It Gets Better

(ETA: DAMNIT! I still can’t figure out how to embed videos. I’ll try to fix this later, but for now I’ll just put the links in)

(E again TA: Richard fixed the embedding! Yay! Thanks again, Richard!)

(3rd edit: adding the above edit borked the embedding again. Sorry. I’ll try to fix this at some point over the next day or two.)

I’ve mentioned before how much I freakin’ love Dan Savage, and especially his “It Gets Better” campaign to bring hope to GLBT teens being bullied in high school. This week’s episode of the Savage Love podcast highlighted a related song by Rebecca Drysdale; as soon as the episode was over I went to YouTube to find the video, which I wanted to share with you!


Having been bullied all through high school myself for being a swot and a teacher’s pet, I especially appreciate the shout-out at the end to the straight kids who also get victimised. I can’t imagine how much worse I would have had it if I’d been a lesbian swot and teacher’s pet, though.

While we’re on the topic, here’s the “It Gets Better Canada” video:

I think I love Rick Mercer even more than I love Dan Savage! In fact, here’s more on the same theme from Rick, just because he’s lovely:

About Cath@VWXYNot?

"one of the sillier science bloggers [...] I thought I should give a warning to the more staid members of the community." - Bob O'Hara, December 2010
This entry was posted in Canada, education, embarrassing fan girl, music, personal, videos. Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to It Gets Better

  1. challl says:

    Do anyone really like the time btw 13 and 16 years old?! I mean, really?

    *note to self* to do look up British slang from work… clearly NSFW… so, it’ll wait for explanation of ‘swot’ when I get home.

    • challl says:

      with that I wanted to say “I agree on the it’s get better” and I’ll watch the video when I get home tonight. happy workday!

  2. Cath@VWXYNot? says:

    Hi Chall – I’m not sure why your comments were going into moderation, but at least I spotted the problem relatively quickly!

    swot = an academic student who works hard and gets good grades. It can also be a verb meaning to study – e.g. I swotted up on that test, so I did well 🙂

  3. ricardipus says:

    I’d just like to acknowledge your highly literary use of the spelling “DAMNIT!”, where most of us lowbrow types would use the more plebian “DAMMIT!”. 😉

    And Rick Mercer is FTW, IMHO, etc.

  4. Hermitage says:

    I can’t imagine the horror of being told that these are ‘the years of your life’ when you are faced with the stark reality that a lot of your peers are glorious assholes. I’m glad the realities of prepubescent dickitude are acknowledged and people are attempting to rectify it instead of blowing it off with ‘kids will be kids, now let’s set that broken nose’.

  5. Ricardipus, “dammit” is an order you give to beavers when you need to manage your waterways, is it not?

    Rick Mercer is Teh Awesome, even though he didn’t join our hockey pool (I accidentally @tweeted him when I meant to @tweet you instead 🙂 )

    Hermy, yeah, how quickly people forget what it was like. I think Dan Savage deserves whatever the US equivalent of a knighthood is for this campaign.

  6. Yay Dan Savage!! \o/
    I know from personal experience how painful bullying can be. I was bullied because I was poor and when the little yuppie shit-heads got tired of that, they moved on to making fun of my over bite. I don’t think anyone was ever happier to get braces than me.

  7. Cath@VWXYNot? says:

    Sorry dude. Kids will pick on anyone who’s different, for whatever reason – the maker of the first video pointed out that she was already being victimised even before she came out. It’s a nasty little fact of life, unfortunately.

  8. gerty-z says:

    Fantastic post! I’m linking back to this now. Love the IGB project – super that the Canadians can represent so well.

  9. Cath@VWXYNot? says:

    Oh! The videos are embedded again. I swear I didn’t touch anything. (And won’t, for fear I’ll bork it once again)

  10. SB says:

    Thank you SO much for posting this, Cath – I loved the music video and the IGB Canada piece. I really started following the project when I saw Obama’s speech, and his words, “You’ll look back on the struggles you’ve faced with compassion and wisdom. And that’s not just going to serve you, but it will help you get involved and make this country a better place.” could not have rung more true for me.

    Similar to that of many (most?) youth these days, my high school experience was socially traumatizing. I had exactly zero friends, owing to a diversity of strange reasons, from being vegetarian to having divorced parents, from being new to town, to having a different sexuality, to being academically gifted. That last reason ended up being my saving grace; in the end, all the bullying did was feed my sense of determination to get the heck outta there. I ended up getting a full scholarship to attend a sweet school in a very different part of the world to where I grew up, and I never looked or went back. I did, however, e-mail a past teacher recently and told him about the It Gets Better project, suggesting that it would be a helpful resource for kids who struggle like I did, whatever part of the GLBT/straight continuum they fall in. He responded positively, and I felt a sense of closure I’d been craving for a long time.

  11. Cath@VWXYNot? says:

    Hey S, good to see you over here!

    Yes, I should have mentioned Obama’s video. It makes such a strong statement when the POTUS joins this kind of campaign. (Odds of Harper following suit? Next to zero, I’d say!)

    Sorry you had such a rotten time at high school. But I’m glad you turned it into a source of strength, and then escaped. I remember once when I was about 12 or 13, in a German test that wouldn’t count toward my final grade, deliberately getting some answers wrong to try and take some of the pressure off. The result? In-my-face taunts and jeers along the lines of “not so fucking clever now, are you? You think you’re so much better than us…”

    I realised I was screwed either way, so I decided that I may as well be bullied for getting good grades as bad ones.

    It’s great that you closed the circle and emailed your former teacher. Have you thought of making your own video to add to the campaign, describing your experiences? I have a Flip video camera and (extremely rudimentary) video editing skillz, and would be happy to help if needed.

  12. SB says:

    🙂 I followed your blog through both moves! The Nature Network version was the first ‘science’ blog I read ever, and I stumbled upon it completely by accident, while visitng the website for something else and getting all excited because I recognized a name from my lab!

    Fast-forward a year: I read updates on the blogs I follow every day before going to bed- it’s become a very soothing ritual.

    And I had never thought of making my own video to add to this campaign! I had always assumed only “famous people” did that, plus I’m a wee bit camera-shy… if I ever do run out of excuses though I will definitely give you a shout! Thanks so much for the offer!

  13. Cath@VWXYNot? says:

    Let me know! 🙂

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