This Emotional Life – Cyberbullying

This Emotional LifeI finally had the chance to watch PBS’s This Emotional Life, that you can find on Netflix and other on-demand services. It was a three-part series that covered many topics, including bullying and cyberbullying.

The segment below, which can be found on YouTube, covers the Cyberbullying segment of the show. I certainly recommend this show for those that want to better understand the emotions that go with the long-term effects and suffering that many feel due to what has happened to them in the past or just the way their mind’s process life’s inputs that happen to them.

High School Friend Writes Internet Safety Book


InternetSafetyMy High School friend (and still my friend), Mark Peesel, just published his online book called “Internet Safety for Children“. He was nice enough to call me when he was writing it and ask if he could contribute my story about The Telephone as one of the first Cyberbullying tools used before the internet.

It was very kind of him to include me and the book is both comprehensive and well written. Mark takes the approach of writing both as a parent and as a web development expert that will offer support and help to both parents and children that all need to ensure that they look out for children and even themselves on the internet.

I am proud of my friend, Mark, for taking the effort to write and share these important tips with everyone. And thank you, Mark, for including my story.

High School Girl Suspended Over Anti-Bullying Project

Sometimes when you think you’ve heard it all, another story comes out that seems to contradict what many are trying to do by creating anti-bullying messages. The below video is the story of a high school girl suspended for creating an anti-bullying project. It seems to me that the school did not handle this correctly and almost seems to be bullying. Do you think the school did the right thing?

After The Death (Aharei Mot)

I was honored to be asked to deliver a sermon (really a speech) with a theme of bullying during services at my place of worship recently. I thought I would share the speech that I gave with you. It’s a bit lengthy, but I thought the subject matter appropriate to share… (~Alan Eisenberg)

The bible reading this week is AHAREI MOT, which in Hebrew means AFTER THE DEATH. This is because it takes place right after the Death of Moses’s brother Aaron’s two sons. The reading is also maybe even more significant, because it is also the origin of the YOM KIPPUR ritual.

Interestingly and possibly even intentionally, this reading takes place about 6 months after and equally six months prior to our YOM KIPPUR. It’s as if to say that we should remember that making atonement is not just a once a year event. It has always been a challenge for me to understand the idea of the once a year atonement. I know that some of us believe we have the other 364 days to build up our mistakes so that once a year we can ask for forgiveness, and then even then, we only ask it of god. While in other religions, they go weekly to confess their sins and ask for atonement, but again, only to god. Why to god, as if he is going to tell the people who most need to hear it.

Why do we struggle to say the words ANI MITZTA’ER … Hebrew for I’m sorry! Why is this so hard for us to do? And what does it mean to others when you say it to them, sincerely, and meaningfully.

David Brin, an American science fiction author, has one of my favorite quotes on the subject. He said: Why must conversions always come so late? Why do people always apologize to corpses?The author Harriet Beech Stowe said it as well when she said “The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and for deeds left undone.” Continue reading

Ask Hank About Bullies

Ross, an animator and advice specialist created an “Ask Hank” animation about Bullying. It’s both creative and a good learning lesson. Thanks Hank for sending this to share.

Choosing Sides (A Personal Story)

Taylor shared this very personal story of her time being bullied. It shows the pain that comes when people you trust break that through their actions. Imagine that it happens to you all the time. How would you be as you grow up? Will you trust anyone around you? How will you treat others? This can be a life long lesson from just these few years. Something we should all know and understand. ~Alan Eisenberg

I was bullied from 8 – 10th grade. By three girls. They made me feel horrible. It got to the point where I told the Guidance Counselors at school and broke down crying in the middle of gym class one day.

In 8th grade, two of these girls acted like they were my friends; They acted very good. I was dumb enough to believe them. Most of the problems came because they found out that I had a crush on a boy. They would say things to him that weren’t true. And they would do the same to me. They got my hopes up, making me believe he liked me too. But I should’ve known better. One day, I needed a pencil for class. They gave me one. I found out later that it was the guy I had a crush on pencil. I immediately threw away the pencil. The next day a rumor flew around that I put that pencil in a place where only Tampons should go…. A few weeks later, I forgave them…I knew they started the rumor..I knew it. They began saying next that I should come spend the night with them. I said “I will ask my mother.” I knew she would say no. Then the next day when I told them no, they began saying I only wanted to stay with them so I could see the boy. One time also, I was outside in front of the school, I said “Oh I hope the teacher doesn’t come.” Not meaning anything by it. In class, the teacher wasnt there. I freaked out. I told my friend. “Oh no! What if she got in a car accident and died because of what I said?!” I was so worried. But she came the next day, and I was so relieved. But in the middle of class those 2 girls yelled out “Yesterday Taylor said she wished you died!” They would throw stuff at me and little things.

