Tyler Clemente Dead at 18: Teasing and Bullying Teenagers is an Epidemic

This issue continues here: RIP Gay Victims of Abuse: Will YOU Wear Purple on October 20th?

From: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hl7z1N6LFh8

My heart goes out to everyone who suffers from teasing and bullying.  They are forms of persecution, and it’s treated far to lightly in our culture when its targeted at children and teenagers.  Teenagers are already going through a difficult transition point in their lives, a point at which they are establishing their identity.  It’s an especially vulnerable time to be subject to attacks on that identity.

Bullying on IRFE as of March 5, 2007 (the firs...

Bullying in Schools. Image thanks to Wiki.

In Tyler Clemente’s case, his privacy was violated and he was outed, unable to come to terms with his orientation and ill equipped to cope with being persecuted as a result.

This isn’t the first time this has happened.  As a culture, we need to become more tolerant and compassionate towards each other especially when we differ and most especially towards children and teenagers who are still developing.

What are your thoughts on teasing, bullying, and persecution?  What do you think we as a culture can do in light of this epidemic?  Do you think it’s an epidemic?

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4 comments on “Tyler Clemente Dead at 18: Teasing and Bullying Teenagers is an Epidemic

  1. Filhote de Lua says:

    When I was a teen, I suffered a lot with these things. Everything, from my glasses to my hair, my musical taste or the suspect about my sexuality, was enough to a group of students, most of them other girls, attack me first with words, after with mockery, and finally with physical aggression. My school years was of torture and my teachers just pretended that nothing was happening. With 16 years, a boy committed suicide. I always remember him – his black long hair, dark skin and the sadness in the almond eyes. Us, the survivors, carried a lot of scars. For years, if I was walking in the street and someone laughed, I started to cry and panicked, with the sensation of the people was laughing of me. Even today, overhear a laugh makes me shudder.

    I’m a teacher now, and I fight to break the silence about bullying, but most of the teachers still pretend that nothing is happen.

  2. Helene says:

    As a victim of bullying I believe the silence and lack of support is unforgivable.

  3. Diego Grez says:

    To stay silent is the worst thing you can do. I was a victim of bullying (I even took the picture you’re using) in 2007, and the principal of my school (Instituto Regional Federico Errázuriz) never helped me, and those bullies were never punished. That is unacceptable.

  4. Osa Taas says:

    I grew up with a loving, work-a-holic mother and a kind, philosophical father. They gave me two separate but wonderful homes. This didn’t stop the abuse.

    At 8 I wondered why the other kids didn’t like me
    I was told I was fine as I was, but no one told me why that wasn’t good enough for the other kids.

    At 10 I thought about throwing myself out of our second story window. I didn’t because I couldn’t be sure it would kill me.
    I didn’t tell anyone because I was told to ‘just ignore’ the name calling. And if I should just ignore it then it wasn’t a big deal, right?

    at 11 I stopped changing for gym class. I was scared to take my shirt off in front of the other girls.

    At 12 I was called ‘tub a lard’. They kept calling me that for the next 6 years.

    At 13 I couldn’t walk down two halls in my school. If I did I would be tripped by the students there. No one stopped doing it and no one said it was wrong.
    I didn’t tell anyone because 40 students watched and did nothing, so it must have been okay.

    At 14 I agreed to fight a girl if it would stop her from shoving me into walls, tripping me and calling me names. She didn’t show and she didn’t stop.

    At 15 I was asked if I was gay. I said I didn’t know (after all I was 16 and hadn’t even had my first kiss yet.)
    For the next 2 years I was reminded daily that this was the wrong answer.

    At 16 I started eating lunch behind the fire curtain of the drama room. I couldn’t eat in front of others, because they made fun of me the entire time.

    At 18 I had such low self esteem, I thought I was unworthy of friendship or love. I wanted to kill myself but was afraid to do it.

    Now I’m 30. The scars are still there and the bullies never figured out how terribly they hurt me. But it’s not about them. It’s about me learning to love myself; fat, big boobs, big nose and all.

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