In light of Pink Shirt Day, also known as Anti-Bullying Day, which took place all throughout Canada February 27, Vision sat down with ten-year-old Adam (fictitious name), a victim of bullying, and his mother. Here is his story.
“It’s concerning, whenever your child tells you that he or she doesn’t want to live anymore.” Adam’s mother outlines that she sometimes feels powerless when it comes to bullying.
“I feel as though the schools sometimes don’t listen,” she said. “They come after him for defending himself.” Sitting comfortably in a leather sofa, Adam quietly listens to his mother speaking. He’s quite the attentive boy, preferring to, as his mother puts it, spend his time with adults instead of children his own age and with good reasons. “Some at school call me fat or say that we’re poor,” a shy Adam explained.
In his own words, the boy says that he keeps all of the bullying he experiences inside. “Then I get angry.” His experience with bullying dates back to kindergarten, when he attended Sainte-Trinité in
Rockland. According to his mother, he was sent to Plantagenet
in order to get away from it all. The move didn’t help, however,
as Adam was still bullied. Finally, he made his way to Casselman, where he currently is in a class of seven. “It’s a lot better now,”
he stated, “but it still happens.”
There was a time when Adam didn’t even want to attend school anymore. “It was heartbreaking,” his mother added. “He would ask
me if I could make him lose weight.”
“Everything changed on his last birthday.” The boy had asked his mother if they could both go out for supper for his birthday,
instead of having a birthday party. “He said it was because he didn’t have any friends to invite.” His mother took it upon herself to
surprise her son. She contacted local animal
rescue organization Meet the Keepers and asked if we could visit them for his birthday.” What happened next changed Adam’s life. As they came into Bourget, where Meet the Keepers were located before their Rockland move, Adam saw that there were over 250 people waiting for him. “The local firefighters had showed up,” his mother recalled emotionally. “There was even a pick-up truck full of presents for him.”
The event led to Adam founding a bond that still exists to this day. His birthday party was also attended by members of the Guardians of the Children’s (GOC) Ottawa chapter, motorcyclists that come to the defense of bullied children. That’s when he met chapter president, Superman. Every member of the GOC uses a nickname. “They brought him to Fun Haven and then he was in their float during last year’s Parade of Lights in Orleans,” explained his mother. He also recently went to KidsFest 2019.
In addition, Adam was made a member of the club, being bestowed with his very own jacket. “Everyone in the GOC has nicknames,” his mother mentionned, holding up the jacket. “His is Donut and he is known as a lil guardian.” Since meeting the club, Adam has now become a player with the Orleans Bengals football team, having won last year’s B-Cup championships. He’s already registered to
play next season. Last holiday season, the GOC, following Adam’s idea, decided to organize a toy drive for children who were affected by the tornado in Dunrobin. “When he heard about what
was going on in Dunrobin, he wanted to donate his toys,” Superman was quoted as saying in The West Carleton Online. “For a boy who went through what he has, to turn around and want to donate his toys to others less fortunate is mind blowing. It’s really amazing.”
When Adam, who sometimes rides on the motorcycles of other GOC members, is asked if he will ever ride a motorcycle when he gets older, he answers "Maybe, but I would rather drive a three-wheeler instead. It’s harder to fall down that way.” There was a time when Adam didn’t even want to attend school anymore. “It was heartbreaking,” his mother added. “He would ask me if I could make him lose weight.”