What do you think of the IT GETS BETTER campaign?

  • Thorbaugh

    Posts: 110

    Jun 02, 2012 6:39 AM GMT
    I think this campaign kinda sucks. All I know is that as a kid who was bullied a lot it would have not made me feel better to have someone tell me when I was in 7th grade - IT GETS BETTER, but you have to go through 5 more years of HELL!


    ** Skinny Bitch could be right about the overdiscussing (since I'm new). I'll delete if no answers show up in a day or two.
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    Jun 02, 2012 6:46 AM GMT
    The fact that it caught on, and got talked about is a good thing.

    It seems like it was just a message to bullied kids, like "please don't kill yourself". Not really offering solutions, but it it can't hurt.

    I'm pretty sure this was discussed ad nauseum when it was starting.
  • DCEric

    Posts: 3713

    Jun 02, 2012 1:22 PM GMT
    SkinnyBitch saidI'm pretty sure this was discussed ad nauseum when it was starting.


    It was, but looking back, I think my view has changed. I was likely highly skeptical at first, but this seem to be something that was directed at all kids, but with the knowledge that the real focus was on LGBT children. While it probably had little impact on most kids, it may have helped others. More importantly it got people to tune into LGBT challenges in the community and while not likely to help this generation of children in any measurable way, It Get's Better will likely help push the country as a whole towards being more accepting of the next generation of LGBT kids.
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    Jun 02, 2012 1:45 PM GMT
    It's a great component in the process to self-acceptance.
    Just like how more straight people become accepting of gays and lesbians after being exposed to them from family, friends, and coworkers, low self-image kids that may be bullied can see others who've been there and know the feeling. It doesn't change the feeling, but hopefully gives them a reason to stick around for the change.

    I didn't like the famous straight people doing the videos at first, because they might not have the same empathy, but I think it does add to the affirmation that the bullies are the exception (and assholes) and there's plenty of people that will accept them.
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    Jun 02, 2012 1:54 PM GMT
    The project is very valuable for me. As someone coming out in his 30s and not really knowing very many people who are gay, I think the biggest thing I took from it was the diversity of people who are gay.

    I spent way too long in a pray the gay away program and one of the artifacts was that they push a very specific view of who gay people are. I probably watched at least 100 different it gets better videos. It just stretched my mind of what could be for my own life.

    Dan
  • Sportsfan1

    Posts: 479

    Jun 02, 2012 2:06 PM GMT
    I thought it was extremely well done. If it helped one bullied student then it was worth it. Students that age are very sensitive to their peers. When a sports persona talks to them and tells them to hang in there and not let others get the better of them it does have an impact. I taught middle school for 34 years, I know how students this age look up to their sports heroes. I wish every major sports team did an "It Gets Better" video. Division I Universities should look into making these videos as well.
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    Jun 02, 2012 2:12 PM GMT
    Its all in your point of view. How does it get better than being a kid in this day and age? Kids in the past were treated as cheap labor.
    You were expected to be a self supporting adult at 12. Going to school past 12 was a huge privilege / luxury.
  • Karl

    Posts: 5787

    Jun 02, 2012 2:14 PM GMT
    Thorbaugh said but you have to go through 5 more years of HELL!

    definitely agree with you !
    No one could help us from bullying...
    All we can do is close our eyes and walk into that hell...
    I was bullied at middle school , later , I hadnt been bullied anymore at high school.
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    Jun 02, 2012 2:17 PM GMT
    As a whole it was very successful, as twowheelermv said, seeing the diversity of gay folk can be very encouraging to those in the closet and afraid to be associated as gay.

    I do feel that the slogan "It gets better" needed further explanation, life doesn't inexplicably get better after high school. There are reasons why life can improve, and if you don't know how to make those additional steps then you will remain lost.

    It gets better...when you have the ability to control your life. A fact that even rational adults can miss.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19119

    Jun 02, 2012 2:21 PM GMT
    Anything that reaches out to troubled or confused people and let's them know that people care and that they are not alone is a really positive step in the right direction. I believe this campaign, along with "The Trevor Project", has helped save lives.
  • DCEric

    Posts: 3713

    Jun 02, 2012 2:21 PM GMT
    Alpha13 saidIts all in your point of view. How does it get better than being a kid in this day and age? Kids in the past were treated as cheap labor.
    You were expected to be a self supporting adult at 12. Going to school past 12 was a huge privilege / luxury.


