‘Why me? What did I do to deserve it? ‘Even with all these questions, I want you to know I forgive you.’: Man pens powerful open letter to bullies, ‘You still have the power to change’

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“Dear Bullies,

I have so many questions to ask you. Things pop up in my life and I hate what you have left me with. I hate when people talk about memories and I always have a negative thought associated with many of mine. I hate that you treated me like trash, I hate that you thought it was okay to treat me like that, I hate looking back on those years. But what I don’t hate, is you.

I want you to know what you did to me was and never will be okay. I didn’t deserve to be thrown into windows, pushed down stairs, or verbally torn apart just because of who I was. Sure, I was heavier, but did you really need to remind me and make fun of me for it every day? I didn’t deserve any of it! Why did you do it? Why me? What did I do to deserve it? Why do you think what you did was okay? Even with all these questions, I want you to know I forgive you. I hope you know I forgave you a long time ago. The pain may be something I will always carry with me, but hating you won’t be. I hope you know if you reached out to me, I would be there to help and support you. You still have the power to change. You and only you have the power to become a better person. I hope you have outgrown those years and have become a better person.

At the end of the day, I look back and remember what has happened is history, and this is exactly where it needs to stay–in the past. What you did to me back then took its toll on me, but it inspired me now to tell my story. It made me do something I thought I would never do. I’m now able to stand up and talk about bullying, more importantly against it. I’m able to advocate for the people who can’t.

I love sharing my story. I love the people I have in my life, I love making a difference and I love being a support system anyone at any time can reach out to. I will always have an insecurity, but from it, I have become a better person. A person who thinks twice before he says something. A person who will always put others’ feelings first. A person who loves himself, even with all my flaws. A person I am proud of. I’ve learned what really matters in this world–family, friends, and LOVE. LOVE first, LOVE above all else, LOVE yourself, LOVE others, LOVE IS WHAT MATTERS!

Stay Kind Always,

Jeff Shrigley”

Courtesy of Jeff Shrigley

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