Bullying Claims Another Victim

How could anyone hurt Amanda? (courtesy of MySpace)

It was only last October that Vancouver teenager Amanda Todd was found dead in Coquitlam, Canada, the victim of merciless bullying who couldn’t take it any more and hanged herself. She was almost 17 years old.

Almost.

The story was all over the news since a month before her suicide, Amanda posted a video to YouTube describing the abuse she’d suffered at the hands of an unknown bully. And like Bob Dylan in his grainy video for “Subterranean Homesick Blues,” she used flash cards to do it, never uttering a word. See it for yourself right HERE.

What happened to Amanda was horrible and still makes me angry. In the seventh grade, this beautiful girl went online and started video chatting in an attempt to make some new friends. Everyone she met complimented her on her looks, but one particular guy went even further, and not in a good way.

Somehow—most likely by playing on her innocence and insecurities—he convinced Amanda to appear on camera topless. A short time later, he found her online again, only this time it wasn’t chatting that interested him.

It was blackmail.

He told Amanda that if she didn’t “give him a show,” he would send her topless photo to everyone she knew, including friends, family and even teachers at her school. This was a lie, of course, because Amanda soon learned that her photos were all over the Internet. That was likely her blackmailer’s intention all along.

As you might imagine, this crushed Amanda emotionally, causing depression and tremendous anxiety. Her parents tried moving into a new home, but even that didn’t help. Amanda continued to get worse and eventually turned to drugs and alcohol to dull her pain.

A year passed and the memory of Amanda’s abuse finally started to fade, but it simply was not meant to be. Her bully again appeared online—this time on Facebook—and even used her topless photo as the profile picture on his bogus account. He contacted her friends, embarrassed her publicly and sparked even more teasing and bullying at school.

So Amanda ran again. She started attending a third school and sadly, it wasn’t much different from the last. Amanda hooked up with some guy she met online, pissed off his girlfriend and suffered a beating at her hands—and several of her friends’ hands—a short time later.

The attack sent Amanda to an even darker place and, later that night, she attempted suicide by drinking bleach. Luckily, her father was able to rush her to the hospital fast enough to save her young life. And once she was released, he packed up his family again and moved to another city.

If only this had helped.

No matter where Amanda went, her bully followed. He never asked to be her friend directly, but he did befriend everyone she knew. And once he knew enough of them, he shared Amanda’s naked photos and embarrassed her yet again.

I wish I could say Amanda bounced back, discovered who her abuser was, watched him being apprehended and testified to send him to prison. We all know that didn’t happen, though. In actuality, it was quite the opposite.

Her downward spiral continued.

Amanda started to cut herself as her fragile psyche deteriorated and even overdosed on antidepressants, which sent her to the hospital for several days. She returned to the hospital a short time later to be treated for severe depression, this time for teasing and bullying at school. Some classmates found out about her learning disability and laid into her for having bad grades.

And that was all it took. Amanda hanged herself at her home on October 10, 2012, a beautiful young victim of some unknown Internet sociopath, as well as loads of her peers who all need a lesson in kindness and compassion. A lesson that begins with my foot in their asses.

And Heaven forbid I ever get my hands on the guy who tormented Amanda for so long. I wouldn’t hurt him myself, of course. That’s not my right. But I know who is deserving of this honor: Amanda’s father. And nothing would make me happier than delivering this psycho to his doorstep with a big red bow on his head.

Not to mention some power tools. And maybe a blowtorch. But I digress.

Amanda’s suicide was heartbreaking, even more so since her bully was never caught. And now it looks like bullies have claimed another young victim, also in Canada: 17-year-old Rehtaeh Parsons of Nova Scotia.

Rehtaeh is bullying’s latest victim (courtesy of Facebook)

When she was only 15 years old, Rehtaeh was gang raped  by four young men who not only took pictures of her having sex, but also shared them with all their friends. For the next year, Rehtaeh endured nearly endless taunting and teasing at the hands of classmates who also have a lot to learn.

Unfortunately, this amazing young woman with so much potential simply couldn’t muster the emotional strength to cope with all the bullying—and who could blame her? Like Amanda Todd, her relentless abusers got the best of her, and on April 4th she hanged herself.

Rehtaeh didn’t die instantly and was placed on life support at a nearby hospital, but her family removed it yesterday and now I am sorry to say that she’s gone. Another young life snuffed out by bullies and other mean-spirited jackasses.

Something’s got to give.

Posted on April 11, 2013, in Perspectives and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. yourothermotherhere

    It literally makes me ill that this kind of thing goes on.

    I read an article recently that stated an Internet hacker group had traced down at least two of the perpetrators and had given the information over to the authorities who were scuffling their feet about it. Part of the evidence they offered included cell phone charges.

    I think the person who started this should be put away for a long, long time. And if they don’t put him in solitary, I’m sure he won’t last long in the general population. Crimes like this one are looked down upon by prison inmates.

    • That is true, my friend. And karma being what it is, he will get what he deserves one way or another. I hope…

      Thanks for the comments and for checking this out!

  2. This just is not a post I can bring myself to like despite it being well-written and on target with my feelings on the matter. I did share it, though.

    • I appreciate that, Red. And I know what you mean. Having things liked is the last thing on my mind anyway. I would much rather people learn something, share something or take action to prevent these kinds of things from happening in the future. That is always good enough for me, so thanks for sharing this. And thanks for the comments, too. I hope to see you here again sometime!

  3. Horror. Absolute horror. So angered by those who believe this behavior is “OK” and to post it to “amuse” others. Animals. Who raised them? Scorn deserved there, too.
    Excellently written post

    • Thanks, philosopher. And you’re right. Someone needs to pay. I appreciate the comments (and compliments) and hope to see you here again sometime soon!

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