Clearly, You’re Disillusioned

Negative thought patterns are a very common product of ADHD. I’m sure many psychologists could come here and diagnose me as schizophrenic, or with a personality disorder, or as anything else, however it’s just ADHD with big old slash of depression/anxiety down the middle.

I’m paranoid. I am neurotic. And I have absolutely no reason to feel such a way. Yet, it still lurks there, with everyone I meet, everyone I become friends with…

“You’re a failure, you’re annoying, they only like you out of pity.”

Great, thanks random negative self-talk. It’d be nice to think someone actually likes me for me. But why would I think that?

Why do I have this failure to be positive and…normal? Don’t people with ADHD usually have great social skills?

First off, no. Yes, people with ADHD are sociable creatures (typically, some are very shy and introverted as well! Not all ADHD is created equally. For this post, I will most likely be focusing on the ADHD which is most similar to my ADHD) and typically people with ADHD have the gift of gab-and the gift of humor. And the not-so-great gift of being overwhelming and annoying.

And right there I have revealed why people with ADHD often find it to be a struggle. We are constantly being accepted into situations, welcomed, and then suddenly find ourselves denied or ignored without any reason. It’s typically because we committed another social faux pas or we just were too much for the person. And we’re smart enough to notice this happening.

As a kid though…we’re not going to know the why. And so we develop a bit of negative self talk to explain the why…and this becomes so deeply rooted into our thoughts, it carries with us throughout our life. Imagine having ADHD along with this kind of thought pattern. It’s a lonely life, one where we constantly question every single person’s intentions in the back of our mind. We are waiting for the push away from every person, because that’s what we had as a child.

Cognitive Behavior Therapy can help with this. So can having people who are understanding and forgiving. I think the best way to learn is have people simply tell you, but for you to be able to understand people aren’t always right. Some people are just so caught up within their own problems, they are just going to take it out on you.

A Shout Out

This is a shout out to the people who didn’t get diagnosed with ADD/ADHD until they were adults.

This is a shout out to the adults who spent their entire life being told they were lazy year after year, because they didn’t do well in school and a shout out to the adults who were called stupid so often they began to truly believe, and even worse, accept they were dumb.

This is a shout out to the adults whose parents refused to acknowledge ADHD was real, and refused to give them the medication or treatment they desperately needed and a shout out to the adults who were told repeatedly it was the parents’ fault, or their diet, or even lack of exercise, and was not a condition.

This is a shout out to the adults who thought they were going insane as they tried to piece together their life, tried to figure out what was wrong and a shout out for the adults who were misdiagnosed as Bipolar, Borderline, or other disorder which they didn’t have.

This is a shout out for the adults who felt like they never quite fit in, or were looking in from the outside.

This is a shout out for the adults who were told if they just tried harder, if they just focused, if they just worked, it would all be okay.

This is a shout out for the adults who developed anxiety, depression, or other similar disorders because of their ADHD.

This is a shout out to the adults who believe they were and still are a failure because that’s all they have been told.

This is a shout out to the adults who tried to cope not with medication, but with drugs…and find themselves in jail or unable to get the medication they need to succeed.

This is a shout out to the adults who have been fighting with their doctors, with therapists, with the education institutions for the treatment they need.

This is a shout out for the adults who gritted their teeth, did the impossible and completed school without the aids needed…and a shout out for the adults that gritted their teeth, did the impossible, and found it wasn’t enough to complete their dreams.

This is a shout out to the adults who live with the constant wonder, the anger, the fear of what their life is and what it could have been if it had been found earlier, if it had been easier, what their life could had been.

Matt Walsh, I Have Nothing Nice to Say to You

A dear friend of mine just posted a link to Matt Walsh’s blog…approving what he had written…my response to him and to Matt Walsh’s blog post.

Remind me not to take my ADHD medication the next time we hang out. I have already seen this blog and I am EXTREMELY upset by it.

