Could You Describe the Ruckus, Sir?

Welcome to Vicky Bell's blog.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Letter to my daughter (with an update 9/16/13)

Hello my girl,
I  wanted to say hi and tell you how much I miss you and that I hope your classes are going well and that you are having fun too.
But I also have to have a mommy moment-  bear with me here.  I won't take long, and I won't be saying anything I haven't already said in one form or another,  but it is important.

You may or may not have heard about the NJ college student who killed himself last week because his room-mate had posted videotape of him having sex with another guy.  A terrible, senseless tragedy.

My mommy job requires that I remind you of two essential things:
One:
Nothing ruins your life forever. NOTHING.
Two:
Nothing ruins your life forever. NOTHING.

If that young man had only waited a couple of weeks nobody would have cared- he'd have gotten past it.  People have short memories- life would have gotten better, much better.  His parents and friends? They loved him prior to the tape- they would have loved him afterward too.  A few awkward moments and then life goes on.

But when you are young you don't know that even the awkward moments are fleeting.  On this,  you just have to trust the old people.  Remember when you were really small and cried and cried over something?  Well,  it didn't last.  That's kind of what it's like- awful things happen, you feel like there's a rock in the pit of your stomach, somehow time goes by and it gets better.  I promise you, it ALWAYS gets better.

The students, a girl and boy, who were involved in the taping and posting-- they are being charged with bias crime, invasion of privacy and possibly other things.  Their college life is over.  They will have to live with this death the rest of their lives-- and their families are devastated.  What they did was so wrong- but also so kid-stupid.  Not to mention mean. And so their lives will be different forever- but even so- their families will love them and they will have time enough to hopefully live in such a way as to make meaning from their mistake.

So, my beautiful girl,  never, ever think something is unfixable.  NOTHING you do will ever keep us from loving you.  NOTHING you do could be so awful you can't get past it.

And if someone is mean to you, and it isn't something you can ignore-- seek out people to talk to about it.  Surround yourself with people who are supportive.  If you ever need help and don't know how to ask- try writing a letter instead.  And right now- before you might need such help- think about who you would talk to if needed.  In the midst of turmoil sometimes we don't always think as clearly- having a plan makes it easier to find help in crisis.  And remember there are always alternatives. Always.

Finally, don't be mean.  Don't let other people be mean.
Stand up for the underdog, protect those who aren't as smart or confident or easygoing as yourself.
Treat people's feelings like fragile little puppies- if you play with them- be gentle.

I love you so much and I know you really don't need me to tell you this stuff.... but it's my job.
Love and hugs,
Mommy


Addendum 9/16/13

It's been nearly 3 years since this letter was published, went viral, reached a global audience, and ended up permanently linked from multiple websites including Ellen Degenere's.  Some wonderful students even made it into an anti-bullying video.  (I've included links below).

I am humbled and grateful to all those who reached out to tell me what my letter meant to them-- thank you.  I am so glad that the letter continues to reach a wide audience.

There has been some positive news- teen pregnancy is down, gay marriage approval is increased and there are more successful anti-bully programs then ever.  New Jersey passed new statewide rules which prohibit public school athletes, coaches and even fans from using  language against the gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion or disability of an athlete.  When I was young it was common in sports to hear words like "pussy", "faggot", and "retard".  Today it will get you kicked out of the game or out of the stands.  So there is progress.

Unfortunately a quick look at some statistics indicates a disturbing increase in suicide rates among young people this year (2013). I leave it to the experts to speculate on the causes, but clearly there is still work to be done so that our children can grow up feeling hopeful and supported.

On a lighter note, I am delighted to report that the original reader of this letter, my daughter, graduated last June and is currently happily employed in the field of her choosing. She and her siblings are all out of the nest and doing well, for which I am very, very grateful.



http://www.ellentv.com/2010/10/14/a-touching-letter-to-a-daughter/

http://youtu.be/zs8f-bPdya



640 comments:

  1. Vicky, you need to write a book. Or two or three. You not only have something great to say, but you say it well. I'm going to try to print this and give a hard copy to all my grandchildren (if it's ok with you). I'd also like to hang it in the gym so other parents can read it. Would you mind? Pat

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  2. Pat- yes of course you can print it and distribute as you like-- although some of your grandbabies might be a wee bit young..... lol thanks for the compliments too!

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  3. If only more parents spoke to their children in this way....

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  4. As a Rutgers University senior, I find this deeply moving. Amazing writing.

    http:Www.outofthecastle.blogspot.com

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  5. I wholeheartedly agree. This was very well written. thanks I will read it to my teen daughters tonight.

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  6. Outofthecastle- thank you for your comment- means a lot coming from a student. I'm glad that you had a chance to see it.

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  7. Yay! My first nekkid chicken comment- gotta go throw feed or something! Thanks :=)

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  8. If there were more mommies (and daddies and friends and family members and co-workers and neighbors) like you, there'd be less people talking to people like me... You are a great mom and the best best friend! Thanks for going public!

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  9. You are a great mom.
    Your daughter is a lucky daughter.

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  10. thank God my daughter is the one who will stand up in a hurry for the underdogs, she will fight a battle that is not hers in a flat second and will try her best to be the one to help guide another to a better way of doing things. does this mean shes perfect ... Nope not at all she and i fight regularly as she is 18 a senior in high school lives out on her own with her older boyfriend and is 6 months pregnant as i type this... but WE STILL LOVE HER and Will Always. Beautifully written letter and perfectly said truths! THANK YOU
    ps came to visit you via MPM :)

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  11. Brilliant post (I am forwarding the link to my son) I found it through a FB friend :-)

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  12. Thank you for that,I shared it to my FB wall. Should be required reading and discussion between all parents and kids! Well Said!

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  13. Vicky I would like to post a link to this post on my facebook wall. I saw your blog post in an email that someone forwarded on to me. It was from a PFLAG group (someone who knew you forwarded it on). This is so amazingly moving that I would like more people to see it. I hope you will allow me to repost giving you credit.
    Thanks,
    Debbie Gottsleben GSA Advisor
    Morristown High School
    Morristown, NJ

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  14. Debbie, I'm honored you want to share it- go for it. If it is helpful or inspiring to anyone than I am very happy to have people copy and post or reproduce or pass it along in any way (other than for profit- of course). Thank you!

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  15. Vicky I see that several other people have already said that they posted it to their FB walls. I am going to make a leap here and go ahead and post on mine as well rather than waiting for permission. I think your message is too important too wait. Thank you for writing such a beautiful, thoughtful post.

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  16. You are a friend of a friend on facebook, I hope it is okay to print this. I must give a copy to each one of my children. Your words are all so true. Thank you.

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  17. Of course you can print it for your kids!

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  18. Brace yourself, Vicky...this post just might go viral. :) I'm about to share it on FB, too. Thank you for finding the words so many of us want to say to our kids, but might not be able to articulate quite as beautifully.

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  19. Yes yes and yes. Exactly. If only all teenagers understood this. Will be sharing this thought with my teens. Thanks.

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  20. Thank you for such a well written letter. I have spoken to my 16 yr daughter about life and how things will always get better, to always be kind and to always know that I will be here for her NO MATTER WHAT. Our town has had so many suicides with young kids and I can't imagine the hurt those families are going thru that is something I don't EVER want to experience. I will share this with every parent I know..Thank you..
    Natuzza

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  21. This is such a beautiful and touching post. I will also be posting this to my FB wall as I feel there are many who will benefit from this wonderful message! Thank you for sharing!

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  22. Oh, so true for everyone, not just kids. Thank you for sharing these heartfelt thoughts with everyone and not just your daughter - you may just save a few lives.

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  23. I don't know if you know, but your beautiful post has viral on both FaceBook and LiveJournal. Thank you for writing it. I'm going to share it with my daughter as soon as I get home.

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  24. I saw your blog on Facebook. I'm forwarding it to my daughter. Thanks!

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  25. Very well said! I too, am sharing with my children and extended family.

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  26. Found you from a friend on Facebook. You have said it beautifully.

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  27. Also found you from facebook!!! Very well put!! I am going to print this out for my 11 year old daughter, who just started middle school! Thank You!

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  28. Very, very well said! Thank you for sharing...

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  29. As a mom myself I found what u said needs to be heard more by our children.... and as a mom i am always hearing yes mom u are being a mom again lol My kids are 35 and 27 and I am so proud of them for their values ...ones that took a lifetime to build....again thank you for your post. Lets share this for sure...Enjoy your ride, its a blast.

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  30. Well written and well said! Awesome and poignant! I shall share with my daughters who are 9 and 10 - just the age when things are starting to bother them. Thanks for sharing

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  31. wow! That was amazing. I am a mother too and talked to my 15 year old son about this tragedy.
    What a beautiful world it would be if one day, people didn't care about others sexuality.

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  32. Just checking in to say that I appreciate all your nice comments. Thank you.

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  33. I took this and reposted on my FB page, and my friends and family have reposted, and their friends have reposted - this is the true ripple effect in action. Isn't it amazing how one person can touch the lives of so many - even if they've never met? I'm glad to see something positive , even a tiny thing like a blog post that came from a tragic event. I hope it makes a difference for even one person, saves one struggling, lost soul. I am not a parent yet, but I hope to be able to write/speak such a simple yet poignant life lesson to my children someday.

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  34. Someone posted a link for this on Facebook. Beautifully written. Thank you so much for sharing your heart.

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  35. Thank you for writing this - it really warmed my hart - just what I needed to read before bed. I wish my mother would have had this conversation with me when I was younger. It might have changed the way I dealt with my internal horror and shame that I carried. Fortunately, I was able to find my own inner light and become the person that I am today.

    I went the NYU vigil last night and was moved by the love and support. I feel horrible for these kids that couldn't tolerate the torture anymore.

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  36. So very beautifully written! Thank you!

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  37. We need to make a movement to have this posted to as many people as possible!! I am the mother of a 16 year old boy and a 12 year old daughter. We have had problems with my daughter being bullied in the past. My world would end if either one of my kids found themselves in a situation they couldn't see an end to. Thanks from another mommie!!!!!

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  38. Cindy I'm so sorry that your daughter has had trouble with bullies, I hope this can be helpful for you and she. Best wishes going forward!

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  39. I pray that these words can help another person.

    AM
    http://allergymum.blogspot.com/

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  40. Every now and then a moment in history is seen as a turning point in someone's life, some for good and some for not so good. These kind of writings define these great moments. This is well said, appropriate, and a blessing to all who read it. Thank you for sharing your inspiration and gift.

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  41. A Sacramento 47 yr old mom of two teens here: We have frank discussions like this in our household...and just yesterday I was thinking to myself how this must be the topic of one of our dinner conversations. I too was thinking of how very tragic it is that the young man felt such deep despair that he would take his life over that. Yes, the cyber world allows stupid things like this to be shared over and over, but as you say, there would have been options for him...ways to rise above. Now it is everyone he leaves behind who have to rise above--each in their own ways. And yes, the people who did the taping should be held accountable. Thanks for your posting.

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  42. Vicky--
    As the parent of an autistic child (still in elementary school) I am constantly worried about the future. Middle School. High School and what will happen beyond. I am worried about the people who let bullies get away with it.

    I am worried about the parents who teach their children hate is not only an option but it's a great way to have fun.

    Thank you for proving yet again, that most people are awesome. That they want to change the world. Thank you.
    May I link to your blog from mine?
    http://autismwheel.wordpress.com

    Thanks!
    AutieMomJulie

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  43. great post. thanks for sharing!!1

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  44. This was amazing and has inspired me to have a similar conversation with my children. Thank you so much!

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  45. Yea mom! A message we should all share with our children!!

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  46. Thank you so much for this beautifully written letter to your daughter. I am going to forward it to my daughters. Wow, you said everything that I've been feeling but wasn't sure how to put into words with my kids.I've been so devastated about what has happened.
    Thank you again,
    Robin

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  47. Your comments keep coming, I am awed, and deeply appreciative. This means a lot to me- thank you all.

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  48. Thank you for this. I don't have kids but I was one once. I still remember how truly horrible things could feel and am thankful that I had parents who, like you, shared their unconditional love with me. Beyond the hate and ignorance that spurred this tragedy is the even more important message that you are sending: NOTHING RUINS YOUR LIFE FOREVER. I think adults need to hear it too sometimes! Your daughter is very lucky to have you.

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  49. you have taken the words and put them into a timely and poignant message to all our youth....i couldn't have said this any better....thank you.

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  50. I had to comment again...I clicked over from a link to your post on fb. Funnily enough I live in the same town you do : ) Just moved here a year ago. Its a very small world indeed! We are the same age and I have two grown up daughters. I'm going to have to look around here now.

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  51. So perfectly said, we all try to be the mother that you obviously are.

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  52. Thank you for writing this. I had parents who were the opposite of the type of parent you clearly are. I have always known that parents like you must exist and once again my faith in that has been confirmed. I put myself in a coma many years ago and I was deeply upset that I awoke from it.Today I am a very happy man with a good life and next year will celebrate 30 years with my man. It was not easy to gain the life that I have but I fought hard for it. I completely agree with you: everything comes to pass and nothing comes to stay.

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  53. Vicky, you have done your parents proud, and they have raised you right. It is a beautiful blog in that you addressed your future daughter to be. Nicely written and to the point. It is a shame, though, that tragedy such as this has to occur to bring beauty to the forefront. I hope your blog and this young boy's tragedy brings forth the saving of other lives that see no way out. When, indeed, they can see each moment through. I am thankful that I (as your parents) embrace all human kind. May this senseless act bring an opening of hearts to all. God Bless you, your family and, especially, those families affected closely by this tragedy.

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  54. Actually, Yvonne, this is a real letter which I had emailed to my very real daughter, whom you can see in the pic. Thank you for your kind words.

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  55. So beautifully written. I am sending this link to my daughter, who is in college. Great words to be remembered!

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  56. Such a truly beautiful post! If only every parent would say these words to their children. You have a very lucky daughter!

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  57. Oh Vicky, so outstanding!! Thank you so much for this post. I shall send it to my two daughters, and post your link on my facebook profile. The whole WORLD needs to read this! Blessings.

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  58. Found this from a link on FB, and am reposting and also copying (if you don't mind, so that I may share this with my daughter (who is 5) in a few years. So well written and as a mom these are the exact words I want my daughter to know! Thank you!

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  59. You are very wise, your daughter is lucky to have you as her mommy.

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  60. As was said above "you might go viral" I'm pretty sure you hit it. I found your link from two different friends that don't know each other on FB. I have a one year old and two year old..I'm going to print out this and put it in a place that we will see it often growing up. I, too, had the opposite parents, than you. And I, too, tried to take my life many times. I wish I'd known that moments are simply that..moments. And rough patches, are simply that...patches in a tapestry known as life. Thank you for putting, it seems, all our sentiments, into words that will be easy for us to pass on and look at often.

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  61. Vickie,

    I just came back to Colorado from PA and a friend of mine there sent it to me via FB. It just takes ONE to begin a movement!! I want to make sure my Granddaughter sees this so will repost it on my FB account! Technology being used for GOOD purposes instead of the EVIL one done back at Rutgers....so sad!! Thank you for doing the right thing and everyone else for recognizing the wisdom in it!!

