Don’t throw your Pearls Before Swine. But Stand up to Bullying. Hillary Clinton Has a $500 Million Plan to Fight Bullying.

 

I have had amazing experiences teaching in Oaxaca, Mexico.  The majority of my classes have been filled with joy and inspiration.  Several students who went on to graduate thanked me for the lesson on “HOPE” and the inspiring messages which are helping them now with life along with the English language.  I know this because I went to lunch with some of them last week.  One is now a teacher who turned his life around.  The other stated he remembers being taught the vocabulary word for respect which has helped him in dealing with others.  I simply compared R-E-S-P-E-C-T to the Golden Rule.

But I only had one class as discussed in my earlier blog that seemed very negative. I attempted to turn it around as seen in the previous blog entry.

The group went on to the next level with a different teacher.

But a couple of my students who attended that class with the different teacher came back to tell me how negative that class was as a whole.

I remember their were two people who I discuss  below who constantly disrupted class.  I was saddened to learn that those two students are now in teacher training at the same school with me.

One of them made a joke about people with disabilities and stated the (N) word for African-Americans was just a joke in my class.   I stood up to them for that.  This student was also the only student to criticize my presentation  about J.K. Rowling who overcame extreame adversity to become Britain’s first billionaire author.  She went on to start her own charity to help abandoned and orphaned children.

Next, the other student mocked the word “HOPE” after my presentation and stated people don’t have to go through adversity or hardship to achieve their dream.  He mentioned that his father is a doctor.  He also told me how he failed math but the teacher passed him anyway because that is just the way it is down here.

I failed him as he fell short of the grade needed to pass after taking the exam.

Perhaps the lesson is not to throw your pearls before swine or just trust that those who are suppose to “get it” will either now or later on in their life.

My Hope for all of them is that they have happy and fulfilled lives.

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The video, although a political endorsement, makes a good point and can add value in the good fight against bullying.

Hillary Clinton Has a $500 Million Plan to Fight Bullying

By Daniel Reynolds
October 27 2016 3:33 PM EDT

http://www.advocate.com

 

Hillary Clinton has launched a plan to combat bullying in schools.

Titled “Better Than Bullying,” the plan, released Thursday on the Clinton campaign’s website, calls bullying an “urgent crisis” and specifically draws attention to the issue of “bias” toward youth from vulnerable communities.
“Children with disabilities are mocked for their perceived differences,” the plan stated. “LGBT and Muslim students are targeted because of who they are or how they pray. Latino and immigrant children turn on the television and are told they don’t belong. When bias influences our children and manifests itself in the form of bullying, we have to act.”

The proposal would provide $500 million in funding to states that develop an antibullying strategy, which would support a list of “national priorities.” These priorities include developing antibullying laws, investing in behavioral health programs, curbing cyberbullying, supporting educators with training and resources, and providing health and mental health services for victims of abuse.

The plan also promises that Clinton, as president, would take federal action. This includes helping to pass the Safe Schools Improvement Act, which would modify school codes of conduct to prohibit bullying based on race, religion, gender, disability, national origin, sexual orientation, and gender identity.

LGBT youth are far likelier than their straight peers to experience bullying. A recent survey from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that 34 percent of LGBT youth were harassed at school, compared to 19 percent of heterosexual and cisgender respondents. Likewise, 28 percent of LGB youth experience cyberbullying, versus 14 percent of straight youth.

The National Education Association reports a rise in bullying since Donald Trump began his presidential campaign. Members of the teachers’ union have observed children calling for the deportation of other kids and hurling remarks that mirror the Republican’s racist, sexist, and anti-immigrant rhetoric.

“Kids feel like they have been given permission, and they are invoking the name of Donald Trump,” said NEA president Lily Eskelsen García.

On October 20, Clinton participated in Spirit Day, an annual event that draws attention to the bullying of LGBT youth. In support, Clinton tweeted a purple version of her campaign logo, along with an implied message for Trump.

“This #SpiritDay, let’s take a stand for LGBT youth and send a clear message to all our kids: In the end, bullies always lose,” she said.

This message was echoed in a new ad released by the Clinton campaign in conjunction with the “Better Than Bullying” plan. The video features a young person named Bryce who was harassed in the past due to his muscular dystrophy. He recounts his experience observing Trump as he mocked a reporter with a disability on television.

“I don’t want bullies in my life, and I especially don’t want one in the White House,” he says.

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CSMonitor – Young lives. Old problems. New solutions. – Mentoring 101: What the kids want matters.

Thank you for this story.  It demonstrates that “The Christian Science Monitor” is not stuck in the past but abreast of the times with its new logo and slogan “Young lives. Old problems. New solutions” for EqualEd.  We are all God’s children.  The right mentor can change a life for the better.

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Mentoring 101: What the kids want matters

Young lives. Old problems. New solutions.

Part 5 of the Monitor’s One Caring Person project on the power of mentoring to transform young people’s lives.

 

 

October 12, 2016 Shopping for clothes can be tough for Rayne, who identifies as neither female or male, but as nonbinary.

Rayne’s mentor, Katherin Hudkins, has been a “rock,” in cases like that.

“I was going to go into a dressing room and we were at a Target, and one of the workers gave me this look, and instantly she was right there, super supportive,” says Rayne, who prefers to use the pronoun “they” rather than “he” or “she.”

Rayne spent more than a decade in the foster-care system. Three years ago, Silver Lining Mentoring paired Rayne with Ms. Hudkins, a 20-something from the Boston area.

Talking with or seeing Katherin is “basically the single thing that I look forward to every week. It’s pretty much everything,” says Rayne. “I have pictures on my wall of our meetings and our camping trips we did together…. It’s nice to have someone who’s been there constantly.”

Hudkins identifies as queer – an umbrella term that can embrace a variety of gender identities.

“I was lucky to be in an incredibly supportive, loving environment when I was beginning to explore that identity as a teenager,” she says. “[To not] have a safe stable place to do that is scary and sometimes even dangerous.”

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) teens make up a significant portion of the foster care population, so all Silver Lining mentors learn about LGBTQ issues during cultural competency training. The group also recruits LGBTQ mentors for kids who request such a match.

Click on link below to read article in its entirety:

http://www.csmonitor.com/EqualEd/2016/1012/Mentoring-101-What-the-kids-want-matters

Part 1: Want kids to show up to school? Embed a mentor there.

Part 2: College supply list for low-income students: Books, financial aid … a mentor

Part 3: From juvenile detention to straight A’s, with the help of a mentor

Part 4: The South African astronomer who built a pipeline to the stars

Part 5: Mentoring 101: What the kids want matters

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It Gets Better: Simon Curtis – The Healing and Saving Power of Hope.

 

Experiences like this shape you. The obstacles you overcome and the challenges you face mold the very fiber of your being. They form the story of your life. Superhuman powers and fantastical technology aside, at its core, Boy Robot will always be about a boy who had to run to LA in order to survive, find his tribe, and ultimately, learned to love.

Simon Curtis

 

In his debut, recording artist Simon Curtis has written a fast-paced, high-stakes novel that explores humanity, the ultimate power of empathy, and the greatest battle of all: love vs. fear.

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28498236-boy-robot

 

It Gets Better: Simon Curtis

10/22/2016 05:49 pm ET | Updated 2 days ago –Simon Curtis Author, recording artist, and songwriter – Huff Post

I can remember a time when I was younger, sitting on a plane en route to Orlando to visit my best friend who’d moved away for college just a few months prior, and feeling like those words were a fairy tale. Ephemeral. Laughable. A concept that was simply wishful thinking. At least for someone like me.

Earlier that year, only a few short months after I’d turned eighteen, my older brother outed me to our parents. My father is an 81 year old ex-Marine. My mother is a devout Catholic. “Gay” and “queer” were dirty words. Phrases used to describe “perverts.” Suffice it to say, that moment reshaped the trajectory of my life, and ushered in the darkest days I would ever know.

My parents didn’t understand. They told me they wished I’d died when I was diagnosed with Leukemia eight years earlier. They sat me down and told me that they regretted praying for my survival, then told me the house I lived in was no longer a place for me to call home.

In my first novel, Boy Robot, a scene almost identical to the one I’ve just described happens to the lead character Isaak. Only the issue at hand is not Isaak’s sexuality. Isaak is a Robot. A humanoid being composed of synthetic cells, who, for all intents and purposes, is a human. Except for the fact that he isn’t.

In the book, he learns that there are others like him. Others who are being hunted by a government that would deny their very existence. He is rescued by members of a movement called The Underground, and begins a perilous journey to their hidden base in LA, where he begins to face his fear, and embrace the power of empathy.

The morning I sat on that plane to Orlando, I’d come from the hospital. My mother had attempted suicide the night before, and despite being forbidden from seeing her by my family who blamed me for the attempt, my sister in law took me to see her before I got on the plane.

“Don’t come home. They’re going to blame you for this. I’m so sorry. Don’t come home” my mother said to me in the ICU, barely conscious.

I left Oklahoma that day feeling numb. It took me three days to even speak of what happened to my best friend once I’d arrived in Orlando. “It gets better” was a pipe dream.

After that, however, things did start to get better. I moved to LA and began auditioning for TV and film roles, and began releasing music on my new Myspace page. I remember being so afraid to call my parents and tell them I’d booked my first show as a musician.

“Well… it’s at a gay club.” I can still feel my heart racing from the conversation.

“We wouldn’t miss it for the world” my dad replied.

From that moment, everything changed. It took time, and tears, long talks, and a willingness to really work toward forgiveness, but somehow, miraculously, it did get better.

Things are completely different with my family now. We talk openly and they fully embrace my boyfriend as a member of the family. It’s almost laughable that they are even the same people who reacted in such a way to learning I was gay a decade ago.

Experiences like this shape you. The obstacles you overcome and the challenges you face mold the very fiber of your being. They form the story of your life. Superhuman powers and fantastical technology aside, at its core, Boy Robot will always be about a boy who had to run to LA in order to survive, find his tribe, and ultimately, learned to love.

And believe me when I tell you, it really does get better.

Simon and It Gets Better will be hosting the ROBOT RALLY at Barnes and Noble at The Grove LA this Sunday (10/23). Come get your book signed and take the It Gets Better pledge!

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/it-gets-better_us_580bddc5e4b0f8715789fbe9?section=&section=us_queer-voices

Cyndi Lauper Plans Incredible Show To Benefit LGBT Homeless Youth

Pilgrim on earth, thy home is heaven; stranger, thou art the guest of God.

SH 254:31
From Concord Express – A Christian Science Study Resource: The King James Version of the Bible and Mary Baker Eddy’s published writings

 

Published on Apr 30, 2015

Cyndi Testifies Before Congress On Ending LGBT Youth Homelessness

QUEER VOICES

Cyndi Lauper Plans Incredible Show To Benefit LGBT Homeless Youth

One of our favorite holiday events.

10/24/2016 12:23 pm ET – JamesMichael Nichols – Queer Voices Deputy Editor, The Huffington Post

Cyndi Lauper’s True Colors Fund is once again staging a holiday concert benefit, the proceeds of which will go towards the needs of homeless lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth.

The Home For The Holidays concert will be hosted by Carson Kressley on Saturday, Dec. 3 and featuring Kate Bornstein, Aloe Blacc, Ballets with a Twist, Big Thief, Billy Corgan, Grace VanderWaal, Judy Gold and Lauper herself.

“For the sixth year, ‘Home for the Holidays’ will bring together an incredible group of performers to support the True Colors Fund’s work to end homelessness among lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth,” Lauper, the organization’s co-founder, said in a statement sent to The Huffington Post. “Our voices are stronger when we say something together. I’m so grateful to the artists, who are donating their time and talent to bring attention to this very important cause.”

100% of the proceeds raised through the Home For The Holidays concert go toward the True Colors Fund, Lauper’s foundation dedicated to ending the epidemic of LGBT youth homelessness.

