Immediately, one of her friends posted a video on youtube both as a tribute to her fallen friend and as a social message that's been resonating around the globe for the past few months: STOP BULLYING!!! It's heartwarming to know that this was done by our future, the ones who will be leading our country, and world!, soon enough. I'm beginning to think that THEY get it better than a lot of our adults do, and that's a frightening reality. I strongly encourage you to not just watch this video, but share it as well. The message is powerful as it is coming from a close friend of someone who has just left this world.
YOU can prevent bullying. Don't sit around and watch it happen. TAKE ACTION!!!The message can't be any clearer.
To be sure, much is being done right now. I can attest to the fact that there are people all around the globe doing huge and wonderful things as means to an end, with that "end" being the eradication of bullying and bullycide. However, until we've actually seen the end of it, much more still needs to be done. We need more people doing their part to bring this to an end. We need everyone working in concert, with one crystal-clear goal: TO END BULLYCIDES...once and for all. We need to continue to reach out, but that's not enough, either. We also need to keep the pressure on every school district, and every politician, to implement stronger anti-bullying measures AND enforce them. Until this ends, we need to be vigilant.
In the meantime, we need to know, immediately!, where to go to get the resources needed if we're "in the moment" or if we suspect that bullying is taking place. As Kim Towne said TAKE ACTION!!!
Here's a list of resources to keep handy:
STOP Teenage Suicide
WHOF's Suicide Support
ABC: Anti-Bullying Coalition
Suicide Prevention Lifeline
How To Identify and Deal With Bullying (pdf)
To the family and friends of Payton Ruth Anne Richardson, my heart goes out to you. I wish you peace and comfort in what is sure to be the most heartwrenching time of your lives. May you now be at peace, Payton.