earlier that those nitwits would mean absolutely nothing to me ten or twenty years down the line. But it’s so hard to see the big picture when you’re that young — everything feels completely overwhelming.

    Unfortunately, there will always be people who need to feel better and bigger than someone else, and who do so by turning someone into a target. I don’t have a lot of hope for changing that, but I do have hope that those of us who find ourselves in a child’s life can convey to them that things aren’t as hopeless as they may seem — to be that person who’ll listen and be there when things seem insurmountable.

  45. Life has done nothing but get better for me. I hope that message can get out to all the kids going through hard times. Just hold on!

    ~smooches~
    Jase

  46. you rawk. luff yew! ♥

  47. What a great cause!

    It breaks my heart to know this is happening. A local 13 year old recently committed suicide during class in our community. Bullying is said to be the cause. Devastating! I have a 10 year old and I sat him down after it happened & told him if he is ever bullied or experiences suicidal thoughts he must tell me, and that I’ll do everything in my power to make it better. It is something I need to make sure I remind him of constantly. I wish someone had been there for all these children who felt they had no other choice but to end their lives.

  48. I was bullied when I was in elementary school because I was overweight and did well in class. It didn’t last for very long and it never got so bad that I contemplated suicide but I’m still working on my self esteem because of it. I’m so glad Dan Savage started this project. My uncle was gay and my cousin is gay. It never factored in to how much I love them or how much they love me. I really hope you reach the goal you set. Your post was great and I’m so glad you had the strength and courage to pull through and live your life well and happily.

  49. Great cause!

    Maybe one day there will be a law against bullying.

  50. Thank you for doing this. It makes me terribly sad to think we’re still living in a day and age where sexual orientation is a cause for suicide. >.< I hope that this effort will help to change this in even a small way.

  51. This is a wonderful cause. Thank you.

  52. IT GETS BETTER!!!

  53. Thank you for sharing your story with us. It was brave, and it is people like you that show others that IT GETS BETTER! *hugs*

  54. I’ve always hated bullies. You rock in what you are doing here.

    Lots of hugs and <3

  55. Julie M

    Thanks you for doing this. My son is 13 and different (Asperger’s syndrome) and I worry about bullying. Thanks to everyone who is trying to make a difference.

  56. Mahalo, Katie, for bringing this issue to light. Bullies hurt children, teens, adults, and seniors. Indeed, it will get better if we all remember and repeat that mantra.

  57. *cuddle & hugs*

    I was an awkward kid too, and I was also the daughter of a gay woman. For me, things got better before I left school, but mostly because I learned to hide who I was.

    Thankfully I don’t have to do that anymore.

  58. I was bullied as a young teenager. Not for sexual orientation or anything — just because I was picked out as the weakest (being raised as a non-violent Quaker does put a target on you in a variety of ways).

    What everyone seems to forget is that the bullied child’s friends tend to scatter the moment the bullies appear. It does make you feel alone and isolated, because no one who matters (your friends, your peers) seems to want to support you. Telling the adults gets you branded as a narc, and many times, worse payback later. So you don’t tell.

    I put up with it for half a year, then fought back, mostly with curse words. They do indeed have power, and they backed everyone off of me. (F**k you! when I was in 7th grade, really held a lot of oomph.)

    New school in 8th grade, new bullies. But I’d learned that fighting back, usually by out talking and out thinking my opponents, tended to work in my favor. Do I recommend it? Well, I recommend anything other than suicide, honestly. Unlike many who were bullied, hurting myself was never in my mind. Hurting the bullies was. As I got a little older I realized the truth: living well and being happy really IS the best revenge.

    Great cause, KB. Thanks for helping bring these foundations more exposure and support. You rock.

  59. It’s terrible, the things kids can do to one another (and some grown adults as well). Some parents should make sure they’ve done their job by their kids and taught them the right things, before packing them off to a college. We all have to live on the same planet, it’s not right to do this to someone. Drive them to the point of suicide. Who you love is up to you, not society.

    -Hope my comment can count for something! It’s great what you’re doing, Kate. And everyone with the ‘It gets Better’ initiative!

    Many Blessings everyone!

  60. Great post! Thank you.

  61. This is a great cause. So many of us were either bullied when we were kids, or were so terrified of it that we suppressed our individuality to try to blend in and not draw any attention to ourselves.

    I try hard to live my life by the Golden Rule. If only everyone else did the same, the world would be a much better place and there’d be no room for this nonsense.

  62. Anonymous

    Thank you for doing this. I was already a fan of Dan Savage, but now I’m a super fan!

  63. Great post and cause, Katie! Hope you reach the 500!

    Julie

  64. Emilie

    I was bullied in school, mainly because I had no social skills. It got a lot better for me in college. Thanks for doing this, Katie!

  65. Thank you so much for sharing what you went through, and for pledging to donate.

  66. Has

    Great cause and post Katie!!!

  67. Lesley

    Thank you for helping get the word out about this important issue. Suicide is never the answer.

  68. Jax

    I wish more people would stop thinking bullying is just something that is a part of childhood and start letting the bullies know their behavior isn’t going to be tolerated.

    Good cause!

  69. Half of my royalties for October are going to the @TrevorProject. I almost didn’t graduate from high school because of bullying – every day I tell myself there is a reason to get out of bed. Somedays have better reasons than others.

    I’m sorry for what you had to go through, no one should have to deal with that. I know we’re all happy that you made it through to be with us now.

    Bullying isn’t just a part of growing up, it’s violent and hateful and wrong.

    – J. P. Barnaby

  70. I was a victim of school bullying too, Katie, and although I never got to the stage of wanting to commit suicide, I can sympathise with those who have. I’m glad you are here today to tell your story and it saddens me that these young people felt that there was no other option but to kill themselves. It does get better, and as the two delightful men in the video said, often as soon as you leave school and the playground mentality behind.

  71. Netreal

    I’m a 50 year old woman who was bullied all through my childhood by people including family members. All I wanted to do was disappear and crawl into my self and hide. I still struggle with self esteem and self worth. It got better for awhile but that didn’t last. Last year it was discovered I had a brain tumor, after surgery to remove it I’ve decide to finally live my life for me and I’m finally capable of hope. Dan started a wonderful project that hopefully will help countless people. Your post was incredibly touching and I hope you get the 500 comments. Reading all the posts has been amazing and I hope people continue sharing.

  72. My son is 12 and it is horrifying to think that some of his peers are so unhapppy that they can’t see any other way out other than suicide. At this age they should be still being carefree kids.

    Good cause Katie.

  73. KB –

    This post had me sobbing by the end. Thank you for sharing your story with the world. I’ve seen so many people using these tragedies as a way to declaim the “gay lifestyle” rather than focusing on the real issue – which is bullying in schools and the lack of proper support for young gay students and others who feel they might be better off dead.

    I was fortunate enough not to have to put up with too much bullying. I was fierce, and fought back when my guy friends were criticized for wearing makeup or skirts. I got into it with a girl on the bus who told my brother he was going to hell. Both of these times, I got in trouble with the bus driver, because he agreed with the students doing the bullying.

    Both times, my mother told me she was proud of me for standing up for my friends and brother, and had an amusing talk with the school about her skinny little daughter “shoving” the star of the high school wrestling team to the point where he fell down.

    We managed to get homophobic words added to the “bad list” while I was at my high school, thanks to our incredibly open-minded and wonderful principal, who is sorely missed on this earth. I wish there were more school principals who were willing to post posters (back in the late ’90s) that promoted diversity and included sexual orientation. I’m sure if he were with us today, he would add gender identity in a heartbeat.

    With the internet, cyber-bullying especially has become such a problem. Too many teens have committed suicide thanks to cyber-bullying, many due to homophobic abuse. Thanks for using your blog to help spread the love.

    I’ve said this in other places, but it bears repeating. The human race has to STEP UP. This kind of treatment towards our children – that we let go by because we’re not comfortable with how to “handle it” – is a disgrace to a civilized society.

  74. This is such a wonderful thing you’re doing. I commend you on spreading awareness… this needs to be confronted, not put aside. Thank you!

  75. Thank you for this post. My daughter was bullied last year and although her school did a good job of addressing the issue, the parents of the bullies just didn’t seem to care. “Kids will be kids” was their typical attitude about it. I wish there was a way to put responsibility back on the parents.

  76. Hello Katie! Thanks so much for supporting this worthwhile cause!
    Hugs,
    Samantha

  77. Awesome post, KB. Here’s to a better way…

  78. You are well on your way, KB! Well done you.

    T

  79. You are an inspiration. What a great way to draw attention to such an important issue.

  80. I am so glad I found this blog, and this cause. Thank you for your honesty and message of hope.

  81. A powerful post, Kate.

  82. Thanks for this, Katie. I’m so glad you still around, because you’re helping us out next week, even though you don’t know it 🙂

    In celebration of National Coming Out Day and in the spirit of the It Gets Better Project, on Monday, October 11 Dear Author will be hosting a “Gay Writes” day, in which we’ll be giving away many MANY GLBT romances donated by presses and authors, one of which is LOVESTRUCK, donated by Noble. So it’s wonderful that you’re still around to see this. 😀

  83. I know a number of people who are making videos for Dan Savage’s project. This is an important cause; kids need the strength to stand up to bullies, and for that they need to know that they are not alone, no matter how much it feels that way.

    Nice work, Katie.

  84. I can’t think of a better thing to do on a Sunday afternoon than commenting here for this cause. This is so heartbreaking, but I’m so glad you’re doing this to help bring light to a terrible situation and the kids that could be in this boat and still reached before it’s too late. Big hugs and kudos, KB, for sharing your personal story and more big hugs to anyone who’s felt hopeless in the light of bullying. You are not alone!

  85. A thoughtful and thought-provoking message, KB. I despise bullies of all stripes, but, I’m pretty sure, if you haven’t been bullied as a kid, it is difficult to fully understand the pain they cause. Thx

  86. Anonymous

    Awesome post, hope you reach your target 🙂

  87. I’d be willing to donate myself to this project if you’re looking for donations. Else, I’ll go with the organizations you listed. I am just beyond saddened that this has happened, four times alone, that we know about, this September. It’s beyond tragic and should not be happening. Great and inspiring post.

  88. kate, im so glad to know you now. you are an amazing woman for so many reasons.

    while i love your fictional stories *wink wink* this type of honest and amazing writing of yours just blows me away. and brought me to tears.

    if i could talk to gay teens being bullied i would tell them – as far as im aware being gay is COOL.

  89. Katiebabs, Kudos and heartfelt appreciation for helping to bring this horrific situation to light. Bullying has always existed, but lately it seems to have quadrupled. My heart also goes out to those who not only have put up with this heartless bullying, but took their own lives because of it. People commit suicide when the pain is so overwhelming, they’d do anything to end it. And, they see no way out.

    I was not bullied during my childhood, but even then I couldn’t tolerate cruelty to others in any form. In senior high I was expelled from school for 3 days for fist-fighting with the captain of the football team. He picked on a young boy (an albino) one too many times in the lunch line and I finally had enough. The expulsion was well worth the shiner the bully walked around with for a week or more. I like to think it was the most embarrassing moment of his life that a 5’2″ sophomore fought back and left a mark for all to see.

    Bullying in any form is intolerable, and only when bystanders stand up against it will it diminish. Thanks so much for standing up, katiebabs. I salute you,

    Best, Keta
    http://www.ketadiablo.com

  90. Thank you Katie for doing this, and for sharing your story. No one deserves to be bullied, for any reason. It has to get better – and it needs to get better now, not just in the future, but at the very least we can offer hope.

  91. Wow, what a thing to do! I was bullied when I was in high school, so my heart goes out to all those who are or have been bullied.

    A wonderful cause for money to go to and a big thank you to you for doing this 🙂

  92. What a good cause to bring light to. You have my full support!

  93. I’m SO tired of hearing about all these suicides. It’s sickening to hear that college students are acting that immature, too. I almost expect it from a younger child, because they “don’t know better”, but a college student? TWO? 5 years is not enough time for them to be in jail for what they did.

    What pisses me off most is this “Oh they don’t know any better” mentality that authority figures adopt. Or, if they’re in a conservative community, they look the other way. How can you do that as an adult? Doesn’t everyone get picked on at one point in their lives? Doesn’t everyone feel really shitty at a young age at one point? Why would you want to make someone else feel that way? HOW can you, when you see what young teens are resorting to?

