After reading Please Stop Laughing at Me: A. Womens Inspirational Story by Jodee Blanco, really hit home to me because my younger sister and a few of my closest friends have been victims of bulling. The book is actually about Jodee Blancos personal experiences with bullying and dealing with it first-hand. I actually enjoyed reading this book and honestly would tell other people my age to read the book as well, it is just a known thing that bullying mostly happens at school and online, and usually the bullies are the victims peers.
The Book shows that it is okay to be different in life, do not feel like you need to follow the crowd, and be what they tell you to be. Never be afraid to be your own person. I would also recommend this book to the insecure people who do not feel comfortable with who they are. Bullying can happen to anyone no matter gender, race, age, or social group.
This book will help open the eyes of the bully, the bystander and offer support to those victimized by others, letting them know they are never alone.
To get a little background about the book, it is an autobiography about what Jodee Blanco went thought in school with bullying. In Jodee’s elementary school years, things were great until fifth grade when she started volunteering with the special needs students at Holy Acsension Catholic School. Marianne was one of the special needs classmates that Jodee got very close with.
Jodee would make it essential for her and Marianne to be with each other outside of school, but Jodee’s best friend, Jo Ellen didn’t like that. Jo Ellen influenced Jodee to stop hanging out with the “retards”; otherwise, they could no longer be friends. That’s where things started to escalate. Morgan Hills Academy was Jodee’s chosen middle school. Jodee met new people and had new friends. It was going to be a fresh start and a new beginning. She was in with the “popular crowd”, for a short period of time. Callie and Debbie were her best friends, until that one mistake at Callie’s party. That was when the name calling, and harassing began. Jodee couldn’t bear it any longer and decided to transfer to a different school district. Jodee’s parents felt that she was depressed and needed to talk to someone. They had no doubts and took her to Dr. Jack Graff a psychiatrist; maybe he would be able to explain why Jodee was “misfit” and didn’t fit in.
Jodee’s new school was Northwest Junior High, she moved to a new house, and was in a new environment with new people and new friends. Emily, Jim, Sam, Rickie, Robbie, Greg, Jason, Kim, Reese, Paul, and Jodee were together every day of the summer. They told their secrets to each other and were best friends. Unfortunately, it started to happen again. Just because she stood up for what was right. No one deserved to be treated the way Jodee was in the past years. Jodee was verbally, emotionally, and physically harassed by her so called “best friends”; every day on the bus and at school. What did she do to deserve this torture daily? Soon, many others in school joined in on the harassment. A.J, Jacklyn and so many others, attacked Jodee just for appearing different in their eyes. Being depressed for Jodee was a normal thing and her bed quickly became a new best friend. Getting that one phone call from her father instantly changed her mood around. In two days, she would be flying across the country to go to Santorini, Athens. Jodee met Niko, Yorgos, and Vangelle; three men who made Jodee feel loved, especially Niko. Jodee and Niko had a close relationship. Jodee told Niko everything. Leaving him to go back home would be the worst, even though they would still keep in touch.
Twenty years past all the harassment, Jodee was free, except she had to go back and face her old mean classmates at her class reunion. She wondered if they had remembered all the bad things they did and said to her. Wondering if they would act the same at the reunion, as they did in high school. She was terrified but she knew she had to do it. She was a strong woman with an extreme amount of courage. It shows that even years later that the effects of bullying at a young age can stay with a person for years and years. I gave her a lot of credit for going back and going to her class reunion after having not many great memories then. It shows that she overcame her problems and her bullies and isnt letting them ruin her time later in life.
In todays day and age, I think bullying is a huge problem in America today, kids are getting bullied for absolutely anything these days and it is not okay, nor should it be okay to anyone. Bullying can completely change someone who was a happy person to a depressed, angry, shy, or scared person. Schools are not on top of it like they should and in some cases parents need to step in and make sure their kids arent the bullies or they need to stop their kids from being bullies. It is not always the case that its just kids being kids, they are actually damaging a person on the inside and can be having a lasting impression on the person. Bullying needs to be stopped, and more needs to be done to help attempt to stop it. A line from the book that stood out on page 163 was “The bullies never remember, but the outcasts never forget”, and I could not agree more.