Earlier this month ABC Family and Seventeen magazine launched a program called Delete Digital Drama to help raise awareness of the growing problem of online bullying. The phenomenon was highlighted in an ABC Family movie starring Emily Osment called "Cyberbully" which premiered on July 17. To support the initiative Osment and some of the stars of "Switched at Birth," "Pretty Little Liars," "The Nine Lives of Chloe King" and "The Secret Life of the American Teenager" have joined the campaign. They recently shot a series of PSAs pointing kids in the direction of support and lending a hand to help those being bullied.
ABC and Seventeen also held a Delete Digital Drama rally in Glendale, California, on July 14. Thousands of kids attended to see the stars, hear their stories, catch an Emily Osment performance and get some autographs. On the red carpet before the event, the actors gave some important advice for kids experience bullying in their own lives. Here's what they each had to say.
Vanessa Marano from "Switched at Birth"
"Find a supportive environment. If people aren't supporting you and not loving you and are bringing you down, they're not really friends. And there are people out there who really will be your friends. So find those people because they're there."
Tyler Blackburn from "Pretty Little Liars"
"Surround yourself with a couple of people who you trust and they love you for you. That's really important because if you start compromising yourself for other people, you're just going to lose yourself. And it takes time to find yourself again."
Skyler Samuels from "The Nine Lives of Chloe King"
"For someone who's being cyberbullied, or bullied in general, you need to tell someone. Get a parent, an adult, a friend, whoever, involved and really let them know, because the first step to fixing that problem is getting people involved."
Shay Mitchell from "Pretty Little Liars"
"Speak up about it... If you are getting bullied there's probably somebody else who's getting bullied, too. So you could be the hero in this and save them. There's so many different support lines and outlets out there that are wanting you to call them and help you out with it. [Don't] keep it bottled up inside. Speak up about it."
Katie Leclerc from "Switched at Birth"
"It's so easy to feel isolated and alone and off in your own little world, in your corner. And it's really important to open your mouth and tell someone what's going on. Tell your parents. Tell your school councilor. The only way it's going to get better is if you talk about it."
Daren Kagasoff from "Secret Life of the American Teenager"
"Don't let it bother you. There's so many more important things in life as far as growing. Don't let it phase you."
Emily Osment from "Cyberbully"
"You have to have to prepare yourself for three ways to be able to get out of a situation. Whether it's walking away, having one thing you can say to a bully to get out of a situation or making a joke about it... And then you've got to talk to someone. You can online and talk to people anonymously about it. Delete the negative hate you're seeing online."
Grey Damon from "The Nine Lives of Chloe King"
"Be strong. Try to find a support group. Try to find people to make sure that that stops quickly. It's pivotal that we end this now."
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- lose yourself
- Seventeen magazine
- ABC Family
- Emily Osment