By Zoey Angelucci and Molly Medvit
My name is Zoey Angelucci. I am 17-years-old and a junior at Shenango High School. Recently, 7th grader Molly Medvit came to assistant principal Mr. Sumner and expressed a desire to share her views on the difficulties of peer relationships in junior high, especially bullying. Mr. Sumner, who saw an opportunity to use the school newspaper, Pawprints, as a platform for sharing this idea, then approached Mrs. Allen, our Graphic Journalism teacher, and requested an article about bullying. Molly and I met and discussed different topics of bullying she sees as a junior high student. Molly’s main concern is other students talking about their peers and making fun of them. “People are talking about you and they’re calling you names. I don’t get how people just can’t be nice. I know people can be mean sometimes. That doesn’t give them the right to talk about them to their face or behind their back,” shares Molly. Molly’s concerns aren’t the only bullying concerns. In today’s 21st century world, cyber bullying is often at the forefront of the bullying epidemic, with social media serving as the medium for meanness.
Hopefully my perspective as a junior, and as a survivor of the tumultuous junior high years, will give Molly and those like her hope. Personally, I believe once you get to the higher grades, bullying isn’t really something that happens anymore. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure people my age get bullied every day. I just believe it begins to settle, and people kind of find themselves. When I was in Molly’s grade, I went through a friend crisis. My advice would be to find your group of friends and stick with them. Always be kind to others, and if you see someone being bullied, stand up to it.
Similar to my advice, Molly says, “Some advice is to not let it get to you. That’s all bullies want. They want you to feel bad about yourself. If you have bad thoughts, you can’t let it get to you. Ignore them.”
As much as we try, bullying will always be an issue. No matter if you are getting physically, emotionally, or cyberbullied, bullying is no joke. If you are being bullied or see someone being bullied, tell an adult. Stand up to the bulliers. Everyone is going through something, so choose to be someone who is helpful, not harmful. Always be kind to everyone, even if they aren’t kind to you.
Joining me, my fellow classmates have put together few words on their experiences, letting students like Molly know that it really does get better.
“Don’t wish away your childhood. You must find the good in all the bad you deal with. If you get through one bad day, it’ll make you strong enough to get through them all. None of these little bad things will matter in a few years. Stay positive, and you’ll get through it.” -Kailee Smith
“Everyone’s opinion is irrelevant. Worry about bettering yourself.” -Isabella Cionni
“Be respectful to your peers and fellow classmates. It will benefit you later in high school.” -Alex Steighner
“In reality, no matter how hard you try to please everyone, people are still going to find a reason to pick on you. The best advice I can give you is to ignore all the comments and be YOURSELF. Do not change for anyone.” -Carlie Cardella
“No matter how rude people are, always be kind. Being nice to people will pay off in the end and you will go much further in life when you are nice to everyone. But through everything you do you and don’t let anyone change you.” -Addie George
“Focus on you and bettering yourself. Anyone or anything that is causing you trouble or stress won’t matter in a few years. Anyone who makes you feel lesser or worthless is below you.” -Annalise Ginocchi
“Time heals all. At the end of the day, the only opinion that matters is your own. The people around you will go away. You come in this world alone.” -Angela Prestopine
“Find something that you enjoy and pursue it with all your heart. This will keep your mind and body always doing the right thing.” -Ty Kent
“You have people who love you. Don’t ever think otherwise.” -Anna Bupp
“Listen to others. Stop talking, stop worrying, and listening to the world around you. Look good, smell good, be nice, be AWESOME!” -Nadine Buckley