    That doesn't mean that it isn't difficult. It means that it is different. It's great that child labor laws exist, but that doesn't mean that there aren't challenges. Now, instead of labor, children are expected to scale the social ladder, and being gay starts you off several rungs lower than heterosexuals.
  • neosyllogy

    Posts: 1714

    Jun 02, 2012 3:23 PM GMT


    Never really watched the videos. I confess I just watched quite a few and, very much to my surprise, cried a lot. icon_biggrin.gifhttp://www.itgetsbetter.org (<-- I recommend jumping around in the "Popular Videos" section.)
    On a more straightforwardly jolly note: the above video is awesome and hilarious! (especially after a couple hours of tear inducing videos)icon_lol.gif
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    Jun 02, 2012 3:40 PM GMT
    I'm sure it helps for many kids, but then you think about those kids that committed suicide. I don't know. It gets better, but not instantly.
  • slimnmuscly

    Posts: 541

    Jun 02, 2012 4:25 PM GMT
    As a kid who was bullied a lot, what would have made you feel better? Is there anything the adult you wishes he could tell the younger you?

    In some respects the content of the videos is less important than the insight that prompted Dan Savage to launch the campaign -- that LGBT adults don't have to wait anymore for permission to communicate with LGBT youth and let them know they're not alone.

    "It Gets Better" was the message he and the campaign's contributors chose to send, but if you have a message that's, well, better, you too don't need anyone's permission -- including Savage's -- to get it out there.

    Probably a relatively underdiscussed aspect of the campaign is the cathartic effect it has for many of the adults -- doing the videos makes them feel better -- and it's true that we should keep in mind that that is a different benefit than the benefit(s) kids are getting from it and we shouldn't confuse the two.
  • Trepeat

    Posts: 546

    Jun 02, 2012 5:53 PM GMT
    I think it's a good message. When you're gay and in gradeschool, prospects for the future can seem pretty damned bleak. Even if you're not being bullied, it can be very alienating and challenging and lonely growing up gay in a straight man's world. A lot of kids aren't able to look beyond the difficulties they face each day and envision a happier, more fulfilling future. I know that when I was that age I couldn't begin to imagine what being a happy, fulfilled homosexual would possibly look like. Being able to conceive such an existence was just not possible for me, given the experiences that had shaped my perceptions of what being gay meant.

    To have a happy, confident, fulfilled, gay adult reassure you that there is hope for the future, and that things will actually improve, can be a huge motivational factor in a lot of troubled young gays' decisions to continue forging ahead. The message provides hope for some youth who might otherwise have given up hope. That, to me, is a powerful and important impact.
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    Jun 02, 2012 6:10 PM GMT
    Even if it only helps one person it's a success and from what I've heard it already has. Yes, it may not help everyone but It's worth trying. I would have killed to have someone tell me it gets better when I was dealing with the anxiety everyday of trying to accept myself and have the world accept me too. I plan on making a video soon.
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Jun 02, 2012 6:43 PM GMT
    hey, did you guys here about this new show called glee? it's about show choir... do you think there will be gay people on it?
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    Jun 02, 2012 7:17 PM GMT
    [quote][cite]All I know is that as a kid who was bullied a lot it would have not made me feel better to have someone tell me when I was in 7th grade - IT GETS BETTER, but you have to go through 5 more years of HELL![/quote]

    When I was 16, my "It Gets Better" campaign was the movie "Philadelphia".

  • Nov 28, 2012 12:47 AM GMT
    I was reading the interview with Dan Savage this month in 'Between the Lines', and from where I'm standing, it's not getting better at all, and gay people are each other's worst enemies. Yes, there are straight bullies who are finally being confronted, but the most devastating thing is coming out to a gay community who doesn't give a shit because you aren't good enough for them to talk to.

    We are self-isolating because of the internet and the ability to not deal with real gay people - rather, we are living a lie behind stolen photos and identities of men we wish we could be rather than the wonderfully flawed humans we are. The gay press has made this possible in using very attractive, college athletes (who aren't gay) as models hawking gay services. These online venues don't encourage closeted gay people to come out: it reaffirms the fact that there is NOBODY out there for them - so why bother looking? They go through dozens of clicked-out conversations and ignored nights online only to discover a gay community that only cares when you're the new young guy who has money, a post-doctorate education, wears $1000 sunglasses and looks perfect. A week later they're done with you, and couldn't care less what happens to you. I worry because we claim to want marriage rights but I see very, very few gay people with the ability to keep or even find a relationship that will last more than 3-6 months.