    I know people do it to make themselves feel better… but shit. I feel like the media should do something to help promote all these foundations. All we hear about are the suicides, but we never hear anything about how we can educate our youth to realize that this behavior is unacceptable.

    I really fear for the direction our country is headed. A vast majority of America’s youth are already so spoiled and bratty and out of control. If I ever acted the way these kids do now when I was a kid… well a teacher can’t touch me, but you can be sure as hell none of them would have accepted my shit. And then when my parents found out? Holy crap I’d probably be grounded for life after getting a severe ass kicking.

  94. I’ve never really been the victim of bullying but while growing up and now working on a college campus I see it. Unfortunately it is not always the most obvious thing happening to the outside world. I pray for all of the people (young and old) who have to go through that just because of the insecurities of others.

  95. Amanda S.

    Thank you for posting this and for sharing your story…It DOES get Better!
    I hope you reach 500 posts and I’ll be posting this on my facebook to let others know that aren’t aware of your blog or whats going on 🙂
    Good job {{hugs}}
    Amanda S.

  96. My heart truly goes out to all the families that have become a victim of bullying… And Katie your right it does get better!

    My son who is now 13 was a victim of bullying because of his eyes.. He suffered from cataracts and surgery to have his lenses removed and replaced so now that is a glossy almost like glass look to his eyes and he has to wear glasses that transition to darker in the light because his eyes are so sensitive.. Kids can be so brutal and everyday he would come home with a story of how some one made fun of him and I don’t know if he ever had thoughts of suicide but we talk everyday just so he knows that he is loved and that it does in fact get better. My husband on the other hand was like the dad that attacked the children on the school bus.. Only he went to school with my son for a whole day and after the kids attempted to harass our son he took them each aside and pointed out that no ones perfect and that how would they feel if someone berated them in the fashion they were berating our son.. Things have calmed a bit but in no way has it gotten better. The school isn’t very helpful either and although these children that did end their lives should not have to be made an example.. I am hoping that everyone is now getting the message loud and clear.
    Big (HUGS) to you!

  97. I have several little great nieces and nephews and I worry so about them once they enter the schoolyard… And I look for things to be better for them.

    Maureen

  98. Thank you, Katie. Very worthwhile cause.

  99. Hey doll, Baby was bullied physically and verbally last year in 6th grade. Took the school SEVEN months to listen to us and only when they caught a little @(#*$ on video hitting her.

    EXCELLENT POST! and I’m proud of you for facing the demons rather than giving up. I blogged, tweet and FB your post. I hope you get 500 comments too, because it would mean that people are listening.

  100. I am here from a tweet made by Larissa Ione. It does get better.

  101. Lillie

    Intolerance in this country has to stop and thanking you for taking steps to help that happen.

  102. Great cause and post. Come on, 500 comments!

  103. What a heartfelt, honest post, Katie. Thank you so much for sharing such a difficult time, and for doing this.

  104. I think this is a wonderful thing that you are doing. Your own story touched my heart and while reading it I soon had tears rolling down my face. I am so happy that you didn’t take your life, for our book community wouldn’t be the same without you! We love you!

  105. What a beautiful, moving and inspiring post! I lost a schoolmate my senior year of high school, when he was just months away from getting the heck out of our small minded town, and I still think about him all the time, even though we weren’t close. I didn’t tease or torment him, but I didn’t reach out to him either. It’s been over 15 years and I still feel haunted.

    Like you, I’ve been appalled and saddened by the recent suicides in the news, and in particular of the story a few years back where the mom of one of the bullies actually faked being a teenage boy to torment one victim. I wasn’t very popular, and like almost every kid I was bullied at times, but I was able to realize that things would get better, or at least different, like you. Books taught me that.

    Hopefully this post will reach some of our younger bloggers out there, and remind them that the future is wide opened, things will get better. Thank you so much for sharing your story, it was an honor to read it!

  106. Anonymous

    Thanks for this post. I normally don’t get too involved in things but this is an amazing cause. I too have had suicide thoughts and was bullied and yes I am better now. I just wish these boys had, had the chance to.

  107. As a former teacher, we saw it in school & tried to make changes. It takes a whole community to make the change happen-from comments at the dinner table to pulpit sermons to recognizing or saying “hi” to the lonely. We all can do our part.

  108. Thank you so much for sharing your story and getting the word out and for being so incredibly generous! I pray that your support will help at least one child. They all deserve to know that they are loved and are important!

  109. Thank you for such a heartfelt and thoughtful post. It makes you wonder how the bullies parents are if they are bullies too. I think most parents of bullies make excuses for them.

  110. The only way tragedies like these can be prevented is for everyone to band together and make it clear that targeting people for any reason is not acceptable. Providing resources like this is a definitely step in the right direction. I applaud your efforts!

  111. Mary

    Love your Post Hope you can get up enough Money to help em out 🙂

  112. T.L.L.

    I can relate as well. Here’s to 500 posts!

  113. Thank you for sharing your story and continuing to keep the issue of bullying and its devastating effects on people at the forefront of our minds.

  114. Here’s another comment: I was bullied as a kid–for thick glasses and being ‘too smart.’ They say being bullied either makes you timid or fierce. I’m not timid.

    And… I know it’s not noble, but I can’t help thinking it’s a shame Asher shot himself instead of the kids who bullied him. The parents of those kids will probably never accept their own role in anyone’s death, and I doubt any of them, parents or children, will ever change. Yeah, I know, they’re only kids — but bullies don’t change when they get older, they just get meaner and more clever about disguising it.

  115. Thank you so much for sharing. Retweeting now.

  116. Anonymous

    It breaks my heart to hear of children and teens taking their own lives for something that can be prevented.

    It does get better!!

  117. Thank you so much for doing this!

  118. Anonymous

    Thank you for your voice and for your hard work and dedication.

  119. It’s a rough time but thank god for the support networks. Every dollar counts.

  120. I use to be bullied as well, but never too the point where I wanted to kill myself. My bullies were…friends?…of mine who after picked on me because I was the skinny, quiet girl who would never fight back. That was until I fought back and knocked them all over their heads, quite a few times. Now they smile when they see me and try to be my friend. Teehee

  121. This is terrific! Thanks for sharing your story.

  122. I hate bullies; when my son was young, he got bullied at school. Why? Because he is small. To this day he is 5ft5 and weighs 115 pds.He will never be tall. I remember one day him coming home from school and he wasn’t wearing his favorite hat. Some kid had taken it and told him he could have it back if he could reach it. So mean!

  123. My heart goes out to the victim’s of bullies. I especially hope that gay youth will understand that their lives are worth living. They just need to hold on through the teen years. While discrimination still exists with adults, it will be easier to handle and they will be able to build their own community of support. Don’t give up.

  124. I know all too well that it does get better. I was bullied for all sorts of reasons all throughout school..I was smart, one of two jewish kids in my grade, wore glasses from a very early age shy…etc.

    After an extremely horror-filled 8th grade class trip, my parents sent me to sleep away camp…where I discovered ‘me’-the social butterfly that was waiting to break through the shell years of bullying had covered. I made close friends, and remembered there was more to me than the kid I was on the first day of kindergarden.

    I was lucky…not everybody is. I had supportive parents who served as the kind of understanding barrier to the world that a severely bullied child needs. For the ones who aren’t as lucky, it does get better. And for the ones who are as lucky, remember to listen to the things people are telling you: it does get better. I’m living proof of that.

    I hope you get to 500 KB!

    Stacey

  125. This is definitely a topic that needs to be talked about. Thank you for sharing your story.

    And that’s a great mantra: It will get better!

  126. I’ve been there, too, Katie, with the knife and the misery. My class was so mean to each other in general that our school re-instituted uniforms for our class and forbade field trips. My problem was my own–I have suffered from crippling depression most of my life–as opposed to a concentrated bullying that was worse for me than for any of the other kids in my class.

    But I hope you get all 500 comments, because you’re giving to such worthy causes.

  127. I was also bullied as a teen.

    The first time was in my first year of high school (US middle school) where I was one of the first girls to develop breasts. The sexual harassment I got from a small group of boys was unbelievably awful as you can probably imagine. It went until for some time until an older family friend at the same school stepped in and the situation came to a head.

    The second time was after we had moved and I was enrolled in an all girls’ school, which I sometimes think my parents did because of what happened to me at the mixed school. Strangely, it was not the girls who bullied me but rather the headmistress. She singled me out because I refused to conform to the assembly line private school girls they were trying to produce and because I always stood up and befriended the girls who were different.

    It was this situation that helped shape the person who I am because, despite the fact that I hated every second there, despite her constant bullying and degradation of me in front of my peers, despite being offered numerous times to get pulled out and put into a new school, I refused to give in. I refused to let her win.

    I think I did that because, firstly, deep inside I knew it was wrong for someone to want me to change the person I was/am and, secondly, that I knew I would be out of there. I knew as soon as I left high school I would never see her again and it WOULD get better.

    And it did. 🙂

    I love you, Katiebabs chook.

  128. What a wonderful thing you’re doing here, KB! I’ve also been saddened and appalled by what’s been happening in the news (and remembering my own difficult adolescence). Hopefully this will help show people they are never alone…

  129. Anonymous

    Thank you for sharing your story. It’s an amazing cause.

  130. This is brilliant Katie! I’m more than happy to comment to help support this.

    I’m sorry for what you went through!

    I was sadly bullied too from the age of 11-14 by an ex-boyfriend and his two friends but with help from friends I managed to stop them before it could get worse. And I will be forever greatful for having lovely people support me!

  131. Thank you for sharing. Adding my comment for this important cause.

  132. Katie, this is an awesome post. Bullying can make you think crazy things, especially as a teenager. I feel for you, and thank you with all of my heart for doing this to help lgbtq teens. We don’t get all of the help non-lgbtq ones do, and that makes it even more appreciated.

  133. Anonymous

    I don’t know if it gets better, but we’re supposed to hang in here so that’s what I’m doing.
    Thank you for posting.

  134. It is sad that ths sort of initiative is necssary, but I applaud you for taking it on. I will mke my own donations separately, but I wante to show you my support here as well.

    May there come a time when bullying is an unheard of cruel behavior whose only place is in the history books.

  135. I was bullied as well, from elementary school through high school, and it never got easier. I remember teachers dragging me out onto the playground during recess to “play” with the twenty to thirty-odd bullies armed with baseball bats and hockey sticks. I remember being convinced that the bullies would murder me and get away with it because they were kids. I remember being eight years old and considering ways to kill myself because it was never going to stop–and I would probably be able to kill myself in a way that hurt less than being beaten to death.

    No kid should be in a position where he or she is thinking of suicide as the best possible option.

  136. This comment has been removed by the author.

  137. It is sad that this sort of initiative is necssary, but I applaud you for taking it on. I will make my own donations separately, but I wanted to show you my support here as well.

    May there come a time when bullying is an unheard of cruel behavior whose only place is in the history books.

  138. It does get so much better, though there were moments in my childhood that I couldn’t imagine that was possible.

    It’s my most sincere hope that every kid will get the chance to realize that it does.

    Thank you so much for doing this.

  139. I wirte about this stuff. The book I’m currently writing deals with bullying in high schools. These stories break my heart. Thank you for the efforts you’re making and for giving others a chance to participate. AKM Miles

  140. I love this post and the steps you are taking to reach out to those in need.

  141. You will have a place in the heart of everyone who reads your post. In New England north we constantly fight against people who think the gender of the person you love matters. The people against equal civil rights use horrifying and evil rhetoric that preys on the less able to determine for themselves to understand the lies for what they are. So, sad that people don’t understand what equal civil rights are.

  142. I’m behind you 100%. A wonderful cause and thank you for standing up with your story. It does get better, but that can be a hard promise to hold onto at the time.

    A friend of mind sent me a link to that video. It’s absolutely amazing.r

  143. B.

    Incredible cause! Thank you for sharing your story and doing what you are to draw more awareness to the issue.

  144. Anonymous

    Delurking to show support for this important cause and to say to all the people who have contemplated suicide for any reason that it really does get better. Hope you reach 500 comments

  145. Thank you for doing this! And from someone that had a horrid time in school I want to say that it does get better.

  146. Thank you for sharing your story! I hope you reach 500 and beyond.

  147. Anonymous

    I’m shocked that such a terrible thing would happen. I’m behind this cause 100%.

  148. Thank you for bringing this to the attention of so many. I hope at least one child sees this and decides to believe that things will get better.

