And then I explained to him how naive we were, that the world did know and remained silent. And that is why I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Sometimes we must interfere. When human lives are endangered, when human dignity is in jeopardy, national borders and sensitivities become irrelevant. Elie Wiesel from Night
I went to see the movie Bully last night. I left more glad than ever that I am telling our story. Glad that I am not being quiet. I am here to say I have worked with good school administrators. They care about kids and are motivated to do whatever it takes to make sure the kids in their schools are receiving the best services possible and I am so very grateful for their efforts. And unfortunately I am here to also say I have worked with administrators that aren’t good at their jobs. I have wondered if they cared. It’s so hard to imagine people not caring. But their actions, and inactions, were stunning and begged me to ask, “Do they care?”
I know what it is like to sit across from a teacher, a principal, a special education director and dump out your heart, show them psychological evaluations and share the most private of details of your child’s life and then look in their eyes and see nothing has registered with them. It’s like they can’t, or maybe won’t, comprehend the words I had spoken.
My son needs your help.
My son dreads coming to school.
My son was so upset he wet himself and you sent home on the school bus in his wet clothes.
My son hit the kid because that kid continually calls him names and he knows no other way to protect himself and knows you have done nothing to stop it.
I might sound like a broken record with all of this, but I will go on, because I know what was shown in Bully does happen.
Because it happened to us.
And thank God my son was one of the lucky ones.
We sued the school system to get him help.
There are some kids who haven’t been so lucky and they paid with their lives.
So I will go on telling our story and encouraging others to speak up and act out if they too find themselves in a situation where their child is in danger.
I will also keep saying if you need help, if you need someone to listen, I am here, you have a friend, and you are not alone.