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Amanda said in May 27th, 2008 at 11:13 pm

This happened in my area, so it’s on the news a lot. I agree with you. No one can cause anyone to commit suicide. Obviously that woman’s actions were reprehinsible, petty, and disgusting, but when it comes down to it, suicide is about one person. I can’t imagine the guilt her parents must feel. I don’t think it’s their fault, though.

Amandas last blog post..Where I Fall

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Dave2 said in May 27th, 2008 at 11:20 pm

Bullying with tragic consequences is nothing new. It’s just moved to a new medium. It’s a society problem, not a cyber-problem… but so long as blame keeps getting shifted, nothing is ever going to be solved. Kids are said to be too young to be responsible, yet parents argue they can’t be responsible for their kids.

Dave2s last blog post..Reaction

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Hilly said in May 28th, 2008 at 12:36 am

I know we’ve discussed this but I’ll put it here anyway, just because…

I absolutely hate the fact that I can legally argue that neither that woman nor the mean spirited kids are responsible for this (legally). If a person commits suicide, that decision is made solely by said person. However, with that said, I am disgusted with the behavior of that woman and feel that morally, they all have their own beds to lie/lay in.

So tragic and unnecessary. I am glad you got to have an open discussion about this with the kids though…that part is good.

Hillys last blog post..Someone’s Standing In My Way! Oh Wait, It’s Me….

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Nat said in May 28th, 2008 at 7:25 am

This whole thing makes me angry. It makes me angry that an adult knew what was going and did try to stop the kids and actively took part in it. What was she thinking?

Suicide breaks my heart. It really does. Why this girl didn’t feel she could talk to someone about this makes me so sad. It’s finding the courage to start the dialogue that’s the hard part. Do I think this little girl made the wrong decision? Yes. Do I think the kids hold some responsibility for pushing to the edge? Yes. I do.

I think we, as a society, need to take steps to ensure our kids feel nurtured and supported by the adults around, even if things aren’t going so well at school. We need to talk to our kids.

Nats last blog post..Of spores and snot

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whall said in May 28th, 2008 at 8:46 am

This story is yet another sad, tragic example of how sad, tragic events can overshadow and dilute common sense.

Yes, it is tragic and I feel for the parents and for the girl and for every parent out there who feels for them as well. I cannot begin to imagine the emotional pain I would feel if my kid chose suicide over dealing with mean people.

But (and there’s always a ‘but’ in a controversy) this kind of story masks the underlying issue, and that is personal accountability. Piece by piece, our society and legislature are finding ways to prove that people are incapable of taking care of themselves.

If someone chooses to off themselves, it’s on them, period.

whalls last blog post..Stuff you don’t want to MISC, #48

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radioactive girl tori said in May 28th, 2008 at 9:00 am

I have 4 kids and I can’t imagine ever doing what that woman did to any of their peers. I’m not sure what makes a person feel that is ok. Ever. But then again, I am more of a helper type of person, and wouldn’t ever decide to make someone feel bad about anything. I’d probably go to the kid and help them feel better about themselves or something.

All that being said, I completely agree with Hilly on this issue. It sucks that I feel this is true, but how in the world can you hold her responsible for the girl’s tragic death. I don’t feel you can. I feel awful that the girl felt this was her only choice, obviously, but it was still HER choice.

If ever found out my kids were picking on someone or bullying someone, I would kill them. Not literally, but they would probably wish it was literal after I got done punishing them. That stuff doesn’t fly with me. Words hurt, and it isn’t ok. Hopefully that message is getting ingrained in their heads enough that I won’t ever have to deal with it from them.

radioactive girl toris last blog post..I’d Like S’more Weekend Please

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Epiphany said in May 28th, 2008 at 12:01 pm

I honestly feel like no, they aren’t responsible for someone’s suicide. However…if you were to invent a fake identity for the purpose of getting information from someone, that would be fraud. If you were to bully them in person or by mail or using some other medium, that would be harassment.

Why should it be any different when it’s online? I think the focus here has been too much on the fact that the girl committed suicide. Yes, it’s tragic. I’ve had close friends who’ve attempted suicide in the past, and it’s a terrifying thing. But to me the biggest question is: why did something this drastic have to happen before cyber bullying could become widely acknowledged? We’ve all experienced it at some point or other, and I personally think it should be as much a crime to viciously attack someone online as it would be to stand on the street and yell insults at them.

