Hi, my name is Tania, I am a mom to a son who has been bullied due to his sexual preference. We live in a small town in the mid-west, you know the type of home-town, everyone may know your business before you do, lol... Well, that is us.. We are an all white community, farming is the main source of income here and nothing out of the norm to most, ever happens here in this small town.. You can count like clockwork when the morning farmers come to town for their coffee,, everyday, over an over and over.. so, you get the idea of our home town. A beautiful place to live, wonderful people-for the most part and my family is here. My son Jake is in the 10th grade this year, A-B student, involved with choir, band , speech and theatre.. Great student and a wonderful son. Jake has been bullied for his sexual preference. Many of his days consisted of chants down the hallways at school, "Fag, Faggot, Fag..." having drawings of penis on his locker, being threaten, scared to get off the bus in the morning and walking into school because he was scared that he would be beaten in a locker room,,, and then finally death threats. He has endured so much and this is just from this year alone, not including the comments posted on Facebook or Twitter.. I almost lost my son, twice,, to suicide. I thank God everyday that he is here with me,, my life without him would be lost.. It was at that moment at the School Board Meeting, after addressing the Board Members- school did not do anything let alone the proper paperwork, it was then that I knew something had to be done.. I started a Facebook page, for my son in mind however geared toward the community.. By the time I had posted the page, I had 400 members,, I posted the Laws of our State when it came to bullying, the schools obligation as well as the requirements that need to be fulfilled by them or all schools at that, I walked around town an posted my phone number in case anyone who was being bullied and felt they had no where to go, could call me ANYTIME. I made orange ribbons (free to the community) to wear as well as ribbons to wrap around tree's to show support, held a candle vigil as well as monthly anti-bullying meetings... all out of my pocket,, to ensure that this is not tolerated and to leave my son as well as others alone.. I started receiving letters from people that were former students (one from a gentleman age 60), former students who are now in college and current students reaching out. I write to everyone of them as well as I have contacts that will be of help. I read letters of students that felt suicide was the only way and now with this page that was started,,,,, it gives hope. A place to come and have people support them an not judge.. My son Jake, he is doing so much better,, stronger and more important, proud of who he is... I am a mom that works 50 hours a week, take care of a home, active kids in school and I have my page... I have given my word that I vow to protect and continue to raise awareness... If you are have someone that is bullied, stand up,, I can help with getting you started, advice of what I have done..Don't get me wrong, we have six kids, we are not wealthy by any means,, but I find a way through donations and scraping,,, a lot to make this happen and the ENTIRE time, I think of my son Jake... I love my son and all my kiddo's so much,, even my husband :).. You are welcome to join our Facebook page, see what we do and get ideas if you are wanting to be involved an raise awareness..
Tipton Against Kids Being Bullied (Facebook Page) or twitter @Momagstbullying Also, here are some links... Thank you for reading...
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Ryan Knowles commented 2013-03-27 15:04:53 -0400Tania, This is an incredibly powerful story. You really exemplify everything that The Bully Project works every day to build and promote. Would you be interested in speaking about volunteering for The Bully Project? If so, shoot us an email at email@example.com. Thank you for all the work have done to bring light to this issue!
The Bully Project
Tania McAtee published this page 2013-03-25 19:51:51 -0400