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‘Bullying Is A Vicious Cycle’

December 14, 2010 by Eaglecorps911

By Samantha Ciccarella
Like every other kid who has ever lived, I have seen bullying, I have been bullied, and I have been a bully.
Bullying comes in so many forms. In the hallways there are taunts, stares, insults under the breath, pushes, and shoves.
Behind the glow of the computer screen, people feel empowered that they can say whatever harmful things they desire without actually seeing their victim’s face.
I’ve experienced the hurtful taunts in school and even more so the harassment online.
Some things people have said to me made me wonder if things would be better if I were dead, but then I remembered along with all the people who hate me, there are many more that care.
Unfortunately,many people have been bullied enough, physically or emotionally, that they lost all their hope and decided that ending their lives was the only escape.
The media tells many of these horror stories, but nothing seems to change this haunting cycle.
People are still being bullied, and people are still being bullies.
Everyone must ask: Where does all of this hate grow from and how can it be stopped?
The answer is not until this generation respects and accepts people for who they are will things change for the better.
“You don’t deserve to live.” Or maybe it was more like, “u don’t deserve 2 live.”
It didn’t matter how it was spelt because that message, which I was sent online, still hurt like a punch to the stomach.
My freshman year, there was one girl who was always causing drama with everyone, and this time it was my turn.
I had made a blunt comment about her fake tan and for a couple weeks she sent me hate mail over Myspace, got her friends to make rude comments toward me in the hall, and generally made my life hell.
All of this just because I said I didn’t like her tan.
I should have just kept my opinion to myself.
I should’ve known better after all the years of my parents and my teachers lecturing, “If you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”
So after that bit of drama, I kept my mouth shut most of high school, but that didn’t stop other people from sending hurtful words and looks my way.
When I was little, I was the typical ugly duckling. I was big, awkward, weird, ugly, and made fun of for all of it.
I wore baggy shirts to hide the body I was ashamed of.
As the years went on, I grew and turned into a nice-looking young woman.
I emphasized that; I always dressed nicely, wore heels, did my hair, and even picked up a bit of a pretentious attitude.
I didn’t want to be seen as that ugly girl anymore; I wanted people to look at me with admiration, envy even.
After the bit of drama freshman year, I stayed clear of the catty girls, but senior year they came back without me even opening my mouth.
Even though I never said anything hurtful, I was still considered a bully because of my occasional judging glares.
Where mistakes are made, lessons are learned.
For fun, I joined Formspring, a site where people can ask anything anonymously. I should have known that was a bad decision.
At first, I was getting typical questions about my dreams, desires, where I saw myself in 10 years. But just a day or two after joining, I started getting hate comments.
People were insulting me, my friends, my artwork, my image, and just tore me apart. I was called a “stone cold bitch,” an “untalented hot s**t wanna-be,” “a fake know-it-all who may be pretty on the outside but ugly as s**t on the inside,” and so many other terrible things.
I never said anything mean to anyone; I just went through the school day doing my own thing.
Was that why people hated me, because they were thinking that I thought that I was better than them because I didn’t talk to them?
I responded back with as much fire as I was sent, which only sent more hateful comments spiraling.
After just four days, I deleted my account.
After reading all of the hateful comments, I started evaluating the way I acted in school.
The fact was I liked who I was. I liked how my friends and I acted, and maybe I did think I was better than the town, but not the people.
I just hated living in a small farm town; I felt I belonged somewhere bigger.
My friends and I were considered bullies because we didn’t talk to anybody else, but really we just were content with ourselves.
People are going to hate no matter what, whether they think they know me or not.
People change. I changed a lot over high school, and I will continue to. But I change because of the way the world affects me, not because some girls from high school don’t like my attitude.
Being pretty, being ugly, having money, being poor, overweight, or too skinny, no matter what, people will find a reason to hate.
Bullying is a vicious cycle that can never stop until generations stop learning hate from the ones before them.
Back in the day, kids were bullied for having glasses or being chubby; they were either told by their parents to suck it up or fight the bully back.
Today, the bullying has escalated beyond anything that parents of these children could ever understand, and they have no idea how to react to it.
Girls are being slandered online by other girls and even boys.
Young girls have come to use such vicious behaviors with one another, whether they taunt them with looks and words or they actually hit them for the most absurd reasons.
Finally being brought to the attention of the media, ignorant students of every age emotionally and physically harass their peers who have a different sexual orientation.
Boys who are shy and awkward are shoved and mimicked in the hallways because television shows show that’s what they “deserve.”
Those with money insult those with less, and vice versa.
Funny guys take aim at anyone who walks by just to gain a little more status.
All of this bullying, this harassment, criticism, intoler-ance, abuse, exploitation, and hate is done out in the open, right in the middle of the hallway or behind closed doors on the monitors of computers.
Where does all of this hate come from? Parents, peers, and the media are the root of all of this hate. From the very beginning of childhood, opinions are thrown at children and they learn what is considered normal, what is right, and what is wrong based solely on those who influence them.
Girls trash other girls for hooking up with guys at a party because their parents have told them that is slutty behavior.
Parents have taught their children that being gay is wrong, so their kids harass their homosexual peers and even those who other people think may be gay.
Television has enforced that sensitive guys are worthless and should be teased and shoved into lockers.
Those who have taught this generation have taught intoler-ance and abuse.
After evaluating everything that our youth has learned from their parents, their peers, and the media, it makes America seem like an ignorant, immature, and inhospitable place to be.
Americans promote freedom, yet set standards on what is normal and judge those who live differently.
This cycle cannot end until this generation stands up for the individual.
Children should be taught that being themselves is more than enough.
They need to learn to respect and accept people for who they are.
The teens and young adults of today are the ones who are in control of stopping the atrocious crimes and effects of bullying in the future.
The people of this generation are the future of society.
They are the politicians, the reporters, the TV film directors, the parents, and the teachers of the generations to come.
They must change what they have learned as children and teach the youth that it is important to love the person they are and to respect and accept all of the people around them.
No more standards, no more judgment, no more hate, and no more bullying.
It is essential that the youth be taught to love unconditionally.
One day this cycle will end, but not until people learn to love.

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