Wednesday, May 23, 2012

When Keystrokes Kill

Her big blue eyes and sweet smile drew me into the screen.  A seventh grade school picture of a make-up free, youthful face that appeared at peace.  Below the surface, however, was intense pain, torturing her soul.

And it caused Rachel Ehmke to take her life.
According to new sources, this middle school girl who had never so much as kissed a boy started enduring the wrath of mean girls last fall when the word “slut” was written across her gym locker.  The relentless bullying escalated at school and on social media to the point that she hid in the locker room during lunch and ultimately escaped it all by hanging herself in her own Minnesota home.  
Her parents were left with this suicide note

Which sends a shiver down every parents spine because who of us hasn’t heard "I'm fine?"

Later her dad would warn "They've got to realize that keyboard - that little finger movement from your computer has the power to kill." 
Cyberbullying demands a new awareness of parents in this technological age.  Unlike face-to-face bullying that necessitates a certain amount of courage, cyberbullying allows the offender(s) to hide privately in the comforts of their own home and punch out a text or key in a message on Twitter, MySpace, and/or Facebook that will be seen by the multitudes and balloon in a matter of seconds. 
And, as the victim watches the words spread like wildfire, their confidence shrivels.
How do you fight back against such consuming hate?

Sadly, the masses share this pain...
Finish reading my post here on ModSquad
Photo Credit. Originally seen on a My Fox 9 news video

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