Friday, December 23, 2011

WHAT YOU STOLE - AN OPEN LETTER TO OUR SON'S TORMENTOR. by Mike Urry

Editor's note: 
Previously we featured a powerful post about Steven, a young man who was relentlessly bullied and tragically took his own life at the age of 13. The letter was written by his best friend, Garrett: "A Letter to Steven, RIP Little Brother." Today we are featuring another post about Steven, this time a letter written by his father, Mike Urry, addressed to the bullies who tortured his son.

Do you know what you stole that day five years ago? You probably don't remember stealing anything, but you did. Five years can seem like an eternity at your age. Do you even remember that day? Let me remind you of it.

It was just another miserable day in your life, the same as the day before. You went to school, and you did what you did every other day; you tormented our son. It was no big deal to you. It was a very big day in Steven's life though, because it was his last day on this Earth.

Simply because you felt inferior and powerless, you decided once again to take out your frustrations on your fellow students. That day, you saved your most vicious attack for Steven, your victim of choice for the previous three months. It didn't seem like stealing anything though, did it?

It was.

The first thing you stole was Steven's life. That much should be obvious, even to you, but do you know how much more you stole? The effects of your violence have spread like ripples on water, never reaching the far shore.

We lost part of ourselves that day; part of us just disappeared. Steven was the last of his line; there will be no grandchildren in our lives, thanks to you. Steven's sister will never have nieces or nephews, his grandparents will never have great-grandchildren. His many aunts and uncles and dozens of cousins will never get to grow with him in their family.

You robbed Steven's friends of his friendship. He did have friends, you know. Good friends that cared about him as he cared about them. Unlike you, they were worthy of his friendship, and Steven earned theirs. You stole him from all of them, too.

The world will never know who Steven might have become, because you stole his future. He may been anyone or done anything, but we'll never know, now. He may have even done something with his life that improved the lives of others, even thieves like you.

His sister will never have a little brother to talk to, and will feel his loss every single day. She will never truly understand what happened, or why. She loved Steven and cannot understand why you didn't like him.

You stole more than that, too. Your actions started a chain of events that continues to this day, and will never really end. We lost several years of our lives because you bullied our son. Years lost to insanity and depression, in a haze of medication and misery.

His mom may never really recover. You can't possibly conceive how losing a child destroys a mother, eating into her soul, like a disease with no cure. You stole the woman I love, leaving a shadow behind. You stole her husband as well, and replaced him with an angry, broken man.

You can't know the depth of a father's pain, my anger at you, or how lucky you are that I had help dealing with my desire to erase you from this world. I will never find true peace, but I will not lower myself to your level, and act out on my frustration and pain, like you did. You're just not worth it.

You stole all of this from all of us, and more. All of the days of growing and learning, loving and being loved are gone, and cannot be replaced. Sunny afternoons and late night talks, family dinners and dreams of the future, all gone. New friends and possibilities, old friends and memories, all impossible now.

All because you felt like hurting someone that day.

~What you stole - an open letter to our son's tormentor. by Mike Urry

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