Thursday, March 17, 2011

You Were My Voice When I Couldn't Speak

According to a new report, children with special needs are 2 to 3 times more likely to be bullied.

An actress on the popular show "Glee" - Lauren Potter, who has Down Syndrome reported
In a strong but emotional voice, Potter described the bullying that she endured in school, and spoke about the boys who thought they wouldn't get in trouble because she was "just a Downs girl."

"But this Downs girl spoke up," Potter said, referring to Down syndrome. "I'm here to tell you that enough is enough. I found my voice and I'm able to speak up for other kids."
Potter "found" her voice, but there are countless other children who have no voice. Who will speak for them? 

Silence means agreement. Bystanders who do nothing when a child is bullied are a part of the problem, not the solution. None of us can afford to be Switzerland when it comes to bullying!

Personally, my siblings and I ran home from the bus stop every day in escape of the bullies who tormented my brother. He was different. They knew it and they never let him forget it. There were times we couldn't run fast enough and my sister and I stood firm and faced the boys who meant our brother harm. 

It's not just up to our own children to stand up to bullying, it's up to us as adults - parents, teachers, "bystanders." Kids watch how we respond. If we say nothing, do nothing, neither will they.

Be the voice for the silenced. What's the worst that can happen? You might save a life!