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THE IMPACT OF CYBER BULLYING ON YOUTH

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Florida Girl Commits Suicide After Relentless Bullying

Posted by Mark Snyder on September 21, 2013 at 9:10 AM Comments comments (3)

Twelve year old Rebecca Ann Sedwick, of Lakeland, Fla jumped from a ledge at a concrete plant to her death in Florida this month, after relentless online bullying.  According to sources, Rebecca was tormented by others over a boy first, and then mercilessly beat down emotionally over further harassment, primarily from other girls her age.  The teen became dispondant, and apparently didn't fight back but internalized the constant social media attacks until she finally took her own life.  LA Times story here.

Washington Teen Commits Suicide After Bullying

Posted by Mark Snyder on February 7, 2012 at 7:55 AM Comments comments (0)

Rafael Morelos took his own life this month in the small Washington State town of Cashmere.  According to his mother, a hundred or so students attended a candlelight vigil in the boys honor, and all of them confirmed that he was regularly being bullied for being gay including having been shoved in the PE locker room.

NY Girl Commits Suicide After Being Bullied in School

Posted by Mark Snyder on January 15, 2012 at 8:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Fifteen year old Amanda Cummings from Staten Island, NY jumped in front of a bus, ending the young girls life after reportedly being repeatedy bullied at school.  So bad were the attacks on young Amanda, that even after her passing, messages of hate littered her Facebook page.

Sadness and outrage have sparked lawmakers in New York to consider stiffer penalties for bullying in that state. 

Gay Teen Eric James Borge Commits Suicide

Posted by Mark Snyder on January 15, 2012 at 7:45 AM Comments comments (0)

Eric Borge said that the  horror began in kindergarten and never stopped.  According to the New York Daily News the other students always seemed to know he was “different” and honed in on him as a target for abuse.

Of his Junior high school experience, Borge reported, “I could not talk or go anywhere without someone saying or doing something,”

“I was stalked, spit on, ostracized and physically assaulted.”

“My name was not Eric, it was f-----t.”

 

What makes Eric's story all the sadder and more ironic, Eric was a film maker who had just completed the IT GETS BETTER video for The Trevor Project, a crisis support organization for Gay, Lesbian and Transgender Youth. 

Bullied even in college, by his own accounts, Borge ended his own life at the age of 19.

14 Year Old Boy From Amherst New York Commits Suicide Over Gay Bullying

Posted by Mark Snyder on December 27, 2011 at 10:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Fourteen year old Jamey Rodemeyer took his own life this past weekend after what observers say was over a year of relentless online bullying. According to several, Jamey had been struggling with his own sexuality but had been dealing with it openly both with friends, family and his therapist. His mother said his tears and anger had recently dissipated. "Lately, he's been blowing them off, or at least we thought he was," she told the Buffalo News. But Jamey posted an online farewell before taking his own life using methods that the police have not yet divulged. ABC NEWS covers the sad story here, yet another preventable tragedy in our new world of social networking.

Fifteen Year Old Girl in Quebec Takes Her Own Life After Being Tormented In School

Posted by Mark Snyder on December 20, 2011 at 2:50 PM Comments comments (0)

According to reports, Marjorie Raymond of Granby, QC ,"couldn't take another day in school" after constant bullying drove the teenager to suicide.  According to reports Marjorie was "psychologically and physically abused" in school and left a suicide note before taking her life.  The community is outraged that more was not done to prevent this one, in many attacks.  The role of techology is not clear in this case, though it seems hard to believe that a 15 year old would not be connected through social networks.  Whether or not bullying is occuring online, the internet continues to connect teenagers to information about other youth suicides.

Bullied High School Senior Takes His Life Over Gay Bullying

Posted by Mark Snyder on December 19, 2011 at 10:05 AM Comments comments (0)

A Tennessee teenager on the crest of finishing his school career took his own life recently over what others say was relentless bullying.  Jacob Rogers was called gay and queer, all of the common names that sting young males the hardest, to the point where he said that he "didn't want to go back [to school]".

Articles on Jacob's death have been interestingly dominated by Christian right publications as the event took place deep in the bible belt, and seems rash with religious overtones.  Two reports provide two different perspectives, here on the Huffington Post and here on the local NBC affiliate.

According to a friend of Jacob's, "Jacob told me no one was helping him. He constantly was going to guidance.".  But others say the school did nothing to help the situation, though the schools' burden of responsibility remains under investigation.

Bullying in "Christian environments" can create additional elements of worry and stress for teens who simultaneous hold strong religious beliefs but are confronted with biblical mandates that what they perceive their sexuality to be, will condemn them.  Some are calling for a tweaking of Christianity, others for reinterpretation of the biblical scriptures against certain 'acts', and yet others hold fast to biblical mandates which appear both in the old and new testament.

Ten Year Old North Carolina Girl: Bullying Being Investigated

Posted by Mark Snyder on December 19, 2011 at 10:00 AM Comments comments (0)

According to observers, ten year old Jasmine McClain of Chadborn, NC did not wear the latest fashions and was teased by school mates.  While bullying involvement is yet to be confirmed by authorities according to the local news article here Jasmine's death follows a similar pattern of children taking their own lives at a very young age.

Bullied Ten Year Old Girl Commits Suicide

Posted by Mark Snyder on December 19, 2011 at 9:30 AM Comments comments (0)

Ten year old Ashlyn Connor was called ugly, fat and a slut by other children in school, harsh names for someone so young.

"Relatives described Ashlynn as fun and bubbly. But she also was a very sensitive girl who wanted to please others and took very seriously the "nitpicking" that kids do, like teasing about hair or clothes.", according to testimony from relavtives published here in the full article from Ashlyn's Illinois County.

Parents said that Ashlyn had been bullied since the age of seven.  The little girl was found in a bedroom closet by her sister, an apparent hanging though investigators are still finalizing their report.

Bullying of girls often comes from other girls, and attacks the child's self esteem through comments about appearance, weight and popularity.  Generally it is not until teenage years before attacks move towards things like promicuity.  Social networking is intense among girls, and can be more nasty than bullying by boys.  Rivalvies and revenge motivated by social anger regularly drives girls to attack and isolate other girls.  And unfortunately, girls can be more prone to internalize than boys, especially if statements about looks appear true to them. 

What is ironic is that most of the things that girls are bullied for, will change over time.  Looks, weight, hair and friends are in constant flux with girls.


Fifteen Year Old Boy Committs Suicide

Posted by Mark Snyder on November 29, 2011 at 1:40 PM Comments comments (0)

An openly gay fifteen year old boy took his own life in October after a long documentation about his life and expressed depressive feelings over being gay. 

With striking similarities to the Jaemy Rodemeyer case, Jamie appeared to have 'come to terms' with what he believed his sexuality to be and yet still wrote about self loathing and self harm.

One of the things that our society needs to start looking at is the fact that gay tolerance does not seem to be translating into happily gay teens.  Some of Jamie's comments according to the article below suggest that not being bullied did not avoid depressive feelings. 

"Sometimes I wish the breeze would just take me with it"

"The only thing worse than being hated is being ignored. At least when they hate you they treat you like you exist"

On the other hand, because Jamie did not report being bullied does not mean that he wasn't.  It also does not mean that societal data did not still haunt him and that one form of bullying could just as easily be being ignored and marginalized.

Click here to read the full story on Jamie Hubley


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