Many of you who are on social networking sites may have already read about the story of Amanda Todd or have noticed #RIPAmanda trending on Twitter. Amanda Todd was a 15 year old girl from Canada who committed suicide as a result of being bullied in school and online. Before committing suicide Amanda posted a now haunting video on Youtube with cue-cards listing everything that she was going through and her description box read as follows:
“I’m struggling to stay in this world, because everything just touches me so deeply. I’m not doing this for attention. I’m doing this to be an inspiration and to show that I can be strong. I did things to myself to make pain go away, because I’d rather hurt myself then someone else. Haters are haters but please don’t hate, although im sure I’ll get them. I hope I can show you guys that everyone has a story, and everyones future will be bright one day, you just gotta pull through. I’m still here aren’t I?”
In the video Amanda shared her story which told of a man stalking her who contacted her on Facebook after getting a photo of her flashing someone over a webcam when she was in the 7th grade. This man threatened to circulate her photo to family, friends and people at her school claiming he had all this information if she didn’t “put on a show.” He continued to harass her by sending her photo to “everyone” and a year later even creating a Facebook page with her photo featured as his profile picture. As a result, Amanda had to move several times, lost friends and suffered from anxiety, depression and panic attacks she also experimented with drugs,alcohol, cutting and even attempted suicide in the past.
The news of her torment and death has been shared on social media through Tumblr, Facebook and on Twitter, where #RIPAmanda is trending. British Columbia’s Premier, Christy Clark, also sent her condolences on YouTube.
As I read Amanda’s story I was filled with tears knowing that she is not alone.
According to the CDC :
- Suicide is the third leading cause of death among young people, resulting in about 4,400 deaths per year.
- For every suicide among young people, there are at least 100 suicide attempts. Over 14 percent of high school students have considered suicide, and almost 7 percent have attempted it.
- 10 to 14 year old girls may be at even higher risk for suicide, according to the study above .
- According to statistics reported by ABC News, nearly 30 percent of students are either bullies or victims of bullying, and 160,000 kids stay home from school every day because of fear of bullying.
The time to take action is now! What are we doing to prevent cyber bullying? Here are some important tips: 18 Tips to Stop Cyberbullying.