Bullies Beware: The New F-Word is FRIEND

Bullies Beware. You're gonna have to go through us.

Bullies Beware. You’re gonna have to go through us.

So you may remember me posting about the phenomenal anti-bullying campaign my Sugar Bean and I were asked to be part of a few months ago. If not, you can see that here. At the time, the campaign hadn’t officially launched….

BUT IT HAS NOW

FRIEND MOVEMENT is in full swing and people are talking about it, which is EXACTLY what we want to happen. Open DIALOGUE leads to ACTION, which leads to CHANGE. A few initial reactions to the campaign questioned the use of the familiar hand gesture–the extension of the middle finger, or ‘flipping the bird’–remarking that it’s too edgy and in your face. Let’s be honest though….this is NOTHING compared to what our youth and adults alike are subjected to on a daily basis. We aren’t flipping someone off, we are flipping off and saying “F-YOU” to the issue of BULLYING which is a problem…

In our faces…

In the media…

In some of our homes…

EVERYDAY.

As the mother of a teen who was the victim of bullying from the time she entered Kindergarten and continuing until we finally had to change schools to escape it, I am tired of it. She came home sobbing everyday, and that was heart wrenching. To know my baby was being mistreated by mean girls who felt the need to pick on her because she was younger and smaller than they was horrific. And I was powerless. I spoke to her teacher, then the principal, then the superintendent. As a parent, I did everything thing I could to be an advocate for my child. But I couldn’t go to school WITH HER, so she was left to stand up for herself. Which is precisely what FRIEND MOVEMENT is all about. The aim is to empower those being bullied to start an inner dialogue, in the face of their aggressors, enabling them to say:

“It’s not okay for you treat me this way.

I accept me for who I am, and you must do the same.

So back off.” 

I’m sick to death of hearing about teenager after teenager committing suicide as the result of something that HAS TO END. Period. There is no room for error, or deliberation with respect to this matter. Bullies come in all shapes, sizes, cultures, genders, etc….and my daughter and I are PROUD TO STAND AGAINST THEM in support of a campaign laden with celebrities who have also been victims of bullying themselves. Don’t believe me? Take a look:

And I urge you to go one step further. JOIN FRIEND MOVEMENT. Follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and SHARE!! Help spread the word, and make it go viral. Make a tax-deductible donation to the Indigogo.com fundraising effort if you can, and aid in the mission to take the movement on the road visiting 40 cities across the country, with the goal of shooting 10,000 photos in 90 days.

It may take a village to raise a child, but it takes the entire world to protect one. We belong to each other, folks. Are you willing to take a stand, and get your boots dirty to raise awareness, and help?

I know I am.