Developer: Jon Tetrino
Launcher Quote: “For years I was the subject of bullying from my peers and family. I held it in as long as I could, but eventually I couldn’t any longer. The noise was incessant. It hurt every part of me.
24th May 2013, I finally had enough and defended myself. A simple phrase to start. “Will you all just shut up.”
I took bruises, rocked my life apart for a while. Fell away from my family, who decided to stick with my abusers until the end. It was a big step and I couldn’t do it before, no matter how I tried. I finally, for want of a better phrase, grew a spine.
However, it was worth it. My world changed. I was finally able to find peace.
Don’t give up. Sometimes, we need to release ourselves to truly grow.”
In a lot of ways, people who are victims of bullying become overly accommodating to those who bully them. This is accomplished in a bunch of different ways, whether it is the victim blaming themselves about the bullying, to trying to justify the reasons that the bullying is happening, to trying to normalize it, and more. But the primary way in which bullying victims accommodating the bullying is through simply suffering through it, through no fault of their own. They choose to try to put up with what’s happening to them constantly day in and day out by just enduring it, trying to let things wash over them in order to just try to get through it, hoping that it will let up, even if it never does, or as is mostly the case, have it get worse for them.
The developer in question presents a very accurate picture of what enduring this is like, depicting the bullying as a sort of static, a haze that threatens to overcome the person that you are, a constant buzzing that interferes with your thoughts and ideas and attempts to live life. But it also provides a message about how to stop enduring that static because you feel like you have to, a way to at least take a first step to try to fight back for your own inner peace of mind. In this case, it’s a simple statement to tell people to stop, to shut up, to stand up and say “no” to the idea that you have to put up with the bullying that is a constant part of one’s life. It’s a strong, perhaps even sudden statement, devoid of anything like tact or diplomacy, but it is, if anything else, direct and to the point.
And the important thing the developer says, as the haze clears and the colors move back into a relaxing sky blue on the screen, is that it’s just a first step. It’s not the only step and it’s certainly not the last one that will happen. It definitely has a chance of not being as smooth to continue taking steps to fight against bullying, as the developer’s account of their family seems to put forth. But the important thing is that it is a first step, something different than just putting up with what is happening to you, something that at least shows that the direction is changing and that the victim is willing to start the process of being healed, finding that serenity that everyone should have when looking at the world and more importantly, living your daily life. If anything is worth standing up for, it’s one’s own sense of peace at not having to put up with being put down.