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A Mother's Plea

I wrote this two weeks ago when I came home to find that all hell had broken loose in my family, wanting to find a way to publish it, to get people to THINK about how they treat each other and the lessons they inadvertently teach others, and decided that our situation is dire enough here that I just really need people to think NOW and can't wait for an editor to decide this works for them. I posted this to my FB yesterday and it went "viral" among my friends and their friends. I don't think that's really the definition of the term, but it's nice that people want to share this. :)

And I want you to share this through links. Please link people here to my blog instead of reposting this elsewhere, if you do. I feel that having a concentrated group of comments for kids like my son to read through and know that people CARE will do wonders for them. (And if you know me in RL, please - I beg of you - do not share anything personal like where I actually live or my child's name. We have had people stalking our house to the point where my husband called the police.)

Thank you. It's a little long, but I mean every word of it. (And if you've ever called someone the names I've referred to in this article, or hurt someone, I want you to look at my icon. That's my son. That precious little thing has had all of this ugliness thrown at him.)

Warning: Frank talk of homophobia, suicide attempts, and bullying.

Tolerance doesn't mean what you think it means.Collapse )


( 135 comments — Leave a comment )
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Nov. 6th, 2012 08:20 pm (UTC)
It breaks my heart that anyone has to go through this, and I know you hurt as much as he does. Sending support to your sweet, brave son and his awesome mama.
Nov. 6th, 2012 08:23 pm (UTC)
You don't now me, and its rude for me to say I know you after just reading this post but I want you to know you do as someone else said, you do make me glad to be human. You make me proud to be human. You are the definition of beauty.
Nov. 6th, 2012 08:37 pm (UTC)
*hugs hugs hugs*

So sorry to hear that this happened to your son. I just can't fathom WHY these things are allowed to keep happening in schools. So awful!

The punks who did this should face charges, and the faculty that turned a blind eye should be fired.

Nov. 6th, 2012 09:51 pm (UTC)
I don't personally know you or your family, but I wish to express how sad it makes me to hear how awfully people are treating your son, who seems to be a compassionate, smart and wonderful young man. I'm very happy that he has the support of his family and friends and that you all are trying so hard to make things better for him. To make things 'normal', for lack of a better expression. And I hope that you all get through these hardships and that he will find happiness soon.

Also, I am an atheist just like you and would like to wholeheartedly agree with you on what you wrote about how religious people can sometimes be overbearing with their beliefs and not accepting of the diversities around them. I am lucky, though, as I grew up in a country where 80% of the population is non-religious and there were never really issues for me on that front. I have come to understand that it is very different in the US where people are more religious than not. I wish you patience and ample amounts of delicious red wine to help you cope with people's ignorance day in and day out. I would recommend moving to a more accepting area or moving your son to a different school, if either of those options is a possibility for your family.

Sending you all much love in these difficult times and I hope your son will find the acceptance and happiness he deserves.
And if you ever need someone to vent to or talk to, I would definitely lend an ear to listen.

Take care!
Nov. 6th, 2012 11:01 pm (UTC)
I'm here via spikesjojo and even if we don't know each other and my English is really bad I want you to know that I feel indignant at what's happening to your child.

I'm one of those people who fall into the category of "normal," non-practicing Catholic, and I want your child to know that the vast majority of people think differently from those little bastards.
I do not understand how young people who have lived their entire lives in a world with so many possibilities and so much information, can be so closed-minded and have so many prejudices.
I can not imagine what goes through their head when they act that way so cruel to a classmate.

Through this space, I want to join all the others and express my admiration for your courage your strength and support so great that you're giving your child.
I hope and wish he will not lose the illusion and hope in the human condition and remains the honest and sensitive kid that you have described.

Warm greetings from a corner of Spain.
Nov. 6th, 2012 11:21 pm (UTC)
I wish you could file criminal charges against those assholes. Assault is assault. Bullying damages everyone, and those kids assaulting other kids now are not going to magically get better without consequences.

I've never met your son, and I'm sure you've already said to him anything I could think of to say, but I'm on his side.

If there's anything I can do to actually help from states away, please let me know.
Nov. 6th, 2012 11:30 pm (UTC)
Here via Glee fandom. I don't know you beyond your writing, and I'm English, not American. I am a Mum and an atheist.

I'm so sorry this has happened to your son. I'm not praying for him and your family but I am wishing him a speedy physical recovery. I hope and expect that he will be much happier in the future. That might sound cold but I want to write in a very straightforward way that people in other countries are reading what has happened and rooting for you.
Nov. 6th, 2012 11:44 pm (UTC)
::hugs:: and ::support:: from one mom of an autistic child to another. Thanks for posting this, and I hope you can see some justice for your son.

