Sometimes, I find myself daydreaming about Pierce being in grade school. I wonder what he will look like, who will be his friends and to be honest, I usually end up tearing up. I look at his little demeanor and although I see one miracle after another, I know kids will see a little boy who is smaller then them. They will see a hand with only 4 fingers on it. They will see a shorter arm and neck. I thank God that there will be a lot of them that see those things and it mean nothing to them, but then there will be some who will poke fun. He will come home one day in tears and it will tear me up inside.
I have a sweet little niece who’s best friend in the world is a little boy who is shorter than her. My little niece sees nothing different about him…just a really good friend…her best friend. I’ve watched their friendship and often thanked her parents for teaching her that different isn’t different. That we are all the same inside. I pray daily for friends like my niece to come along side of Pierce and celebrate him without hesitation.
First of all, this is not a blog post about supporting Trump (AT ALL) to be honest, I have been disappointed in some of his decisions and broken hearted for the many they have and will continue to effect. Let’s just take that argument off the table. This is not a blog about supporting the President. This is an encouragement, a charge, if you will, to be responsible with your words. I’ve been wrestling with these thoughts for some time now…really since before the election, but even more so now that we are in the thick of Trump’s decisions.
We live in a society where we constantly say bullying has to end, and yet I’ve never been so appalled by the words I see written on a daily occurrence through social media. “Bullying 101” starts at home. Most “bullies” are either bullied at home through siblings and parents or they are in an environment where this kind of talk is acceptable and encouraged. They watch from example and then act out. It also stems from insecurity and a lack of confidence for most children. “I’ll put you down so I can make myself feel better.”
I watched this week as Kathy Griffin posted a photo of herself holding our President’s head. Although, many were appalled (and rightly so, he’s still the President), I know that many thought it was fitting and laughed. I am a strong believer that respect is earned and not given so I’m not saying you should respect the man, but you need to respect the office…if anything, because your kids are watching. They listen to your conversations at home or read your words online. The name calling “idiot, dummy, stupid…” they take those things into account and if they see you saying and writing those words, what’s to stop them from using those words against others outside of your home? It is possible to disagree with someone and not call them names. It is possible to disagree with someone and not spew hate all over social media. And before the Republicans reading this, cheer, I saw the same thing when Obama was President.
My point…it has to end. We make fun of his kids, his wife, the way his face looks, his hair, his clothes, the way he moves his hands…and yes, he makes fun of people too, I’m not excusing his behavior and I am not letting him off the hook. I am saying, that we are better than that. We have to be better than that. For the sake of our children growing up, we have to be better. I need you to be better. My kids need you to be better. We need kids seeing kids for kids and not differences, whether it’s beliefs, disabilities, looks, who their parents are…they need to be kids. Kids should get to be kids.
And it’s not just with our President. I see it everyday with mom shaming, parenting issues, you name it and there are haters out there commenting, encouraging people to kill themselves…WHAT IS THIS?!?! When did this become a thing that was/is okay? How do we bat an eye at this behavior and not stand up for what’s right? I’ll tell you why…because there seems to be little accountability behind the screen of a computer. You can say whatever you want…make fun of a celebrities clothes, their weight, their hair…it’s everywhere and I am done with it. We thrive on satire, encourage it, laugh at it, at the sake of someone else. If you want to call people names, please do it in your car when nobody is listening, or here’s something you can do…just don’t say anything at all. I love that social media has given a voice to a lot of things and people but I also hate the voices who have used it as an excuse to bully…because that’s what it is.
It starts with you, parents. If your kids or other’s kids overhear you calling people names or commenting on someone’s attire or the way they look…they’ll follow suit…and I need good friends for my kids. Making fun of people will not be allowed in our home…EVER. Please be responsible with your words and actions towards those you disagree with or with those who are different than you – who believe different than you – who see things different than you…please be responsible. Stop calling people idiots, stupid, dummy…you’re smarter than that. Encourage diversity in your friendships so your kids will do the same with theirs. Different is good. It’s necessary. My friends, please be careful with what comes out of your mouth. Our kids are watching.