Please Stop Laughing at Me...

by Ben Rozga

Summary

Jodee Blanco has filled in the gaps and unknowns about school bullying in her book Please Stop Laughing at Me... Her book is about herself through her years in school from elementary until graduation. In these years it goes from teasing to bullying. This bullying ends up becoming so bad she ends up getting beat and she is scared to go to school. As she grows up they pick on her for other things including her deformity. Sometimes the causes of the abuse are from the teachers as well and no one supports her. Eventually she begins to give in and not believe in herself which leads to depression. “What a desperate, pathetic fool I was. Time after time, my "friends" had shown me their true colors. Yet, I still wanted to believe they were sorry for causing me pain. p. 128”, Jodee said this when she was about to give into the hate and give up, which she didn't recover from until after high school is over. The book ends with her visiting her school reunion as an adult, where something shocking happens.

Character Analysis

The main character is the author of the book Jodee Blanco. When she is younger she is just like everyone else and fits in as normal. Her parents teach her to be affectionate to everyone and not to run away from her problems. When she starts to be picked on because of it she wants to do what she can to fit in but her grandparents who are very religious tell her it is important to do the right thing even if you don't want to. This is why she said this, “I dreaded my parents finding out that I was a social failure again, so every afternoon when I got back from school, I carefully hid any evidence of abuse. I applied makeup to my arms and legs so my mom couldn’t see the bruises where id been punched or kicked. I soaked the bloodstains and mud off my clothes in the tub before she got home. If I had to cry, I turned the stereo on so no one could hear me. When anyone asked how school was going, I said everything was terrific and that id never been happier,” (Blanco 69).

Conflict/Resolution

In this book all Jodee's problems were with her friends at school. This is an example of character vs. society because it wasn't just a couple people that she had a problem with, it was most of the school. Sharon (one of the school bullies) said, "So many people at this school want to kick the daylights out of you." (Blanco 197). Jodee never really had a resolution until the end of the book when she went back to her reunion and the burden of the bullying was lifted off her when everyone said they now appreciate her.

Theme

I think a good theme for this book is "The bullies never notice the harm, but the bullied never forget". I believe this is the message of the book because when Jodee meets all of the old bullies they seem to think they weren't actually causing harm but just being a normal kids and just joking around. Also Jodee wrote this book to make people aware of bullying so it doesn't happen to others.

Textual Evidence

I think the most powerful part of the book was at the end when Jodee was able to forgive her friends. She said,"I feel as I'm floating now. The weight I've been carrying for so long has been lifted. I slowly open my eyes and smile at my former classmates sitting before me. I can finally forgive them... and myself." (Blanco 268) This was also my favorite quote because it was very meaningful and had emotion to it. This was also a very important part of the book because Jodee relived herself from the pains she ad from her childhood.

Book Review

★★★☆☆ Out of 5 stars I believe this book deserves a 3/5. Why did I give it this rating? I thought that the book has good content but a set-back was I wasn't intrigued until the end. I found the beginning to be quite boring but I think its also necessary to read the beginning and not skip over it because some of the most important information is in it. But if you have the patience to read through it, the book becomes interesting and does pull you in with a good conflict and ending.
Jodee Blanco on CNN

Web sites to view

http://www.jodeeblanco.com/ - Learn all about her other books, questions you may have about her, and where you can see her.

http://www.thejodeeblancogroup.com/ - You can learn all about Jodee's writing and consulting corporation and they have a bio about her.

Citations


Works Cited

BlancoGroup. "Jodee Blanco on CNN." YouTube. YouTube, 02 June 2010. Web. 08 May 2016.

"It's NOT Just Joking Around! - A Survivor's Guide to Joking and Peer Abuse :: Jodee Blanco." It's NOT Just Joking Around! - A Survivor's Guide to Joking and Peer Abuse :: Jodee Blanco. Web. 09 May 2016.

"Jodee Blanco Quotes." Jodee Blanco Quotes (Author of Please Stop Laughing at Me... One Woman's Inspirational Story). Web. 08 May 2016.

"Jodee Blanco Provides Valuable Insight to Bullying." The Jackson County Times-Journal. Web. 08 May 2016.

"Our Company Is Comprised of Three Divisions:." The Jodee Blanco Group. Web. 09 May 2016.

"Outside Reading Project." : Please Stop Laughing at Me (Aimee Mueller). Web. 08 May 2016.

"Robot Check." Robot Check. Web. 08 May 2016.

"Xpress: She Stood up for Herself." Xpress: She Stood up for Herself. Web. 08 May 2016.