My daughter Melissa was always emotional. From the time she was a toddler all the way up to her teens. She would laugh and smile at everything she experienced—and break down and cry just as easily. Of course, when she was really young, I chalked it up to just being a kid. But then as she got older, I started to wonder? Is she bipolar? Does she have some kind of emotional issues? Should I consult a child psychologist?
My wife and I never did seek out a shrink, because it wasn’t like Melissa was too out of control with her emotions. She just laughed and cried easily. My mother-in-law used to say she was just very in touch with her emotions and I thought, “Yeah. I guess so.”
When puberty hit, things started to change. Melissa still cried easily, but her laughter and smiles had begun to lessen. By the time she was 15, she was a moody, sullen and unpleasant person to be around. She would disappear into her room every day after school and only come out for dinner and the occasional drink. She wouldn’t open up to my wife and I at all and we had no idea what was going on in her life.
One thing I did know was that she was on her iPhone all the time—although she seemed to show less enjoyment on it then she used to—so I took the opportunity to install a phone tracker app on her phone when she was showering one morning. I’m glad I did. As I began to use the cell phone spy app, I started to learn all about Melissa’s life and why she was becoming so unhappy and removed.
It turns out that a few months prior, Melissa had posted a picture of herself and a boy she like on social media and a jealous classmate said something nasty about her. Then the friends of that student had gotten involved. The boy then sided with the other girls and it all escalated. These little bastards had spent half the school year harassing my little girl all over social media and through texts. They posted mean things on her Facebook page, her Twitter account, and sent her horrible texts that’s why I installed spy apps on her phone. I also found out that they did even worse on Snapchat.
I was furious! Until I found a few posts by Melissa—and then I was scared sh*tless. It turned out my daughter was wallowing in misery and was talking about killing herself. What made it worse is that all of those horrible monster kids were telling her to go ahead and do it!
To make a long story short, I confronted Melissa about it. She was angry at first, but then my wife and I and her all talked and cried. We contacted the school. There is a disciplinary action taking place right now. We could try and sue, but what’s the point of that? Instead of taking the negative path, we all chose to take a positive one. We are now working with the school on their anti-cyberbullying campaign—instituting new, digital aspects to the already existing one.
I don’t know for sure if Melissa would have killed herself—I really don’t even want to think about it—but I’ve heard about similar situations in recent years where teens did. I’m glad I did what I did, because I have my little girl back in my life … and I’ll have her forever.