Parents of 12-year-old who committed suicide say he was bullied
SACRAMENTO (KTXL) -- Brokenhearted, Michelle Anderson recalls last Thursday, the day she says her 12-year-old son, JJ, ended his own life.
"That day for me was very hard. I didn't see him at all that day ... I went to work in the morning ... and..." Anderson said.
"He was the kid that if he saw you down, he tried to make you smile," his father, Josh, added, his voice cracking.
JJ was that special seventh-grader from Smedberg Middle School, who spoke his mind. The friend others went to when they needed help.
"He was just caring. He was ..." mom said, unable to finish her sentence.
But on that fateful day, things were different.
"He wouldn't open up to me that day, for whatever reason," his dad said.
The parents say they were never aware that JJ was considering suicide. They only learned after his death, from one of his close friends, that he contemplated suicide just two days before.
They say it's nobody's fault.
"If somebody tells you that they want to commit suicide, whether you believe them or not, tell someone," his mom said.
Their hope is for victims of bullying or those thinking about suicide, to open up.
"Tell your parents, tell a teacher, tell somebody..." dad said with tears. "You only get one chance ... and then it's too late."
Although they recognize whoever made their son feel so desperate is also a minor, they hope they'll consider just how serious words can hurt.
"If you have to bully someone, or if you even know that you're being mean to someone, even if it's just random, it's still bullying. Don't. Just think about what you're doing. You don't know how that person is going to take your words," Michelle Anderson said.
"You only get one chance before they're gone, and I don't want anybody to feel that pain we feel every day," his dad said, before breaking down.
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