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Book Reviews and Other Media
Feb 2012

It Gets Better: Coming Out, Overcoming Bullying, and Creating a Life Worth Living

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2012;166(2):195. doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2011.735

In the middle of 2010, a rash of suicides by at least 10 boys ages 13 to 18 years brought into focus the brutal bullying gay kids face in school. After 15-year-old Billy Lucas hung himself in a barn in Greensburg, Indiana, Dan Savage, the syndicated columnist, expressed his outrage on his blog. A commenter, “Kim in Portland,” planted a fertile seed: “I wish I could have told him that it gets better, from one former bullied (and beaten) child to another.”

Savage realized he could deliver that message through the Internet. What if lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) young people could watch, in the privacy of their basements or bedrooms, encouraging videos by victims of bullying who love their post–high-school lives?