Amanda Todd.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the story on this young teen’s recent suicide, I suggest you either Google her name and watch her chilling yet sad story on YouTube re-posted below:

Typically, I don’t usually follow “trendy”, bandwagon-y type of news, but this one was different. It really struck a chord in me. Why? Because I was in her shoes before. I’ve made the same stupid mistakes as her. And yes, there were consequences. Consequences in the form of bullying.

When I was 12, I was horribly bullied by a group of girls that were a year older than me and who went to highschool across the field from my school (yes, I was still in elementary at the time). At this age, I was boy crazy — I had a crush on basically everyone. And even at that age, I loved older guys — hello highschool boys! Anyways, I happened to crush on a particular boy who had not informed me that he had a girlfriend. Basically, shit went down and I was bullied pretty badly (this was way before Facebook — we had Apartment 107). This group of girls and their friends in older grades constantly wrote on my “wall” telling me to go to hell, labeled me as a “tryhard”, nobody likes you, leave the guys alone, no one wants you, etc. They even began to call my house. It was hell. And I couldn’t understand why these people hated me so much. I never did anything to them at all. This continued into Grade 8.

But luckily, my perseverance, optimism, and most importantly, a secure group of friends (that I still have to this day, thank you!), I was able to push through. It eventually got better and I stopped caring. This Amanda girl had no support group. And although she is receiving outpours from tens of thousands of people around the world, where was this support when she needed it?

Bullying needs to stop, I get that. Bullies will always exist but we need proper education in our institutions to full-on combat this. Teachers and authoritative members need to take students’ issues and cries for help seriously. They also require proper and adequate training in dealing with these crises.

Such a sad story.