How We Can Help Prevent Bullying For LGBTQ Teens
People within the LGBTQ community know firsthand how important it is to feel safe and supported by a community. Unfortunately, many LGBTQ teens do not have this support; instead, they regularly experience bullying and discrimination.
October is Bullying Awareness Month, so it’s a great time to raise awareness about this crucial issue and discuss what we can do to help prevent bullying of LGBTQ teens. At Elevations RTC, we strive to make our campus as welcoming as possible.
A key to this is educating everyone on the issues that bullying can cause. No one deserves to be bullied, and we all have a role to play in preventing bullying and creating safe schools.
With the proper education on what to do, all it takes is one person to stop someone from getting bullied. We can help teens understand where to go and what to do if they see or are bullied.
Here are some things we can do to help prevent LGBTQ teens from getting bullied.
Educate Yourself and Others About LGBTQ Issues
Learning about the different sexual orientations, gender identities, and challenges the LGBTQ community faces is an excellent start to how you can help. At Elevations RTC, we create a safe space for LGBTQ teens to thrive and provide regular training/education for staff and students in order to keep that safe space thriving.
The families of students back home can learn about LGBTQ issues as well to help the cause. There are resources available on elevationsrtc.com to help. There are also discussions over video chat that allow parents to connect.
Here on our website, we strive to help parents find answers on some of the more sensitive topics that few other parents understand.
Be an Ally to LGBTQ People
Being an ally of the LGBTQ community means standing up against discrimination and supporting equality for all. Ideally, every person in the world eventually becomes some version of an ally.
Allies don’t always need to do much to make a difference. Sometimes just showing support and being willing to listen helps those friends in need.
Speak Out Against Bullying
If you witness someone being bullied, don’t be a bystander. It’s better to stand up and speak out against it. Many believe they should stay out of trouble if an incident doesn’t involve them. This mindset isn’t going to get anything fixed.
The more people stand up to bullies; the more outnumbered the bullies feel.
Create a Safe and Supportive Environment for Everyone
We can achieve this by using inclusive language and ensuring everyone feels welcome and respected. Our staff strives for students enrolling at Elevations RTC to feel comfortable knowing they won’t be judged for who they are.
Students who have experienced hardships or made some harmful decisions are the main reason why students are here in the first place. Most have experienced bullying to some degree, so they are more willing to understand that bullying based on sexual orientation shouldn’t be acceptable.
There’s a reason why we have always strived to make our campus as accepting as possible. Not only are we one of the only residential treatment centers that is gender inclusive, but we also consistently teach students about topics that can help them be better people overall.
Activities for All
One of the easiest ways for all students at Elevations RTC to get along is to participate in recreational activities. Away from therapy and school is a wealth of resources to get into anything a student desires.
Whether picking up a sport or learning a new skill, this can bring people together from vastly different backgrounds. Bullying often starts because there seems to be no common ground, and once some of those boundaries are broken, it becomes much easier for everyone to get along.
More often than not, students find out that they aren’t as different as they think they might be.
A Permanent Change Against LGBTQ Bullying
Ultimately, each October is about more than raising awareness. We strive to make equality and acceptance a way of life so more people can feel included, creating better communities for future generations to come.
It can take time, like anything, but steps in the right direction have given us, and our students and families, hope.