  149. Thank you for sharing your story. I tweeted and facebooked about this issue and I’m glad to find another way to help.

  150. Katie – A big hugs to 12yrs old you. I’m sorry it happen to you. I think that this is awesome pledge! I believe in you and your heart to make the world a better place. And…it does get better! 🙂

  151. Kate you rock! xoxo awesome thing to do!

  152. There will always be someone who thinks they are better than you, smarter than you, prettier/more handsome than you. You have to find your inner light and let it shine regardless of what others think. My heart goes out to the people who have lost their loved ones because of the cruelty of others.

  153. What a great idea and such a noble gesture.

    The Trevor Project is my favorite charity. I donate as often as I can to this fabulous project.

    Thank you so much for shedding light on this growing epidemic.

    XoXoXo
    Dakota

  154. Great cause, Katie.

    I’ll definitely spread the word..not only for your goal, but for Dan Savage’s as well.

    TA

  155. I’d like to thank you for sharing your own personal story. It takes a lot of courage and strength to go through what you did and not only survive but thrive. IT GETS BETTER!!

  156. This is a fantastic post. I’ve put it up on Facebook and hope that many people will see it and know that it does get better. I’ve suffered from bullying as I know many other of my friends growing up did. But it DOES GET BETTER. You just have to learn how to survive. Plus, in this day and age, schools have anti-bullying laws and special programs about it. We need to make sure we participate in those programs wholeheartedly and make sure they continue, even in schools that don’t often get a lot of support.

  157. Great post and The Trevor Project is a worthy cause.

  158. You are awesome. My students and I were just talking about this very topic on Friday…I urged them to wait and talk with someone if they ever feel like they can’t make it. That it might not feel this way now, but when you grow up sometimes feelings of hurt lessen. Sometimes. And, that if someone’s asking for help or to be heard, that we listen.

    Thanks for this.

  159. KL

    Wonderful post, thanks for sharing. I endured my share of bullying as well in my youth, and overcame it. I now find success with what I want to do – the bullies, I later learned, didn’t turn out as good. The best revenge is living well.

  160. Anonymous

    As a parent, I worry about my daughter being bullied. Studying to be a teacher, I worry that I won’t see it soon enough to help a child at school.

  161. Wow. What an incredible post.

    And what an amazingly noble thing you’re doing.

  162. Thank you for this post and for sharing your story. Both very worthwhile and unfortunately very much needed organizations.

  163. Wonderful post Katie. You are quite the survivor! And this is a wonderful thing you are doing.

  164. Another dollar for the cause.

  165. You are phenomenal, KB! Thank you so much for taking this incredibly generous and important step.

    I mentioned the Trevor Project in a guest post I did at Jessewave’s some months ago. It, as well as the Shepard Foundation and other, similar affirming groups, are critical to the well-being of GLBT youth in this society.

    As you pointed out, even capricious bullying seems to have reached epidemic proportions in the U.S. Makes me wonder how the hell people are raising their kids–a depressing thought.

    You go, girl!

  166. I think the teen years are difficult enough – and this is a wonderful message for all teens. Thank you! Interestingly enough my verification word for this post is “reject”

  167. It does get better. Thanks for doing this. As a teacher I see bullying all the time and it can feel overwhelming for me as an adult to do what I can to stop what I see. However, the older kids are, the better they are at keeping the bullying underground. I know there is so much more than I can see.

  168. What an excellent post.

    I too was bullied and teased from first grade through my senior year in high school, not because of my orientation, but because I was breathing. I too thought of suicide or at the very least running away, but in the didn’t.

    Someone else mentioned they also were told to ignore it – which never worked. I’m not sure I know anyone that it’s worked for.

    There is nothing worse than the pain you feel when you are going through it. And at 12, 13, 14, 15, 18, the only thing you want is for that pain to end. And it doesn’t matter how.

    One of the best things I did was join the military and then go to college. The best revenge against bullies is to live. Not just to live but to thrive. To live life to its fullest, to chase whatever dream you have and succeed at it.

    While the pain of those years will never completely go away, it helps to form the strong person you will become. And then it ceases to matter. You are able to do things others can’t or won’t, because of your strength.

    It does get better.

    I have traveled through out the world where many of those who bullied me never left the city.

    It does get better. And it’s worth striving for.

  169. Thank you for bringing this wonderful cause to people’s attention. And thank you for sharing your inspiring story, hon! You’ve done more than survive. You’ve triumphed. No one should end their lives because of the cruelty and ignorance of others. My daughter and I will be donating to The Trevor Project.

    Wishing you all the best—and 500 comments!

    Kate, you’re the BEST. 🙂

  170. Thank-you for sharing your story. I hope you reach 500 comments.

  171. I have been bullied. (Not for the same reasons as the people mentioned in the post of course) And it sucks.

    People dont see the harm that they do. There is no justification in hurting someone because they are percieved to be different. Especially if the hurt that they feel and experience is bad enough to make the person involved take their own life.

    I am right behind anything that helps publicise this matter and gets people the help that they need.

    I live in hope that one day the world will allow us to be who we are.

    Until then organisations and iniatives are of vital importance.

  172. As a survivor of bullying, I thank you for sharing your story and for supporting such a cause.

    It truly does get better.

  173. lia

    I’ve had a lot of people tell me that “suicide prevention” is a joke- there’s no way to prevent someone from taking their own life. I don’t believe it, I think there’s a reason behind people making the choice to commit suicide and that reaching out can help. Letting someone know it does get better helps.

  174. Tiffany

    It does defiantly get better. I have never understood prejudice and bigotry even though I have seen so much throughout my life. Some pointed to me and some to others.

  175. kylie

    Growing up is tough enough but to add being bullied? My heart goes out to those who are going through this and I send thoughts of healing and strength. Thanks for doing this, Katie.

  176. Anonymous

    Great cause – it’s a sad thing when the only way a bully can feel good is to make someone else feel like cr*p.

    Lissa

  177. I am 56 years old and I, too, want you younger people especially to know that IT DOES GET BETTER!! I endured horrible bullying, not only thru middle/high school but also at home. I seriously contemplated suicide many times. But, if I’d gone thru with it I wouldn’t have been blessed with a wonderful husband who is my best friend in the entire world…we’ve been married 36 years. I wouldn’t have two phenomenal children, a wonderful daughter-in-law. I wouldn’t have my two precious, gorgeous, beautiful, darling grandsons. I wouldn’t have this wonderful life. And all those bullies? Who knows where they’re at now? Who cares?! I know I don’t. And someday hopefully you won’t either. TALK to someone. Talk, talk, talk. How does anyone know what you’re enduring if you don’t inform them? Come ‘talk’ to me on my blog…I’ll listen! Seek help!!!!!! Especially now, with so much of this happening, there are a lot of caring, concerned people out there who can help you out. Don’t suffer in silence! There is strength in numbers and the more who speak out, the stronger this endeavor will become. Life is a gift, it truly is. Treasure it.

  178. Faith Estelle

    Me, nor my friends have never been bullied. However, it is saddening to hear of the various stories. Great cause, hope you reach your goal =)

  179. KimArr

    Great post and great cause Kate. Thanks for doing this!

  180. I was mercilessly bullied at school, because I was effeminate. I am blind in one eye as a result.

    It’s shameful and evil that adults don’t intervene to stop bullying, and to explain to bullies why it’s wrong.

  181. Jeanne

    Thank you!

  182. Katie- what a cool thing you’re doing.

    My sister is a lesbian and my nephew is gay. Fortunately for them, they weren’t bullied for any reason- nephew was very overweight as well.

    Also fortunately, both were and are supported by friends and family unlike these poor kids who have no one to turn to.

    Good for you in spreading the word and positive vibes.

  183. You’re doing an awesome thing!

  184. thank you – it’s a wonderful message. good luck on your way to 500! 🙂

  185. Commenting for a great cause.

  186. Great post, great cause. Thank you so much.

  187. I lived with names like Woody Woodpecker since I had bright orange hair. I was also called a lesbian in high school because I had a very close female friend and never went out with any of the boys in school. Bullies need to face more consequences for their actions, but it’s not just children who are doing this, there are adults who engage in public bullying from the pulpit of television and radio and the written word. Those are lousy role models for our children.

  188. Ava

    People can be cruel. Best you can do is survive and be the best of yourself. That is the best revenge.

    Great cause.

  189. What also saddens me is how often I hear about school officials who did NOTHING to stop bullying they know is happening.

    We should not tolerate that.

  190. I was tormented endlessly by bullies in grade & high school. Through the years the bullies became older versions of what they always were, common thugs. In their wake, they left carnage in their own lives, fatherless children, broken homes & marriages and even bodies from drug abuse. I have been married to the same man for over 26 years, and save lives in the medical field. Some showed up at my parent’s wakes when they passed, and they now know how I turned out & what I do for a living. Time is a healer; it evens out all scores and reveals everything!

  191. You’re almost at 200! And, I’m so sad that so many people have been bullied – obviously our system is failing to protect children’s basic human rights.

    You go!

  192. Amy

    What a great thing that you are doing. Our system is broken, and it is horrible. I’m so glad to see what you are doing, and the response that you are getting. Thank you.

  193. Kate

    Thank you for being brave enough to share your story.

    I hope you reach your 500 comments.

    Lynn

  194. Thanks for spreading the word.

  195. Anonymous

    Action must be taken to eliminate bullying/intimidation. Other forms of harrassment are not acceptable and these should not be either.

    IT DOES GET BETTER

  196. Thank you! It’s heartening to see all the supportive responses. Best of luck reaching 500.

  197. Thank you so much for spotlighting this cause.

  198. Great post, Katie. I can’t even believe how often this all still happens. There is no justification for this type of behavior, and it’s just so sad.

  199. I was bullied for years in school and at 16 had a razor blade in my hand in the tub (less mess that way). And then I decided, no way am I giving these assholes the satisfaction.

  200. When you start something like this, you don’t have a real clue how it will end…maybe just raising awareness and money or actually saving a life. I applaud you and your efforts. There is no excuse for bullying or harassment, regardless of the reason. I hope your efforts here have the farthest reaching effect!

  201. Anonymous

    This is a great post. That youth feel so victimised that they feel suicide is the only way is simply too heartbreaking for words.
    One of my friends is gay. I was born a day after him, we went to kindygarten together, then primary and high school. I didn’t know until high school that he was gay, it didn’t change the way I see or feel about him at all. He was still himself. I would be completely devastated if suicide was the only option he felt was available to him.

    Thank you for taking up this cause.

  202. Awesome, Katie! So many things have improved for teens since I was one (an ungodly # of years ago), but sadly, this ain’t one of them. The boy from Rutgers just broke my heart. 🙁

  203. Anonymous

    Thank you for doing this

  204. Wonderful cause, and kudos to you for doing this. We’ve all got to do something about this horrible trend.

  205. Chris

    Wonderful post. Thank you for doing this.

  206. This is fantastic, and it was very brave of you to share your personal story.

    I think we all feel like we would like to help, and it’s great to see somebody step up and really DO something that can make a difference! Thanks for that and for letting us all help in a small way.

  207. Thank you so much for supporting these causes!

  208. Thank you for opening up about your experience and supporting such a great cause.

  209. Even though I have heard some of these poor boys’ stories before, this post still brought me to tears. I wish I could express my feelings right now, but there are no words right for this situation.

    I hate that even one person had to deal with such awful bullying, let alone this many. My heart is breaking for these teens and their families.

    Thank you so much for this post, and your donation. I’m going to spread the word as much as I can.
    ~ Morning Glow

  210. I wasn’t treated as you were, but high school was rough for me too, and jr. high. I was confused, and felt like it would never end. I hear people talk about reunions and high school and I cringe. Who the hell wants to relive it? Well, my boys are 16 and 17 now. I am so proud of them for sticking up for those that are different. When a gay young man did a graceful, free style dance for the talent show last spring I help my breath, waiting for someone to yell out, or to boo him. He finished and there was clapping and cheering. I looked around and saw some guys who looked awkward but they clapped and stayed quite. Our community isn’t perfect, and a lot goes on behind the scenes, but that gave me hope. I’ll share your post URL on facebook.

  211. Anonymous

    Thank you for doing this!

  212. As a teacher, I constantly fought against bullying. Most people say that it’s something every kid goes through and it’s no big deal. But I think that people just don’t understand how cruel children can be.