ADHD is something which effects my entire life. It’s not just a issue of distraction, it’s an impairment of the executive functioning of the brain which covers emotional reactions, self control, time management, working memory. It’s something which I will NEVER outgrow and which medicine can only help in a minuscule amount. I will always be hyper, I constantly have to fight and struggle to be the best I can be, which doesn’t usually amount to anything. I struggle to understand what social norm I failed to adhere to in a daily matter. I have lost things which are so important to me because of my ADHD, things which I tried my hardest at and just was not able too. I am constantly one step behind my peers because I can’t function like a “normal” person no matter how hard I try. It comes with sensory processing issues, emotional issues, social impairments (which are completely different from the social difficulties caused by ASD), sleeping impairments, self esteem deficiencies, memory problems, eating problems (I wish I still had that), low impulse control, emotional regulation control (I literally can’t control when I start crying. All I want to do is stop, but I can’t)…it even impacts my balance and coordination as I have a smaller cerebellum than most!

It’s the most frustrating thing. I try, you know how hard I try. Every single social interaction is a battle for me because of my ADHD. Learning is extremely difficult for me. It’s hard when i am in a class trying to focus and I get distracted by the littlest stimuli and my mouth moves before I am able to control it. Think of it like Tourettes in a manner. Both impact the basal ganglia. I have been battling my lack of self control MY ENTIRE life, and I have come a long way, but I still haven’t gotten far enough. And honestly, at 24 years of age, I don’t see how much more self control I can get. My brain just doesn’t allow it. I will keep working at it though, just like I work at everything. I don’t think I know anything else.

Growing up was extremely difficult for me. It wasn’t my parents fault. They were and are absolutely amazing. It wasn’t that I didn’t care, or I didn’t want, it was I couldn’t control anything. That’s the different between neurotypical people and neurodiverse people. A neurotypical child will eventually be able to calm down. A neurodiverse child literally can’t stop. It was a nonstop battle for my family and for me growing up. It’s a nonstop battle for me today, it’s going to be a nonstop battle for the rest of my life as I will NEVER be good enough. I will ALWAYS be ADHD.

In the article, he mentions the DSM-V talking about the inability to focus on tasks unless they are of interest. The DSM-V is not referring to what he is mentioning, it is referring to hyperfocusing. Think of Asperger’s with the narrow-minded interests. It’s the same thing in a way. I perseverate on certain topics and I am able to focus on them. NOTHING else gets done though. I will not eat when I am hyperfocusing, I will not pay attention to time…I am literally lost within this one topic. And do NOT try to change my focus when I am hyperfocused because I know if I get distracted, I won’t be able to complete the task at hand. It’s happened so, so, so many times.

It is VERY overdiagnosed, and I do agree medication is given out like candy. I would do ANYTHING to change how overdiagnosed it is as it impacts me negatively. I would do ANYTHING for people to understand just how complicated ADHD is. I would love for people to not use ADHD as an excuse (which I have been guilty of). I would have LOVED to receive ADHD treatment which was more on focus for my needs.

They don’t really have a method for treating impairments of social skills in ADHD. I need a treatment for that. They gave me the social skill treatment they use for ASD, and treated me as if I had ASD. I don’t. I do have one of the most severe cases of ADHD. If you want, I will track down my old MRI in which you can see some of the areas in my brain which are impacted. I can also track down the hundreds of files which have diagnosed me with a ton of other disorders…then upon further investigation, have been proven to not be correct. The ADHD is the ONLY diagnosis which makes sense for ALL of my quirks. Guess what? There’s a bunch of people who are just like me as well…and they all try their hardest to be normal.

But they won’t be able too. Because of my ADHD, I am less likely to hold down a job, keep friends, finish school (which, in terms of intelligence as this often comes up, I have a Master’s degree. I am lucky as I do not have many of the academic deficiencies as most with ADHD do. I also can provide my IQ test results if anyone would like to know…I digress, back to topic). Substance abuse, promiscuity, low self esteem, trouble with the law, gambling addiction, and suicide are EXTREMELY common with those with ADHD. I got lucky there as well, I know many people who didn’t. Worse part? It’s all because of a lack of impulse control, a deficit of executive functioning. It is something which I stay far away from and constantly monitor. I won’t learn from others mistakes, or I will seldom learn. I have to learn firsthand to understand something.

