A Letter to You
Hi, my name is Jillian Jensen. I am 19 years young and a, so far, successful singer songwriter. I have been singing since age two, playing instruments since age seven and writing my own music since age eight. I have been blessed with many opportunities thus far in my career. I was a member of a local successful girl group called The Varsity Girls and with them had a song that was on the top seven at nine on Fun 107 for multiple weeks entitled "Be You". After leaving the group I had the pleasure of singing back up for lead Pussy Cat Doll and judge of The X Factor, Ms. Nicole Scherzinger on Regis and Kelly (a national television show).
People think that because I have done these things and because I appear to be so happy and at peace as I perform on a stage that I have been equally blessed with an easy upbringing. Well, I fortunately had both parents and no real issues at home and up until 7th grade school wasn't that bad either. But, how quickly everything changed. I remember my first day of 7th grade like it was yesterday, getting to meet all your new teachers and figuring out your schedule and where to go. However, it was in the class I believed would be my favorite, Spanish, where my life changed.
That first day in Spanish started out like any other introduction to a class, ice breakers and such, but then the boy next to me turned to me and asked if I would like to buy something off of him. What the boy had in his hand was a bag of some white powder. When I realized what it was later on in the afternoon I decided I had to do the right thing and inform the principal. Needless to say, that boy was taken away in a cruiser publicly during our lunch period. How quickly everyone found out it was me and how quickly I stumbled into hell.
Every class I had seemed to be with the same people and I had the same name… "snitch." Was that what I was? A snitch? As the days seemed to grow longer they also got worse. More rumors began to spread and other names I began to possess, it was as though I became the one to make fun of. Now it was not only for the thing I did right, but for other things that were not true and non-related.
I attempted to tell my guidance counselor, however, his idea of fixing the problem was sitting one of the students who was leading the pack and myself down in a private setting and making him apologize to me. Obviously, that brilliant plan didn't get very far because after leaving I nearly got my head chewed off by the student for telling on him. It felt like there was no way out.
By that point I was crying myself to sleep every night and hiding what was going on from my parents out of my embarrassment. How I wish that I would've had someone like myself to talk to about everything that KNEW exactly how I felt.
I broke down one night and finally told my parents, their reaction was to take my out of the school. They were furious that the guidance office/school board hadn't actually done something to stop this problem, but I didn't want to look weak; so I waited to the end of the year. Even after leaving the kids continued to bully me via MySpace, AIM (Instant Messaging) and prank phone calls.
I then began hurting myself. I couldn't fathom the idea of this continuing any longer than it had. I had many marks on my body it was only a matter of time before someone noticed, but by that point I had already attempted suicide two times. When all of this came to my parents attention I was sent to therapy, but that wouldn't stop the bullies. I didn't understand why I was still the one being punished: first leaving MY school and now therapy.
What I did learn through it all was these words that have become my own personal way of grappling with my pain. "Success will be your greatest revenge." At first I didn't truly understand, they were just words. But, over the years I began to get it. I worked harder and harder on my music and writing more and more; taking every emotion I possessed and putting them into words and into the one thing that really has kept me alive… Music.
My goal for 2012 is to have the opportunity to go into schools, sing my own material that I have written, as well as some other very modern, but very inspirational songs. I want those who are being bullied to have something to hear that they understand with a positive message behind it and to realize… they are NOT alone. Especially, for those who know of all I have done at such a young age already and now know what I had to experience to get to this point.
I want to be able to talk to them, tell them my story and get them to understand what I didn't exactly understand right away. It is never the end, you just need to take your mind and focus on what you want most, whether it be sports, music, drawing,
etc. I want to get them to realize that success WILL be their greatest revenge and that in being the best you can be you will succeed and can do anything you put your mind to.
Jillian Marie Jensen
PS: That boy that was "the leader of the pack" friend requested me on Facebook a few years ago and tried to become my friend, congratulating me on all of my accomplishments. (Thought you'd get a kick out of that.)