I just read a story about a 5 year old boy who likes Taylor Swift. His mom posted videos of him opening gifts from the singer and the insults began. Internet trolls started calling him gay and you know it was intended as an insult, as a slur.
There is so much wrong with this where do I begin. How many 5 year old kids have identifies their sexual orientation? I suspect not too many. And that’s not even the point. Why put a label, any label on a child based on their taste in music? And who made it any of their business anyway?
His mom said, “This is why young kids kill themselves. And this is also why our society is so f—d up.”
Indeed, it is why too many young kids commit suicide. Some are gay, some are not. It’s not being gay that causes them to kill themselves; it is the relentless bullying they endure. Why is it so hard to put a stop to it? I wish I had an answer. I wonder what these kids (and adults) learned from their own parents. Were they bullied and this is the only way for they feel they can take back their power? Are some of them gay themselves and don’t want to me? Do they have internalized homophobia?
This little boy is lucky. He has parents who let him be who he is, like what he likes and don’t put gender or sexual orientation labels on him. If he’s gay, fine. If he’s not, fine. He’s only 5!
I had an experience with this and it was so upsetting. I posted a video to my YouTube Channel titled “My Son is Gay.” and I got some of the most hateful comments, including that he should kill himself. My son never saw them and he’s old enough and secure enough to not let them bother him. But they bothered me. I didn’t engage with these trolls and I’m grateful that many of the moms of LGBTQ kids I know wrote positive, affirming comments on the video.
In this day and age, it seems to me that bullying like this is worse than ever. It is so easy to do this on social media and some kids who do are relentless. I can’t get inside their heads and can’t understand why someone would bully someone to the point of them committing suicide. Do they have no conscious; do they just not care or do they not think it’s their fault? I don’t know. I just want to know how to stop it.
What do you think? How can we make a difference? What can we do?