Head here for more information about the Home For The Holidays concert and for more info about True Colors Fund, watch an interview with Lauper above.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/cyndi-lauper-home-for-the-holidays_us_580e29f0e4b000d0b157969e?section=us_queer-voices

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Oaxaca, sixth in suicides (Special) – Damed is the man who abandons himself.

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I think “hope” is only a bane, a curse, if one thinks that that hope within will never be satisfied, the promise will never really show up. Then that hope can be something that just is a sense of always seeing the feast and never being able to eat it. As we see hope, I think, it is that connection to Truth that in itself IS the feast and an awareness that the one who PLANTED that hope is not a tease, but the Christ-Truth that is here to save us always.
Name Withheld

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Oaxaca, sixth in suicides (Special)

ANTONIO TRUJILLO

Oaxaca, Oaxaca. | 20/10/2016 | 14:47:58

40% son menores de 24 anos

10% son menores de 14 anos

 

Oaxaca state ranks sixth nationally in terms of suicide, and that the entity for every 192 people who have died, one is suicide, which adds from 2005 to 2014, a total of  1382 suicides on average throughout the state, according to the “Statistics of suicides of the United Mexican States”, the National Institute of Statistics, Geography and Informatics (INEGI).

So 40 percent of these suicides are under 24 years, of which 10 percent are under 14 years, a problem that in recent years has been increasing since suicide has become a phenomenon to rise throughout the country, mainly in cities.

The sector is increasing suicide are children between 12 and 24 years, and that from 2011 to present, suicides increased by 50 percent. The most frequent factors are: lack of communication with their environment, loss of values, loneliness, family problems, financial problems, depression, anxiety, emotional problems and, in children, neglect and physical violence…

http://www.adiariooax.com/oaxaca-sexto-lugar-en-suicidios/

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The video is a re-share.  SuperSoul Short: The Conditioned | SuperSoul Sunday | Oprah Winfrey Network
OWN

After reading an article on hope our class had a discussion on it. Several students gave examples of how hope helped their families.

One shared how his family was in a car accident and how prayer made a big difference in their healing that followed.

Another student shared that he has yet to face any real trial or tribulation but recognized that perhaps the topic will have a profound effect on him in the future.  He went on to describe how his father almost lost their family farm but held on to hope and was able to save it.

A portion of the article is listed above and was read in its entirety by the class because hope is the major weapon against suicide.  The students added bullying as another main reason for youth suicide.

We briefly addressed what to do if they were being bullied.  Reach out and ask for help.  Find a teacher, a friend or parent.  Talk about it.  Ask for help and talk about it.

The students also cited alcohol as a major contributor to violence against youth within the family.  I got the feeling several were speaking from experience.

We finished our discussion with Oprah’s article on how a homeless man of 35 years (Raimundo Aarruda Sobrinho) finally had his dream fulfilled by having his poetry published and was reunited with his family.

Perhaps some viewed him as a person who gave up on hope.  But did he?  He continued to write poetry everyday and held on to his dream even when it seemed impossible to the human sense.

One person changed his life by taking the time to stop by and getting to know him.

How many people just walked on by all those years.  The Bible story of the good Samaritan comes to mind here.

Our class concluded with a discussion on a quote from Sobrinho’s poetry.

“Damed is the man who abandons himself.  These six words show that the worse a situation is, never, ever should a man consider it lost”.

Several students pulled me aside and thanked me for the “Hope” presentation and stated it had a positive impact on their lives and in a very good way.

“You taught us something to help us in life along with the English language.”

“Never give up, teacher.  This is what I will always remember when life gets tough”.

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Boston College, Ellen DeGeneres and Hallmark (Prom Video) – SpiritDay 2016

Happy ! Show the world you love them just the way they are.

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Published on Jun 30, 2016

In this Hallmark short film, a son comes out to his dad before prom. The results…heartwarming.

Boston College students show their support for LGBTQ youth on #SpiritDay

October 20, 2016

According to the 2013 eighth biennial report of the GLSEN National School Climate Survey, 55.5% of LGBTQ students were reported to feel unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation and 38.7% because of their gender expression. 74.1% were verbally harassed for their sexual orientation while 55.2% were for their gender expression. 36.2% of LGBTQ students reported to being physically harassed for their sexual orientation while 22.7% were for their gender expression. As I state these statistics on the bullying that LGBTQ students face, one thing is clear: in the midst of all the progress that seems to be going on, these rates are still too staggeringly high.

