Bullied Teen Hangs Self After Writing She Loves ‘All My Haterz’
by ABC Digital
(VANCOUVER, Wash.) -- A 14-year-old girl whose Facebook page says she loves "all my haterz" has committed suicide after enduring two years of bullying by her female classmates, her family claims.
Eden Wormer, an eighth grader at Cascade Middle School in Vancouver, Wash. hung herself Wednesday.
The girl's family told ABC News affiliate KATU that she committed suicide after two years of being bullied by girls in her class. Wormer's older sister, Audri, told the station that Eden changed her appearance several times in an effort to fit in and begged her older sister not to report the bullying because she thought it would only make the problem worse.
Wormer's Facebook page is a bittersweet mix of tween angst where she wrote: "im super funny and out going i love all my friends n family n that includes all my haterz.! :) n im funn to hang around too. :)"
In a Feb. 12 post, she wrote: "omg im such a loner i dont have a valentines n the only thing im celebrating valentines day with is my bummble bee pillow pet. like this iff u hhave no valentines too or iff u wanna be my valentine. :)"
Police in Vancouver say they haven't found evidence that the alleged bullying violated any state laws, according to KATU. Both the school and the Evergreen School District are talking to students and investigating what might have happened and whether any bullying had been documented.
Following her death, Wormer's friends wrote mournful words on her Facebook page. Brook Radtke wrote: "Eden you are an amazing [betuifl] person i will miss you forever love isabel abd brook."
Another friend, Samantha Lynn, wrote, "I wish it didn't take people this long to relize how beautiful you are and how unique you are. You are the sweetest girl in the world. I wish you knew you didn't have to fit in. It's good to stand out."
Wormer's suicide is the latest in a string of youthful suicides that have been attributed to bullying and have prompted a spate of anti-bullying legislation across the country.
Carol Fenstermacher, director of community relations at Evergreen School District, told ABC News that she couldn't comment on this individual case. However, she says she wished someone in the school or community had been able to investigate the bullying claims before such a tragedy occurred.
"It's something that the school community is going to be dealing with for a while," she said.
The school district maintains a website to keep students and parents informed about bullying and harassment, and features a Safe Schools Alert system in which people can anonymously report bullying by phone, text or email. So far this school year, Fenstermacher says there have been 11 reported incidents of bullying at Cascade, which is fairly typical for a middle school, but the type of bullying may vary.
"When there are reports, they're looked at," said Fenstermacher. "We call kids in, and we talk to them. It was disturbing to hear family members saying, 'We didn't call the school.' Please do. If you fear retaliation, do it anonymously, because it's still going to be checked out."
Mike Donlin, program supervisor for the School Safety Center at Washington's Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, said that the state passed comprehensive anti-bullying and harassment legislation in 2010 that defines bullying and requires a set of procedures that all schools must follow.
Although cases of suicide in connection with bullying are rare, "in my mind, the tragedy is that we often forget," he said. "That young person was screaming out for help. We have to learn from this and make sure that we deal with things."
Donlin's School Safety Center also maintains a working group to fight harassment and bullying, and it's scheduled to convene next week. Donlin said he imagines that Eden's case will be discussed at length.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio