So it's my first year in high school, and low and behold, I had my first encounter with... The mean girl clique. I was recently attacked by one of my own classmates, who pointed out in vivid detail what they thought were my flaws. It took me up until that point to realize that bullying is a nationwide issue. According to statistics from Family First Aid, around 30 percent of teenagers in the U.S. have been involved in bullying, either as the bully or the victim. Emotional and verbal abuse is more common amongst teenage girls than boys. Tactics have recently become much more discrete, with methods such as cyber-bullying and anonymous notes.
Effects of teenage bullying include physical trauma, as well as many other psychological and mental effects, which may lead to depression and even suicidal thoughts and actions. Recently in the news, a 14-year-old boy named Jamey Rodemeyer received national attention on YouTube after uploading a shocking video about his encounters with teenage bullying, which lead him to commit suicide. Enough is enough. Collectively we need to stop this madness, so here an open letter to all the mean girl cliques out there.
Dear Mean Girls,
Who are you? You know who you are. You're the girls who walk down the hallway every day eyeballing everyone else with your insecurities. Is she prettier than me? Fatter than me? Getting better grades then me?
You like to belittle others so you can feel better, so you can enjoy your five minutes of fame. Your popularity is based on designer labels and the backs of others you put down. You make high school a place of drama, instead of a place of learning.
Who are we? We are the other ones. Sometimes we are insecure, sometimes we don't have designer clothes, sometimes we may be less than cool or even smart by your standards, but the difference is that each morning we leave comfortable in the original designer labels of our own skin. We want to click with the world. You see people like me make people like you feel threatened. We don't need to spread nasty rumors anonymously through social media. We came to school to learn, not just in books, but from our peers. We came to learn that no matter what our differences are, we have more in common. We all share a future -- one that holds many challenges and obstacles. There may be a time where you need us to be a friend in a world that is sometimes mean.
Being mean doesn't change anything about our own lives. It doesn't matter. What does matter is love and acceptance -- two things you should find within yourselves so you can find it in others. We can help you. You see success is not measured by being mean, it's measured by doing the things you love. I love roller-skating. You do too, that's great! Lets go sometime.
So please let's eliminate all the mean girl cliques in 2012 and beyond and have peace on earth (or at least in high school).