Oh, and I’m not entirely convinced you can outgrow ADHD either. It’s a lifelong disorder. I will always be super hyper first thing in the morning, running around until I take my medication and my brain actually slows down enough for me to be somewhat normal.

I will also find the many (more so than what dear Matt Walsh has provided you with) articles which PROVE ADHD is a real existence. I highly recommend looking looking at Dr. Russell Barkley. He has YouTube videos which explain exactly what ADHD is. On a side note, I was part of his studies back in the late 90’s…so perhaps a bias is noted here. I will be more than willing to find the article after article after article by psychologists, doctors, neuroscientists, parents, teachers, people with ADHD, etc, etc. and link them all up here for you.

I really hope you change your opinion on the matter. It’s not a disorder which everyone has. Would you say everyone has ASD, or depression, or OCD? I don’t believe you would sir. However, they are very similar to ADHD in which there isn’t a medical test which can definitely proven the existence. I am more than willing to talk, show articles, introduce you to doctors/scientists/whomever, I will even go off my medicine to show you ADHD is a disorder, and a life-changing disorder. It is not the norm, it isn’t something doctors made up in order to make money. Need proof that it isn’t? Feel free to switch some of my Adderalls up in a double-blind test. Not all of my ADHD behaviors may come out (as I have a build up of Adderall) but a lot will. ADHD is a real condition. And it’s a LOT more complicated than what Mr. Walsh has shown here.

Ramblings About ADHD

ADHD has been romanticized in the past few years. It has become so prevalent  as a buzzword in school, people often forget ADHD is a disability which effects a child (or adult) not only in the classroom but also during recess, on the bus, and at home. ADHD doesn’t go away. It’s there, the little childish figure of a person clinging onto your shoulder.

Some people may have ADHD which isn’t severe, and some outgrow their ADHD. I wish there was a way to put those people into a different category of ADHD so they can still receive the support they need but it doesn’t put me in the situations of, “Well, Bob’s ADHD and he can do X and Y without problems.”

I’m sure I’m coming off as whiny and needy, or at the very least, I will. When I ask for accommodations, I’m not asking for the ability to make my own schedule, or the right to never be fired, even when I totally deserve it. I’m asking for support. I’m asking for understanding. I’m asking for people to change their views on what it is like to live with ADHD and to understand the why I do what I do. I want people to know I work my butt off to be the best person I  can be and it hurts so much when I am told I am not good enough.

It hurts when I am told to change myself without being given firm, achievable guidelines. It hurts more than anyone could understand. It’s a pain I have been carrying since I was four, never being able to please anyone even though I try my hardest.

“Just be normal.”

I can’t. The little figure of ADHD sits on my shoulder and prevents that from ever occurring. I can’t be socially normal, I never was taught in a manner which actually worked. When I was taught social skills, I was thrown into a class with a bunch of wonderful children…who had autism. The program worked well for them, it failed for me because I didn’t have the same areas of social issues.

My parents sent me to a month long summer camp, thinking it would have a social skills program for me. It was a camp for children like me, children with ADHD. It ended up being a summer school with not one single program for developing social skills. My poor mom apologized for me. I wasn’t like the other kids with ADHD. I did extremely well with school. I just didn’t understand social parameters.

A lot of people wonder why I do an anonymous blog. I have an anonymous Facebook as well where I am very active in a group which helps support those with ADHD. It’s wonderful. I get asked all the time about my anonymous figure. It’s because of my parents, the ones I don’t live with but I still will always carry the guilt of knowing my ADHD continued to impact me into adulthood, causing me to lose jobs over the same things they have been telling me not do my entire life. I failed them, and I failed myself.

