Monday, November 8, 2010

I am picking on you... yes YOU!


My heart is sad for children that have to deal with being picked on, made fun of, laughed at and bullied to where they feel they have to take their lives. I was a child of bullying in school and for me, as so many kids, we did the best to survive throughout our years in school. No child should always have to be in survivor mode! It is up to the adults to be aware of this, teach our children how to respect others, and care for them. I am grateful that I had the strength to hold on and crawl through these muddy and uncomfortable years where it seemed like everything was moving in slow motion. I went to school officials, guidance counselors, and even my own teachers, but sadly, nothing was done…SHAME on them! Children need the support, protection, and guidance of adults. It is our role to teach, respect and show acceptance with compassion to everyone and never judge anyone for being anything other then perfect. All children are beautiful and perfect in my eyes….all children should be loved, and all children should be protected. Parents, I beg of you to listen, to not turn away if you see something or hear something and do not assume everything will be OK because many times it is not. When a child is bullied, it is like creating a scar in their heart, soul, and mind that is very hard to fully heal. Now I am picking on the adults reading this. I am urging adults to step it up and take responsibility….please! Treat our children with grace, love, and kindness so they in turn will do the same to one another. There’s a phrase I think about everyday “In loving kindness” – I think it says it all.

Down the Aisle in Style,

David Tutera

17 comments:

  1. I am in total agreement with you David. Parents are the ones who teach their kids to hate. Our kids learn not by what we say, but by what we do. If we as parents are putting down or judging others, even in a "joking" manner, they learn that. Even the smallest thing, like a dad saying to his kid, "don't buy THOSE shoes, they look gay" is saying that being gay is not good.
    Whether the kid is gay or not, he in turn will pass that onto others. Every jab hurts a kid, and they all add up.
    Parents MUST look honestly at themselves, so they can see clearly what they are teaching their children.
    Thank you for being honest
    Theresa

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  2. David,
    Thank you for taking the time to post. It is tragic how our children are left to fend for themselves. As a mother of four children this is so important to me. Children are our future and they need to be nurtured, protected and accepted as they are right now.

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  3. David, please watch this video. My friend made it and I am honored to be part of it.

    It Gets Better: New Yorkers Embrace Being Different
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ti6GMfyodBE

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  4. Thank You David Having been bullied in school I know that feeling. I have 4 children and tell my children not to judge. I was bullied because I befriended a girl who was being ostrocized. We tell our children to do the right thing. Sometimes kids don't hear negative from parents but peers. Keep up the great work David your compassion for people comes forth. Stay blessed

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  5. David I work in a high school and it hurts my heart on a daily basis to see and hear what passes for acceptable. As if it is not hard enough just to be a child how much harder is it to be a child who is deemed different by their peers. Children should be children with free open hearts not closed ones hiding tears and scars gained all to young by bullies. Words that should be taught are wrong are overlooked and overused because there is sadly not enough time in a school day to save each and every child from the harshness and scaring reality that these words leave on a young spirit. There is only so much of a thin line that can come between staff and student when interfering. A clear message love and compassion should be reiterated and taught so that children know that being different is not bad or wrong it's just a part of growing up. Teaching love by example can perhaps ease in some small way the pain of just going through the day in the life of a child. There will always be bullies sadly because in essence it is just the insecurity of a child who does not want to appear different that bullies another child. In there own insecurity and youthful ignorance they seek strength by overpowering those who do not know how to fight for themselves as well as they do. Children should not have to fight at any age for themselves as individuals trying to find out who they will become as adults. Children should not have to come away from each day with tears and battle wounds. I can only hope that I am someone in as much of a capacity as I can be who shows the youth of my school encouragement through words, kindness, and compassion to give them some reassurance that they are not alone. Children are meant to be cherished and loved so that they learn to give love and to feel the grace of compassion in return.

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  6. "Treat our children with grace, love, and kindness so they in turn will do the same to one another". To the point and direct. Thank you!

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  7. It's just too sad to see what is going on with the bully issue. I mean you send your kids to school to learn, to explore, to share, to have fun and to be happy and be themselve while doing it. Not to feel miserable by others to the point where they have to call quick to life. we connot accept this to continue to go on. Something must be done. This has to be a collaborative work, parents, kids, teachers, principal and congress yes i believe now we need some sort of laws and regulations because this bully thing is going too too far. Everyone need to pitch in. I dont have kids but i feel for this poor and innocent kids and for a parent to have to buried his child for this reason, that's just wrong wrong wrong...Please help them God find a solution because kids or any other human being have the right and freedom to just be themselves and to express themselves however they feel. So help them God!

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  8. Thanks so much for posting something like this, with your feelings included...I'm a mother of 5 and have raised my kids to respect others and themselves...I admire you from top to bottom. Every Sunday, my TV is on to watch your show, all of them one after another one, we watch them all! You are a true person and I love your personality and what you do for others. Form the bottom of my heart...THANKS!!

