February 19, 2012

Stop Bullying

Sadly, teasing is a part of growing up.  Although, there is a difference between teasing out of fun vs. teasing with intents of hurting others.  Either way everyone isn't accustomed to teasing.  Through experience of my own child I have suffered the cruel end of teasing.  He was teased because of how he  dressed. Although, he wear current designers such as Ralph Lauren, Puma, etc.  They will tell him it's the nerdy form of fashion he chooses to wear.  I am a true believer that fashion isn't the most important for a child to succeed. However, I truly believe if you dress them for success now they will be prepared for success when they achieve it.  He was teased because of his way of thinking.  My son has the soul of an old wise man.  He's intrigued with other's thoughts.  This made some of his peers view him as a nerd or weirdo.  He simply cares about all.  Thankfully, bullying didn't affect my child's motivation and determination to be great.  Where as others are deeply affected by it.  Some has even taken their young, precious lives.  My cousin recently had to do an essay for one of his classes.  It was phenomenal.  I can't think of any other way to describe it.  He speaks from experience.  I shared this essay with four other co-workers with younger children.  Each co-worker including myself got something different from it.  I would like to share this with you.  Also, I encourage you to share this with others as well.  It's very important and you never know who needs it at the present moment.  Thank you so much for visiting.  Peace......

A Path to Humility
Have you ever seen a child being bullied constantly by his peers? I have witnessed this sight plenty of
times during my childhood, first-hand. I have always wondered why I was chosen to be the outcast.
Acceptance is the only thing that I wanted, but nothing that I’ve done seemed to work. Offering
my lunch, that my mother made with love and care, to those who would pick on me. Laughing with
the bullies at others they would mock. I was even slacking in school in order to hide my exceptional
academic talents. The most despicable thing that I did was abandoning my friends who accepted me
even with my “flaws”. None of these methods helped me gain acceptance, they only made me feel
lonelier. My adolescence was formed around the negativity I received from my peers. I doubted myself
and from this I developed insecurities.

Being self-conscious not only affects you, but those around you as well. My insecurities took control
of me and I began to change mentally. My personality and behavior adapted to prevent people from
realizing my “flaws”. The outcome of this made me a bitter, angry, and defensive young man. I refused
to be that outspoken child I was once before. I chose to be more aggressive when demanding respect
versus passive. Whenever someone would make the slightest joke, I would lash out as though they have
just slandered my mother’s name. I would mock those who refused to defend themselves. I was rude,
obnoxious, and I could care less about those affected by my behavior. Without even knowing, I was
becoming the very same thing that I hated.

Of course being defensive also made me stubborn. I refused to believe that I was the reason my mother
cried late at nights. I was blind to the fact that it was I, her only son, who disappointed her. “I failed
you as a parent” is something no child ever wants to hear. There was good in me, but no one else could
see it. No more disappointing my mother was the only thing on my mind. I decided to make a change
and eventually a change occurred. After constant nights bowing to the Lord, my mother’s prayers
were answered. I was slowly progressing into a man who was not bitter, angry, or sensitive. Applying
the teachings of Bishop Dale C. Bronner to my life dramatically reshaped me. I was able to become
understanding, to show compassion, to be considerate, and most importantly to begin to love myself.

My mom always told me that the reason I was picked on is because I have a big heart, like my father. He
cared for others and so do I. Everything happens for a reason and I believe that God put those obstacles
in my life in order to train this big heart of mine. How could I care for others without experiencing pain
myself? I want to make sure no one else has to endure the same pain I had to endure alone. My first
opportunity to achieve this was when I met a crying little boy. Surprisingly, the crying little boy was my
younger self. It was though I subconsciously met myself during my adolescence. As I greeted the boy he
instantly poured his heart out to me, to the only person who would understand him.

Screaming at the top of his lungs while crying heavily, the boy asked, “Why am I not loved like everyone
else?! Why do I get picked on every single day?! Why don’t I have a father to guide me?! Why does no
one care?!” All I could do was smile and without even saying a word I hugged him as tight as I could. The
boy dug his face in my shoulder and continued to cry and also without saying a word he hugged me back
as tight as he could. I always felt that I needed someone else’s approval to feel loved, but it was in that

instant that I realized that I was wrong. My approval was all I ever needed. As I held the boy in my arms,
he began to fade away with my insecurities with him.

I would be grateful for those who bullied me. I do not take anything for granted. I feel as though I can
take the experiences from my past and help others with their future. I guess everything I went through
was just a pathway to reach humility.

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