A question to the bullies: How do you feel? With all of the attention on Amanda Todd's suicide, and the ones before her, and the ones we aren't even aware were related to bullying, and the ones that have not happened yet? How do you, the bully, feel?
When my daughter was at a local elementary school she was bullied. She was locked in supply closets, she had yogurt tubes exploded on her, she was called names, etc. She was very shy, and was afraid to tell anyone in case it got worse.
She had trouble keeping up in school. I have to wonder now if it was because she spent all of her time at school being afraid. It got to the point that she would throw up every morning; she suffered from debilitating stomach problems. She went to doctors, had tests, etc.
As her mother I was most concerned, and I asked her constantly if someone was hurting her, "touching" her - tell me anything, you can trust me, etc.
Finally when she was in middle school, she broke down and told me that a boy was picking on her, and had been since Grade 1.
Now that they were older, he and his friends would follow her home and chant that she was a bitch all the way home; he would hit her with his gloves and harass her every chance he got. He would simply intimidate her walking down the halls and had her so scared she just didn't know what to do.
Once she finally told me what was going on I was, of course upset - why hadn't she told me before, why hadn't the schools done anything?
When I did go to the principle of her middle school, since they had a zero tolerance for bullies, he told me to my face, "Oh no, you must be mistaken. That boy comes from a nice family." So what did that make us?
This boy and his friends knew what they were doing. They "teased" a lot of the girls, but they got a crying and upset reaction from my daughter, so they continued to pick on her. They felt it was harmless to make her cry and cower.
I, as her parent, had to finally phone this boy's parents until I reached them and explain what had been going on for years. The father was very understanding and had no idea that this was happening. It stopped after that day; if it hadn't I would have gone to the police next.
I think now that my daughter could have ended up doing what Amanda and so many others have done; she could be dead.
How do you feel now, bully? How does it feel as a grown man now, perhaps with children of your own, to know how much you tormented a young girl for years? Do you still feel like a big tough guy? Do you still think of your actions as "fun?"
So my question to all the bullies is, how do you feel now?