A mother has been left terrified of a life without her 11-year-old daughter who has been bullied so badly she doesn’t want to get out of bed in the morning and is too scared to go to school – as well as making threats to end her life.
Halle Bone, from
, has been bullied most of her school life.
The young girl says she has been ‘pushed and punched’, mocked for her thick eyebrows and been the centre of a hate campaign on Snapchat.
Her mother Aimee Cowen has been to the school, police and the parents of the ‘bullies’ involved, but doesn’t know what else she can do to protect her little girl.
‘I am scared and my heart is breaking for her – I want to fix everything but I have tried and I can’t,’ the worried mum-of-two told Daily Mail Australia.
‘Kids are taking their own lives because of bullying, I am terrified of life without her – I can’t bear the thought of walking into her room if she isn’t here anymore.’
The mother said the death of 12-year-old Dolly Everett in January, which helped spark a nation-wide conversation about bullying, had a huge impact on her family.
‘I can’t imagine my life without Halle, children everywhere need to be taught about the kids who have died to escape bullies,’ she said.
Ms Cowen said her daughter has some friends – but the more she is bullied and singled out the more other kids keep their distance – because they don’t want to become the next target.
‘It is devastating. They call her a s**t and a dog, these kids are 10 and eleven, this is what normally happens at high school.’
Halle has been told she will never have friends and she should end her life.
Her worried mum says the taunting gets worse when the school announces anti-bullying initiatives.
‘When the kids know they are being watched at school they wait until their victims are outside the gates.
‘They have been told the school can’t get involved if it happens outside.
‘One day Halle was attacked just outside the gates, the girl pushed her onto the road. She hit her head and grazed her arm.
‘Then they go on Snapchat, we have taken it away from Halle but she hears about what they are saying about her when she gets to school.
‘They all put a HB on their profiles meaning ‘if you hate her, put her initials on your profile’.
The young girl said the bullying started when kids started calling her ‘monobrow’ when she was seven but has continued to escalate over the years.
‘Nobody helped me except my mum,’ she said.
She said one day after two of her friends had a fight they turned on her – and told her she had to choose who she was going to be friends with.
When she didn’t choose she was harassed by both of the girls.
‘I came home and cried for so long – I felt hurt,’ she said.
‘I now spend my recess and lunch very much on my own – or play lunch time sports to get away from all the mean people at school who talk about me.’
Ms Cowen said her daughter has threatened to end her own life, is depressed and is ‘sick of people hurting her heart’.
‘Some parents are really understanding and promise to talk to their kids, especially the parents of the girls who have also been bullied.
‘But other parents claim their children would never bully other children and won’t listen to what I have to say.
‘One little girl, who has teased Halle relentlessly, sent out a Snapchat video where she said ”Mum asked if I was being a bully so I just denied it and burst into tears, then she bought me stuff”.
Ms Cowen said the family have been working to build up Halle’s resilience, told her to continue to treat everyone in her year with kindness – and to take advantage of the lunchtime activities to keep away from the children who tease her.
The mother has told her daughter to speak up about how she is feeling – so she can help solve the problem.
Ms Cowen wants schools, and their communities including parents, to adopt a better anti-bullying messages to teach children that their cruel taunts and physical assaults can lead to depression and worse – death.
‘They have to be aware that this is what they are doing – that there are consequences.’
The mother, who has also been bullied as an adult, says this will help stop the antisocial behaviour.
Since Dolly’s death her family have been raising awareness on youth suicide and bullying.
They have set up Dolly’s Dream, a campaign to make the world a better place for children by working to eradicate bullying.