Words Wound

I really do hope that I'm someone who steps up to lend a hand when I witness cyberbullying, no matter who it is, instead of just staying silent. I know it's the right thing. And I know it's up to me.

Phelan, 16, New Jersey

Inspiring Victims of Bullying to Stay Strong

Sixteen-year-old Kathleen wanted to inspire those who had been bullied to not give up. She is a talented young woman who wrote and performed the song "Don't Let Them In" which won Seventeen Magazine's 2013 "Mean Stinks" contest.

"I wrote this song because I felt that most bullying prevention campaigns I witnessed at school were solely focused on getting the bullies to stop bullying. I thought there needed to be a message directly to victims to not let bullies get to them, because bullies are often empowered by the reaction they get from the victim. I had witnessed multiple times that if a victim would stand firm and confident and act like the bully's words didn't affect them, the bully would get discouraged and move on to a victim he/she could get a reaction from. I also found that some bullies simply could not be reached by the school programs – they were going to continue to be mean and bully others, no matter what. Some kids (and adults) are just mean, maybe because of problems in their personal lives. I don't mean to suggest that bullying prevention programs are not effective. Some definitely are. But some individuals cannot be reached for whatever reason (at least by the efforts of just the school) and I saw a need to empower victims to be true to themselves, not to let bullies into their hearts, and not to give the bullies the reaction they are looking for."

Check out Kathleen's song here (http://www.teachertube.com/video/dont-let-them-in-anti-bullying-psa-original-song-by-kathleen1-352934).