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December 5, 2011

1

love to you, Jonah Mowry

by Andrea O'Connell

When I have a moment to check in to Facebook (which is not too often lately), it’s usually a treat because I stumble across things in the news that move or anger me, but are always educational.

I stumbled upon this video and I am so glad I did.  It is moving and lovely and hopeful…well, you will have to see it to appreciate what I’m attempting to say here.

The young person in the video is 13-year-old Jonah Mowry. He’s pretty special, as you’ll see.

Sadly, this is an all too typical story.  Every day kids and teens are bullied for being different enough to stand out.  Jonah’s bullied for most of his young life.

What’s wonderful, though, is we get to see his raw and emotional transformation into person-hood.  He realizes that before the tyrants who bully him will stop, Jonah has to first accept himself for who he is.

Bullying in the schools should not be a rite of passage for kids to endure and suffer through.   Young kids, or teens like Jonah need to be allowed to grow naturally into incredible young people.  They have a lot to deal with in the coming out process.  Young men and women like Jonah who must come to grips with who they are, have a tough enough time, the schools shouldn’t be where humiliation and torture are condoned.

After posting this video to his friends, the video went viral and everyone fell in love with him, myself included.  You will love him too, I’m sure.

Bravo to Jonah for his courage, grit, and ability to stand up for himself – refusing to allow the coward bullies to hurt him anymore.   The wonderful outcome of his video is the fact he has undoubtedly given hope to many, many young people like Jonah who are facing what it means to come out.

We can only hope that every young person with the courage to come out will do so with the incredible grace of Jonah Mowry.

The text below is what Jonah left on his YouTube page.

UPDATE, PLEASE READ
To all my friends and supporters,
I made this video 4 months ago just before school was about to start. I was 13. It was a very emotionally dark time in my life. I made the video at 4:00am in the morning; I hadn’t been sleeping at night for a long time, too many things going on in my head. I was dreading going back to school and I had not come out to my family yet. Only my closest friends knew. I didn’t know how to say what I needed to say. All I could think about were all the bad things that had been happening at school last year, every year for that matter. I just couldn’t bare to go through that anymore. I was done being fake happy, pretending hateful words didn’t hurt, done hiding it from my family.
So this video was made for my friends that had moved on to High School who were worried for me, to say to them that I was going to take a stand, and to the haters at my middle school that I’m not going anywhere. I am who I am. I posted the video here and told people were to find it. That was it.
My friends were moved by the video and thought I did something important. I was encouraged to upload it to my Facebook page so more people could see it. Maybe it could help someone else going through the same thing. So I linked it Dec. 1st. My Parents saw it for the first time Dec, 2nd.
Then….. all this happened.
I never expected in a million years that it would have such a wonderful impact on so many people. I am truly humbled and truly thankful for all the love, encouragement and support from people all over the world. It’s been incredibly overwhelming. I don’t know what to say. Thank you so, so much!
Lastly, yes you have seen me happy in a couple short videos replies I posted; I would think that would be a good thing, and yes I do have friends, my High School friends, and I have made friends because when I came out they realized that they had hurt me and that they fealt sorry. The video is real, and true.
In the last few months everything eventually came out in the open, I felt a huge weight off my shoulders; I’m happy, I’m excepted for who I am, I’m more confident and feel stronger every day.
Thank you all, Love and peace to all who are hurting.
Jonah Mowry

Let’s encourage children to spread love, not hate.  Speak peace, kindness, appreciation for all our differences so kids and teens understand that being gay is not a curse.  Rather it’s a journey – a long one perhaps, but a good one, too.

What a remarkable young man Jonah Mowry is.  And, what a wonderful outcome, not only for him, but for the countless kids who are feeling the same way.

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  1. To Jonah « American Parser

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