  213. These kids break my heart, them and all the ones we don’t hear about. Best of luck.

  214. Jen

    I find it really horrifying how much bullying is accepted as part of the normal school experience, especially for queer and/or trans youth. It’s totally normalized, and that can make things really difficult–you hear: you just have to tough it out, everyone goes through it, words can never hurt me…but it’s not normal and it’s not right. And if we want it to get better, we have to make it better–things won’t magically improve on their own. I’ve seen it from both sides–as a queer kid and as a high school teacher. There’s so little support and recognition for these issues, even now. So I really appreciate what you’re doing here.

  215. What a wonderful post, Katie. Thanks for sharing your story and for doing this for the kids. No one should have to go through such pain and misery that they consider suicide the answer. Thanks for what you’re doing.

  216. S

    A very inspiring and thought provoking post.

  217. This is a wonderful thing you’re doing Katie and I admire you for it! Bullying needs to stop, I suffer some when I was a teen but I was lucky to have great friends and family to keep my spirits up. It DOES get better eventually!

  218. This is a great thing you are doing. Bullying of all kinds need to stop. My daughter has ben the victim of bullying, not because of sexual preference but because she is white & for her looks (very volumptuos) and because she has a learning problem. The schools wont do anything and we contacted the police when someone threatedned to kill her on the FB & NOTHING WAS DONE!!! They had it on FB, copied the page…everything but the county attorney wouldnt press charges or I should say didnt want to persue it. I don’t know what is going on in this country.

    -Brandy
    brandyzbooks@yahoo.com

  219. Anonymous

    Such an ugly world. Good thing there are spots of light which will hopefully help many victims. Bless you.

  220. All the best. 🙂

  221. erinlin

    I wish when I was 12 someone was there to tell me it gets better. Thank you for doing this.

  222. Great and affecting post. Commenting for the cause.

  223. Hi there,
    Great, great post. I’m overwhelmed with sadness that bullying is so rampant and so commonplace in our education system. But I agree that it will get better, and that organizations like The Trevor Project are a crucial part of that. Personal stories are also really inspiring. Thank you for telling your story – it’s an important one, and I’m glad you’re here to tell it.

  224. Kel

    From one bullying survivor to another – thank you for highlighting this!

  225. Thank you for turning your personal hardship into a tool for good. I admire your courage in sharing your pain.

    Warmly,
    Lisabet

  226. I wish all kids who are bullied or made to feel inferior could see just how much better life will get when they get out of school.

    I wish they had adults who didn’t say things like ‘this is the best time of your life!’ because for many, it’s not true. For me, it was years later when I finally found the ‘best time of my life’ and it continues to this day and far eclipses anything from my past.

    Life gets so much better!! Hang in there and keep fighting through!

    CindyS

  227. This is a great idea. I was never bullied in school, but my sister was and consequently I was in a lot of fights until she started to fight back. This is something that has to be stopped; parents should do their part by teaching their kids it’s not just “being kids or playing around” but that it does real harm.

    There are No Bullying programs in every level of our school district, and I hope to see more districts on board with this program. No person should ever be made to feel bad about themselves, no matter what. Here is a website to further this concept:

    http://www.thinkb4youspeak.com/

    It has ways to get involved as well as projects aimed at educating and stopping bullying. Good luck and thank you for taking up this cause as well.

  228. Thank you for supporting this cause. My best friend in high school was gay and tried to commit suicide but thankfully was found in time.

  229. Anonymous

    Keep up the good work! I endured some bullying in junior high, but I’m at university now and don’t have to deal with the bullies anymore.

  230. Ellie

    Thank you for sharing your story. I was bullied for many years also. I think because I was shy, maybe I seemed like an easy target for bullies. Good luck at reaching 500.

  231. I don’t know where to start…I was bullied in middle school. I lived, but felt scarred afterwards. In high school I was called names. It hurt, but I learned to ignore them. I married a wonderful man and raised our 4 kids with him. When they were young and would come home calling someone or something “gay” I would give them the lecture so quickly and so often they learned not to ever use it in my presence. I told them that the gay people I know didn’t realize it until they were in their 20s…how sad is that, to find out that what you have always made fun of, is what you are? My cousin is gay and I have had him to my house to dinner, overnight, etc. He knows he has a friend in me. We are all a genetic soup of our ancestry, and roughly 10% of the human race has always been gay. Ignore the homophobes and know that you are just the way you were meant to be. There is life after high school for all of us! And the bullies get fat, bald and ugly just as quickly as the rest of us do! Listen to Dan and his partner and know that you are loved.

  232. Thank you so much for taking on this wonderful goal. I’m talking my partner (we’re a bi boy & m/m loving grrl household) into a making a video for the project – he doesn’t always see how far he’s come, but I’m always grateful he’s here with me, and that we both made it through our adolescence intact, and willing to keep fighting for what we care about.

  233. I was never bullied, but I know far too many people who were, including a dear friend who recently confided in me that she spent the first three years of our friendship frantically trying to impress me, for fear I’d go away.

    Thank you for this. For her.

  234. It is sad that bullying starts so young. Good luck on getting to 500 posts.

  235. A wonderful idea and project. Thank you for doing this.

  236. Great post, thank you for sharing. I hope you reach 500 soon.

  237. Lin

    Hatred and bullying should never be tolerated. As one who lives in NJ where the young man from Rutgers saw no way out from what others had done, this topic has been front and center in my home. I do not understand why we consider bullying just kids being kids. It isn’t…it is a symptom of something darker, dirtier, and it MUST stop. Every child is God’s child and God only has ONE requirement, one lesson, one challenge that He gives to all of us…and that is LOVE. Love is NOT conditional…it is our soul-right. God does not make mistakes. we are each of us who we are meant to be…until we decide WE know what God wants and By God we are going to make sure everyone follows God’s laws acdording to man.

    To every brother and sister who is my family because we are ALL God’s children, I send you my love and know you are beautiful. God knows it, and so, Dear Ones do I.

    To those of you who bully…whatever anger lives within you, jealousy, or fear, bullying will never relieve it. Only through learning that you are no better nor worse than ANY of God’s creations will it get better.

    If I sound like I’m preaching…good. I’ve earned the right. I’ve walked through the flames of hell, and survived. I’ve also felt God’s uncondtional love and KNOW only God has the right to change one of HIS children…our job is simply to learn love.

  238. Hi Katie,
    Wonderful post. I live in Australia and bullying is an epidemic here too. I once read a comment which I wish these young people could have read.

    “Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.”

    Best of luck with this venture.

    Margaret

  239. Thank you for doing this.

  240. This is a brilliant idea, Katie. I will pass the word on, and I’d like to offer another $100, whether or not you reach your comment target.

  241. Great blog. It’s so sad what is happening. Bullying has become an accepted part of our culture. That has to change.

  242. Good luck and well done. We all need to help stop bullying in any form.

  243. What a wonderful cause – bless you! I live in hope that no one will ever again take their lives out of despair. Life in general does get better as you get older, whether you are LGBT, trans, curious, or just different from those around you. I was the perennially bullied ‘fat kid’; I know.

    *hugs* Gods bless you. 🙂

  244. I’ll support anything that helps stop bullying, no matter who the victim is. Two of my children are mildly autistic…high functioning and highly intelligent, but the lack of social cues means they are constantly bullied. My son, especially. What IS it about boys? But I digress. Bullying and cyber bullying should never be tolerated, IMO. Carry on the good fight.

    Brenna

  245. Great post KB. Hope you get to 500.

  246. Thank you for undertaking this.
    ~ Gina

  247. Thank you for this 🙂

  248. Thanks for doing this, and for the reminder to donate on my own. But it’s beyond comprehension that these kids had to take their own lives for people to understand how pernicious bullying has become.

  249. Thanks for doing this, and for the reminder to donate on my own. But it’s beyond comprehension that these kids had to take their own lives for people to understand how pernicious bullying has become.

  250. The stories of these boys have been breaking my heart.

    I know what it’s like to be bullied too, not just in school but in my adult life. It is hard to deal with. These boys still had years of school ahead of them, and the thought of having to deal with that every day with no real help… it is not surprising they couldn’t see any light ahead of them.

    I hope that something good can come from such a horrible time, that there will be a change in attitude.

    Thanks for doing this. I will be making donations to your chosen charities as well.

  251. Anonymous

    My older son was bullied until he fought back. My younger son has social skills issues and really can’t fight back. Thankfully, this year, he has a great group of teachers, one who has promised to protect him as much as possible.
    I tell him all the time that it will get better. And don’t go thru it alone.

  252. Ana

    Great post, great cause KB!

    IT DOES GET BETTER!!

  253. Tiella

    A very strong post about a grave issue.
    I hope you will get your 500 posts.

  254. Wonderful post, Katie. Thank you for putting your story out there and trying to make a difference.

  255. This is an incredible post. I hope everyone bullied and abused in school can just hold on. All that crap about it being the best years of your life? It’s a lie. The best years are yet to come.

  256. I tried posting earlier in the morning, but my internet was wonky.

    First, Katie, I want to reach across cyberspace and give you big hug. I’m so glad you chose life – as painful as it can sometimes be.

    The pix you posted of yourself reminds me so much of my older sister (only she had straight brown hair cut in a shag). She was tormented endlessly and cruelly throughout high school. So badly, in fact, that decades later, when one of her tormentors found God, he tracked her down and wrote her a long letter of apology begging her forgiveness for the terrible things he did to her.

    Vile, vicious personal attacks and intentional public mockery/humiliation are not acceptable – not in the classroom, not in the businessplace, not on the internet. Not anywhere.

    All people, from all walks of life, should take care with their words. Because contrary to the children’s rhyme, Sticks and Stones may break your bones, but Words can most definitely hurt you. Words can wound deeper than a physical weapon ever could.

  257. Bullying is wrong. Thank you for calling attention to this, and helping others!

  258. makes my heart sick to hear about things like this. You are doing a wonderful thing by helping get the word out! Thanks

  259. Anonymous

    It’s sad that something like this has to happen for us to have a conversation about bullying in any form. No one should be bullied for how they believe or who they love. Self-esteem and self-love are two of the most fragile things humans have and to destroy one you destroy the other. Good luck and this is an amazing thing you’re doing.

  260. Anonymous

    This is very sad…and needs to end…it does get better

  261. Ann

    Thank you for your response to this devastating trend. Serving as it does to both spotlight and raise funds to address an issue that is too often ignored, this is the best sort of answer.

  262. How terrible that people are bullied for being themselves.

  263. Its heartbreaking to lose so many wonderful people.

  264. Thanks for this, Katie.

  265. Anonymous

    it is a great cause…No one should be bullying for whatever reasons…

  266. Anonymous

    Good to see so many commenting. We can make a difference!

  267. Hi Katie,

    Great work with this generous campaign. The personal tragedies of the past few weeks have been on my mind a great deal. I’ll donate an extra $50 to The Trevor Project if you meet your goal.

    All my best,
    Carrie

  268. ‘The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good people to do nothing.’

    Doing nothing and being silent when confronted with prejudice and evil has to stop.

    Being silent makes you complicit.

  269. Thank you so much for doing this.

  270. Thank you so much for doing this!

  271. Children can be so cruel. It starts early, I see the beginnings of it when I go to lunch with Annika’s second grade class. Her school does teach about bullying but they need the parents to follow up on it at home. Too many parents are oblivious to their child’s actions. We have to teach our children young that bullying is not acceptable. We have to be present in our child’s life and teach them to be compassionate.

    Great cause! Good luck with getting to 500!

  272. I tried to describe your post to the hubby and I kept getting choked up. It’s so sad and terrible.

  273. Anonymous

    Really love what you are doing! It’s so horrible that we let ourselves be so influenced by other people; we should only listen to what makes us happy, not what everyone else thinks would make us (or them) happy.

    I’m in highschool as well right now and no one’s really save from bullying, so just tell them to f*** off and live a better life than they will. That’s not something they can change.

  274. Em

    As someone who was also bullied as a child and teenager, my heart goes out to all the children suffering the same torture now. Though I am not gay, my Wyoming middle school circulated the rumor that I was for years, sending me into a deep depression that had me thinking of taking my own life. The only thing I can say is that it really does get better.

    Katie- Thank you so much for posting this.

  275. I heard of your efforts from TA Chase’s blog post. I wanted to show my support for your efforts.

  276. I wish I could take all these kids in my arms and let them know that the world is so much bigger than where they are right now and one day they will leave the bullies behind and find love and acceptance in the world. I know it’s so hard for these kids to see beyond their situations and they do need adults who have been there and survived to let them know that it does get better and they need to just hold on.