“Act your age. Think before you speak.”

HOW? I have tried everything to learn how to think before speaking. I really do try. It just happens…all…the…time. The words just fly out of my mouth, sometimes I realize they aren’t appropriate, sometimes I am completely oblivious to how horrible and taboo what I just did or said was. Any sort of social situation is an anxiety throbbing experience. I sit there after every single conversation, every single moment, and I worry I did something wrong. This worry lasts for days and months. It’s sometimes relieving when I find out I messed up because I find out what I did wrong. Sometimes it’s horrible because I don’t know where I went wrong. I will think about it, eat myself alive over it.

The only conclusion I can come up with is, even though I think I’m an okay person, I am clearly not. I am just a burden on the system, a failure. My ideas, dreams, wishes, and my hard work are wrong, I didn’t help anyone. It gets to a point were I wonder if I’d be better off dead.

“You only think about yourself.”

Great, so on topic of this whole self esteem issue, I now am paranoid I am a narcissistic. Looking back, I don’t get how I was being self-centered…if I was facing this problem, others may have been as well. Other people may not want to speak up or deal with the conflict. I will.

“Did you even listen to me?”

I did, I really did. Sometimes my brain doesn’t process things as quickly as it should. It feels like a fuzz forms in my brain. I try to repeat back to myself what you just said and it is muffled. I can’t help it. And it is so embarrassing.

“For someone so smart, why are you so bad with interpersonal skills?”

I wish I knew…I just want to know where I am going wrong with my interpersonal skills.

“Chill.”

I didn’t even realize I was wired, or not chilled. Now I am wired because I’m afraid you are upset with me…thanks.

“What’s the point of trying to help you? You just get agitated and you don’t listen.”

Alright, maybe it’s me. I don’t think it is though. Maybe it’s you. Please understand I have been trying my entire life, and I need support. I need help with working on things, one step at a time. It’s embarrassing because I’m smart. I don’t feel disabled, I’m not disabled, I just need a bit of help with things. A little support and understanding goes a long way.

15 Things I Want You to Know About ADHD

1. Not every person born with ADHD is the same. It’s a condition of the brain which means there are going to to be similar symptoms, but also big differences. Think of it this way. Not everyone gets sick with a cold in the same exact way, even though it might be the same cold virus which makes them sick. So just because your husband has ADHD doesn’t mean you know how I learn, think, or act. And just because you read this list, doesn’t mean you know every person with ADHD and everything that ADHD does.

2. ADHD doesn’t stop in the classroom for most people. It’s a lifelong condition for a lot of people, and it changes throughout life. It’s something which impacts every part of my life. I may have trouble holding up conversations. I may have trouble getting to places on time. I may have trouble with tasks which are incredibly simple. I may not be able to watch a movie fully.

3. I outgrew my hyperactivity and I am lucky I did. Hyperactivity is a huge part of ADHD, but it isn’t mandatory for everyone to be that way. Just because I don’t have one of the symptoms of ADHD doesn’t mean I am not ADHD. Trust me, I’ve been tested and tested again. I am definitely ADHD. There are different kinds of ADHD though. Some people might be hyper, some people just simply can’t focus, and some people have a combination of both. See 1 if you have any more questions.

4. Sometimes my mouth moves before my brain fully knows what it’s going to say. I have been working on this my whole life, and I really struggle with it.  It is so important to look at the WHY I am saying something rather than the what I am saying. I usually have very good intentions, I just didn’t say it exactly how I wanted too.

5. I’m not stupid. I can’t say this enough. I am not stupid at all. Chances are, I am smarter than you. However, sometimes things don’t click immediately for me, or I miss key points in a conversation and I want clarification or to double check. Somethings I might have to review over again just to understand.

6. Remember Dory from Finding Nemo? I feel like her a lot. My Short Term Memory isn’t always the best. If you’re giving me a task, it’s best to break it down and to give me a list so I can see what I have to do. This will keep me from becoming overwhelmed. Oh, and it’s just my Short Term Memory really. I can remember other things perfectly, including conversations from years ago.