I can’t really remember anything from 9th grade. I’ve pretty much blocked it out.

In 10th, the two same girls, and me had an argument. I don’t know why, but we did. And during Advisory at school. They were talking about me and sat near me. So I minded my own business and did my homework. Then one of the girls, she came over and stuck a sticky note on my back. It said “Kick me!” And she thought it was so funny! The next week that girl wasnt there. The other girl was there but not the one who put the sticky note on me. So that girl was talking about me, and I told argued with her during advisory and even we were arguing when the bell rang, and I walked out of the classroom and headed to my next class and she was following me and yelling at me, saying “Come back friend! I aint done talking to you!” Her and a new friend of hers, would talk about me to their friends (Which were also mine, might I add) And I couldn’t take it. I already had so much going on. So in the middle of class one day…I cried…I just couldn’t quit crying. The teacher tried cheering me up by making jokes, but it didn’t help. so he let me leave to the guidance counselors. I told them about it and they told the girls “She feels as if your bullying her. Now can we stop. Next time action will be taken.” (Something along those lines.)

They stopped for a while. I know we had little arguments every now and then. But nothing as bad as to make me cry.

That summer! They were being mean to my best friend! So I told them to stop. And threw it in my face that I had friends from India and stuff. And they got mad cause I stuck up for my best friend. They told me I had no friends, so I told them it too.

They use to always get jealous that my best friend would hang out with me and she wouldn’t hang out with them. So, recently, just Thursday Night. They asked my best friend “Wanna go camping?” she said that she was hanging out with me. And one of them had the nerve to ask me “Wanna go camping with us? I havent see you in forever!”
So I yelled at her…I threw everything at her that she and her friends did to me and I called them names (I know…the name calling was not right. It makes me no better than them…)
Because I was upset and mad and all these emotions, I sent her this message. She sent it to her other friends. The other bully from 10th grade went off on me. She was cursing at me. And I told her to stay out because it’s not between her. The message was between me and someone else. She was mad.

The next day at school, I told my close friend about the fight. And she told the bullies I was talking about them….so what happened. One of the bullies texted me and was yelling at me. And my friend said “You shouldnt tell everyone about that fight. You wouldn’t want them calling you rude names when you called them that and it was so long ago.” (Pretty much this)

I’m pretty sure she is upset with me. And another friend of mine is also upset with me because that bully is her best friend.
They say “We dont want to choose sides.” But they did. I told them “You choose sides because you want to. Because you want to!”
They don’t understand…they really dont…These girls made my life hell..and then they ask me to go camping? I got upset! I was so angry! All the memories of everything they did to me came flooding back at once! ((I’ll admit, Me calling them names was bad. I even told them that.))

But now It seems I’m losing friends left and right…except my best friend…but they don’t understand why I did what I did…and they just jump the gun and wont try to see…they just won’t see..

I’m not sure what to do anymore…I dont know why they ever thought it fun to pick on me in the first place…


Bully Documentary In Theaters March 30th

A new documentary movie called “Bully” is being released. The movie is set to premiere on March 30th in theaters around the country. This powerful film takes an in-depth look at the bullying crisis taking place in this country. This movie looks to be a no holds barred view of the problem taking place in our schools and communities and looks to be  a must viewing for our schools and kids.

The only issue looks to be that the MPAA wants to give the film an “R” rating, basically making it a movie that will be unavailable to be viewed by those under 17. This would effectively ban the movie from being viewed in schools. Currently, the filmmaker, which is the The Weinstein Company, is trying to have that changed. You can learn more about the petition to change the rating at the Care2 site.

Again, the movie will be released to theaters on March 30th. Here’s the preview of the movie: