5 Reasons Bullying Made Me A Better Writer #1000Speak – Building On Bullying

Sacha Black–Mother, Wife, Writer–writes about how bullying made her who she is. Will she thank the bullies? No. Being bullied, however, was something she was able to transform into determination. Thank you, Samantha, for sharing your story.


Sacha Black

5 Reasons Bullying Made Me a Better Writer

I had to coax myself into posting this. Not because I didn’t want to do a post for #1000Speak, but because bullying is one of those things that everyone has been affected by, and I am no exception. It’s all a little close to the bone. Bullying is one of those universal topics that touches the lives of almost everyone. But I want to focus on the positive. On why being bullied made me a better writer. Without having been bullied I wouldn’t have focused on writing in my youth, and I probably wouldn’t have realised writing was my dream. So am I compassionate with the bullies? No, probably not, I know that’s the point of 1000speak, but, I am grateful for the experience of bullying.

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#1000Speak for Compassion–The Tragedy of Cyberbullying and “Slut-Bashing”

I Am Not A Slut: Slut-Shaming in the Age of Social Media

Recently I read a very interesting book. It was written by Leora Tanenbaum, who first coined the term “slut-bashing” in her book Slut!: Growing Up Female With a Bad Reputation, published in August of 2010. Having been labeled a “slut” in high school merely because she developed early, Tanenbaum wrote an article for Seventeen Magazine and was later motivated to write her first book.

With the proliferation of “slut-bashing” on social media, Leora Tanenbuam took another look at “slut-bashing” in the age of social the Internet. Her new book, I Am Not A Slut: Slut-Shaming In The Age Of The Internet, was released by HarperCollins in January of 2015.

Quote from I Am Not A Slut: Slut-Shaming In The Age Of The Internet
Quote from I Am Not A Slut: Slut-Shaming In The Age Of The Internet, by Leora Tanenbaum

Traveling to several locations and schools in the US, Tanenbaum spoke to female teens, young women, and educators about how the Internet has escalated the problem of “slut-bashing.” While her own research is largely anecdotal, she cites many research cases regarding the situation. She also explains why she believes that current attempts to “reclaim” the term “slut,” such as she witnessed at the NYC SlutWalk, will ultimately fail, being an option only for those privileged to be white.

If you have a female child, educate her before puberty, which for many girls these days occurs at an early age.

Some Helpful Links

Thanks to author Leora Tanenbaum for the inspiration and much of the information provided in this article. Check out Lizzie Crocker’s review of Slut!: Growing Up Female With a Bad Reputation in The Daily Beast.

This post is for the victims of cyberbullying and slut-shaming who took their lives rather than live a life of shame:

Amanda Todd–Coquitlam, BC, Canada (15)
Megan Meier–O’Fallon, Missouri, United States (13)
Phoebe Prince–South Hadley, MA, United States (15)
Jessica Logan–Cincinatti, OH, United States (18)
Alexis Pilkington–Long Island, NY, United States (17)
Rachel Ehmke–Mantorville, MN, United States (13)
Audrey Pott–Saratoga, CA, United States (15)
Felicia Garcia–Long Island, NY, United States (15)
Hannah Smith–Leicestershire, England (14)
Gabrielle Molina–Queens, NY, United States (12)
Rahteah Parsons–Cole Harbour, HA, Canada (15)

 There are many others whom the system failed. Let’s not fail any more!

For a better understanding of cyberbullying and a call to action, check out Anderson Cooper’s blog post: An Anderson Cooper Special Report – Bullying: It Stops Here.