Hey, everybody. My name is DeLaney and I am 16 years old. I've always been heavier, and kids at school would call me rude things and talk about me as if I weren't there. A lot of my friends got bullied more than me, and I would try to stand up for them. I actually ended up getting in trouble for it more than once. Once I began doing this, some of their attention was redirected to me. Once again, I was getting lewd comments and people "accidentally" running into me and pushing my things to the ground. 

Then we got to high school. At first, I thought everyone had just calmed down, but they had actually just gotten more clever about hiding what they were doing. I would try to get them to stop, and they wouldn't listen. This time, they simply ignored me. I tried to get a teacher involved, and they gave the spiel about how kids will be kids and it was all in good fun, blah blah blah. 

Now that I look back, I should have been suspicious when I stopped hearing about it from my friends. For the most part, the people that had been messing with my friends had gotten bored and moved on. However, a  girl who I had considered to be my best friend since 6th grade started a rumor and would spread it on to anyone willing to listen. I go to a small school, so pretty much everyone had heard by the end of the day. The rest of the school year, I got called really rude and unnecessary names (things like dyke and whore. there's a reason I haven't come out.). 

Then, in May,  my friend Daniel committed suicide while I was out of town for my cousin's army graduation. I found out via text during the ceremony. He had been being bullied in the bathroom at school, and no one knew how long it had been going on. His death was all but ignored by most of the people at our school. They used his death as an excuse to leave class, and talked about how he deserved it. That's what made me really want to do something about bullying. You can read all of these stories and watch movies, but it never really feels real until it happens to someone you knew. There's something very wrong with a society that ignores people being made to feel so terrible that they would rather die than bear it anymore. The way bullying is handled really needs to change.

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