7. Sometimes I am going to be random when having a conversation. To me, it’s not random though, it makes perfect sense. While you are talking, I either am engaged in the conversation (rarely), trying to catch up with what I missed (usually), or making connections to what you are saying (all the time). For example, if we are talking about ADHD, and I bring up how I was bitten by a squirrel when I was 8, it actually makes sense to me. I am thinking about ADHD which then makes me think about the meme about ADHD and squirrels, and then about squirrels and previous experiences I had with them and how it’s funny. This is done in seconds. I’m not trying to change the conversation, I’m just trying to contribute.

8. I can be moody. It’s actually a part of ADHD. My brain doesn’t see it as moody though, it sees it as completely normal. I also don’t always realize I am being moody. Don’t be afraid to say something to me if you see this. I don’t mean to be that way.

9. I can be lazy, just like you. But most of the time I’m trying my hardest. If something is difficult for me, please try to help me. Sometimes it’s just something as silly as making a cue card for me to follow along. If I’m hesitant to start something, it’s usually not because I am being lazy, but rather I don’t know where to start, or I’m afraid I won’t do it correctly. Though not everyone may agree, I will take the help if it is simply offered.

10. I’m not good with time management. I really try, but it is hard to be at one place at a certain time. My brain doesn’t process time well at all. I can’t tell if a minute has passed or an hour. Personally, I thrive with schedules and timers. Some people can’t function if they are in a routine.

11. Please don’t tell me what causes my ADHD, or that it doesn’t exist. Some people may use their ADHD as an excuse, but I don’t. Also, ADHD does exist, and it does impact my life. I have tried the diets, I have changed my entire life around, I have tried every remedy in the book. Some helped, but only minutely. What does help are stimulants (at least for me). They calm me down, put the world to a speed which just makes sense. I don’t question it, but I know there is a difference when I take my medicine. This isn’t always the case from person to person though.

12. I can focus on video games and sit at the computer all day, but a book can take three weeks for me to read. Why? Some things just grab my brain. Other things don’t and I have to really try to focus. And it can be painful.

13. I’ve tried to be organized. I try my hardest at what I do. Sometimes my brain just forgets to organize or to completely finish something because I get distracted and completely forget what I am doing. And when I try to tell my brain to focus, it gets even more difficult for me to sit and finish what I am doing.

14. Sometimes simple tasks can be very overwhelming to me. There are times where I get anxious because I am overloaded by all the information which I am perceiving. Being at the supermarket when it is crowded is hard for me. Trying to focus in on one thing when people are having conversations around me is impossible. I just hear white noise.

15. I’m very impulsive. I have been working on my impulsivity my entire life. I have tried my hardest to change this, and it has gotten much better with time, but I still struggle with it. Unless you are going to offer me advice that I can actually apply, please don’t. I try to think before I do. Sometimes it doesn’t work that way. The whole think before you act advice does not work.

ADHD isn’t going to be the same in each person. Just because you met one person with ADHD doesn’t mean you know what it does or how it feels. Some people might have ADHD and think this list is not true at all. Others may be upset I didn’t put things which affect them. ADHD is more severe in some people than it is in others. I personally struggle socially. Some people don’t. I don’t have as much trouble with time management. Most people with ADHD do. Some people don’t have have any sensory issues. I do. When working with someone with ADHD, whether it be an employee, a co-worker, a student, or a friend, be understanding of their needs. Be firm and direct when giving direction. Be supportive and forgiving. And most importantly of all, get to know the people for who they are, don’t just label them as ADHD.

A Little, Blue Pill

What is ADHD to me?