Phew. Talk about opening up a can of worms, Shiny! But that’s my two cents on the issue.

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Foo said in May 28th, 2008 at 1:17 pm

I teach classes about internet safety and cyber-bullying and like others have said, it’s just the same playground B.S. taken to the Internet. In my area, over 50 percent of middle school counselor’s case loads deal with cyber-bullying issues. YouTube videos are showing up daily, MySpace and Facebook slut lists (still trying to figure out how I get on those)are popping up weekly – the kids are tech savvy and most of their parents are clueless as to what goes on in their own homes. Give a child a computer in his or her bedroom and it opens a world of opportunity, both positive and negative – there is little to no monitoring going on. Educating parents and talking to our students/children is key. Your talk with the kids will stick with them forever.

As for Megan’s case – I’m very familiar with all of the details due to a training hosted by the US attorney’s office that I attended – Tragic, yes. More tragic – the fact that a parent is so up in her daughter’s shit that she would even consider being involved in deceptive games with another child…is sickening. I’m finding peace in believing that she will never be able to escape her own mental anguish in knowing how stupid it was to take part in such reindeer games. The responsible route would have been to bring everyone together for discussion, but that is too easy.

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Finn said in May 28th, 2008 at 4:35 pm

I can’t help but wonder what that horrid woman was thinking when she did those things. I’d love to punch her right in the face…

That being said, what transpired cannot have been the only thing that led to Megan’s suicide. There were other issues there to begin with. And many people go through far worse and don’t kill themselves. So, unfortunately, this shithead mother is not responsible for Megan’s death. Legally. Morally… well, she’ll have to deal with her maker eventually.

Finns last blog post..Have You Ever…

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hello haha narf said in May 28th, 2008 at 5:27 pm

if there was justice i would be permitted in a dark room with a baseball bat and that parent who was bullying a 13 year old girl. but should the law punish her? no. sadly, the only one who can be held responsilbe for the suicide is megan herself. the entire situation is truly awful in so many ways.

although it reminds me why a jury of peers is necessary.

hello haha narfs last blog post..How Bizarre

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kapgar said in May 28th, 2008 at 8:31 pm

It’s a horrible, horrible thing that happened to Megan, but I think I would have to agree with you. It’s hard to hold that parent responsible even though what she did was absolutely reprehensible. Maybe find some other way to punish her through community service where she counsels on how what she did was bad or lead a group of people trying to reform their ways and habits. But jailtime is going to do nothing but rob her own kids of a mother.

kapgars last blog post..You come from out of nowhere…

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turnbaby said in May 29th, 2008 at 3:40 pm

I have to agree that bullying is horrible and that ‘cyber’ is just a new venue.

The saddest part is that the so called ‘adult’ likely will not suffer mental anguish over what happened –she doesn’t have that much empathy.

turnbabys last blog post..Half Nekkid Thursday Edition No. 11

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katherine. said in May 29th, 2008 at 10:54 pm

I too question the legal validity of the criminal charges brought against this woman. I am concerned that this…and other situations…will cause a series of laws that will ultimately violate some of our freedoms.

Having said that…I do believe Megan’s family has a CIVIL claim on this woman…which I hope they pursue to the fullest extent of the law.

In addition to Megans family and friends…I have to extend grace to the young girl who has experienced her mother acting with these consequences…on her behalf….what a heavy burden.

katherine.s last blog post..sword or shovel……blade as spade

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shiny said in June 4th, 2008 at 7:45 pm

To all: Thank you very much for all of your replies. I’ve been delinquent in making my rounds to each and every comment and responding to it, and I think part of it has to do with the subject matter of this specific post.

If I’ve learned anything from blogging this specific experience (that is — my thoughts about the reactions of the kids with whom I spent that weekend), it’s that I have a highly intelligent bunch of readers who (a) can critically analyze complex situations; and (b) are familiar with the legal aspects of such issues. It’s also apparent that you guys are compassionate and caring about those who have been wronged.

So — consider this a non-response response, I guess. Thank you for all of your comments. My blog is certainly a wiser place because of you all.

— S

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