Singing Out Against Bullying
Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one’s definition of your life; define yourself. – Harvey Fierstein
October is Bullying Prevention Awareness Month, a time to encourage communities to work together to stop bullying and cyberbullying by increasing awareness of bullying on children of all ages.
As a father of four children, bullying, and its traumatic consequences, has reached my house too many times. I’ve often written about how I was bullied for my speech impediment and eccentric parents, so when my children are victimized, it cuts especially deep.
Bullying is a painful reminder that the world isn’t always fair, and no matter how much kindness we share, it’s not always returned. But even when bullying stings the most, there’s still hope that kindness will triumph in the end because of people like Kayla Caffrey.
A Messenger of Hope
Kayla Caffrey is a singing instructor in New Jersey who has heard too many stories from her students about being bullied. In recent months, Kayla has been dealing with similar issues regarding what she thought was friendship, only to find out these “friends” never really had her back.
After hearing these stories from her students, Kayla realized it was to find and use her voice for their sake, so she wrote and recorded Thanks (LOL).
Thanks (LOL) is an anti-bullying song about rising above the negative people encountered in life. She wanted to give her students a song they could relate to when they were feeling down.
Kayla’s goal is to share this song with as many people as possible to instill (or re-instill) a sense of self-worth and confidence.
In Kayla’s Words
Thanks (LOL) is an anti-bullying anthem, if you will, that I wrote based on my own experiences. Some recent, some I pulled from my memory bank (think middle school).
Most of us have had our share of “fake friends” and bullies we’ve encountered. How we react to the ‘tough times’ can make all the difference on the affect they have on us.
At the time we are being hurt, humiliated or treated unfairly, we may not feel the strength to prevail or feel good about ourselves. However, using hindsight, if we adjust our attitude to one of overcoming, we stand to come out just fine…maybe even stronger than before.
Bullying is an epidemic. I am a teacher of voice; I own Idol Time Vocal Academy in New Jersey. I feel so honored that my students call my studio ‘home’ and a safe haven of expression – a place to be themselves without judgment.
Some of my students have conveyed stories of pain and being bullied so I wanted to write a song they could relate to. The song is an upbeat (and sarcastic) response to bullies and a reminder that you are worthy of love and respect.
Dealing with unpleasant, negative people in life is unavoidable, but here’s to rising above those dark times…Thanks (LOL):
(Reading by email? Click through to the site to listen)