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Campaign promises bullied young gay people: 'It Gets Better'

In the wake of several young people's suicides apparently resulting from their having been bullied because they were gay, an on-line campaign is underway to urge people to hang in there instead of ending their own lives.

On Sept. 23, sex-advice columnist Dan Savage launched the "It Gets Better" campaign, which features videos of men and women talking about their experiences as gay people and promising that no matter how awful the viewer might be feeling right now, there is hope, and there is help. The videos are posted on YouTube.

I got wind of "It Gets Better" when a friend posted on Facebook this heart-felt segment from Ellen DeGeneres. (The piece, recorded on Thursday, is not actually part of the "It Gets Better" project, but it led me to the project when I started Googling around for more information.) Among other words of encouragement, DeGeneres, who is gay, notes that her TV show's Web site features resources for those who feel isolated, bullied or defeated because of their sexual orientation.

You don't have to be a parent of a teenager to share the anguish endured by the families of these young people who have felt so desperately tortured that they've taken their own lives.

No matter how wonderful and open-minded we believe our own children are, we should all take a moment to sit them down and talk with them about how unkind words and deeds, particularly those executed via the Internet, can do grave harm to others. I don't think my kids would ever bully anyone for any reason, but I'm going to talk with them, anyway.

By Jennifer LaRue Huget  | October 1, 2010; 12:30 PM ET
Categories:  Prevention, Psychology, Sex, Teens  
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Next: Study reveals Americans' sexual activity, condom use


Please take a minute to read my personal story of what I went through on my journey of coming to terms with my own sexuality and how we can learn to help each other heal so no one else has to suffer. It breaks my heart to think these kids lived with so much pain that suicide was the only option. If sharing my story can help just one of them than it makes writing it worth while.

Posted by: critta10 | October 1, 2010 11:00 PM | Report abuse

I've designed an "It Gets Better" t-shirt that I'm trying to spread the word about. My goal is to bring more attention to Dan Savage's fantastic project and also to donate a generous portion of my sales to the Trevor Project. Check it out...

Posted by: FSomma | October 3, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

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