    Carol
    Littleton, CO

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  62. Vicki-

    Thank you for your sharing such wisdom. You are going viral... and we all need to the words to take back to our children and schools and communities, to embrace ourselves and teach from them.

    Thank you!
    Donna

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  63. Wow - thanks for the simple reminders. No age is too young for these reminders. Simple & to the point. Thank you for sharing. I loved it.

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  64. Dear Vicki.

    I pray your letter to your daughter will stretch around the globe many times. So well written, so well said...Me and my 2 grown children are 11 year survivors who lost my husband, their dad to suicide.

    What you said is 100% correct if I may quote you "And if someone is mean to you, and it isn't something you can ignore-- seek out people to talk to about it. Surround yourself with people who are supportive."

    From one mother to another..I commend you :)
    Audrey
    Orlando, FL

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  65. so incredibly well written and such an important message to send to kids of all ages. There is no excuse for bullying like that -- it is nauseating to think about. By the same token, it is important to remind high school and college aged students that even the worst situations will pass and aren't worth losing your life over. Thank you for putting this out there.

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  66. I'm a teacher...may we post this in the school newsletter? It was a wonderful message that all students and parents need to see.

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  67. Again, I am so grateful and appreciative of all your comments.
    Beth, yes, please do put it in your newsletter- I'm delighted that more young people will see it.
    Thank you!

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  68. This is such a beautiful post. I am a 21 year old and I know what it is like to have such loving & supportive parents like you. Mine have always been very supportive of every decision I ever made, even if it was my stupid decision. I agree with everyone else, there needs to be more parents like you. Truly an inspiration! Thanks for sharing! :) I also, found you through a family member on fb.

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  69. Vicki, You said something we have all been struggling to convey to our children so well. I am going to make sure all three of my boys see this. Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful. Thank you for sharing your words with us all.

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  70. Fabulous message and so well said!!!
    I have five kids and, like you, even though this is the message I've communicated to them their whole lives, it's so important to have those "mommy moments" to say it again. I'm sharing this with them, their friends, my friends... Thank you!!

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  71. Thank you...I do not know you but thank you for leading me to the words I need to say to my daughter right now...again Thank you...

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  72. Just beautiful! I am going to link you on my blog, I hope you don't mind. I think this is beautiful!

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  73. What a beautiful post. My daughter is just 6 right now but these words are not too late to tell her. Thanks for posting.

    Grace @ Sandier Pastures (Dubai)
    http://sandierpastures.com

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  74. Thank you for such true reading, can i copy to my wall for my children to read too....it is beautiful!

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  75. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  76. brilliant, loving, true...I remember when my son was born and holding his little tiny newborn form I was overcome with a massive wave of emotions and thinking 'it doesn't matter what you do, what you ever do, I will love you till my last breath, you are perfect'

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  77. I SO needed to hear this today as I struggle with my own personal tragedies. Thank you.

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  78. this is a wonderful letter to your baby girl. but i take issue with one statement: "If that young man had only waited a couple of weeks nobody would have cared- he'd have gotten past it. People have short memories- life would have gotten better, much better." -- the reason i take issue with it is that being humiliated in that tape was most likely NOT the beginning of a gay young person's being the target of teasing and bullying. i know this sad fact first hand. add to that the perceived shame still rampant in our culture about homosexuality. also, it's not important that if he'd 'waited a couple of weeks nobody would have cared' -- what matters is what it did to HIM and how HE cared about it. plus, the video would have gone viral into the hands of all the other voyeuristic jerks out there who are so obsessed with gay sex that what they are really doing is blowing smoke on their own questionable heterosexuality. thank you for listening to my opinion of your letter, and that aside from that one sentence, it's perfect in my opinion.

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  79. As a mother of six, four daughters and two sons, I think this is beautiful and should be read by every mother everywhere. The harrassement doesn't only go on in college, it happens in high school as well. It starts at a young age and the schools need to be made aware of the fact that it goes on and how to stop it. A copy of this letter should be put up in every school in the country and should be displayed prominently. thank you for being someone who cares about the situation in our schools and what is happening to our children.

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  80. I don't know you, but would LOVE to keep reading whatever it is you write..I saw this on a friend's facebook page, and shared it on mine and you are getting quite a lot of GREAT feedback. Kids all over Cincinnati and beyond will have read this by bedtime tonight. Very inspiring and very well said.
    Randi Marino

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  81. Thank you so much for posting this. I have not been able to stop thinking about the young man that tragically took his own life and have been grieving in my own way for the family he left behind. Your letter helps me to make sense of it all in some small way, by keeping the doors of communication open with our children. Mine are in their teens when life can become difficult to navigate for so many reasons that seem insignificant as we grow older. I hope it's o.k. if I share this with others as it is truly heartfelt and spot on. I would like to post it on SPARKPEOPLE.com which I am a member of for so many of us need to read & share this...Regards, NY Mom (Liza)

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  82. Woke up this morning to these wonderful comments and heartfelt messages- thank you all again for taking the time to read this and to write from your hearts.
    I am happy to give permission to those of you who've asked to repost, copy for your children and friends, include in your newsletters etc. If this can be helpful in ways I never imagined then so be it- thank you.

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  83. Quite simply, thank you for sharing. Your words will ripple out into the world and you will touch millions, and save countless thousands who are lucky enough to read this. Paying it Forward.
    Leslie (Norton,MA)

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  84. I nearly cried into my cup of coffee. Your daughter is very lucky.

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  85. Nicely said. I was a firefighter for 30 years and saw the results of some of these disasters. It was always a trial to see the results of people just being cruel to each other for no other reason than to just do it. Thank you for writing this. It will make a difference somewhere to someone.

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  86. Thank you Vicky. I will share this with my children today.

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  87. Wish I had this letter over a month ago lost our daughter 8/17...........it is really good!!

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  88. This stuck a chord with me too. I was just explaining this concept to my 15 year old stepdaughter, although nowhere near as eloquently. Saw it on FB. Thanks!

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  89. I have printed your letter and promised myself I will do everything I can to make my children (ages 3 and 5) know these words. Thank you very much.

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  90. Hi. One of my friends posted on FB about this and I just had to come over and read it. What you have written is *so right*. My kids are still quite young (5 and 7) but I am trying to make them understand nothing is so bad that it can't be dealt with and resolved in some way or another and that they are never alone or have no one to talk to.
    Wonderful words you have written. I have someone in mind I would like to share this with if you don't mind.

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  91. From one mother to another, thank you for having the courage to put this in writing in public. So many parents are afraid to talk to their kids because they think it might embarrass their children or hurt their feelings, but sometimes they just need to know that NO MATTER WHAT, we love them and will be there for them. I will post this on my facebook and let my son read this as well. Again, thank you.

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  92. Nicely done. My short version: The single most important thing about feelings is, feelings change.

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  93. This is such a fantastic post. I am a gay male who is also the parent of four, yes four, young children, 7,5,3 and 2. My partner (we are married as we live in Connecticut where it is legal now) and I adopted all of these children who are all full biological siblings, the youngest we've each had since birth right out of the hospital. Although being gay for me hasn't always been easy, I have been lucky to have a wonderfully supportive and proud mother and family. This post will mean so much to so many as you can already see. I do worry about my children and being teased or bullied because they have two gay dads. I always talk to them, to the level that they can understand, about the many different families there are. Some have stepmom and stepdads, some have just one mom or one dad, some have two moms or two dads, and some have grandparents or aunts and uncles who take over as their parents. This is so that they understand it doesn't matter what kind of family you have or that others have. Treat everyone the same as you wish them to treat you. Respect other people and help those who cannot help themselves. Be a friend to everyone and an enemy to no one. This are life's lessons that I try and teach them. We have been very fortunate to live in a community, although it is considered conservative, that has been very accepting. My children have many friends and are always getting invited to every birthday party and playdate. Their parents are always requesting that my partner and I come as well and get together for dinners and such. Maybe it's that we are a novelty since we are one of the very few gay families in our community and the school. But whatever it is, I am happy to know that there are people out there like yourself looking out for their children and instilling positive values and teaching acceptance. It gives me hope that someday homosexuality will not be such a big deal.

    Thank you for post.

    Brian from CT.

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  94. Touching, true and just beautiful! Thanks for sharing Fran!

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  95. A beautifully written letter to your daughter, all of our daughters and sons, nieces and nephews. I've posted to my facebook and suggested that this is a wonderful way to open a dialogue regarding difficult times ... we'll all have them ... and to remember that things will get brighter. Thank you.

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  96. Thank you Vicky - my friend posted this on FB and I cannot wait to share with my three sons - ages 14, 9 and 9. We have always taught our boys to embrace the fact that people are not all the same, but beautifully unique - and we were all so saddened by this tragedy.

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  97. I am posting another response because I want everyone to know that I read all of the comments you leave, and they mean a lot to me. I appreciate them- very much- and am so glad that you are sharing this and feel it is helpful. Thank you again for taking the time to let me hear your thoughts. I wish you all the best- this is an amazing experience.

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  98. I don't know you, but wow, what an awesome post. I was thinking about everything you wrote the other day. I was thinking I will teach my kids to respect other people no matter what their race, sex, gender is. You just always be nice and pleasant to people and if you're in trouble you can always come to mom and dad. Well done.

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  99. You have touched many lives by sharing your letter. Things we all have thought but didn't put into words. You did it beautifully. Thankyou. Ruth Wright

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  100. Vicky - thank you so much for sharing this letter. You put into words what so many of us parents are thinking but somehow can't say it so eloquently. I will definitely print this out and share it w/ my girls.

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  101. If I lived near Branchville NJ, I'd love to become your business partner....You seem like you'd be a great partner....open, fair, nonjudgmental and loving! I'm 69, still working, 4 grown kids & 9 grands...and finding life a great adventure. I pray our society moves closer to chosing love rather than hate & judgment (which I believe is motivated by fear)

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  102. Very well and simply said. A powerful message to all parents & children.

