Monday, 4 April 2016

Will Ellen DeGeneres make my dream come true ?




  Ellen is making dreams come true. On her website she asks, "Do you want Ellen to make your dreams come true?"  Yes, I do have a dream.  It is not to go on a tropical vacation, nor a chance to win cash or a chance to meet my favorite celebrity. 

  My dream requires no more than a stage, with ears willing to hear my story of survival. 

  My story is one of being relentlessly bullied throughout my high school years.  

  The reason I want to share my story is because I know intimately of the consequences to the victim when bullying gets out of control. When bullying gets out of control, victims can find themselves ostracized from an entire school. 

  When this happens a pecking order arises where others humiliate the victim to quickly and firmly establish their own social status. Bystanders, and bullies alike cease to have empathy for the victim as they become targets for public shaming, and ridicule. The victim is no longer perceived as a human being deserving of respect. 

  As a result they become threatened on a daily basis. I was told multiple times that I should seriously consider suicide because no one likes me.

  Many of those who endure this degree of hatred fail their education, and become high school drop-outs because they simply cannot endure yet another day of abuse. 

  The psychological stress and impact of being bullied is devastating. Especially in a time when the adolescent  brain is undergoing critical psychological and neurological development. And  that person is beginning to define a concept of self and their role in society. 

  Because victims of severe bullying lose out on forming meaningful, and purposeful relationships - they become emotionally stunted in their development as adults. Often they are prone to developing crippling mental health issues like social anxiety, chronic depression, and even post traumatic Stress Disorder. 

  I know because this is my story. My experiences of being bullied had led me to 5 suicide attempts after dropping out of high school, and a string of dysfunctional relationships because of my low self-esteem. Now I live on disability for chronic depression, social anxiety, and panic attacks. 

  My story illustrates the lifelong damage that can result from being bullied, and just how destructive that damage is. 

  However,  I can also speak on the strengths that I found in my adversities. Strengths that led me to become a" Guinness World Record" holder as well as a" Ripley's Believe It or Not" record holder, among other notable achievements like being in a nationwide article, and being published in 2 books. 

  I also found purpose in being an advocate for mental health issues, and anti-bullying. 

  I can also speak on what I think needs to be done to help resolve the bullying issue. 

  I think schools should be held accountable for implementing, and maintaining a strict no bullying atmosphere. There is an answer to the bullying problem, but it requires a network of school authorities sharing their strategies and successes to the bullying problem and implementing an anti-bullying curriculum.

  A curriculum that teaches that content of character and moral aptitude are just as critical as academic success.  

  There needs to be discussion among school trustees, principles, teachers, and in the classroom addressing the bullying issue. Discussions also need to take place when conflict occurs, discussions that include the bullied, the bully, and the bystander.  

  Every issue starts with awareness, then debate.  And eventually collaborative efforts to resolve the issue. Evil happens when good people do nothing. We need to be part of the solution, not part of the problem.

  It is my dream to present a speech on the Ellen DeGeneres show detailing everything I have spoken about. Because I want that one moment in my life where I can use what I have learned and experienced, to positively affect as many lives as possible. 

  I have written blogs, and made YouTube videos on the subject -with little attention. I have even shared my material with every school, school principle, and school trustee in my city with little effect. I have even approached schools with speeches I have written but was declined. Some schools simply told me they didn't have a bullying problem even though I knew otherwise. Others simply did not offer to work with me to create a mutually beneficial speech. 

  I believe I went through this life experience for a reason. It is my experience ,as a victim of bullying, that qualifies me to speak on the subject. My asset is my willingness to speak about my pains, and struggle. And my story provides its own new and unique insights to the bullying issue. 

  I want the satisfaction and sense of purpose that comes with knowing I did something that benefited the lives of others on a larger scale. 

  The opportunity to make a difference in the lives of so many people is one thing that would fulfill my attempt of self-reward. I would feel great if I could help others.

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