ADHD is a blessing yet also a curse. It has good and bad. And ADHD is different for everyone. I can only allude to some of the traits, I can’t explain what it is for someone who isn’t like me. ADHD. I remember when I was first told I had this when I was eight. My parents sat me down, explaining I wasn’t like the other kids, but I wasn’t very different from the other kids either. I felt alienated and confused. Sally had ADHD, she was liked by the classmates, they didn’t pick on her. Why was I getting beaten up daily? What was so different from me? ADHD isn’t the same in every child or adult. I get upset with one of my best friends who also has ADHD because she is so different from me…at first I thought she was making it all up. She wasn’t. She is definitely ADHD.

So what is ADHD to me?

It’s a small, blue pill. It’s a small blue pill with so many senses, so many flavors…what makes me different.

It’s the pill I had to swallow before lunch which really alienated me from my peers. I was sick. I was different.

But I am me.

I am the girl who puked at her first college party because of the smell of weed. I am the girl who should have been a drug dog because of how strong I can smell it.

I am the girl who couldn’t go into a grocery store because the shelves were an overload, the people darting was just too much.

I am the girl who was so smart, creepy smart, scary smart, yet wasn’t able to control what flew out of her mouth.

I am the girl who was so smart yet didn’t get why people thought she was strange.

I am the girl…the fighter, the angry one…

The girl you know is a sweetie yet…she did that?

ADHD makes my mouth move without any control from my brain. It makes me worry until I am sick. It makes me moody, and quick to react. ADHD makes it so I can sit on a couch all day without noticing time, yet if I am bored, time will stop. ADHD makes it so I can focus on one thing and finish it perfectly, yet…if I can’t do it perfectly, I will just give up. ADHD makes it so something which takes too long becomes rushed or I just don’t finish. But with that little, blue pill. It sometimes gets easier, to the point where you can feel normal…then you remember you aren’t.

Foolish mistakes. Misunderstood intentions. Feeling dumb. Feeling like a failure. Feeling like the world would be better without you.

Then it happens. Something just clicks and it all becomes easy, it all makes sense. The world screams forward, running, you are flying, you are so successful…then something cracks in you, and you sabotage yourself. You fall, crying, failing, misery. And you’re back to feeling…dumb. Alone. Failure. With just you and your little, blue pill.

ADHD is a little, blue pill.

“Just take this Sadie, so you can focus and sit still.”

It hurts though. How does it physically hurt to sit still? The world isn’t making sense, I can’t understand…I can’t learn. I need movement. I need to bounce. I need to pick. I need…

A little, blue pill.

“Look how tiny Sadie is!”

My growth was stunted because of my ADHD. I don’t eat because of my ADHD. I don’t sleep. I don’t think.

One more little, blue pill. One more, for the rest of your life.

Where Did I Leave My Passion?

I’m someone who is very passionate. I get into what I want to do and I go hardcore into it.

But lately…I’ve been going through the whole issue of self-identity and trying to figure out what I want to do with my life. I’ve been questioning myself and what I would actually be good at. I thought I would be a teacher. Turns out, teaching has a lot of politics. I’m not able to keep my mouth shut when I feel something is unjust (whether this is something I perceive or is actually there). Plus, I really can’t get behind being told what to teach. It’s as simple as that, I want to teach what I want to teach, not what the “man” wants me to teach.

So I decided to combine two of my passions…teaching and psychology. I went into the field of ABA used for treating autism. GREAT!

But I have the naysayers there as well. People telling me I can’t work in the field because I talk too much, because I don’t know what it’s like to have autism as I have never been a parent…people telling me I can’t because I have a disability (and no, it’s not a matter of the ADA. It’s a matter of myself learning how to handle my ADHD).

I’m clearly for “fighting the man.” I’m going to defy what others say to me just to defy. Please go ahead and call me ODD.

At the end of the day, I have to think of what is best for the children to whom my services are benefiting…or not. That’s where the passion is, that’s where I work to better the lives of others. In this case, I have to better my life as well though. I can’t change some parts of myself though. I don’t want to, I don’t want to lose those emotions!

I don’t want to lose that PART of my morals. So what do I do? Do I just change my path, find a career of which I am not truly happy as I am not helping the lives of others, but I still am able to work in my passions? Do I change who I am, change how I love helping others?