Edited at 2012-11-06 11:46 pm (UTC)
Nov. 7th, 2012 12:35 am (UTC)
I wish nothing but the best for you, your family and especially for your son. School can be so difficult, no matter what the circumstances, but what he's having to deal with is horrifying. You're doing absolutely everything you can, and I believe he is very lucky to have such a strong support system at home. Hopefully something can be done to make things better at school. I will say, I don't believe there is anything Christian in the behavior of those terrorizing your son. It truly breaks my heart that children can't be safe in school. That's not the way it's supposed to be. You and yours are in my thoughts.
Nov. 7th, 2012 01:07 am (UTC)
I'm here from kita0610's link. This broke my heart, and I'm so glad your son has you and and the rest of your family as a support system. I saw an earlier comment from you, and I'm glad (forgive me if I've misunderstood) that you are not letting him go back there. I've learned that people like those bullying your son won't change, and the school will continue to turn a blind eye. I hope, with all my heart, that he feels better, doesn't lose hope, and has happiness come his way.
Nov. 7th, 2012 08:34 am (UTC)
You always remind me that love and understanding will take us father than hate. I am sorry your family has to go through this.
For your son and any other young person who is bullied who is struggling to make it from one day to the next
At the risk of sounding cliche it gets better. It gets better because high school ends and you get to go out into the world and find that there are other people like you and that if you lean on each other you are stronger than hate. It gets better because find place where you can just be.. I remember what it was like to step out into the world and be myself, and I wish I could bottle the peace, and happiness that is my life today and give it to you now, but you have to trust me when you are able to leave behind people who only know hate, it gets so much more than better.
Nov. 7th, 2012 01:49 pm (UTC)
As an ally: Thank you for being such a great mother and wonderful human being. Thank you for pointing out that someone's preferred gender does not make them "scary" or "weird" or "bad". And that no one is asking for special treatment. All we're asking for is equal treatment.

As an atheist: Thank you for putting things so concisely. I don't want anyone else to stop believing but I want to be allowed not to.

And as someone who never bullied or was bullied but who also never stood up to them on someone else's behalf: I'm sorry. I'm making amends for that in my current life. And I promise you, with all my heart that if I were to see anything like that happening to anyone I would step up and stop it.

Please tell your son to be strong. He is not "bad" or "weird" or "wrong" he is beautiful and strong and perfect and regardless of how bad things are (and god, I can only imagine) he will come out of this as an inspiration to young kids everywhere. This is a war we win by fighting. By standing up and saying "Yes, I am different. Yes, that is okay."

I'll leave you with something Louis C.K. said about marriage equality that pretty well sums it up for me:
"It doesn't have ANY effect on your life. What do you care?! People try to talk about it like it's a social issue. Like when you see someone stand up on a talk show and say 'How am I supposed to explain to my child that two men are getting married?'... I dunno, it's your shitty kid, you fuckin' tell 'em. Why is that anyone else's problem? Two guys are in LOVE but they can't get married because YOU don't want to talk to your ugly child for fuckin' five minutes?"
Nov. 8th, 2012 03:17 am (UTC)
I admire your fire and spirit so much! Never forget that your son has a piece of that in him too, from you. I'm sure you've seen him overcome so much. He sounds remarkable. It breaks my heart to read the torture he's put through. My son is only 18 months old and my dearest treasure. If he were in this situation I think I would have bundled him up and run away a long time ago. You, and he, are so brave. By not running, not abandoning your home, you have become part of the diversity that must exist in bigoted backwards communities (sorry, I really hate Texas...no offense!) for those communities to have any hope of change. I hope the results of the election give you a glimmer of hope for the tolerance and future of our country!
Nov. 8th, 2012 01:35 pm (UTC)
I am sorry I missed this when you posted it!

You know I stand with you and your family, and you know how my hearts hurts for you. But I'm saying it again anyway, because this is the sort of thing where you do that. I am so sorry that this is the reality you and your family have to face, and as a parent...Stoney, imagining it just crushes me. Hang in there. Sending lots of love and hope your way, and I hope our collective love and hope are something of a help. <3
Teri Weber
Nov. 8th, 2012 05:59 pm (UTC)
YES. YES. So well said!

I just want to add a note of support to your list of comments. Your son sounds like such a wonderful boy. I've been reading your LJ (oh dear, I guess for years at this point) and every single mention of him reinforces what a good soul he is. It breaks my heart that he is treated this way. He deserves love and tolerance and equality and to feel he belongs. He deserves absolute strangers standing up for him and correcting the bullies. He deserves other adults setting a tolerant standard and not accepting intolerance in others even if the object of their thoughtlessness isn't within hearing range.

Much love to your son, you & your family from the West Coast!
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( 135 comments — Leave a comment )


Are You Actually

Reading this? I'm just curious. Because that's really detail-oriented of you. Feel free to stop reading. But you can see that there's more here, so are you going to keep reading? Really? That's pretty dedicated. I'm impressed. No, really. I'm not being sarcastic, why do you get like that? See, this is the problem I have with your mother - yes. YES. I'm going there. It's time we put all of our cards on the table.

I love you, why are you doing this? After all we've been through? You don't have to be like this. You know, still reading. You could be baking a pie. And then sharing it with me.

Time Wot It Is

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