This is a bit of a tangent in the midst of my Learning to Love yourself series, but I need to make mention of this week:
What’s it about?
Name calling is a form of emotional abuse, no matter whether it occurs in the home or at school. School bullying is a huge problem that recently seems to be getting the attention it desperately needs. I just came across another youth suicide story, this time about a 9 year old committing suicide in school! I have no idea about the specifics in this tragic situation, but it made me wonder about a potential link to bullying. (Edited to add: I just read another article that states: There are rumors that he was bullied before).
I have written previously about other youth suicides linked to anti-gay harassment and bullying. One of the common youth insults, “that’s so gay” is not an innocuous phrase! For kids who are gay or being perceived that way (often because they don’t meet rigid gender role expectations) using gay as a slur is damaging. GLSEN, the sponsor of No Name-Calling Week, has developed a campaign to raise teen awareness about this phrase and issue, and it is working: Significantly More Teens Think ‘That’s So Gay’ is Wrong as GLSEN’s Ad Council Campaign Enters Second Phase.
Then again, maybe this isn’t such a derail from my current self-love theme! What if we also applied “No Name-Calling” to ourselves? What if for even one day we stopped calling ourselves the names we know are damaging to others?
For more information check out these anti-bullying resources.