In President Obama’s 2015 Pride Month proclamation, he declared, “for countless young people, it is not enough to simply say it gets better; we must take action too.”

On Spirit Day, participants can easily demonstrate their support for LGBTQ kids, teens, and young adults simply by going purple: wearing it, talking about bullying, and taking action in local communities.

At Boston College, I decided to celebrate Spirit Day and show our support for LGBTQ youth through a photo series featuring various students, both straight and queer.

Unfortunately, many of my friends of color are not featured through this photo project, as they expressed fears of being seen as queer online. Knowing that this is a reality for many queer people, it is crucial to understand that allyship and high-profile visibility are not conflated. Allyship comes in various forms: whether that’s participating in a public photo campaign or through interpersonal work.

As we continue to define allyship and what it means to stand against bullying for queer youth, it’s important that we practice intersectionality and also condemn bullying against queer youth of color and trans and non-binary individuals.

Each year, millions of people “go purple” for Spirit Day in a united stand against bullying and to show support for LGBTQ youth. According to a 2015 GLSEN survey, more than half of LGBTQ students report being victimized based on sexual orientation, with a further three quarters of students who report hearing anti-LGBTQ remarks in school. Started in 2010 by high school student Brittany McMillan, Spirit Day now draws the participation of celebrities, corporations, media outlets, sports leagues, schools, faith institutions, national landmarks, and individuals around the world, who join together in a united stand against bullying.

Check out glaad.org/spiritday for more about how to stand against bullying and show support for LGBTQ youth. Also follow @GLAAD on Twitter to keep up to date with #spiritday news.


Spirit Day is made possible by the generous support of its presenting partners Target and Wells Fargo, official partners, NBA and WNBA, NFL, Viacom, and WWE, and supporting partners, American Eagle Outfitters, Barilla, Comcast NBCUniversal, Kellogg’s, Kirkland & Ellis, Toyota Financial Services, and Zipcar. The translation of GLAAD’s Spirit Day Resource Kit into multiple languages is made possible by a generous grant from Google supporting GLAAD’s Global Voices Initiative. Global Spirit Day resource kits are presented by Logo’s Global Ally campaign.

Past participants in Spirit Day include the White House, the Empire State Building, Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres, Cher, Laverne Cox, Kim Kardashian, Demi Lovato, Ariana Grande, Shaquille O’Neal, Good Morning America, The Today Show, The View, The Talk, The Tonight Show, MTV, the NBA, the NFL, Major League Baseball, NASCAR, WWE, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, the Las Vegas Strip, and more.

(Boston College students featured: photo one–Cynthia Gonzalez, Gabriella Zabbo, Sabel Flynn, Andrew Boucher; photo two–Edward Byrne, Julia Goetz, Joshua Frazier, Lily Nagengast; photo three–Anne Williams, Patrick Madaya, Connor Kratz, Eilis Bacon-Blaber; photo four–Collin Pratt.)

GLAAD Campus Ambassadors are a volunteer network of LGBTQ and ally college and university students who will work with GLAAD and within their local communities to build an LGBTQ movement to accelerate acceptance and end hate and discrimination.

If you would like to learn more about the GLAAD Campus Ambassador Program, please contact Clare Kenny— GLAAD Youth Engagement Strategist.

http://www.glaad.org/blog/boston-college-students-show-their-support-lgbtq-youth-spiritday

Courage, I am with you alway; I will lead you safely Home.

 

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.

I Corinthians 15:58

King James Version of the Bible

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An older student arrived early yesterday to my class and asked about my family. I shared that I am an orphan. She told me her mother is also an orphan and had a lot of health problems as a result. But she shared that when her mother got married her husband’s family became her mother and father. As a result, the health problems disappeared. Thus her mother doesn’t take anything for granted raising my student who set the highest score in our previous class where we all worked together as a team to make sure a struggling student would not fail.