    I am a yoga teacher in PA who works with children with autism. I am always emphasizing these ideas. I just started a series of programs using art & storytelling to illustrate these all important points more colorfully to all children and young adults-as well as inclusion, respect and self-confidence.

    I want to re-post this to my FB page. (BodyLogique) I hope you don't mind. Thank you so much for your insight.

    ~Barbara Gini

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  103. Vicky, you took the thoughts and emotions in my head, and put them down so eloquently. I have posted this on FB so others may read it. I have periodically told my kids this, but I get after them a lot more often about cleaning their rooms, improving their grades, cleaning the kitchen, cooperating with siblings--all the things I think they don't do to my expectations. How about I reverse which ones I tell them more often?

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  104. You've made an impact on many with your beautiful words to your daughter - I would have loved to hear those words come from my mother. Your children are very blessed.

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  105. what a lovely letter, and you'll never have to buy one of those Hallmark cards that says, "I guess I don't tell you often enough, how much I love you"... can there be too many times to tell your child they are loved? I don't think so. Well done...

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  106. I'm a college student and my mother sent this to me. It's pretty funny becuase the part about people being mean was just happening. This was written very well and I'm happy that it has been spread the way it has. All mothers should send this to their daughters. It made me feel very happy and loved!

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  107. That's gorgeous, thanks for creating a template for the rest of us to follow.

    Jacquie

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  108. Thank you so much for sharing. What an AMAZING letter. FYI, if you haven't gauged by now, your letter if being re-posted, over & over on FB by so many others that appreciate your poignant & beautiful words. =O)

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  109. Great post. My parents told us and showed us these same values and it is sad today that so many children can't share with a parent their true heart. Nothing on this earth should shatter that parent-child bond. Three cheers for the unconditional love of family.

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  110. Such a beautiful and well said letter! My children are still young but my husband and I have often discussed trying to teach the same things to them as they grow!

    ~Aimee Taylor
    http://madamtae.blogspot.com

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  111. This is truly a wonderful post,but so many young people,and teens learn this type of haterd from there parents. So the parents need to be educated on this growing problem as well as teens. This was beautiful written!

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  112. This is wonderful...thanks for writing this and thanks to whomever has gotten this out in the world...sigh..when will this stop? Talk to your children...and hold them close...

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  113. everyone needs to stand up for the underdog. great post

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  114. A priceless and lifesaving letter!! I also would like to repost, share, and pass it on! There is nothing left to be said - you said it all. Thank you so much for this thoughtful, honest, and inspiring letter! It needs to be seen around the world! God bless you for this gift, not only to your daughter, but to the world!!

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  115. I work in an elementary and want to share this all over the building. I will post this on my FB wall as well. This is so important and must be said again and again. Young people, old people, everyone needs to be reminded that there is nothing too big, bad, or ugly that we can't get past it. Thank you for sharing this in such a lovely way!

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  116. What a beautiful and honest letter that was written from the heart. This should be spread nationwide so others can read it and follow it and know that there is always another option and that life is precious!

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  117. So beautifully written. I'm so glad that I was given the link.

    Life always gets better. And worse. And better again.

    It's just that we have to be there and remind each other that we're all crazy and going to be okay...this post reminds me of that. Thank you.

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  118. I know that this is about to go viral ... and so it should. It's written from the heart of a mother to one of her offspring regarding an awful subject. It was brave, it was eloquent and it was poignant. It *should* be shared. It's one of the life changing things of our generation. I hope that every kid in the world under 25 reads it ... and passes it on ... and that every kid in the world under 25 reads it ... and passes it on ... and on, and on, and on ... until there isn't a kid in the world who hasn't read it and taken notice of it ... and passed it on ....

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  119. Great article - this was shared with me through a friend on Facebook.

    I am saving a copy right now - to share with my daughters as they get older. They are 3 and 6 now. While these lessons can and should be taught constantly, this a great letter to share with them as they head off to school many years from now.

    It is so sad, how hurtful the world can be and what it does to people, both victims and perpetrators. As you said, everyone's life is forever changed over something truly senseless.

    Thank you for taking the time to write this and being willing to share it!

    Joe

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  120. I'm going to go tell all these things to my teens right now. It's so easy to forget, as we get older, how earth shattering things can seem to kids.

    And it can be so difficult for them to believe we will love them. No matter what.

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  121. Vicky ... Thank you so much for posting this .. very well said .. I have four children of my own and I will be sharing it with them. We've already lost close family friends and I can't tell them enough, in enough ways how much we love them and not to take their lives so seriously and to always do the right thing. You've offered me another way. Thank you :) Monica

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  122. thank you. i forwarded this to both my son (14) and my daughter (18). thank you for the exact right words.

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  123. this is absolutely beautiful, I found it on FB on Iliketosave.com and it caught my eye, you brought me to tears, as a mom of three, my oldest 16 and youngest special needs, I worry every day about the cruel things people do. I try to keep my motto at home simple, if everyone isn't laughing its not funny!
    I want to share this with everyone! can I repost?

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  124. What a beautiful letter. I have told my children the same things, though not as eloquently as you have. I hope you don't mind if I post this on my FB page.

    Kids need to know that no matter what - we will always be there for them.

