Be Yourself

Be Yourself

I know that bullying and teasing can be so painful and upsetting. Try your best not to let it get to you. Find a positive way to channel your energy like writing in a journal. People say all the time that things will get better. I know it may seem hard to believe, but things really will get better. I promise!

Jeremy, Minnesota

Change

Change

Don’t let others tell you how to look or how to dress. Be YOU. Do YOU. Don’t follow the crowd, sometimes the strays are better than the entire herd.

Captain, Wisconsin

the right way

the right way

You don’t always have to take the path that others are taking. If it doesn’t feel right, go left. Follow yourself. This is for you. Live for you.

destene, Oregon

Can’t I love myself?

Can’t I love myself?

Even on my worst days, I can look back at what I have done, and say that I’m proud. I’ve done so many things, seen so many places. I’ve worked so incredibly hard. I’ve pushed myself past my limits. I follow my dreams and pursue my passions. I’ve touched the lives of the people that I’ve encased myself in. Everyday’s a battle, and I’ll admit I don’t always win, but that doesn’t matter. I always pick myself up, and each time I seem to grow. This sense of pride and self worth, the emotion I let propel me, is looked down upon by our society. WHY? How can being proud of your accomplishments be a bad thing? While bragging and cockiness is a completely different issue, confidence is never a bad thing. It’s OKAY to be proud and love yourself. Never let anyone tell you differently.

I love who I am, and what I’ve become. I sincerely hope that everyone is able to say the same.

Mercedes, Utah

Realization

Realization

Be aware of yourself and how others perceive you, but don’t let that change your opinion of yourself! You are beautiful, smart, kind, and deserving of love. Remember that and cherish that.

Maddie, North Carolina

life

life

Live life being yourself. Copying others doesn’t make you cool. It makes you a follower. Be the bigger person and step up and lead. Be your own person and don’t be afraid to make your mark. People who try to get you down – they really just wish they where more like you. So be happy you’re you.

Max, North Carolina

Pressure

Pressure

I used to go with the crowd. I was always seeking others approval. I was smoking, drinking and doing narcotics. I was doing these things to fit in. It messed up my relationship with my family and my girlfriend. Trying to fit in the way I did totally messed my life up. My advice is to be your own person. Don’t let some else tell you who to be.

Kase, Texas

Love Yourself

Love Yourself

There will be times when you are pushed down.
There will be times when your smile is greeted with a frown.
But NEVER FORGET who you truly are.
Remember to shine bright, a forever burning star.

Madeline, New Jersey

Going Against the Norm

Going Against the Norm

Here in Wisconsin – the land of beer, sausage, and cheese – everyone drinks. And while one or two drinks might not hurt that much, some people don’t have control over their drinking. It hurts to see your parents drinking until they’re stupid every night. That’s why when people at my school invite me to parties, bribing that there will be alcohol, I politely decline, saying it’s not my kind of party. I refuse to make other people feel the way my mother makes me feel when she drinks. That and the fact that anxiety and addiction runs a clear path in my family. That’s why I won’t ever drink or do drugs, because it’s a sure thing I’ll get hooked. I just don’t see myself in that kind of lifestyle. Remember that no matter what the world throws at you, you have the power to make the right decisions for yourself.

Myranda, Wisconsin

Speak Up

Speak Up

You may feel different.
You may feel hated.
YOU may feel depressed.
And lonely.
That is why you need to speak up.
Talk to your friends and family.
Every day is a new day.
So make each day worth it.

Jessica, Florida

You

You

You are you. You are nobody else. You’re not meant to be anyone else. Don’t ever let anyone convince you that doing something you’re not into will make you cooler or get you more friends. You don’t always have to go with the flow. You don’t always have to go along with what everyone is telling you to do. Stand up for yourself. Don’t let people push you around and take advantage of you. If you don’t want to do something, don’t do it. If someone doesn’t want to do something, don’t make them do it. Sure, you’re going to make mistakes, everybody does. But those mistakes are not what defines you. Live for yourself, no one else.

Don, Alaska

It isn’t worth it

It isn’t worth it

My best Friend was using Meth. We were close, and I always tried to get her to stop. She told me, “It isn’t that bad the only problem is the lows.” Even though she was addicted, she was the best friend I could have. But now there are no sleep overs or parties or trips to the mall. We don’t get to share clothes or flirt with boys or dance to our favorite songs. That’s because she is dead.

