I can’t say it enough. Don’t be cruel to each other. It doesn’t matter who, whether they’re male, female, transgender, gay, straight, black, white.
Over the last few years, we’ve heard stories of young people killing themselves after being bullied. At first, it seemed to cause a sensation, but now, we let out a collective “Awe, what a shame” and go on with life. It shouldn’t be that way.
We should be asking ourselves why this is happening and try to stop it. We can try to instill in the next generation that no matter race or sexuality, we are all human and should be treated as such, but we need to start with ourselves.
It makes me sick to think that someone is sitting in their room or their car or their school bathroom crying at this moment because of something miserable someone said to them that isn’t even true. You’re fat. You’re worthless. You’re stupid. You’re retarded. You’re too short. You’re too tall. You should kill yourself. No one should hear these things, and there is no need for anyone to ever say them.
Words are the most powerful force in the universe. They can raise and lower mountains, build worlds and crush spirits. We must choose our words carefully because their impact is irreparable. Can you think of something someone said to you that hurt you deeply? Was it years ago? Yet, you still remember it. You’ve felt the effect of it yourself, so now imagine someone saying that to you every day. How would you feel to have your self-worth stripped away constantly? It doesn’t matter how many times someone tells you you’re amazing or pretty or smart because you still remember that awful thing someone said to you, and that will always cling to your mind.
So how do we begin with ourselves?
Watch your words. Some of us have a quicker filter than others and can stop ourselves in time from saying something unkind, but the first step to strengthening that filter is a bit of foresight. Think about what you’re going to say before you say it, and does it need to be said? Not to make you feel better but to help the other person. Will it hurt them? Would it hurt if someone said it to you? It’s such a simple thing, to think of how we would be affected, but it’s shocking how often we don’t do it.
If you see someone else abusing another person verbally, step in and say something. Nip it in the bud. Don’t be abusive back, but stand-up for the other person. Tell them it isn’t right to treat someone that way and why. Try to defuse the situation and give the other person comfort and support. Ask them if they’re all right. What would make you feel better? The best outcome is that the bully/abuser will back off and hopefully think twice about doing it again, and the other person will remember that someone stood-up for them and not that their worth was stripped away once again.
You never know how powerful your words could be. You could destroy or save someone, but which would you choose? I should hope you would want to stand-up for someone because if you were in that situation, wouldn’t you want someone to help you? It’s such a small thing.