  277. Those stories (and the ones left here) absolutely break my heart. As a mom, it’s one of the things I was terrified of everytime I sent my son to school – would he be the victim of bullying? He’s kind of an awkward kid and I always worried about him fitting in; he’s in college now and every day, I still worry that this kind of crap can happen to him. I know he struggles with self-confidence and like this awful situation at Rutgers, you just wonder what’s the tipping point?

    I was desperately shy in high school and had only a few friends and the in-crowd always made sure we knew we weren’t welcome anywhere. Typical high school crap. I had other issues, so I can’t blame it all on bullying, but I attempted suicide twice, once in high school and once in college.

    I have the National Suicide Prevention Hotline to thank for talking me out of the rest of the times; another resource that’s not utilized enough. Anything – anything that can help prevent these horrible, senseless, heartbreaking deaths from happening again has to be done.

    What a wonderful thing you’re doing, Katie!

  278. Katie,
    I found out about your efforts from TA Chase’s blog and wanted to show my support of your efforts.

    This bullying has to stop and people have to start taking responsibility for their actions. Because it is done ‘remotely’ via the internet-it is still vicious and hurtful to many.

  279. Thank you for writing down your story (which is very close to mine!) and alerting me to your cause and Dan and Terry’s video.
    I reposted this in my blog (and FB and Twitter) to help bring more people here. Hope you make it!

  280. This is so important! I’m glad you’re doing this.

  281. Anonymous

    What bothers me is where are the parents of the bullies? Not in the. “Let’s blame the parents, problem solved” vein but are they aware their child is the bully? I would be devastated to learn my child was this hurtful to another human being. And please, let go of the glbt thing-this is WHO folks are. No one is bullying u cuz your an ignorant jerk-we leave u to live your narrowminded life-return the favor. W

  282. Anonymous

    Thank you for doing this. I hope you reach 500 comments!

  283. I really, really hope you get to 500 comments. Although every little bit is wonderful.

    I heard about the It Gets Better Project on a forum I’m on, and I’ve been thinking of posting a video. I don’t know how much I’d have to say – while I was bullied, a little, it wasn’t half as severe as many people, only minor teasing and ostracization from my peers, because I was a ‘nerd’ and ‘odd’.

    My heart goes out to the families of those boys, and to anyone, anywhere who is being bullied. Thank you for doing this.

  284. Anonymous

    Good on you! hope you get all the comments you need. Bullying is wrong!

  285. Excellent post and brilliant idea, Katie. Brian and I were just talking about this as he hadn’t heard the story about the latest suicide. As a mom to a little boy, the very idea of anyone driving my baby to the extremes of some of these children makes me want to cry. It also makes me visciously protective and angry. And don’t even get me started on the idiocy of picking on someone just because of sexual orientation. That’s a soap box issue for me.

    Thanks for doing this, Katie! You’ve a brilliant, big heart.

  286. Las

    Thank you for doing this. I’ve been following this since Dan started the project.

  287. What a great thing your are doing. I got bullied when I was a kid and was suicidal. There was no help when I was a kid. My son was bullied for having a learning disability & school would do nothing. It goes on all the time. Just sickens me that it still happens.

  288. Good Luck with an excellent cause

  289. Katie, thank you so much for doing this for such an important cause and bringing awareness to the public. You ROCK!

  290. Sadly, there have always been bullies and there always will be. There are some things in life that will never change. Because of people who feel a need to elevate themselves at the expense of others, things won’t get better, but we can rally around the victims and teach them how to turn a deaf ear. Thank you so much for your inspiring post, and I truly hope you meet your goal. I’m blogging today about something similar, but very different…The Make A Wish Foundation.

  291. Ria

    From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank you for this. Too few people are willing to make such a sacrifice for those who aren’t sure how to speak for themselves and who can’t see another way out, and it brings literal tears to my eyes to see that you’re going above and beyond to help people who need it. Although all I can do at the moment is comment here and help spread the word, I’m wishing you, and everyone involved, success! And love. So much love.

  292. Great post. You brought me to tears. I wish this would stop and I hope it gets better soon.

  293. Raising money helps to raise awareness helps to end hate. Thank you.

    Tammy May, CEO
    Rainbow eBooks

  294. Katie, this is a great thing to do. Add another $25 to the pot from me. Bullying of any form, for any reason, is totally unacceptable.

  295. Kate – You are wonderful. Thank you for sharing your poignant story and for your generosity and the generosity of those you’ve inspired!

  296. Excellent post, Katie and thank you for what you’re doing to help.

  297. Anonymous

    My heart bleeds for the young you and all of those being bullied now. I just pray they find hope to see a future.

    Regards, Ruth (CO)

  298. Cheers to you for doing this. No one deserves to be bullied. NO ONE.

  299. It does get better, largely thanks to people like you and Dan Savage. Thank you.

  300. Anonymous

    Thanks for doing this, Katie! Even though I’m not a lesbian, I had my locker in high school broken into and a very hateful message left about my perceived sexual orientation. After having survived low-level bullying in grammar school, I was able to shrug it off & reported it to school administrators. This was a single incident. I can’t begin to imagine what those who are constantly harassed are going through.

  301. This is a terrible thing that is happening. I question my kids all the time about if their being bullied, have they bullied anyone or have they seen it being done. I scared out of my mind all the time. @ of those children live within an hours ride from here. Please keep bringing this others attention. Thanks

  302. Thank you for sharing your story and for having the strength to stick around in the first place. The fact that you did makes life better for the rest of us as well.

  303. Bege

    I have a 15 year old son who was also bullied all the time since he entered middle school. My son was a little different that most of the children in his school because he had to wear ear plugs while doing school work because alot of noise distracts him and he was taking pills to help him focus in class. I went to the school numerous times only to be told that it was my sons word against the person who was bulling him. I have actually seen another child run up behind my son and hit him in the back of the head. When I told the school they told me that it happen off of school property. Finally I sat down with him and talked about homeschooling with him. He has been off his medication and is currently being homeschooled for almost 2 years now.
    I know that some people don’t have the option of homeschooling and its sad that children are hurting themselves because schools say they can’t do anything about bullying. Unfortunately I don’t see it getting much better only worse in the school systems.

  304. Anonymous

    My heart hurts…

  305. This is a great cause. Thanks for bringing it out into the open.

  306. A great post and a great cause. My heart goes out to all victims of bullying, especially victims of homophobia.

  307. Thank you for this post and reaching out to help others. I believe we are each as God made us, a unique work of art. Instead of teaching our children to fear differences, we should be teaching them to rejoice in them. How dull the world be if we were all made from the same cookie cutter mold.
    We should celebrate difference, celebrate life.

  308. Anonymous

    Support is something that is needed. This is so sad to hear. I am glad to know help IS out there.

  309. wow….nice blog you have..s

  310. We love you Katiebabs!

  311. wow…nice blog you have,,

  312. Anonymous

    It’s a comment.

  313. Tyler’s case was reported even over here in the UK, and it’s a disgusting story. This kind of thing should never be allowed to happen.

  314. You post made me cry. I hate that this kind of thing goes on… why do people have to be so cruel? especially kids and teens…

    Bullying is a horrible thing! I experienced it to a small degree myself… and a friend of my daughters is experiencing it to an extent now.

    It’s such a difficult thing!

  315. What an awesome idea, Katie. I was one of those kids who was constantly picked on and teased. And when I would complain to the teacher or principal at school, the teasing only increased. Now with the technology of theses days and the growing popularity of cyber-bullying it makes what I went through look like a walk through the park.

    Right now, I’m in between jobs, otherwise I’d also chip in a few dollars.

  316. Thank you for your honesty and the great post.

  317. Anonymous

    my heart goes out to these teens, but personally i feel they are way too young to be worrying about their sexual orientation. whatever happened to the days when we didn’t have sex until at minimal High School? I really do feel bad for these kids, but seriously? why tease them when they are so young and don’t fully understand their bodies and urges? i mean…13?! i could most certainly understand 16…but still…

    ~my heart goes out to these pre-teens and teens. Hang in their guys. it will get better.~
    Vixie

  318. Thank you so much for doing this. I am straight, but was still tormented by bullies because I was weird and because my parents had very little money so I wore second-hand clothes. No kid, gay or straight, should have to live with the torment. It is a wonderful thing, especially for the gay kids who have so few vocal role models, to hear that it will get better!

  319. I’m a Laramie Wyoming native, where Matthew Shepard lived and died. I’m very glad to see the Shepard Foundation on your list.

    So glad you put that knife down.

  320. Kirstin

    Hearing someone tell you “I know where you are, I know what that place feels like” is so incredibly powerful. This is such a great way to share the mutual experiences that can comfort and give hope to those who are struggling.

  321. Thank you for your post and all of your work and commitment. It’s a horrible thing that this happens, and someone needs to be there for anyone who feels hopeless because of it.

  322. I was also bullied growing up due to being different. Its a horrible way to live and something needs to be done about it!
    I hope everyone now realizes they need to help! From the school down through the parents. This needs to stop!
    Thank you

  323. Schools and teachers should have an absolute zero tolerance when it comes to bulling. As a shy, awkward kid in school it was frightening each and every day. I just kept my head down and finally made it. One of the most important lessons a parent can teach a child is to be accepting of people who are different or simply not popular. While they might not become your best friends, you should not do anything that is less than the way you want to be treated. Unfortunately, the TV shows on today, while maybe not promoting bulling, do tend to show this behavior as “normal” which in itself should be punishable.

  324. I don’t even know what to say. I’m so incredibly sad. Why are we so horrible to each other? Why is this acceptable?????
    Thank you for doing what you are doing!

  325. I’m so sorry you went through that. My son is 15 & has aspergers (a form of autism that affects his ability to interpret social interaction). He was tortured – and I don’t use that word lightly – from kindergarten thru 4th grade. Kids called him names, hit him, kicked him, knocked him down on the bus & stomped on him, stole from him and worse. The school did nothing. They told us that if he would just learn to ignore it, the bullying would stop. And then they began punishing him for tattling on the bullies.

    In 4th grade, not only were the kids finding crueler methods of torture, the adults who were supposed to be helping him (his teacher, the school counselor &the school’s OT) stripped him of all his services & in the case of the OT also insulted & picked on him. He had a severe mental breakdown & decided to kill himself. Thankfully, he came to me before he actually attempted it. His plan was a good one. He would have succeeded.

    I will never forgive myself for not seeing how bad it had become for him. At he age of 10, he spent two weeks on suicide watch (heavily medicated), and missed 3 months of school (he did not return to that school).

    He has received a lot of help since then & now takes medication to deal with depression and anxiety – his constant companions. He will most likely need that for the rest of his life.

    But the story isn’t done yet. It does get better. He (after 4 yrs. of specialized education) insisted on returning to public ed for high school & is doing well, tho he has his struggles. No one picks on him anymore & he has a group of really compassionate & kind kids who have taken him into their circle of friends. He’s happy most of the time, tho he still struggles with self worth.

    I hate reading stories like yours. They hurt. I think somewhere along the way people have forgotten to teach their children compassion and kindness and acceptance. But then again, most of the mothers of the kids who tortured mine made excuses for their behavior. “Boys will be boys.” Its wrong. And I, for one, am glad people are speaking out. No kid should have to go through what mine did.

  326. mel

    I am very sad to hear about this. I knew kids could be mean, but, in a way it is also up to the parents to make sure that their kids know and understand that just because someone is different that does not give them the right to treat others badly. I’m not saying it’s the parents fault but, to just try and make sure that they understand.
    I have two boys and I always tell them that you treat people the way you want to be treated, and that nobody has the right to judge or hate anyone because of the way they act or look. Everyone is special and that is how everyone should be looked at, and if adults or kids give you a hard time or say mean things just to remember that we love you just the way you are and that’s all that matters.
    My heart goes out to everyone who has suffered through this or lost a child. They are right it will get better and just because you are different just means you are that more special.

  327. Misti

    Thank you for doing this.

  328. Bullying is unacceptable and it’s way past time that schools did something about it – instead of encouraging it and, at best, ignoring it. I know there are some few schools that make an effort to stop bullying, but far too many don’t. It’s sad and it makes me very angry.