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THE STILL SMALL VOICE

From the November 2, 1912 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel

Every one may hear its message—
King or beggar, high and low,
Soldiers ‘mid the din of battle,
Sailors when the tempests blow,
To the man of business worries,
To the orphan left alone,
Comes the low sweet voice which murmurs,
I will lead you safely home.

Whose the voice that comes so sweetly,
Leaving peace along the way,
Healing all the broken-hearted,
Cheering each so tenderly?
‘Tis the voice of Love that whispers
To the weary ones that roam:
Courage, I am with you alway;
I will lead you safely home.

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It Gets Better with God: your Mother, Love.

 

Dedicated to all those who felt unloved or unwanted by their human mothers.  There is nothing wrong with you.  There are no so-called “throw aways of society”.  We are all one in divine Love.

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Your freedom lies
in knowing who your Mother is—
not Eve: descendant of;
not bitter bringings-forth with taint and toil—
but God: your Mother, Love.

From the June 27, 1983 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel

 

How people react to losing their mothers with J.K. Rowling, Dr. Alexander, Fred Rogers, Johnny Depp and St. Teresa.

The Increasingly Dark Tone of the Series Was Inspired by Rowling’s Life Experiences:

The Harry Potter series becomes considerably more sophisticated as it progresses, grappling with serious issues like death and bigotry. Rowling has been open about the fact that much of the darkness is autobiographical. Rowling told Oprah Winfrey that, though she did not realize it when she began writing the series, making Harry an orphan, along with his subsequent experiences with death, was her way of dealing with the death of her mother, who died of Multiple Sclerosis when Rowling was 20. 

“If she hadn’t died, I don’t think it’s too strong to say that there wouldn’t be Harry Potter. The books are what they are because she died.” The Dementors, among the most frightening creatures in the franchise, were inspired by her struggles with depression during her 20s. “”It’s so difficult to describe to someone who’s never been there, because it’s not sadness. I know sadness. Sadness is to cry and to feel. But it’s that cold absence of feeling—that really hollowed-out feeling. That’s what Dementors are.”

J.K. Rowling

Poof! 5 Little-Known Facts About How J.K. Rowling Brought …

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Next, the interview below is an except from Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday regarding Dr. Eben Alexander’s book, “Proof of Heaven”.  This example shows how important a mother’s love can be for the health and well-being of a child and adult.

Though Dr. Alexander had built a successful career and had a loving family, he still had questions about his biological parents. Prior to 2008, he tracked down his birth mother… only to learn that she did not want to meet him.  After that, says Dr. Alexander, he experienced a deep sadness that threatened to derail everything in his life.

Oprah:  You grew up feeling loved and appreciated, but when your biological mother… said she didn’t want to see you, you went into a sinkhole.

Dr. Alexander:  It was absolutely devastating, because of the memory of feeling as if I was being thrown away.  My adoptive father — a renowned neurosurgeon — would tell me, “You can’t possibly remember anything that happened when you were weeks old.” But he was wrong. Because I later came to realize it was such a deep and powerful memory, it shaped everything about my knowing of this world and how I related to this world.

Oprah:  I just got that in a way like never before. And that is why this is a good thing we’re sharing here right now. That is why every mother or father who has to give up a child for adoption should explain to the child why. Even though it’s a baby. So they know the difference between being wanted and not wanted.

Dr. Alexander:  Right.

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May 1, 1969: Fred Rogers testifies before the Senate Subcommittee on Communications

Grief and self-destruction

How people react when their mother dies (including Johnny Depp)

01 Jun 2016, 00:15 GMT Report

Writer, philosopher, cartoonist, thinker

the-newshub.com

The recent and very public break down of Depp’s marriage has shocked many people. I won’t be so rude as to comment on what I believe to be true or not true, that is what courts are for. I find it interesting that this all immediately followed the loss of his mother. I am writing this as more of a way to draw attention to the immense power grief can have. I believe it is no coincidence that grief based on losing those so close to you, such as parents, partners, siblings or children, sends people into a deep state of mental distress. It is not spoken of enough.