I don’t. I keep in the field, I hope that someone will accept my flaws and help me to make those flaws my strongest areas. I hope I am doing the right thing for the children I serve. And I work on.

But how is this a matter of a lost passion? How am I to say I am wondering where I left my passion? Well, it is simply because I don’t know if I’m in the right field, and I don’t know if this is what I should be doing with my life. I don’t know if this passion is really a passion, or just a trend, a phase. And that right there makes me question who I am and what the hell am I doing with my sad, sad life.

Why should I follow my passion when I could do something I may actually have a nature calling for? And what is my nature calling?

Who am I?

Why 90’s Kids Were Shafted When It Came to Preventing Bullying

Imagine this. A 6 year old trying to kill herself by a razor she found on the ground. Why is this happening? Because the 6 year old feels so alone. Now imagine a bystander having enough sense to grab a teacher before the 8 year old does any damage. Imagine the teacher grabbing the razor. Imagine the teacher telling the principal for the principal to just wave it away, not wanting a lawsuit. Imagine the 6 year old feeling alone for years to come.

Imagine this was preventable.

Imagine an 8 year old playing with snow on the basketball court. Imagine some kids making balls of ice and throwing them at the girl, while others looked on in horror. Imagine the teachers finally walking over after socializing under the hood of the warm school building. Imagine their faces when they see the blood. Imagine the 8 year old in the hospital, a broken scapula and one mother ready for a lawsuit.

Imagine this was preventable.

Imagine being bullied every day. Imagine feeling like you will never be anything. Imagine the depression, daily gray. Imagine the years of nightmares. Imagine the social inadequacity you will feel for the rest of your life.

Imagine this was preventable.

Imagine the gapping hole you feel in your heart when your boyfriend…girlfriend…best friend…sister…brother tell you this happened to them.

Imagine Columbine was preventable.

Imagine if bullying was prevented before Columbine.

As per stopbullying.gov, 12 out of the 15 school shootings which occurred in the 90’s was due to bullying. Bullying was the buzzword for around 15 years after Columbine, but recently it’s been AUTISM*, ADHD, and TERRORISTS. Yes, bullying gets brought up still. It is NOT where it should be. However, it’s not where it once was.

Why did bullying become such an issue in the 1990’s? Why was I bullied? Why is it so common for people I know to be victims of bullying?

Bullying has been around for ages. And please don’t tell me that it’s because my generation couldn’t handle the bullying…other generations suffered the same. School shootings have been happening for years (http://www.k12academics.com/school-shootings/history-school-shootings-united-states#.VLSCiSvF-So) though the first ones to be offically recognized due to bullying were in the 1970’s. It just so happened my generation had the deadliest school shooting, which was when bullying became a major focus for the nation.

But students have committed bullycide before. I remember learning about cases from the 1960’s. It took a massacure to prevent bullying in schools? Why wasn’t this prevented beforehand? Prevention is key, it’s how we can make sure these situations don’t occur…ever. Yes, mistakes are going to be made, but if the bullying had been prevented…and it wasn’t uncommon to be bullied in the 90’s.

Why am I saying kids in the 90’s got shafted? Well, they got tortured by bullies for the first half of their lives, then got to watch the anti-bullying movement first try to rise up and fail…and then again, and again. I can say my recent exposures to the public and private school system have shown that bullying is far less common than it once was. It still happens however.

It shouldn’t take people dying for an issue to gain awareness. It shouldn’t take years of students being tortured. Tolerance needs to be created and acceptance needs to be taught…STILL! Even if someone has different views than you, they need to be accepted for what they believe. People shouldn’t have to feel like they have to change who they are to fit into society’s mold.

But here’s the age old question: How do you teach acceptance on a wide-scale basis?

 

*Just because I mention something as a buzzword does not mean I want it not to be one. I am so thankful autism is finally receiving the focus it needs to gain.