Sophia, Minnesota

Breaking The Cycle

Breaking The Cycle

Ever since I was in elementary I’ve known my mom and step father were on drugs and alcohol. I didn’t know how they acted when not on them, except that they would get very mad and beat me and my 2 brothers. By letting people into our house I was molested several times and raped. My parents were both arrested. While they were in jail I took care of us 3. We all moved in with different family members because I couldn’t pay the bills while in high school. My one brother wants to go to school to be an engineer and the other is working full time. I am on my way to graduate a year early and work full time as a Nurse Assistant until I enter college. I work out everyday, eat healthy, will never use drugs or drink alcohol and am devoting my life to help those that are struggling with drug addictions and mental illnesses. I primarily want to work with children so they don’t have to go through the same thing. I am breaking the cycle, we all are. You can do it too!

Chanel, Utah

Lessons

Lessons

I have learned that if you watch other people make mistakes and see how it effects everyone, you will have a better look at how things might turn out if you make similar choices.

Alysa, Oregon

It’s okay to be different

It’s okay to be different

I was never really the one who had friends. I was the one who sat in the corner reading while everyone else was having fun, no one would approach me or talk to me, and since I never had a mom, I never knew how to dress accordingly. I started trying to make friends, but it always seems I’m just too talkative and annoying. So I just gave up. Then I saw other people the same way as myself, and honestly you don’t need 50 friends, you just need 1 or 2 real friends. Personally I think its better to have someone you can tell everything to, and have them stay by your side, than ten people who you tell small things to and have them leave.

Jaydyn, Indiana

Why Be Edge?

Why Be Edge?

For me and many others, Straight Edge is the path we chose because of the negative effects alcohol, drugs, or tobacco had on those closest to us. We saw the path friends, family, and loved ones were headed down or had already traveled and didn’t wish to follow in their footsteps. For others, the decision to “claim” (recognize themselves as) edge came after they traveled down these paths and they know the harmful effects of these negative substances first-hand. No matter the reason for claiming or becoming Straight Edge, it was a great decision because we wish to refrain and abstain from the poor decisions and substances that unfortunately ruin far too many lives.

Edward, New Jersey

Stay True To Yourself

Stay True To Yourself

Does anybody tell you that you have to do drugs to fit in? Well you don’t. You have your own voice, and if people want to kill themselves on the inside, then try to help them, and do not make them feel like they are alone. When you feel like you have to do them because all of the “cool kids” do them, that does not mean that you have to. If you feel pressured to, then talk to an adult about it, and if you feel like you can not do that, I know how you feel, because I have the same problem. But if you can, try to talk to the person who you trust and relate to the most. Never let anyone choose who you are or who you are going to be. Remember to stay true to yourself and let your heart decide what to do in life. <3

Summer, Colorado

You Are Perfect

You Are Perfect

Everyone says “Perfect doesn’t exist,” but in reality it does. People are amazing just the way they are, no matter what anyones else says, you are perfect. I grew up being told that perfect was just a figment of our imaginations, that it was just an excuse we all tell ourselves to fit in, but perfection is you. Perfect is what everyone is. Yes everyone has flaws, but those just add to the perfection which is your personality. You are you, so be happy being you. No one else’s opinion matters even if you think your “friends” tell you other wise. No one else is you, so they wouldn’t know that inside, you’re the best person you can be. Be you, ’cause you rock that look!

Mary, Colorado

Self Love

emerson

Self Love

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment” – Ralf Waldo Emerson

Hallie, Ohio

Do as YOU want to do

Do as YOU want to do

My story is this. In grade school, I got bullied around. I wanted to be with the cool kids, but also still be myself. Then after 3 years of the harshness, I gave up trying to be with the cool kids. I found friends who were more into my interests. We’ve been friends ever since, even though we go to different schools. So the main thing I want you to take from this is to trust yourself, and find people that like you for who you are, not for what they think you could turn into. The main message is, Do as YOU want to do, not as your “friends” want you to do. I hope this helps.

Braeden, Washington

Embrace yourself

Embrace yourself

Embrace yourself. You are who you are, so why change it? I’m weird and people used to avoid me. I used to think there was something wrong with me, but then I realized I am who I am and there is no changing that. I learned to embrace me for who I am, and to embrace the weird. Always be yourself.

Lemony, Washington

Its o.k. to be different

Its o.k. to be different

I have a couple of battles to talk about. At school I get bullied because of a lot of things, my clothes, my preference in music, and my appearance. I get bullied basically because I’M DIFFERENT. I’m not what people want me to be. I’ve never had an interest in sports or outdoor activities, except riding my bike. I’ve always been a quiet kid, never really talked to people. I always wanted to be how I felt ALONE, because I felt I had no friends, because I WAS DIFFERENT.

