Today I received a text from a CLOSE friend's mom asking for my blog URL. She said she must have missed it when I signed off and I happily gave it to her and asked how she'd been. She told me about how her youngest daughter was being bullied online for being gay.
It got me thinking about when I was in high school and the bullying I was subjected to. The car chalk "fag" on the windows and the punctured tires, the car chases and the fat dude reaching across the inside of my car in an attempt to punch me. These things sucked but it made me who I am today and I'm thankful for that.
High school Dusty and 2013 Dusty have very little in common. 2013 Dusty is confident, if not cocky, in every aspect of my life. HS Dusty pretended to be and had his feeling hurt a lot because he didn't understand that being mean was how people took his power to stand up for himself.
HS wanted everyone to like him. 2013 knows you aren't successful if you don't make a few enemies and that you're doing things right if people are a little jealous.
HS Dusty didn't have any gay friends that weren't struggling just like he was. 2013 puts it out there that if you or your kid is having a hard time because of their sexuality or just bullying in general, to send them in his direction because no one should have to go through this alone and sometimes parents don't have all of the right answers, no matter how hard they try.
Life isn't going to be easy. Utilize all of the resources you're given. Don't allow yourself to settle for less in yourself. And most of all, reach out to the people who say they want to help or BE the person asking how they can help. We're all in this together.
~High School AND 2013 Dusty