A Dad’s Sage Advice

it-gets-better-300x201On the best of day and on the worst of days, my father’s advice was always the same: “Don’t worry. They are peaking. You are going to go on to do great things in your life and they (whoever it happened to be that was bothering me or making me glum) are peaking. Once they leave high school, they won’t make anything of themseves. You, however, are a late bloomer and college and beyond will be amazing.”

Over the years, my Dad must have told me this 4 dozen times or more. Sometimes he would embellish on how this was true for him and how it was true for my Mom. He would encourage me. He believed in me. For that matter, my Mom did too. She gave the same messages with examples of how she has exceeded expectations.

Sometimes I believed them. Sometimes I didn’t.  Somtimes life just hurt.  Sometimes others in my life hurt me.  Many times, my school failed to stop the bullying.

I grew up before the It Get’s Better video series. I also, luckily, grew up before internet bullying became so popular.  I love that the video series exists.  I love that television shows are starting to address both bullying and diversity in a more holistic way.  Still, there is so much more to be done.

If you haven’t seen It Get’s Better videos, do.  Here is one by Google Employees:

PS Turns out my parents were right.  The bullies from my school, for the most part, haven’t made much of themselves and I love my life. What words were of comfort to you growing up?

***This is part of a series on bullying.  Check out the other posts: Intro, Friends vs. Bullies, Physical Violence,  and researching LGBT teen suicide..

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