  329. Rachel C

    It DOES get better. One day I asked myself ‘Why do I care about what these people say? I don’t want them to like me, or to be like them – why do I want to be friends with a bully? ‘. So I ignored them, and did my own thing and guess what? I found friends who liked the same stuff I did…and I had enough fun with those friends that anything the bullies said was just too obviously stupid and wrong…so they stopped.
    Live your own life, not the one they want to force on you, and make it a good one. It WILL get better. You aren’t alone.

  330. These were such sad stories — and made all the more so because they’re just the ones that get the publicity. How many more go unreported or misunderstood?

  331. I really really wish schools would enforce their ‘zero tolerance’ strategy. they seem to ignore words until it reaches a breaking point for the bullied student. If you, as a teacher, are aware of who so and so is dating, there’s no way you don’t know that another student gets bullied this viciously and could you speak up about it.

    I think this is horrible and bullies should be taken to task, the victims shouldn’t be expected to handle this since if they were strong enough I’m fairly certain the bullying wouldn’t get that far.

    Amazing post.

  332. Thank you for this post, Katie. I’ve linked to it from own blog, and I hope you make it to 500.

  333. I wanted to comment on this yesterday, but my phone is wonky about posting on the best of days.

    I too was bullied as a kid, not to the degree you were, but regularly. To this day, my self-worth is affected by those years. It did get better, but I have to remind myself all the time that I’m not that little girl anymore. I’m married to a wonderful man who loves and accepts every insane part of me, I have two great kids, I’m finally fulfilling my dreams, and I have a damn good life. But those years still affect who I am.

    I am proud to say that I’m raising a couple of very strong children. My son experienced bullying from one kid last year, and he totally got how stupid they were being. He stood up to them without turning into a bully himself. A boy recently told my five-year-old daughter that she isn’t pretty. She laughed about it when she came home. She’s a princess and she knows it.

    Either instance would have left me curled up in a ball for days at their age.

    I really hope you reach your goal, Kate. It’s a fabulous cause.

  334. wcshade

    This is a great post

  335. Nikyta

    Wow, you are an amazing person. Thank you for making people aware and helping with the cause.

  336. Wow, you are a truly amazing person. Thank you for making people aware of this situation and helping with the cause.

  337. Thank you for doing this.

  338. I blogged about the same topic at http://patriciablount.wordpress.com/

    It’s up to parents, folks. Too often, kids are more afraid of us than the bullies. We must do a better job of making them feel comfortable to talk to us about ANYTHING.

  339. Anonymous

    Chiming in for a good cause.

    My heart breaks for these kids. I have eleven of my own and pray to God they know they can come to me with ANYTHING!!!

    Bless you!!!

    Valerie
    in Germany

  340. Anonymous

    It just sickens me to hear about the bullying and these poor teens killing themselves over it because they feel there is no other alternative. Something has to be done to stop this cycle!

    thanks for doing this to help.

  341. Anonymous

    Thank you for sharing your story and for highlighting this issue. It does get better.

  342. Anonymous

    Thank you! It’s getting better out there thanks to people like you. 🙂

  343. thank you so much for spotlighting and helping to champion the cause for our teens & youth 🙂 It makes me sad to continually read about this time & time again, so thank you for championing something positive to make a difference for the better!!

  344. This is a national tragedy and so much more needs to be done to raise awareness and save lives. Each loss depletes us in every way.

  345. These five, now six young folk (that the media has stirred itself to give attention to – there are so many others) who have killed themselves may be just the incentive for the aware adults in our society to get outraged enough to take a stand. I hope so. One child’s life lost is one too many.

  346. Rachel

    It is really sad that there is so much hate in this world. I love what you are doing and I am praying that it gets better.

  347. deannawadsworth@blogspot.com

    Thanks for bringing this information to light!

  348. I was a bullying victim in grade school and again in college. I was smaller than my classmates and delicate-looking, which I guess made me look like a target. When older girls made me jump off the tire wall on the playground (a 20 foot drop. I was 9) my family rolled their eyes. “How did they force you to do it? Did one of them have a gun?” my brother asked. I stopped telling them about the verbal and physical abuse, but it continued.

    By 18, I thought I had outgrown this, but a “friend” in college thought picking me up and swinging me about as though I were a kitten was the thing to do every time she saw me. Another girl phoned me almost daily to harrass me–I had no idea who she was. She had me constantly looking over my shoulder and afraid to answer the phone.

    We need to teach our children how to effectively stand up to these people and not accept this belittling behavior. That is the only way to stop bullying. Sadly, bullies will never go away. My daughter was bullied in kindergarten–until she and her friends ganged together and chased the bully away. It stopped.

  349. Thank you for sharing this vital information and letting people know there is hope. Young people need to learn how horrible the consequences of bullying are. I applaud you for your efforts.

  350. Bless you and best wishes.

  351. I’m a bit too sick to make anything resembling a *coherent* comment, but I did want to comment, both to add to the tally and because this is an excellent thing you’re doing. Thank you!

  352. I so want to get behind this initiative. Bullying is a terrible thing to experience, especially if some aspect of your core being is the reason you are being attacked. I have been bullied myself, for my weight, for my looks, for my sexuality…But at the end of the day the bullying is happening because the bully is uncomfortable with themselves, NOT because what they are saying about you and to you is true. You are loved, needed, wanted in this world. Stay with us, please. It does get better.

  353. I love this post. It is thanks to brave voices like yours that one day, hopefully soon, prejudice and hate like you describe will be a thing of the past. I hope it will seem odd and tragic to my children once they are grown that such hate and inequality ever existed. I hope they will stand up for a peer should they ever witness ANY kind of bullying.

  354. Michael

    You are a star and absolute hero. I’ll donate $50 to one of the two causes you have mentioned as well.

  355. This is a tragic problem with no easy solution. Parents TALK to your children. Thank you for your efforts for this problem.

  356. This is such an awesome cause! I think what is equally as worse as the act of bullying is the thought that someone finds such misery in their own life that they feel the need to project it into others. I think more awareness needs to come to bullying it is no longer young kids just picking at the kid who wears glasses but it seriously affecting the quality of lives! The more people talk the more people will listen. This is another serious thing that needs to be changed!

  357. This is a great thing you’re doing — good luck meeting the goal.

    Angie

  358. Thanks for doing this! It’s a great cause.

    IT GETS BETTER!!!

  359. Katie–My heart bleeds for you, and for those young men and the families who lost them. You are a strong, wonderful example of overcoming adversity. Thank you. God bless you.

  360. It is wonderful that you are doing this. No one, I mean no one should ever have to suffer like this. I was never bullied mainly b/c I’ve always had a mouth on me but a lot of my dearest friends have. I can’t tell you how many fights I got into trying to protect them (lost over half but fought enough people stopped picking on them and me) this is tragic.
    It does get better and by helping out with this project it will get better for a lot of people.

    Thank you!

  361. Thank you for making this pledge. My younger sister was bullied and attempted suicide. It’s something that affects so many young people and more should be done to raise awareness and help prevent it.

  362. Thanks, Katie for being so honest and for supporting this cause. As someone who was also bullied as a young kid, I was hoping that things had improved since then. But over the last few years it is obvious that it’s gotten even worse with new ways of tormenting others. As an author of m/m romance, I hope that the stories we tell give hope to GLBT people that life can be romantic and loving. Either way, I can claim that I’m helping a little by being involved in my local PFLAG organization (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays). Please spread the work that your local PFLAG organization is there to support both the kids coming out as well as the parents of students who come out. The Greater Boston PFLAG organization also visits schools around the state helping them create better, safer environments for LGBTQ students. They can help the whole family!

    Jen Swanson

  363. Thank you for bringing this to a wider awareness. Bullying is rampant today–in schools, in the workplace, and sometimes in our homes where we think we’re safe. Though it’s given different terminology, it’s still bullying. Kids and teens don’t have the tools to deal with this kind of abuse. They need our support….When you see bullying, TELL SOMEBODY. It’s not tattling. It may save somebody’s life. If you’re being bully, TELL SOMEBODY and keep telling until somebody listens.

  364. Jo

    Bullying is a sad and tragic fact of life. The support and help of anyone who is suffering or has suffered from this disgusting behaviour is a moral obligation of anyone with a heart, a conscience, any compassion and an open mind. The charities and organisations (and individuals) who make it their lifes work to reach out a hand to these poor people and offer help (and hopefully prevent any more from taking the ultimate ‘escape’) are an example to us all. Great article Katie, I truly truly hope you raise as much money as possible to aid in the widening of resources to combat this terrible epidemic.

    Jo, a bullying surviour, it really does get better.

  365. I wish there was some way to change the bullies, as there’s obviously something very wrong going on there.

    I hope you reach your goal and beyond!

  366. Good luck with your fund raising for this important cause. Hope you reach 500 posts.

  367. This is a wonderful thing you’re doing. Thank you. Best of luck reaching 500!

  368. Lynn

    I wanted to add my voice in support of your campaign Katie. I was bullied badly during junior high and my first year of high school with the focus being my weight. Things finally got better my sophomore year because I made protective circle of friends and took advance placement classes so I didn’t have classes with the bullies any more. I ended up with the last laugh though not only graduating college in three and a half years, but also dropping over fifty pounds, I had so much fun at my high school reunion 🙂 Bullying for any reason should not be tolerated.

    -Lynn

  369. Anonymous

    Thank you for the great post.

    Having been bullied in school myself – though not to the extent that you had and not in the same way – I can well understand the feelings and the consequences of bullying.

  370. As a teacher, I see some sort of bullying every day, and I do all I can to prevent or stop it. Kudos to you, Katie, for stepping up to the plate.

  371. anam

    *hugs*

    it does get better and often the worst form of bullying is ostracism – the silence was what nearly got me. and then i had a wise person tell him that school is only 10% of your life and i never had to see any of these people again. that saved me.

  372. Arlene

    Whoever gave the advice that someone can only hurt you as much as you let them, obviously never had to deal with the vicious and sometimes deadly bullying that exists now.

    It’s like standing on the beach, feeling the waves lap around your ankles, the sand shifting under your feet. You can feel it, but it’s manageable.

    But…when the waves become riptides and you are dragged under and thrown around, you are out of control.

    I’ve been in those riptides at times in my life and I survived. them. The thing is, you can’t give up. You have to fight even though the problems seem unbearable because…IT GETS BETTER!

  373. Pam

    Tyler’s story has been haunting me ever since I heard about it. My oldest daughter has been the victim of some bullying and I know first hand how much it hurts and the toll it takes on these poor kids. I hope you make it to 500 comments!

  374. Anonymous

    Happy to help you reach the goal.

  375. I’ve been there too, Kate, for reasons that are almost identical to yours. So glad you hung there.

  376. Anonymous

    I was bullied for being “the fat kid” until I got boobs – then was accused of stuffing my bra and starving myself. All because people – young and old – cannot understand the concept of the word “individual”.

    **Nikki

  377. Tobi

    Thank you for sharing your story.

  378. Lisa

    I love what you’re doing and thank you so much for spreading the word.

    I don’t know how the school system works in the States.. So much of what I hear saddens and angers me.

    I handled peer bullies on my own but when a teacher picked on me, I told my Mom and she was amazing. She stormed to the school and got it all sorted out. And she was willing to transfer schools if it could not be fixed.

    I saw something on CNN that said that the parents of a bullied boy knew for 18 months that he was going through hell, and that they complained to the school but no action was taken. Was there a reason that boy had to stay in that school? Couldn’t he transfer out? It just seems to me that there should be steps the parents should be able to take to get their child out of a bad situation if the school is ineffective.

  379. Anonymous

    It’s heartbreaking to hear about things like this. I remember bullying and now think it wasn’t that bad in comparison to some of the stories. Whatever the level of bullying, I know it does get better. Hope the comments reach 500!

  380. Thank you for sharing. Hopefully with people like you and the ones that have posted here we are taking a small step toward eliminating bullying. For those that have been bullied, please don’t give up, it does it better….

  381. Dawn

    Great post Kate. Good luck with reaching your goal!

  382. Bethie

    Thank you so very, very much.

  383. K.D.

    The message “It gets better” has to be prevalent and provided in trustworthy ways to be effective. Thanks for doing this – the more times and more ways the message is repeated, the more chance there is to make a difference at the critical point(s) in someone’s life.

  384. D. L. King

    Thank you so much for doing this! Dan and Terry’s video is amazing, thanks for sharing it.

    If I could tell a kid one thing, it would be this:

    Some people seem to be fond of saying that high school is the best time of your life. DONT BELIEVE ‘EM. In actuality, for most of us, high school is the WORST time of your life (followed by or tied with middle school). Terry was right; the minute you finish high school, your life begins to unfold in glorious ways. For me, college was the best time of my life because I found people who were like me. You’ll find those people too. Just hang in there!