    God Bless you.

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  125. Your blog was posted on my fb wall as well....Thank you so much for sharing such an important message to the youth of our times. Many blessing to you and yours.

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  126. You know, even us grown-ups need this reminder sometimes. Thanks. =)

    Also, thanks for pointing out the consequences of the students who posted the video, while stating that things are fixable and their family still loves them. I feel for both families.

    Thanks for sharing your "mommy moment" with the world.

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  127. Checking in again to say that I love all your comments, they're sweet, funny, heartfelt, touching, wrenching, hopeful, darling... and I appreciate every one.
    Some of you I want to hug, some I want to hang out with, some I want to pick brains of (Is that a sentence?)... All have touched me deeply. Thank you.

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  128. Wow! That was perfectly written and such an important message to instill in our children and everyone for that matter! Thank you so much for sharing!

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  129. Vikki,
    I am a jounior high student. I thought that was tuly amzing! I do not see why those kids had to do such a terible thing. Thanks for such a great blog! Thanks for sharing your "Mommy moment" with us!
    ~Taylor~

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  130. I am a Mother of 3 in Ridgewood NJ My youngest is a year old than Tyler. He was such a kind and gentle young man with a musical talent that was truly a gift from God. Our Community has been rocked by this tragic and senseless loss. I also remind my children that no matter how bad a situation seems, we can get through it. Nothing is so bad that we can't deal with it as a family. We love our children unconditionally. I think this is true for most Moms. Keep Tyler's soul in your prayers and also pray for his family during this unthinkable time.

    A Mom from Ridgewood, NJ

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  131. Wow, extremely powerful and beautifully put! This left me speechless and crying. I only hope I can be half the mother you are to my 3 year old:)

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  132. I recently had a conversation about the tragedy of suicide with my son, who was devastated when a friend recently took his life. If only the person who is has lost all hope understood that time heals, and even when life seems impossible, it can and does get better. Thank you for sharing this beautifully & thoughtfully written letter

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  133. So well put, what a great Mom. Now, if we can just share this with more kids!

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  134. I copied this for each of my three teenagers and left it on their pillow to read tonight. My oldest son (almost 18) just came downstairs, gave me a hug, and told me he loved me too! Thanks Vicky! One person can make a difference.

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  135. great post! i just linked back to you. thanks for these awesome words! a great reminder to all of us.

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  136. I just printed this for my 16 year old daughter. So well said. Thank you.

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  137. Great letter! I just talked to one of my daughters she was as impressed. This letter should be a required reading. Well done! I sent it to my four kids and I am sure they will feel the same way I do. You daughter is very lucky to have you as her mother.

    Sergey

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  138. Love, love, love your post! I can't add anymore than what's already been posted. I'm just sorry it had to be in response to a tragedy that could have been prevented.

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  139. Thank you for allowing all of us to share these powerful words to your daughter. I will be reposting on FB and Twitter and, of course, sending to my daughters ;-)

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  140. My kids are 3 and 1 (and our son in heaven is 4). You are a great role model for me..who is wondering how I will navigate this tough world kids are in these days.

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  141. Your stories really lift me up. Thank you all for your comments, for sharing bits of your lives. Thank you for finding my words helpful and worth saving and sharing. This post has taken on a life of it's own, and I am very, very honored.

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  142. Vicky you could have just as easily have written this letter to me.....I am 38 and still need the sense of a parents voice to get me through tough spots. Thank you.

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  143. Short, simple, beautiful and brilliant.
    You must be an outstanding mother

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  144. My mother is in heaven and I have two little boys. I need my mother and this letter came across to me sounding exactly like what she would say if she were here to help me through some of the tough times I'm going through now. I cried and cried when I read it. If felt like a message through you from her. Or at least exactly what she would say to me. It blessed me tremendously. Thank you.

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  145. as a college freshmen with many gay friends i find this not just a small tragedy for his family and friends, but also for all of use openminded straight people who love indiscriminately. it doesn't matter to me if they are gay straight or purple as long as they can be civil towards each other, because nobody needs that much hate in their lives. that is a very permanent solution to a very temporary problem.

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  146. thank you for taking the time to write this. So many people have seen it and passed on its beautiful message.

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  147. Thank you so much for writing such an amazing and beautiful letter. As a 25 year old girl living in New Jersey who was horribly bullied my entire life, these tragedies have hit me hard. I too am going to share this on Facebook. Thank you, thank you, thank you! <3

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  148. Someone once told me. Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. So true. Thanks for sharing your letter.

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  149. This was so beautifully written. I am also going to share this on my FB profile, AND save it for down the road when my 4 year old is a teen.
    Thank You !!!

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  150. I think everyone teenager and young adult needs to read this. It is very well written and very powerful. Thanks for sharing.

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  151. Thank you for a beautifully written and timely message. A student in a local high school has just committed suicide and I have sent your letter on to our high school principal to possibly share with our parent and student community. Thank you for sharing.

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  152. With the turmoil that children go through I think alot of children need this thanks for your well written words they will come in handy in the future!

