Nicola and I would just like to take a moment to address something quite close to our hearts and our community. On Wednesday, October 10, 2012, Amanda Todd took her own life. She was just 15 years old and had endured over 3 years of constant bullying. The bullying started at the age of 12 due to an indiscretion and a naïve mistake involving the Internet and webcam. From there, someone was able to post a Facebook page with damaging photos and hurtful posts. This same person was then able to re-establish another Facebook page a year later. How this happened is beyond me. All the while, peers at school were able to verbally and physically abuse her to the point of leaving her in a ditch for her dad to find her. She had attempted to harm herself or permanently rid herself of this hurt twice. Amanda had changed schools 4 times and each time, the same people, as well as new ones were able to find her and torment her. All this bullying led to Amanda suffering from anxiety and depression. At the beginning of this school year, Amanda seemed to be making progress and was beginning to feel better and was looking forward to things. We are not sure what her setback was, but she felt her options had been exhausted and took her own life.
I am so sad and angry that someone as caring, forgiving, compassionate and sweet as Amanda had to endure so much torment and anguish that she took her own life. Even with mistakes, no one should EVER have to go through that. All I can remember is this little girl’s beautiful smile when I taught her in Kindergarten. I will never see that smile again.
Even in death, Amanda is continuing to be bullied. What is wrong with that picture? Why must she continue to suffer even in death?
I ask that her death not be in vain. Remind your children how devastating and damaging bullying can be. Amanda leaves behind a mom, dad and brother, who will never forget the magnitude of the burden she carried at the hands of some very hurtful, vicious people and the consequences of their actions.
Remember to preach what you love not what you hate…
Denise and Nicola