  385. Amber L.

    Thank you for doing this.

  386. Amanda

    This is a beautiful thing you are doing. Thank you so much for taking the initiative 🙂

  387. Anonymous

    What an incredibly generous commitment this is! I hope this message gets bigger and bigger, and reaches those that really need it.

  388. Yendi

    You are amazing for doing thing! Hope u get all the comments needed! 🙂

  389. What a great post! I hope help is on the way for kids like the ones listed above. And ones that were picked on like me. It does get better! Lets send help to those who need it now. 🙂

    ismellsheep.blogspot.com will donate 25$ on top of all the others.

  390. Anonymous

    My childhood was much the same and my Aspie son reported some upsetting homophobic things said to him at our family camp this year, one place I would never have thought we’d have to worry about stuff like that. 🙁 Thanks for your efforts. — willaful

  391. Thank you for sharing your story and for being so generous.

  392. Evelyn

    Thank you so much for this post.

  393. T.

    Thank you. Yes, it does get better.

  394. z

    oh, this is heartbreaking. but it’s amazing that you managed to get through it and helping other people along the way.

  395. Anonymous

    Thank you for caring enough to start this.

  396. Thanks for sharing your story and hope you reach your goal!

  397. Anonymous

    nice to see there are some people out there trying to put a stop to behavior that harms everyone.

    Blessings on you.

  398. Great cause & great post – looks like you’re well on your way to 500 comments. I have some personal experience with bullying as well, although not as heinous as these stories. Even so, it was still difficult at the time to comprehend that it would get better. But shining a light on the issue will hopefully help spread the word.

  399. Chelsey

    I don’t know if the other comment went through but thanks!! <333

  400. Victoria

    It does get better! This should be written on the walls to remind everyone of hope just around the corner. Thanks for pushing this cause.

  401. Anonymous

    This is a wonderful cause! Thank you for doing this.

  402. Excellent post Kate and thank YOU for being brave enough to share! Hope you reach 500 and then some!

    Layla

  403. Thank you for making this happen!

    Sara

  404. Anonymous

    me iz do comment.

  405. This is a excellent post and very
    enlighten. I had no idea that this situation was this bad or is there alot of news coverage on this situation. This is should be on the top of the list to teach people and should be a criminal act. I mean you hear about all the sex-texting or pictures sent through the phones done by teenagers which they are making a criminal act but to me if you send your own picture or start a conversation like that how can they press charges? Bullying should have always been punishable. I am confused on what makes something criminal and what doesnt?

    Thank you for bring this situation to light.

  406. Sandi LaMania

    I was bullied when I was young also. Tall, skinny, buck teeth, glasses…and you are right, it DOES get better. Never let another person have so much control over you that it ruins your life. Best of luck in reaching your goal and helping other.

  407. gh worth

    Great job on tackling this serous subject. Good luck

  408. Go, Katie! Go, Dan Savage! I love this project. Hope you max out your pledge.

  409. Anonymous

    I think in general things do get better after high school, but if opposition is also coming from your own family, then at some point, you might have to face severing ties there as well to gain greater peace.

  410. Thank you for this post. I dealt with bullying when I was their age and the only reason why it stopped is because I did the “macho” thing to do. From experience breaking someone’s nose may have stopped it but it isn’t the answer either. I should never have been put in that situation in the first place.

    It breaks my heart that LGBT youth are still getting bullied almost a quarter century after I graduated from high school. I’m so upset about it I don’t know what to say other than I’m angry and I want to end this cycle NOW.

  411. Anonymous

    Children need hope and to know that they are loved. Thank you for donating so much of your own money.

  412. chamekke

    This is wonderful! I’m so glad that the Trevor Project is available to kids in the U.S.

    Do you have any connections to groups outside America? I just read a page on Yahoo! Answers in which a Canadian youth asked where similar help could be found in Canada. Someone pointed him to the Trevor Project, but of course its toll-free number for the Trevor Project doesn’t apply outside the States. The youth adds, “I tried Kids Help Phone and they directed me to a hotline that deals with war rape.” That’s just not good enough.

    This could be a wonderful opportunity to forge links with similar hotlines in other countries. The Web knows no border, and a lot of GLBT youth from outside the U.S. will discover your video. I can only imagine how hard it must be to watch it and realize that they can’t find an equivalent resource where they live.

    If your site could help point them to assistance, that would be fantastic.

    And hey, an international Trevor Project network would be even better!

  413. Commenting and good luck.

  414. There is no room in the lives of any child for bullying — no matter the “reason.” I was bullied incessantly for years because I was different. I had no one to go to about it because this happened at a time when the response from adults was “ignore them, they’ll stop when they see it doesn’t bother you.”

    That isn’t the way it happened then, and it isn’t the way it happens now. Bullies don’t care about a reaction. They LIKE what they’re doing. They need 2 things: To be removed from a place where they can bully and to get help for their obviously huge problems.

    I was pinched, punched, pushed, slapped, verbally abused, emotionally abused and one time nearly strangled. This is not something that will “go away if you ignore it.”

    My heart goes out to everyone who has been and is being bullied.

  415. Great use of a blog.. Thank you.
    I hope that people will finally open their minds to see this kind of thing has to stop…
    and to Craig Deisern where ever you are now, yes I remember after 30 yrs… you were kinda right..I did end up at the zoo in the elephant yard.. I was one of their trainers.

  416. Leo

    I was never bullied, well I mean I was teased but I never took it. I fought a lot growing up. Not everyone has that strength though and it breaks my hear that these teens felt the only way out was suicide. Great post. 😉 peace

  417. Bullying is hell, it doesn’t always go away, but life is big and there is always something worth living for, even if it is your dog!

  418. Sherry

    Thank you so much for all you are doing, for sharing your story, and for contributing to finding a solution. Every human being shares the same basic needs: to love and to be loved in return, to be accepted for who they are, and to be respected because of who they are. It saddens me that people are discriminated against because of the very unique qualities that makes them special. I pray for the day that people can open their hearts to true love and acceptance of others. Until then, I can only do what I can to support these wonderful foundations that are set up to save lives and give hope to the oppressed. Thanks to everyone who participates.

  419. Anonymous

    Love it! Great idea and I totally support the cause. I believe high school plays a definitive roll in our lives but it shouldn’t have to be a negative experience if you focus on all the positive things you have going for you. Stay true to yourself and your goals and know that “the cream always rises to the top!”

  420. Oh, Katie. Your story breaks my heart. Good for you for choosing to live.

    One of my daughter’s very good friends was bullied. By her mother. Not for being gay (she isn’t) but just for being. I can’t even tell you how many times I held that poor girl while she sobbed out her anguish on my shoulder. And the message I kept telling her, over and over and over, was that if she could just hold on, if she could just endure the rest of high school, everything WOULD get better.

    She has now graduated from college and is working toward becoming a CPA and she is happy. And she has learned that her efforts and accomplishments, and not the bullying voice of her mother, are what define her. I am so very proud of her. So very proud of all those who manage to somehow survive their bullies. We all need to help them, if we can.

    Really, it does get better.

  421. The best revenge is to live a great life!

    Thank you for what you’re doing here….giving someone hope!

  422. Kat

    Great post. I, too was bullied as a child, and lost a friend to suicide from depression (where a middle-school bully was the last straw). Kids (and adults) who are bullied: it really does get better! Bullies only thrive as the big fish in a small pond: Don’t stop looking for the way out into the ocean, the people like you (and there *are* people like you, no matter how weird the local fish think you are) are waiting for you to arrive!

  423. What you’re doing is great! I’ve been where you were when I was 7 years old and was bullied for the whole of my elementary school. I wish someone superior, school officials, government, whoever, would try to curb bullying. It may not sound like a crime but at this age and this century, it will lead to suicide 🙁

  424. It’s a worthy cause, and I’m all for helping GLBT kids understand that It Gets Better.

  425. Victoria Dahl

    What a brave and amazing post, Katie. Go, you.

  426. Thank you so much for doing this.

  427. I hope the message that it does get better reaches someone who really needs to hear it.

  428. I have 5 grown children and although none of them are GLBT, they did suffer bullying. One of them suffered from mental illness and all of them had to deal with the bullying form others. I know at times things were bleak for them, but fortunately they did understand things would get better and it has. We had a wonderful support system and they have all gone on to become wonderfully productive, supportive adults. I have raised my children to be open and acceptive of all people and each and every one of them stick up for the under dog.
    I wish every child out there had one friend who would become their guardian and make the difference in the crucial moment. I congratulate you on this project, all children need a glimpse at what the future could be, because when you are 10, 12 or 14, being 25 or 30 is forever away.
    My heart goes out to all the families who have lost so much by these senseless deaths.

  429. ((hugs)) Wonderful post for a very needed cause. Thanks so much for doing this.

  430. Kerstin

    I think it is so sad to see what’s becoming of our world. All those children just wanted to live their lives the way they believed in, but somebody else had to dictate them about what is right and what not.
    It’s a great post and I really hope we will all be able to change something. This has to stop.
    People have to stop hating and start accepting…

  431. This makes me so sad, sends shivers down my spine. Love the video by Dan Savage and his spouse. High school sucks for so many people that are bullied. Hearing Terry’s story about how the school administrators did nothing SICKENS me. But I know that in my child’s kindergarten, they discuss bullying in their lessons. Kids should constantly be reminded to treat others with kindness even if you don’t necessarily want to be their best friend. And parents and schools need to continue to teach this at home.

  432. Anonymous

    Thank you for highlighting this situation – I hope you make 500 comments soon.

    The support to you and the charities has been wonderful.

    All the best from Australia

  433. Anonymous

    End of the month? I’ll be surprised if it takes you till the end of the week to get 500 comments. 🙂

  434. Kara

    Hello! Great idea, Kate – thank yu for acting! I am posting on FB as well so that my friends over here can see too… You re truly international! :o)

    I was bullied too – how sad it is that the tools we now could use to deal with it just weren’t available to us then. If only I could have told myself, this hurts now but will make you stronger… If only I’d understood that it was no reflection on me, but on the children who bullied me. And therefore it HAD to get better. Just look at what you’re achieving, Kate!

  435. Lilli

    What a wonderful post, Katie, thank you!

    And the 500 mark is close already. 🙂

    Lilli

  436. Sarah

    This is such a wonderful cause! I hope it reaches 500, by the look of it,it is almost there =)

  437. WOW, Katie! Just WOW! Great post. The part about your little 12 year old self brought back a lot of memories for me. This is a wonderful thing you guys are doing.

    Peace and love,
    Paula R.

  438. Liz32

    Thank you for doing this!<33

  439. Anonymous

    Thank you for this post. Thank you for helping.

    They deserve to be remembered.

    – Kira

  440. Fantastic post. I have never understood the bullying instinct (possibly because I was always on the receiving end) and it’s about time people finally started flagging it up as the truly heinous problem that it is.

  441. Great cause and I really hope with all my heart that you will reach your goal.
    It’s sad that this is happening and we should all be aware of it.
    Thank you!

  442. My son is dealing with bullying now – not because of orientation but because he’s smart. Seriously? A kid is teased because he does well in school?

  443. Meg

    Thank you for sharing your story and helping bring attention to this cause — I can’t believe we still live in a world where people are treated so cruelly. I was fortunate to emerge from school unscathed by bullying, but we all know how it’s felt to be excluded, ostracized or humiliated… simply for being ourselves. What a shame.

  444. This is an amazing thing you’re doing. My heart aches for these kids. It DOES get better.

  445. *hugs*

    Been there and done that, chica – maybe not quite to the extent that you did, but I did the same thing with a pair of scissors in 5th grade.

    It’s a sobering thought to see thing that things haven’t changed much over the years, and I really wonder how I’m going to handle it if my own children are bullied.

    And yes, it does get better.

  446. Thank you for telling your story, Katie.

  447. Great Post Babs!

    You would think by now school officials would stand up and stop bullying. It really is an epidemic!

  448. This situation makes me so sad. I really hope all teenagers realize it does get better…I am so glad I did.

  449. It’s very sad that this happens to children. When I was a kid, things were very black and white – you don’t do these things to other kids. I was very fierce in protecting my friends but I never thought of it as “I have to be good and stop bullying.” I did it because they were WRONG and I had to yell at them for being mean to my friends. It was just clear. I feel disappointed that it’s not obvious to some people what you should and shouldn’t do to others.

