Jenny (Reading Envy)'s Reviews > It Gets Better: Coming Out, Overcoming Bullying, and Creating a Life Worth Living

It Gets Better by Dan Savage
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's review
Jul 30, 11

bookshelves: read2011, advising
Read on July 27, 2011

I've appreciated the It Gets Better campaign, that started in YouTube to let teens know that they just have to hang on until they are in a place where they have more control over their lives. I think this message is important, whether it is about coming out, coming into your own, or just embracing who you are. I wish my neighbor had this message before he took his own life in high school, and I hope it helps people.

This book is primarily a compilation of the transcriptions of a selection of people who made It Gets Better videos. So I'm not sure it is anything "new," exactly, but the message is still powerful. Some have been translated into English, or expanded beyond their original length. It ends with some resources for teens, adults, and families, which might be a crucial next stage.

My favorite essay in this is called "Getting Stronger and Staying Alive" by Gabrielle Rivera. She says that it doesn't necessarily get better, and that there is no happiness guarantee, but that you get stronger. I actually think this is just as important of a message.

I deal with a lot of students going through the stage in their lives when they are just starting to understand and identify and be confident with who they are, and want to make sure I know of resources I can point them to when I don't have all the answers. I think this is one of those places. A friend told me about When I Knew, which sounds like a slightly more humorous companion to this book.

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