My Suicidal High School Years: A Happy-Ending Bullying Story

Clay Burrell, Beyond School, Dec 17, 2007
Commentary by Stephen Downes

"I was bullied for two years in high school. Every day," writes Clay Burrell. "But this story does things differently. It's to the bullied. It tells them that, for me, over 700 consecutive days of bullying in high school was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. It just took me a couple decades to realize that." I'm glad Burrell got past being bullied. I'm happy for him. But his perspective is simply wrong. Being bullied is not a good thing. It's not something students should simply have to tolerate. It's not - as Rick Mercer says in his video - enough to say that high school is the worst their lives will get. Because, for people who are bullied, it might not be - it might just be the kick-off to years of fears, depression and anxiety. I'm really glad things worked out for Burrell. But he must not fall into the fallacy of thinking that every bullied student can just pull himself up by his bootstraps.
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