Jonah Mowry: ‘Whats goin on..’ video
Thank you to everyone for all your loving support, comments, messages, videos and letters…. it has meant more to my family and I than I could ever tell you all.
I made this video August 2011, a few weeks before school was about to start. I was 13. It was a very emotionally confusing and dark time in my life. I made the video at 4:00am in the morning. I hadn’t been sleeping at night for a long time; I had too many things going on in my head, tearing me up inside. I was dreading going back to school. All I could think about were all the bad things that had been happening at school last year, every year for that matter. I just couldn’t bare to go through that anymore. Over the summer I finally just accepted who I was. Only my closest friends knew. I was scared. I wanted to come out to my family but didn’t know how to. I was done pretending to be “fake” happy, pretending hateful words didn’t hurt me, and done hiding it all from my family.
This video was made for me, my family, and my friends that had moved on to High School who were worried for me. I wanted to say to my High School friends that I was going to take a stand and I was going to be OK. And to the haters at my middle school that I’m not going anywhere, I am who I am. I posted the video as “unlisted” here and told people were to find it. That was it…
At the end of Aug. 2011, everything eventually came crashing down and out in the open. I finally told my parents what was “really” happening to me all this time. I let them know the extent of the bullying and I told them about the cutting. They knew something was going on, and always tried their best to help me. But I got very good at hiding it all. I thought if I told them, it would just make it worse and the bullies would come back at me harder. So, I would just take the abuse. And I just didn’t want to worry my family and cause more problems.
At this time I came out to my family. After finally letting go of everything I felt a huge weight off my shoulders. I started seeing a Family Therapist and I started to find some happiness again. I felt accepted for who I was, and I felt confident and stronger.
My parents were always there for me through all of this, always there to listen, to talk and to support me no matter what. Looking back, all I had to do was simply ask for help.
School started Sept. 2011. Over the next several weeks my close friends and others saw the video and were moved by it. At the end of November, I was encouraged to make the video “public” and link it to my Facebook page so more people could see it. Maybe it could help someone else going through the same thing. And once and for all, my whole school would know and that would be the end of it. And this would quietly fade away and life would go on. So I changed the video to “public” and linked it to my Facebook page Nov. 30th. My parents finally saw the video for the first time Dec. 1st.
Then, over the next few days all this happened.
I never expected in a million years that it would have such a wonderful impact on so many people from all over the world. It’s incredible. I am truly humbled and truly thankful for all the love, encouragement and support. All the wonderful, heartfelt videos, messages, letters and phone calls, it’s been overwhelming. I don’t know what to say. Thank you so, so much!
When the video came out there were people at school that realized that they had hurt me and felt sorry for their behavior. I did make some new friends and I have my High School friends. School is OK for the most part. Things still go on here and there. I know there will always be people that hate for whatever reason. And there is nothing I can do about that. And of course, like everyone else I have ups and downs and have things to work on. But now, it just feels easier every day to stay on the “up” side of life than ever before.
“Whats goin on..” is my story, and sadly the story for 1,000s of kids who go through this pain and abuse every day. I was one of the lucky ones and now see the light at the end of the tunnel. Hundreds of kids do not and tragically give up. Bullying and Teen suicide is real, and is serious. I hope all that see my video find hope, inspiration and know they are not alone.
Thank you all, Love and peace to all who are hurting.
Video — “Whats goin on…” US copyright ©2011 Jonah Mowry. All rights reserved. Duplication without express permission of the author is prohibited.
Music — “Breathe Me” by Sia. Used with permission from the artist. Thank you Sia!! ℗ 2004, 2005 Systemtactic Limited t/a Go! Beat under exclusive license to Astralwerks.