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  9. I myself was picked on as a child at school for being overweight, I was ashamed and did not tell my parents. As I got older the teasing was also being done to me by my mother and brother. I am an adult now, and even though I am complimented by many, I just don't see what they see. When I look in the mirror I am always very critical of myself, and am always trying different diets even when I am told I don't need to. Parents are supposed to be a child's protector, teacher and example. The saying "sticks and stones can break my bones but words could never harm me", is a load of garbage. Words can be hurtful, and traumatizing,as parents we need to teach our children that they are beautiful and special in their own way. Society and media set a criteria as to what beauty should look like, and what the norm should be. These images should change, there should be more positive messages sent out to our kids through the media. I would like to extend my thanks to you for bringing some light onto the issue of bullying, and being kind to one another. On a different issue I would also like to thank you David for trying to make women's dreams come true in your show "My fair wedding". I try to never miss an episode, today I saw an episode with a bride named Joann, which you named one of your gowns after. I did not have the wedding that I dreamed of as a child because of money issues, so seeing these brides get the wedding of their dream makes me happy. The episode with Joann made me really emotional, because how many of us can say that you not only gave us a dress that you designed, but that you named it after us. To see your bride say that she wanted to donate the dress and make someone else's dream come true was great, it is a reflection of what your show is about. You are gorgeous, classy, and from what I see you have a great heart. Keep up the great work!

    Marie

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  10. After I read this post, I realized why you are such a compassionate man. I am always amazed at how you treat the people on your show, from the bride down to the vendors who work for you.

    The experience of being bullied has a profound effect on the victim. Some of them allow the experience to have a negative effect on their lives. Some, like you, use it to gain insight into how people should be treated.

    My daughter runs a seminar on bullying, and in her district, the courts mandate perpetrators take this course as part of their sentence.

    The light is finally shining on the problem of bullying. It is my hope that both the bully (who may be bullied at home) and the victim get the help they need. I also hope as individuals we are strong enough to see a situation and do something about it.

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  11. I So agree with your post David.. I also see how that person could feel.. I myself was bullied as a child I went for help many times but only to be ignore..i was overweight all my life..I was called a cow all threw school walk down the halls to hear MOOO! when I walk By jumped and beaten by kids as well.I several times (6) tried to take my life 4 times in grade school and jr high twice in high school..It is very hard to go out in public to this day..

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  12. David, very true. I was teased when I was young too and to this day, my self-esteem is hurt because of it. I don't know if parents are to blame or who the kids surround themselves with, but it is very sad when kids take their own lives because of the bullying. It should never get to that point. Teachers definitely need to be aware of what is happening and do something about it.

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  13. Dearest David,
    I'm a retired teacher & your post had me in tears as did the "It Gets Better" video that one of the comments told about. I worked with middle school students - yeah, the ones who are pretty much hormones-with-legs and trying to find their way. I was known for not permitting bullying comments & with that age group, "You're GAY!" was often thrown. I am so glad & proud, that this would ALWAYS lead to me stopping & going into THE How-Would-You-Feel mini-lecture. I was always a Big and Tall, straight girl/woman & knew that discrimination and bullying. Many of my students were spouting the verbal poisons that were given by their parents. These young-ones were Hatched rather than Raised. PLEASE - Parents & all those who influence kids (of all ages) keep your voices & actions kind and tolerant. Thank you, David for your positive influence, outlook and post to ALL people.
    Some people chase Joy - You create it! May you always be treated with Loving Kindness. M. #:>

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  14. David, I just started watching your show & love it. I'm so glad that you're taking a stand asking others to do it as well. I was a child that was always picked on and bullied because of my weight problem. As a young child I was always overweight, whenever I got into high school I would starve myself so I could lose weight. I was very popular in high school so I guess by that you know that the starving worked and I was thin. But I never forgot how people treated me & even though I'm not small anymore I still see people & children bully not just children but even adults because of weight. I think people need to understand its not all because people over eat it can just be in they're genes. But on your show I see that it doesn't matter if the bride is fluffy or small you make each one feel beautiful. I wish I could've had you around whenever I got married in 2004. Thanks you for being the wonderful person that you are & I wish nothing but happiness to you & yours. May God bless you always & in all ways.

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  15. I think you are awesome David! Your heart is one made of gold. I was also bullied all throught my school years. I think it is an amazing thing for someone such as yourself to stand up for those that are too afraid to stand up for themselves. I love the work you do!

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  16. David when I read the first sentence it brought flashbacks of my younger years in school.I too was bullied and picked on in school so I did not tolerate it from my daughter at all. Children can be so cruel to one another if they only knew how it can hurt an individual not only as a child but as an adult. I used to get followed home and gir;s would try and gang up on me because my mother did not dress me the way others did she dressed me like a little girl with dresses and ponytails unti; my teacher had to finally tell her that she had to dress me differently. I was very quiet and shy and didnt make that many friends until I got into high school and still to this day I am a little shy. But what i have to say is that it made me stronger and a better adult I used to work with children and when I saw a shy kid or a child that no one would pick on I tried to become their friend and let them know that there is good in them. It wasn't til I became an adu;t to realize that those kids were actually jealous. I look at ypur show every week and now I can see that the look that you give those brides is genuine and why you do the things that you do. I will be 51 this year and am kind of skeptical about being married for the first time about what people may think about the dress I may choose. That complex never leaves you always wondering how you look or if someone is talking about you. Keep doing what you are doing David upliftng people you are a true Angel!!

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  17. I already loved you David, but this post deepened it. It's so hard to talk about bullies when you were a victim. Those wounds are unbelievably difficult to heal, and definitely scar you for life. Thanks for using your influence to speak out against this atrocity that goes on every day to millions of innocent children.

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