Cameron, Michigan

When You’re Ready To Give Up…

When You’re Ready To Give Up…

“I look around and all I see, everyone smiling, everyone but me…”
This is me.
This is me in times of loneliness, me in times of self-hatred, me when I feel like giving up.
But then I realize the friends that I have. One of them said to me on my homecoming night after I got stood up, “You fit in… You don’t need to be popular, you don’t need a lot of friends. You just need a few good ones.” Another seemed to support in almost every text he sent me, one saying, “I know you’re going through some tough stuff right. We are here for you and we aren’t going anywhere.”
With that support, I realize that I’m not alone and someone is going to be there for me when I want to give up.
And that goes the same for you.
You have friends and family who love you and care for you. They aren’t going anywhere, and want to help you. Take advantage of that. They may end up saving your life.

Annika, Washington

Be Yourself

Be Yourself

At bottom every man knows well enough that he is a unique being, only once on this earth; and by no extraordinary chance will such a marvelously picturesque piece of diversity in unity as he is, ever be put together a second time. ~Friedrich Nietzsche

This quote is very inspirational because it speaks the truth. Be yourself in this life because in the next, you may not have that chance

Gabriela, Washington

I Will Overcome

I Will Overcome

I come from a long line of alcoholics in my family. I have seen first hand how alcohol can ruin and destroy you. I vowed to myself that I would never drink. I have been pressured by the people in my family, and friends, to drink. I have always upheld my vow to not drink because I have to much to live for. Alchol can hurt you and the people around you. I don’t want others around me to go through the pain I went though.

Vanessa, New York

Don’t be a slave

Don’t be a slave

Just do you! Forget about what anybody says, if you don’t want to do something whatever it may be, don’t do it. Use your head and research EVERYTHING you are unsure of, because only you can live your life! Only you can make it what you want it to be! Live it how you want it and don’t be afraid to go your own way! Be who you set to be and live above all influences!

Nathan, Kentucky

Always Say No to the Bad Things

Always Say No to the Bad Things

When it comes to peer pressure you then find out who your true friends are. True friends will always support your opinions and your views on certain things. Stealing, drinking underage, or drugs are the bad things in life – if you start early it will come back and bite you in the long run.

Always say no to those things, it will ruin your life forever and you may never get a second chance.

Yianna, New Jersey

Drugs Can Change You

Drugs Can Change You

If you believe that drugs don’t change you, think again. Drugs will make you do things that you don’t know what you are doing. For example, I hurt my ex badly. I was so influenced that I broke her heart and didn’t even care. A week of being sober, and I started realizing that I lost the most important, beautiful girl ever, and now she’s gone because of my decisions.

Just because you feel like crap doesn’t mean you need to take drugs. And in life there are consequences. And that’s one of the consequences that I’m living now. So people please consider making a change just like I am. Because you can lose the most important people in your life.

Edwin, Texas

drugs are destructive

drugs are destructive

A year ago I never believed in what people would say about drugs, the typical “they destroy you.”

I hardly ever had a sober day – I was always on bars, pain killers, hydros, lsd, weed, codiene, ecstacy – I was always on something. But then when I was sober, I was so angry and felt pointless in life. I got into a argument with my mom and I was having a terrible day while being sober, and I just thought, “what if I just take so many pills and bars I don’t wake up and have to deal with being sober?” because I couldn’t stand the empty depressing aggravation I had. Life felt POINTLESS POINTLESS. My dad that night opened a drawer in my desk and found all the hydros and xanax bars I was going to take the next day, in total it was about 28 including nyquils to put me to sleep and never awaken. My parents were so disappointed to find all the hydros, nyquils, and xanax bars I had planned to take the next day.

That was my wake up call that I needed to quit drugs and just face sobriety. Self+drugs=self destruction.

Jasmine, Texas

Painkillers Beware!

Painkillers Beware!

I am a recovering addict trying to change others lives and warn others of the danger. At first my drug use was fun, but I was so unaware of the dark turn my life would take. In the matter of a couple of weeks I was addicted to oxycodone – a strong painkiller. I spent every penny I had on this drug. I dropped out of college where I was pre-med. I lost 6 jobs and I was arrested 3 times in 1 year. I lost contact with some of my closest best friends. I stole money from my family for drugs. When I tallied all the money together, I spent $300,000 on my addiction.

When I was younger I told myself that would never happen to me. However, it can happen to anyone. No matter what your skin color is, sexual orientation or your religion you can be an addict. Oxycodone is a dangerous drug! It is the same thing as heroin. I had no idea I was putting heroin into my body, because I thought painkillers were ok, because doctors prescribe it. Message: don’t do it!

Tom, New York

Stay You

Stay You

Only you know how to be you. You do it perfectly well.

No one else knows how to be who you are, and that is something special.

Don’t ever be afraid of who YOU are.

You are unique. You are beautiful.

You are YOU.