Years ago I recall read about a woman, who had worked for a local council (doing the finances) when her mother died. She fell into a deep depression. She started gambling because it made her feel better. One thing led to another and she had gambled away her house, it got to the point where she was taking the council’s money and gambling that. She told her husband and he left her. She then found a note from her mother that read ‘You always do the right thing.’ That was enough to bring on a suicide attempt. The judge went easy on her, she was given a home sentence. I read this story in a magazine years ago and I couldn’t believe what a light sentence the judge gave the lady on the grounds that she had not grieved properly for her mother. I didn’t understand how that excuse worked, until I lost my own mother.

When you suffer grief, it is a state of great pain and it doesn’t end. It comes and goes, and it eventually becomes bearable. I think in the immediate time after, people need to be cared for in some way. This is not at all an attempt to say, losing your mother means you can break the law, not at all, but I think it is important to have compassion for people who are in pain. The saying ’hurt people hurt people’ can be very true in the case of grief. A mother’s love is unconditional and losing that is such a shock. When I lost my mother I incessantly dreamt of her. I read a book about lucid dreaming, so that I could deliberately see her in my dreams, I dreamt of her on purpose. There were dreams where we thought there was a chance she could come back to life, wish dreams. In another, she said she was beating the cancer and I had to tell her she had already gone (I look back now and realise I was telling myself that). In one of my last dreams of her, I said to her “Everything is so awful, but at least I can talk to you here.’ I will never forget what she said “Jenny, you have to stop conjuring me up in your dreams”. I was heartbroken. It reminded me of the scene in Harry Potter where he looks at the mirror to see his parents and Dumbledore says he has to stop because he could waste a whole life in front of that mirror. I stopped dreaming of mum and she has only appeared a few times since, to give me a hug.

While this all sounds very sentimental, I really was in a bad place for a long time after losing mum. I drank, I smoked, I was depressed. I was beyond sad. I wanted my mum back. It took years to heal. I went through an awful break up. I had sleepless nights. I ran away from the city. I saw a counsellor for my break up, but really only spoke to her about losing my parents. I did yoga, I changed careers, I went traveling. I would say now 13 years after my mother died and 11 years after losing dad, I now have children of my own and feel healed, yet still different. An acceptance of loss does happen. I look back on some of the times when I felt at my lowest and I want to give myself a hug. There were times when I felt so sad and alone and I actually don’t think people know what to say to you when you are going through such a loss.

I feel for Johnny Depp, I feel sorry for him and anyone that loses their mother and I feel for him being in that zone at the moment – there really should be a place for people to grieve.

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“Anyone who does anything to help a child in his life is a hero to me.”

Published on Jun 7, 2014

“Anyone who does anything to help a child in his life is a fredrogershero to me.”

—Fred Rogers

We all knew him as the lovable host of Mister Rogers’ Neighbourhood, but few know just how much the late Fred Rogers did to push television networks to become better nurturers of our youth. As a teacher himself, he cared about the education and well-being of children across the globe immensely.

Check out this YouTube video and watch Mr. Rogers calmly turn a condescending hard-nosed US senator into a kid all over again.

The message: Teaching is by far one of the more noble and influential professions on the planet. Teachers help their students every day to become better learners, better citizens, and in doing so become better teachers. Make no mistake—you’re a hero to many children. Let that be one of the many reasons you continue to nurture the architects of the future.

onebook“One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world.”

―Malala Yousafzai

 

16-year-old Pakistani student Malala Yousafazi was an advocate for students’ rights in her hometown of Swat during a very dangerous time of war and political upheaval. Malala won the Nobel peace Prize in 2014. She now lives in the United Kingdom where she still attends school.

The message: If there’s anyone who is in a position to bring positive change into the world every day, it’s a teacher. Don’t ever think that your efforts as a teacher are insignificant and make no difference. There is no telling what positive effect you will have on someone’s life, especially a student’s. Be brave, stay passionate about your kids and your work, and don’t give up—ever.

Photo Below – Preparing the teachers for the upcoming TOEFL EXAM

workshop