Rip Ms. Tovonna Holton — STOP Bullying
So, this story definitely hit home for me when I heard it. A young woman in Wesley Chapel, Fl (About a 30 minute drive away from Tampa, Fl, which is also where I reside.) named Tovonna Holton committed suicide due to a nude video of her being posted on social media. Reported by her family, Tovanna took a shower at school & someone who was supposedly a good friend of hers videotaped her without her permission. It was also reported that it was posted on the young woman’s Snapchat, where spectators began screenshotting and reposting the video as pictures.
In later interviews with her now ex-boyfriend, he claims him & Tovanna had an argument the night before about the videos. He says that he didn’t mind them as long as they were private, but Tovanna wanted to post them on her Snapchat. He says he argued that he didn’t want “ people seeing his girlfriend, showing too much”. But she didn’t care. He also claims that she had problems deeper than just their relationship, such as arguments with her parents. He then proceeded to show their last text messages where Tovonna expresses her feelings about her relationship with her mother, and how she ultimately fell about herself. He then proceeded to tweet that nobody was at fault or to blame, and to just let his “angel” rest in peace.
Not sure how much of either stories is true, but just being a mother myself, and in my opinion seeing some weird contradictions in his story. I’m going to lean a little more towards believing the families stories. How this young lady was described by family, friends, teachers, etc … She was such a beautiful soul with a good head on her shoulders. So when he says that she wanted to post nude videos for Snapchat it doesn’t make sense to me. Though you can’t judge a book by it’s cover & the ratings others give it, I personally just don’t believe that story. If she wanted to post nude videos on Snapchat, in this day & age, we all know that KIDS ARE MEAN. Bullying is real & that’s a well known fact. If she wanted to post them on social media for EVERYONE to see, she would have had to have an “idgaf what other people think about me” type of attitude. Which, she obviously did not have or she wouldn’t have went home and taken her life. At the end of my day, it’s not my place to say who is correct, and who is not. I just know that this story is tragic, and it shows a big problem within our communities that is often ignored.
Tovanna went in her mother’s purse and took her handgun, went into the bathroom, and ended her life. Even sadder to say, but her mother is the person who found a pool a blood which let to the family having to knock down the door. As a mother myself, I COMPLETELY feel for this beautiful young lady’s mother. And my deepest condolences to the family of Tovanna. This story is truly tragic. And the reason it hit home for me so much is because I was once in Tovanna’s place mentally. And there’s been multiple occasions that I’ve tried to check out this “Extended Earth Stay” (yes, I said 3x E. Yes, I know it was kind of lame lol. Just wanted to see you smile). But, back to the point, I’ve tried it. In different ways, and I’ve always been saved in time to not have actually gone on. Unfortunately this young woman found a quicker way out.
I will never forget my 9th grade year of high school, which is the same year MS. Holton was just about to finish. My family and I moved to Silver Springs, Maryland. I was only 13 years old, and in a completely new, and different place. The transition from Fl to Md was LITERALLY the worst year of my life, and I can say I NEVER made a comfortable transition. I was bullied constantly for being different. I was a nerd, I low key liked reading books. I was from Florida, and they used to chew me out HARD about my “accent” (that I don’t even hear *rolls eyes* but you know whatever) and the way I dressed. I was all around different, and that age, I didn’t know that IT’S OKAY TO BE DIFFERENT. Then when I moved back home, I thought everything would be great. All my “friends” were back home, so I was good right? Wrong. Moving back home & finding out that my “friends” weren’t really my friends only made my mental, self esteem, and want to live die more. But I’m thankful that I’m still here, to be able to relate to a story like this one, and spread a message. And that message today is “STOP RECKLESS BULLYING”.
Bullying isn’t something that is born into us, it is something we are taught. And in some cases, our parents lacked on teaching us common courtesy, privacy, and respect for one another. I sit back sometimes and look at the generation I’m in, as well as the up & coming, and I shake my head. The things that kids do now a days are so silly, and I wonder where they/we get it from (yes, I do silly things too. Not saying I’m just a kid who does nothing wrong.), but this was taken too far. And it’s the prime example of why bullying needs to be stopped.
At the end of the day, I have a child of my own. I remember those days coming home from school and crying. I remember those days sitting in the bathroom with a bottle of pills contemplating whether my entire being was a mistake. I remember … being bullied. And it’s not fun for anybody, except the bully. Bullying will leave people emotionally scarred for years. Sometimes so extensive that it scars so bad, that a once bright future dims into nothing but sadness and anger. We as parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, younger brothers, neighbors, teachers, etc etc. We as a people, have to guide these generations. We have to talk to our kids about bullying. Both sides of it at that. We have to ask our kids questions like “How would you feel if you were bullied?” or “Do you think that you would ever bully anybody?” We need to stop turning off the news when stories like Ms. Holton’s come on, and show our kids what it’s really like out here in the real world. So they can truly put it in perspective if it was them. It’s time for us to stop being such friends with children, and start being parents, leaders, and mentors for them. We have to give them something positive to look up to. We have to teach them things such as “you never know what people go through behind closed doors”. WE, are the people that were placed to teach these kids, and lately it seems we’ve been off our game. It’s time to get back in shape, and show these kids positivity. It’s time to change the world, one step at a time.
And on another note, because you never know who will see the things you post and blog. For the kids involved in this. Whether you took the video, screenshotted the pictures and didn’t share, screenshotted and did share, reposted the video, called her names, laughed at her, etc etc. I want you to ask yourself a few things, and I personally don’t want my messages, comments, etc flooded with answers if you happen to stumble across this post. But, how do you feel about your choices now that Ms. Holton took her life? How do you feel knowing that your laugh helped in causing a mother to lose her child? How do you feel knowing that, instead of laughing you could have hugged her & told her everything was going to be okay? And last, how do you think you would feel, if you were in Ms. Holton’s shoes? Just think about it & really analyze it. Not to make you feel bad, or like it was your fault. I just want you to look in the mirror and realize just how uncool, bad, and hurtful bullying is. Remember, a mirror is only going to show you what’s real. It’s time … to reevaluate.
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