Tiffany, Wisconsin

The Guilt You Have To Live With

The Guilt You Have To Live With

I was always the good girl: the one who never did anything wrong, ever. I was always afraid to do something wrong, I would disappoint my family or even worse God. Then one day I went off the deep end. I had sex with a guy I didn’t even know. Why you might ask, to this day I haven’t figured it out. What I am trying to say is talk to someone. I was being pressured by my friends and I went with it. I did the one thing I promised myself I would never do, all because of peer pressure. That is not even the worst part though. I got pregnant that one night and had an abortion. That was God sending me a message. I had made a mistake and now had to live with it. Everyday I have to live with the guilt of how I killed the tiny baby in my stomach.WORST feeling EVER.

Don’t let peer pressure get to you. It could make your whole life different. Sure it might not be as extreme as my case, but it also could be. Let my story be a great reminder to listen to yourself and your beliefs, not what a “friend” says. You are you.

Alexa, Wisconsin

You’re Beautiful

You’re Beautiful

Be yourself,
Accept yourself,
Value yourself,
Bless yourself,
Express yourself,
Trust yourself,
Love yourself,
Empower yourself
Because You Are All Amazing & Don’t Let Anyone Tell You Otherwise.

Ashley, Oregon

ADVICE: bullies

ADVICE: bullies

We all know what it’s like to be put-down. It’s no fun by any means. We tend to do the following things when people bully or tease.
-cry
-ignore
-complain
-get even
You may cry for the 1st time, ignore the 2nd time, complain the 3rd and eventually crave for revenge. None of these will help. TRUST ME. Crying only makes your mind think the action is worse than what it is. Ignoring it will want the bully to keep trying to get your attention, and complaining will make no one want to help you. Getting even might get you into trouble. So my advice?!
-laugh along
-report
-take action
Laugh along if it’s a minor joke.
i.e.: “you look like a pig!” (Your response: Oink oink!)
Report: NOT Tattle! Tell a parent what’s going on.
Take action: have a parent call someone for further help.
*Your friend might pressure you to ignore the bully or get even, but DON’T. Fight through until the end.

Courtney, Florida

I’m Above the Influence

I’m Above the Influence

I’ve been near peer pressure now and then, but I always remember that I’m above the influence. I know that I am strong enough to not be persuaded to do drugs or to drink. I know that I will become stronger every time I say no to drugs and alcohol. I will become stronger, because I’m above the influence.

Lucas, Florida

Just another scene girl.

Just another scene girl.

Once I tried a new hair style that I thought was really cute, but everyone made fun of me, and I ended up crying in the bathroom. When I got home I gave myself a “normal” haircut. This year I decided to try the hair style again, and I ignored everyone’s comments. People in public places and at school were coming up to me saying I really love your hair, could you do mine? I ended up keeping it. I have had the hair style since October 2014. It’s really hard to ignore how society sees you, but find friends that care for you and stick with them. Trust me, if I didn’t have my friends, I would be a normal nobody who doesn’t express her feelings.

Vivian, Florida

I am an athlete

I am an athlete

I am an athlete. People see us as those perfect people who have it all under control. I am a freshman in high school. When I see the upperclassmen athletes some are drinking and smoking and not really caring about their futures. They cheat on tests because they are too lazy to study after their games. They don’t try hard enough to succeed in everything that they do because they are afraid of failure. That’s the way how society and peer pressure work. They applaud you for getting a C on a test and they call you a nerd when you get 100% on a test that you studied for hours on. I want to be different. I want to be the one person who can role model for others to know that it’s okay not to smoke and drink and that there is another way to find happiness. I want to be the person who can get a 100% on a test and not worry about what people think about it. Right now I might not be the coolest kid in school but I know the habits I have created will help me later in life.

Eric, Washington

Personal Realization

Personal Realization

A few weeks ago I realized why I wasn’t happy. I was just trying to fit in and be who everyone wants me to be. I then decided to be my true self, and I have been happier ever since.

Aiden, Ohio

Stuck in the Trenches

Stuck in the Trenches

For as long as I can remember, I have had on and off depressive episodes accompanied by an unavoidable misery. When my dad passed away two months ago, and my sister betrayed us all with her greed, I thought that I had reached my limit. After all of the heartbreak, disappointment, depression, and death experienced in my life, I didn’t think I was going to make it. To be honest, I still don’t. But I am trying. And that’s what matters.

Lacy, Tennessee

Free Your Mind!

Free Your Mind!

I always had to tell my friends that we do not have to live under someone’s standards. We are who we want to be, we do what we love to do, and that does not make us unacceptable as human beings.

Kevin, Michigan

Who are You?

Who are You?

Why build yourself through the perception of someone else when you have this chance to prosper as the one and only ‘you’ that there is. Take a look in the mirror. What do you see? I see potential.

Joseph, Indiana

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