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43. Being Bullied All the Way to Madison Square Garden With Aija Mayrock

Today, we’re joined by Aija Mayrock, a bestselling author, poet, and performer who was bullied as a child and lives, now, to help alleviate that pain from future generations.

Her story starts with her most impressionable years spent suffering in silence, mocked for speech impediments, a lisp and a stutter, and experiencing cyberbullying and harassment seeded by a social post by someone she’d never even met. We learn that even her teachers sometimes took part in the abuse. The starting blocks of her pain-to-purpose journey illustrate the extreme toxicity of mob mentality alongside the dangers of social media exposure. 

Aija talks about how she was hesitant to stand up for herself, and that her mother encouraged her to be brave and share her story – leading to her first book, The Survival Guide to Bullying – to help other kids who were struggling as she had.

She encourages parents to recognize the signs of bullying in their kids, such as changes in eating habits, downward trending grades, withdrawn behavior, and altered body language. She suggests asking questions to help kids open up and start communicating more freely and openly.

But first, we open up this episode with a poem that Aija wrote and recites so eloquently. It's called, Who Do You Want to Be? And it is a powerful note to remember.

Learn more about childhood adversity and trauma, and find resources for those who have experienced Adverse Childhood Experiences, atNumberStory.org.




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“The Big Silence” theme song written and performed byJames Nicholas Kinney.

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