    If we are to be honest about gay relationships we need to identify why we sabotage them, we need to examine why our expectations are so unrealistic when looking at the small percentage of men who are gay we get to choose from, why we're not finding anything, and why we refuse to grow up and take responsibility for being men rather than the damaged 15 year old girls we are emotionally. As it stands, gay people generally don't like each other - we pass by each other on the street and don't even say hello or smile. We lie, steal, cheat and wish each other bad luck. If you want to know why so many gay youth/adults commit suicide - it's not because of straight bullying. It's because we come out after waiting years to find acceptance, only to discover this group of broken men who will only speak to you if you have affluence, disposable income, over-education, a nasty, mean-spritied attitude and live very far beyond your means. It's actually more restrictive to come out than it is to say nothing, and that's why so many youth are doing just that. It Gets Better is a great start, but it does nothing to address the fact that gay people are just as responsible when it comes to the fact that we don't give a flying fuck about the health and well-being of other gay people. We are still a very anonymous people who are just fine without ever knowing a thing about each other, because our image and delusions of affluence, over-education and elitism are more important than the real people who happen to be gay - whether they're white, black, latino, rich, on welfare, whatever - we have to stop being so awful towards each other. THAT is 'It Gets Better' needs to shoot for.

    One of the hardest things we will ever have to do as gay men is get rid of the clothes we can't afford, stop lying about this social/economic status we wish we had, stop making up stories about how we grew up in rich families and went to the best prep schools, etc because that will not find us acceptance from within or from others - I don't think we are there yet. But having come out at 15, I can tell you, I've met just about every personality type there is, and those who just told the truth regardless of how boring and 'poor' it made them sound, are the most successful in life today. So many of us still can't stand to be in our own skin so we cover that with lies that boost our social status and clothes that make us feel as if we should be treated better than 'common folks'. It will get better when WE do better. And start being nice to other gay people. It doesn't mean you want to sleep with them, but my God, it wouldn't hurt to cultivate some sense of gay community in most cities these days. We can't just spend our lives not speaking to those we don't deem good enough and set our sights on the absolute best there is.
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    Nov 28, 2012 1:03 AM GMT
    It's an incomplete message. They leave out the part where you do push-ups and crunches every night so that you can fight back and defend yourself. They also leave out the part where you carry a hammer around in your backpack so that if they really hurt you, you can at least take a chunk out of their skull or knock out some teeth during the fight. You have to believe that you are worth fighting for and with all of your might.
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    Nov 30, 2012 12:04 AM GMT
    It got worse.
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    Nov 30, 2012 12:18 AM GMT
    paulflexes saidIt got worse.


    +1,000,000
  • thegaymessiah

    Posts: 214

    Jan 01, 2013 7:47 AM GMT
    It's a little Celebrity Narcissistic like but it's the right idea. Obviously people who are getting bullied a lot need more specific 'hands on' help than this. But we shouldn't discourage forms of helping.

    Just having more safer places to be open and talk about FEELINGS would help, as Americans are very insecure about that stuff.

    When I was bullied I hated it. I also hated talking about it as I felt like they would just blame the entire thing on me even though I was doing nothing to provoke the attacks. I even had asshole str8 male psychologists suggest I change some things so i wouldn't get bullied as much. it doesn't stop until the person stands up for themselves.. I had to learn this all on my own. I thought that the right person inspiring me would make all the difference but it didn't really work, instead the weirdo social workers got off on my pain and secretly enjoyed when I talked about my problems like sickos. they offered no real help. they weren't my friends and just wanted to further report me to the authorities for 'not stepping in line.'

    simply put we all need to be nicer to people. when somebody has honest problems we love to gossip and get off on their weaknesses instead of truly helping.

    As Andrew said on Buffy "People suck."

    The answer is not build more systems. those are the problem. the answer is to just be kind! It's not that hard god.
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    Jan 01, 2013 7:56 AM GMT
    It doesn't get better until you make it get better. As you get older, you become a bit fed up with stupid people. And you learn to take control. As Eleanor Roosevelt said, "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent."

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    Jan 01, 2013 8:02 AM GMT
    I posted a topic about this once..

    but in truth it's like this.

    The intention of it is good and means well...

    However as a African American Alabamian ...who is 23 and still has it rough I can say that It gets better is very...naive

    it's like a delusion that people will have it easier in a certain allotted time...


    there are many who it never gets better from, who take their lives, who are abandoned and discarded like trash...

    HOWEVER

    who is to say that things wont ever change for them, no one can see in the future. No one knows what is to come.

    I think It Gets Better is an idea of hope. Hoping and believing that things will change.

    It has happened for black people ...for the most part, it has happened for women, in the bible it happened for Christians... so who is to say things wont get better.

    I think the idea can be hurtful to some, but I mean at the end of the day, I don't think it would kill anyone to remain hopeful and believe things would change,

    and even if they don't being positive is way better than being negative, and I know that personally.

    I know for me I rather life my life suffering while believing it will get better, than live it suffering and feeling like it will always be that way.

    I have done that, and trust me, its like living in your own personal hell.