Before I introduce you to http://MakeItBetterRightNow.net (or MIBRN as we like to call ourselves) and some of its members, I would like to thank Alan for all he does in bringing attention to this epidemic around the world called “bullying”. He, like me, believes that by telling our stories; by discussing our issues openly without the fear of being bullied yet again, that we can begin the healing process. Again, Alan, on behalf of the MIBRN community, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.
Please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Kevin Carey-Infante. I am an author, blogger, teen advocate and creator/administrator of a newly created alternative social media website for teens called http://MakeItBetterRightNow.net. MIBRN is a website created by teens for teens. It’s a safe and secure place for teens to come to get support, as well as learn about issues that matter to them. It’s also a place where teens can come to talk with each other and tell their stories in real-time, without being judged, ridiculed or bullied. MIBRN uses various methods of communication, including messaging, email, open forums, bulletin boards, and a “chat” feature that allows teens from around the world to communicate with each other in real-time. In less than a year, MIBRN has grown into a social media website for all teens – black, white, yellow, red, gay, straight, bisexual, transgendered, the victims of bullying and abuse, and, yes, even the bullies themselves. As long as everyone shows respect for each other and their diverse points of view, everyone is welcome at MIBRN.
MIBRN was born out of the many tragic deaths from teen bullycide (teens who commit suicide because they felt that they could no longer deal with the relentless bullying they were being forced to live with.) Tyler Clementi, Cassidy Joy Andel and Justin Aaberg are just a handful of those souls. One of the features on the MIBRN site is the Honor Roll of Victims of Bullycide. We regularly add a teen who has taken his or her life and tell their story in the hope that we can learn from them and not repeat their actions. MIBRN is committed to ending bullycide in our time.
The MIBRN community also invites those adults who have been there to tell their stories. There is nothing more inspiring to a teen than to hear from those who have been in their shoes and made it to live another day – to hear how they made it better in their lives.
When I told the members of the MIBRN community that Alan had invited me to write a guest blog about MIBRN they asked if they could submit comments for you to read. “This is our site, after all,” Danny told me. I was, of course, more than thrilled that they were eager to participate. Over the past couple of weeks, I have received many comments. Here are but a handful. I present each MIBRN community member by their “Username“. This way, if you would like, when you visit MIBRN, you can reach out to these very special individuals, say hi, and start a conversation.
MigueldeCuba: Hi! My name is Mike. I’m 15-years old and I live in New Jersey. I found MIBRN one day this summer when I was fooling around on my iPad looking for people like me. I get bullied all the time because I don’t fit in. My mom is Cuban and my dad is Irish. Kids call me a zebra and I hate it. The other thing about me is that I am short, so kids think I’m weak. I’m not. I’m pretty strong and I play soccer, and I’m pretty good. I was super lucky to find MIBRN. I have made lots of new friends and Mr. Kevin has helped me a lot. Now I am paying it forward. I met a girl from Canada on the MIBRN chat line. She was really scared in the beginning. I talk to her a lot and now she’s my friend. She’s doing better. My dream is to help Mr. Kevin to make it better for all kids. Mr. Kevin has taught me to want to make a difference. I hope to talk to you soon. Thank you for this time to talk to you. Mike
cookme25: Hi everyone. My name is Hannah. I’m 16-years old and I live in Kentucky. About 2 months ago I wrote this on my MIBRN profile and I really do believe it:
Everything happens for a reason. You may not see it right away but you will. It may be years from now but it will happen. You’ll look back and you’ll see that if that one thing hadn’t happened then everything would have turned out different. You might not have met a person you love or you might not have become the person you are. So just remember, even if it seems like the end of the world, be patient. Everything happens for a reason.
MIBRN is a great place for teens to come together and know they aren’t alone. We all have similar experiences or maybe you find someone who understands what it’s like to be you. It shows you aren’t alone. Hope to meet you soon. Hannah
Sander1998: Hi. My name is Sander. I’m 14-years old and I live in the Netherlands. I found MIBRN when I was doing research on bullycide. This is the best site I found honoring kids who committed bullycide. I really like this site and believe that it can help lots of kids. I hope that it can help you too. Talk to you soon. Sander
KatieRoo: Hey everybody. My name is Katie. I’m 16-years old and I live in Ohio. MIBRN is basically a site where you can come and talk to people who have felt/experienced the same things you have. You are not alone in this world. I have seen a great change in myself in just a few months. There are people out there who are going through the same mess as you. Just remember – you first have to climb the mountain before you can see the beauty. I wrote this on my Message Board last week because I thought it was very important:
Your words/your thoughts ARE powerful/ARE meaningful. If no one listens then speak up until your voice is heard. Be brave in yourself – stand up for yourself for if you don’t believe in your words then who will?
How about just starting a convo with me!… I would love, love, love to just talk! Ok c ya! Katie
DannyL: Hi everyone. My name is Danny and I’m 14-years old. I’m in the 9th grade and I live in San Antonio, TX. To be honest, my uncle is Mr. Kevin’s husband. But even if that were not true I would still love this site. I’m gay and I came out to my mother and my friends at the end of the last school year. I get bullied all the time for being me, but I am learning how to deal with it. I have made lots of friends at MIBRN and they help me a lot. We talk all the time. When I have a question or a problem I can’t answer I will ask Mr. Kevin for his advice because he had many problems and was bullied when he was a kid like me. Mr. Kevin is the best! I think – no – I know – this site will help a lot of kids no matter what they are going thru. I hope to meet you soon. Danny
I couldn’t have said it better gang. Thank you! On behalf of the MIBRN community I would like to invite you all to come over and check us out. Here’s the link:
IT’S YOUR PLANET…MAKE IT BETTER RIGHT NOW
Thank you, Kevin, and all at MIBRN for doing what you do in the battle against bullying. ~Alan Eisenberg