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  153. I couldn't have written it any different. Wonderful words of wisdom and I am posting on my facebook page for all to see as well as linking it to both my son and daughter. Thank you for sharing this with us. i hope it goes around the world over and over and over. God Bless you and your family! :-) Lisa

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  154. Sent to one more college-aged daughter, another FB post, and I will tell the same to my two little ones at home. Thanks

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  155. I am so touched. As a mother of a 17 year old senior in high school, I am in a constant worry the roads he will travel, even the brightly lit roads. When he was young I would tell him, "mommy loves you no matter what". I would even ask him "how does mommy love her little boy?" he would answer "no matter what".
    Your words are beautiful. I am going to make sure my son reads them.
    //Lisa Kelley, Luleå, Sweden (formerly of Boston)

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  156. Thank you for being the kind of mother I hope to be when my girls (4 yrs. and 1 yr.) are grown. You are an inspiration!

    Leah from the Chicago suburbs

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  157. Thanks for the reminder of what a parent should be...a safe haven no matter what.
    And you are SO right...things that are gossip worthy one day are forgotten with the next big story. If only...

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  158. Waking up to another batch of wonderful comments- thank you again. This means a lot to me, and I am so glad that so many are getting an opportunity to see this, thanks to all of you.

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  159. this has indeed gone viral - good for you! and for everyone that has had the opportunity to read your message.

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  160. That was such a beautiful and realistic writing. It's sad that some kids are sooo impressionable. The only thing that makes you understand life is age and wisdom. I agree completely that most of these things go away and life goes on. You can get through anything in life, and for me personally I can attest to that. Some things just make you a stronger person once you're past them ! :)

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  161. Simply and beautifully said. I will pass it on to my children.Thank you.

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  162. Thank you for posting this... I put it on my Facebook profile page.

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  163. I posted it to my Facebook wall too. I hope you don't mind. It said exactly what I wanted to say to my Children. Thanks for finding the right words. David

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  164. Thank you for taking the time to write down what we think, and what we assume our kid already knows. Thank you for the gentle, yet firm, reminder to TAKE THE TIME TO TELL THEM!!

    Amber (Charleston, SC)

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  165. Thank you for reminding me,and everyone else. As a Mom, blogger, I appreciate the time and thoughtfulness it took to write this. I would love to share this with my readers . This is something everyone should know

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  166. Thank you for the great post....I will share this with my kids....thanks for sharing this

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  167. Very thoughtful and well written, I reposted to my blog (hope you dont mind). If in reading this it makes one young person stop for a moment to think or make another young person stop to be kind, then I thank you whole heartedly.
    Sank
    www.sanksrunningrants.blogspot.com

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  168. Thank You for your words.. I am the Mother of 2 girls in college and I could not have said it better. I sent it to them to share with their friends.. I hope you don't mind...
    More than once one of my 4 daughters have called me upset because someone said something mean to them and I always told them that they are just words and to forgive their ignorance adn childlike behavior.. you said it perfect.. this too shall pass!

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  169. perfectly stated. i want to print this and show it to my kids, if and when needed.

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  170. I came across your blog, when someone posted it on FB. I have to say, this is the most thought out letter. I will be sharing this will my son. Thanks for saying what some of us just can't find the right words to say.

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  171. Wow Thank you so much for posting this. Beautifully written and from the heart.

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  172. I will be sharing this with my daughter. Thank you so much for saying what needs to be said so eloquently. I am grateful to you.

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  173. This was profoundly perfect. I hope I can truly convey your letters message to my own growing daughters.

    Kristin Duus

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  174. I just sent your beautifully written letter to my daughter's middle school guidance counselor as well as a group of my friends. Your sentiments embodied what so many of us feel - and I hope your letter gives so many mothers the courage to initiate dialogue with their children. So many children suffer in silence, feel their parents don't understand and feel that they are alone. They also lack the life experience to understand that this will pass. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for so poignantly putting into words what so many people have been feeling.

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  175. Vicky,
    I would like to thank you also. As I was reading your letter I began to cry. It brought back the wonderful memories I have of my mother (my best friend) who never hesitated to tell us how much she loved us and that she would always be there for us because things will get better as time goes by! The one thing she forgot to tell me was that missing her is something that will never get better!
    You are truly a wonderful mother! Again, thanks for the memories.

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  176. Beautifully said...I will share with my girls and friends! We all need reminding how fragile children really are. Thank you!

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  177. What a wonderful letter! My friends and I here in Norway are reading it with tears in our eyes. It's beautiful.

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  178. SO wonderfully said! IF only ALL parents were as understanding as us! I will re-print this and show my children (young teens. Thank you for your wisdom!!!

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  179. Wow- I wish I could respond to you all individually.. I'm so grateful for your comments. Norway! Growing by leaps and bounds, who could have guessed?
    Thank you all for the time you've taken to read and to share something of yourselves with me.

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  180. This is amazing and wonderful. I have four college students and I will ask them to read this!! Thank you sooooo much!!

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  181. I just sent this to my almost-15 year old granddaughter, who is being bullied and harassed at her school. Thank you for writing something so clear and direct.

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  182. just one more person stopping by to tell you how wonderful i found this. and since i posted it to my facebook page two hours ago two other friends have already reposted.

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