  450. Beautiful post and great organizations to support. I’m happy to comment to do help reach your goal. Good luck!

  451. I’m so glad you’re still around… thanks for your inspiration with this post.

  452. Such an important issue. And schools need to be doing more about bullying, because I’ve seen them make a difference.

  453. Anonymous

    Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  454. Kd

    Good luck with this cause and thank you!

  455. Love the “it gets better” crusade and your contribution to it. Thanks for sharing this.

  456. Thank you for sharing your story. Hearing about all this has broken my heart and opened my eyes to the potential threats my young nephews are facing in schools that won’t stop this craziness.

  457. Anonymous

    Excellent post. This needs to be talked about and hopefully it will get better for everyone. There is no excuse for bullying or for looking the other way.

  458. Callie

    Thank you for doing this.

  459. Anonymous

    Thank you for what you are doing, and also to all those that have added their donations. My heart has been so heavy with the rash of reported suicides and bullying – yet I have hope when I see people pulling together as they are here.

  460. Thank you for doing this. It’s so incredibly important.

  461. It will indeed get better.

    Thank you for this post.

  462. This rash of suicides by gay teens was the push I needed to get involved with a local gay youth organization. It’s so tragic and if we can get the message out that IT DOES GET BETTER, maybe a kid will think twice about it.

  463. Thanks for sharing your story. 🙂

    These are two great organizations – it’s sad that they are needed.

    To all the parents, guardians and adults – you need to watch out for the kids and speak up for them. Don’t be afraid to step in!

  464. This is a wonderful cause. Thank you.

  465. Thank you for bringing awareness! Harassment in any form is unacceptable!

  466. Wonderful post and thank you for standing up to and contributing to the cause!!

  467. Great cause, great post.

    I’m beyond sick of the judgements that spurn bullying and that hit on anything/anyone different.

  468. I was bullied and ostracized because of my weight, my looks, my orientation, my religious choices, you name it. I was 15 when I almost committed suicide. The only thing that kept me going was love for my younger brother. I’m so glad I didn’t!

    Thank you to all who are able to donate to this cause!

  469. This is a great cause and great (but very sad) post…thank you for sharing.

  470. Dee

    Great post and cause. Thank you for sharing your story.
    Good Luck reaching your goal.

  471. Every post about this issue helps and every dollar donated goes to a good cause, kudos to everyone and keep up the good work!

  472. I too was bullied as a child Katie. I was a red-headed, freckle-faced curly-haired, chubby girl that moved a lot and always had to try to make new friends. Until I was 10 years old, I thought ALL kids were mean, didn’t have any friends (that I could keep, cause as soon as I thought I had one we moved), and thought that the world would not miss me….never tried suicide but I thought about it often. Then, I met another new kid who would become a life-long friend. He thought my freckles were cute, his hair was as curly as mine, and we both had annoying little brothers. A simple act of kindness and my world was changed forever. He is still my friend, and ended up introducing me to my amazing husband. So, no matter your circumstances, there really is hope and it DOES get better. Thanks for sharing your story and I hope that the message is repeated all over….It Gets Better. Thank you for what you are doing, it saddens me greatly that these children who haven’t even had a chance to live will never know how many people have cried for them.

  473. Matt

    Thanks for your efforts! I’m 18 and gay and have had to deal with bullying. What you (and others) are doing is so great!
    Matt

  474. Great job spotlighting the topic!

  475. ljmac

    It breaks my heart that anyy child should suffer like thses kids did. ….

  476. sarah amalfi

    I’ll be 479 🙂

    Thanks for doing this!!! <3

  477. Anonymous

    This was beautiful to read, I actually teared up at work because it brought back my own memories that I try to ignore. Bullying is never easy, regardless if it’s about your sexuality, your weight, your home life, nothing. I’m 25 years old and sometimes I still have to think to myself: it has to get better.

  478. Thanks so much for doing this, and to all the additional donators.

    I was bullied horribly in middle school, not for my orientation, but for just about every other reason under the sun. IT DOES GET BETTER.

  479. Rimestar

    I wish there were more resources for children who are bullied to seek help, and see results from talking and voicing their concerns to a parent, a teacher, an adult.

    As a gay male, I was also bullied and harassed by my peers. Unfortunately, I had no one to turn to, and it seems that hasn’t changed in 15 years. I pushed through, because yes- it gets better.

    Sometimes, when victims DO seek help, very little -or even worse- nothing is done, and the bullies face no serious consequences- which only reinforces the victim’s belief that there is no other solution but to take their lives.

    These kids were pushed to the most tragic extreme because they felt there was no other escape, no other help for them. But there is. And in areas where there isn’t, we must put it in place.

    Education and awareness is the first step to reaching out and helping those in need and also preventing harassment in the first place.

    Thank you for your voice in this cause, and your generocity- no child, no teenager, no person should ever have to face such a scenario.

  480. Anonymous

    Thank you for writing about this topic!

  481. Anonymous

    Thank you for this, so much.

  482. Anonymous

    Thank you for your wonderful post and for all you are doing.

  483. Thank you for your work towards this cause. Continued luck on going above and beyond your goal!

  484. Robin

    This is a great cause and I’m more than happy to support it. Bullying to the point of causing someone to end their life is unacceptable.

  485. As a teacher I thank you so much for this. I am sure that you will more than exceed your goal! 🙂

  486. Seriously sad! Here is my comment! Good job!

  487. Reporting for duty! @katiebabs follower, here to comment, ma’am!

  488. I was touched by your story and commend your efforts to stop the bullying. Good luck!

  489. This is an issue near and dear to my heart. For me personally, and for one of my teenagers. Thanks for blogging about it, you’ve inspired me to try to find a way to do the same. And I want to donate as well.

    Jill Shalvis
    http://www.jillshalvis.com

  490. Anonymous

    Junior High was the worst three years of my life, sophomore year, a close second. I hope my children never go through the torment that I did. This blog hit very close to home. Thanks for doing something so worthwhile! 15 years later, my great life is proof that it DOES get better.

    k

  491. Kym

    Thanks for sharing your story and for bringing attention to this.

  492. Thank you for sharing your story!

  493. I’ve cried over some of those “It Gets Better” vids. I hope these outpourings of love and support reach the kids that need them!

  494. Anonymous

    Great post Katie. And kudos to using your blog to make this issue known.

  495. Thank you for the heartfelt post.

    I had a good friend in high school who was bullied and teased constantly for being gay. He was approached and physically attacked by another boy after school one day. My friend grabbed a knife he’d started carrying out of fear and stabbed the other boy. Thank God it was not fatal. But it was an example of how he no longer could take it. Enough was enough. The people that loved him regardless of his sexual preferences stood by him though that. I was bullied as a kid, too skinny, not pretty, flat chested (which is damn funny now) etc. It’s horrible and as kids we can’t see past the here and now.

    Thank God you did and many others do too. Hopefully these efforts will help those that can’t.

    You’re doing a wonderful thing!
    WookiesGirl

  496. Thanks Katie for your story. What a great post and what a great thing you are doing. as

  497. WE DID IT!!!

    500 COMMENTS!!!

    it just got a hell of alot better!

  498. Bullying still happens, even in the modern-day workplace. Sadly, bullying doesn’t end with the school bell chime.

    It does get better.

    <3

  499. Looks like you got to 502 comments.

    Proof, it gets better.

  500. Thanks so much for this post and for sharing your heart in this way.

  501. I think what you’ve done is awesome. 🙂

  502. I think what you’ve done is awesome. 🙂

  503. Katie, I’m so proud of you for sharing your story and making more people aware of the horrendous times some of our youth are facing. I was bullied as a teen due to my weight, but thank goodness it didn’t go to the extreme that some of these cases did. It’s amazing how much better you feel after getting out of school and away from the negativity. It does get better.

  504. Unfortunately, sometimes it’s those in authority doing the bullying. Great post and good luck.

  505. Thank you for this post, it’s just wonderful and your pledge makes me want to cry.

    I especially liked this:

    “Suicide is not the answer. Those who bully will feel no remorse over their victims taking their own lives. Suicide isn’t a cure. Ending your life isn’t the answer. Living your life on your own terms and loving who you want and in your own way is the answer.”

    Thank you again.

  506. Anonymous

    Thank you all for doing this. The further the word spreads, the better.

  507. Your story really choked me up. I am so impressed with your bravery for being open enough to share it.

  508. Joanne Burt

    We need to understand that in this world love is a precious commodity and not focus on the anatomy of it. The bullying has to stop. It is hard enough to grow up and discover ourselves without the pain inflicted by others. We are our brothers keeper.

  509. Getting through high school and finally admitting my sexuality to myself was one of the hardest times of my life, but seeing it from this side of 20 I’m glad I stuck it out.

    So many people suffer for the people who bully and hurt others for no reason and I’m really happy that there are programs and campaigns like this.

  510. This was a very good post. There is sooo much bullying being done and not enough is being done to stop it. I was bullied and I have a child who was & is being bullied, and it is very hard to get anyone to do something about it. I left a post the other day but its not showing up so I thought I better repost. Good luck with the fundraising.

  511. I am behind this 100%

    I was bullied in middle school by a group of girls for whatever reason they could think of that day. I hated going to school. Then, they went to the high school so for 8th grade, I had a wonderful year and loved going to school. Then I went to the high school and there they were, picking up right where they left off. I dropped out after 14 days. I couldn’t get help from my parents, the school, anyone. I felt alone and afraid. Bullying of any kind must not be tolerated.

  512. Thank you Katie for shining a light on such heartbreaking events – the bullying that you and countless others had to endure. NO ONE should ever have to go through that! Ever!

    I watched Dan Savage’s YouTube video and I laughed in places, cried in others and had a lump in my throat for almost all of it. I hope those teens out there who see this and other videos are…filled with hope. Thank you.

  513. Katie, I’m a little late to the party. But what a fantastic post. It’s just so upsetting that these teens feel they have no other option.

    Laura

  514. I am so pleased to see all the great visibility to a very serious issue. Thank you everyone who is helping this worthy cause.

  515. Great post. I’m late and you’re over the 500, but still …… great post.

  516. Thanks Katie for sharing your story. And I agree with Lila, you triumphed. I think this is wonderful what your doing and everyone else involved. These poor boys to have felt there was no other way.
    Thank you Katie.
    Carol L.
    Lucky4750@aol.com

  517. Anonymous

    Here’s to doubling what you’ve gotten *salute*

  518. What a great way to support the cause. I’m glad to comment here to applaud your efforts!

  519. Anonymous

    I think this is so sad and it’s great that you’re doing this.

  520. Anonymous

    I have to say I don’t really understand the lifestyle but NO ONE deserves to be bullied. It is so sad that these kids are all killing themselves. I pray that this epidemic of suicide will end.

  521. Anonymous

    I wasn’t really bullied in middle school (not in a focused, daily harassment way), but I worried constantly about how my family would take it if I came out, and I realize now that those I called friend were not actually helping my low self-esteem. And I did think of suicide, often, usually when I felt ignored by my parents and brother, but sometimes after the sexist jokes from my ex-boyfriend, and one memorably low moment in high school, when a fellow lesbian who was also on the softball team said I had been called some very nasty things. I quit softball that year, for reasons including that. Thank you for doing this. I wish more could be done to educate the youth about GLBT people and issues, but failing that, just being able to tell bullying victims – no matter orientation, sexual identity, race, or anything else – that high school might be the worst part of your life, but it shouldn’t be the end of it.

  522. said to say that the ones who need the education about bullying are the adults and it’s not just sexual orientation, it’s anything, ANYTHING, that makes you different.

  523. I just stumbled upon this, so I may be a little late for the pledge, but I have to say I was very moved, of course, and also a little enraged that after a story makes the news, everyone goes back to their lives and nothing really changes. I think foundations that will foster discussions, awareness and outreach to victims in as many places and ways as possible really will make a difference.

  524. Anonymous

    I care about you. I am glad you didn’t take your life. You being here has made a difference, a better difference.

  525. Bullying is a huge under looked problem in our culture. Nobody seems to really want to tackle the problem. Schools have always been known to be a place of bullying and this type of behavior needs to stop. Education with this matter is helpful but also to the bully’s need to be aware of the consequences of their actions. perhaps there should be legal consequences for child that bully other child. That may be the only successful solution.

    -Zane of ontario honey

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