“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” – Nelson Mandela
Overcoming Hate with Love: A message from Give Forward
Acceptance and tolerance are two of the things that I long for where it concerns my children and especially with my middle child. With her autism being what it is, I employ every public moment as an opportunity to educate and raise awareness. Ignorance, unfortunately, is all too common place where it concerns special needs children and the public. Far too often I hear stories of bullying, rejection, and isolation. Instead of taking a moment to possibly understand and learn, individuals immediately decide to shun and ignore. What makes her stand out, more often than not, sets her apart.
And for the most part, I’m more than okay with this. I accept this and embrace it. Her autism doesn’t define her, but it’s merely a part of who she is. She’s just different, but she’s not any less than anyone else.
Sadly, however, that’s not always the case with everyone. In today’s society, it seems, there are less and less individuals with an open mind and accepting heart. I worry, often, as she gets older that she’ll become the target of bullying. She’s an easy target, you see. Non-verbal, mostly a gentle and loving soul. So, that’s why when I found out about Give Forward and what they wanted to do bring love to a young man and his family in Ohio; I had to take the opportunity to get involved.
If you hadn’t heard his story by now, here’s a brief recap. A young man with autism thought he was going to be participating in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. The end result was a cruel prank, as the ice bucket was filled with spit, urine, and feces. As a mother of an individual with autism, I was outraged that such an unspeakable act of cruelty and hatred could occur. Not just because this young man had autism, but because he’s also a human being. I couldn’t fathom the values that those teens were being brought up and also prayed for them. I also had to wonder what those teens were learning to think that such a thing could be acceptable.
Give Forward decided to open a page on his behalf, with a goal of reaching 1,000 comments. I encourage you to participate, it won’t take you but a minute and all it requires is a loving and supportive comment.
Click the image above to go to the Give Forward Campaign Page
And if you see someone being bullied- take a stand and speak up. Don’t remain a bystander forever, because you never know who’s life you’re going to change. It could even be your own. To read more about what you can do, I invite you to read: The Bystander Effect
* This is a sponsored post written for GiveForward, all thoughts, opinions, and text (not otherwise attributed) are mine
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I am so happy that my kids school takes such a strong stance on bullying. When I think about some of the bullying I witnessed back in the day, it horrifies me.
That’s always good to hear. And I hear that, Robin. It really is disheartening.
Wonderful post. I worry about what will happen when my son gets to school. It is really shocking how mean other children can be.
Thank you, Tricia 🙂 And yes! Most of the time I tend to think that girls are the meanest little creatures on the planet.. but not always to this extent.
These are such great rules to live by. So much easier said than done!
I think so too 🙂 And yes, that’s also true. But a little can go a long way.
It amazes me how people can be so cruel. Thanks for bringing this bullying incident to my attention.
It is very baffling :/ I don’t think I’ll ever understand it, honestly.
I agree with Elijah Wood.. going against the best thing in the world.. unfortunately these kids today just do not think so, and in turn big issues are happening.
Me too.. I think individuality should be celebrated. It’s sad when kids are bullied for that.
Wow, stuff like this is so sickening. I’m so glad there are people string enough to stand up against it, reminding us not everyone in the world is cruel and heartless. I pray your daughter never endures such torment, and neither does anyone else. We can’t change the world all at once, but we can start where we are.
It really is.. and yes, maybe we can’t change the world alone but we can start with one and grow from there.
That sounds like a neat initiative. My heart just breaks for all those who are treated so cruelly.
Yeah, I think that Give Forward really has the potential to do great things for a good cause.
Omg great post!!! Glad I too the time to read :):)
Thank you 🙂
i love this campaign. i hope they raise a ton of money for this kid. such a horrible thing to have to go through.
Me too 🙂 It’s really a shame how cruel and mean people can be.
Kids can be so mean and cruel! Bullying has to stop!
They really can be! It’s very sad.
We ddefinitely need more love in this world. There’s so much hate, and it’s really sad.
It is. It’s unfortunate that what makes us different is also what makes us targets to some.
I just read about this heartbreaking malicious act. It’s frightening what compels people to treat others so horribly. I can understand your worries for your middle child. Bullying has become a nation wide epidemic.
Yeah, it was … well, it made me very angry and fearful. I’m thankful, at least, that the three teens who were responsible are going to be charged.. or at least they’ve been caught and identified.
I love that there is now awareness spreading. Last night I (a grown woman) was being cyber bullied and harassed for sticking up for a lady that did nothing wrong. The attention shifted from her to me, but it wasn’t fair. I think what I’m trying to say is not only are the kids in schools having to deal with it – but adults at times too. Will the act of bullying ever go away?
That is sad 🙁 It’s a shame that kids are doing it, but when adults are doing it too? One day I hope that society can mature.
I hate all of the stories of bullying. It’s so heartbreaking and we need to stop it. Why do we have to bully people for ANY reason?!
It is very disheartening, indeed. I wish there was a way to put a stop to it once and for all.
What a great cause. While hearing about any child being bullied is disheartening I like to reach back to Mr. Roger’s advice: “look for the helpers. They are always there.” I find great hope in the response that people give when they hear about these situations.
Yes. It’s definitely nice to know that there are still good people out there.
Thanks for sharing, it’s scary! My daughter isn’t in school yet but it already makes me worried.
It is! Hopefully more people start sticking up for others 🙂
I hope for her sake that the bullying never happens. It’s so much easier to love.
Me too.. and yes, it is. But some still seem to have such a difficult time with accepting others.
I live near Bay Village and this story horrified me 🙁
🙁 That’s very disheartening. It’s sad, I think, even more so when it’s closer to home.
Thank you so much for raising awareness and letting people know about this campaign! I pray that the boy and his family are blessed!
It was definitely a campaign that I had to get involved in 🙂
I am in shock at how many kids could care less now days. I hope that parents start waking up and teach their kids to care about others and not just themselves. I can’t even try to understand how they thought that what they were doing was okay or even why they would want to do it in the first place.
Yeah, it’s very disheartening and I have to wonder as to what kind of lessons they’re learning (or not learning) at home.
I love that they are doing this! I can definitely empathize with you- my daughter is developmentally and physically disabled due to a traumatic brain injury and it’s definitely a rocky road and I am always concerned about her being a target.
Me too! It’s great to see that Give Forward got involved. And I’m relieved that the bullies were at least identified.
I just headed over and shared my support. I’m inspired that people are coming together to show this young man how awesome he is!
Thank you for your support Michelle! It is definitely great to see that people are coming together to support him.