Bullying is no doubt the cause of depression, anxiety and loneliness, and oftentimes suicidal thoughts in many kids. No one truly knows when bullying started, but in recent years the issue has been a rising problem. That’s why B.C. RCMP officer Tad Milmine, who was bullied as a kid because of his sexuality, has gone out of his way to speak to kids about bullying.
“I’m openly gay and I’m an RCMP officer and I do a darned good job,” Milmine told The Now. “Any positive message we can put out there for youth or society as a whole is a good thing.”
As a kid, Milmine was bullied to the point where he considered suicide. Because he remembers this time so well –and how bad it was- he wants to take his vivid memories and how he dealt with it to help others through their time of pain and suffering.
“I let them know I’ve been there. I know what it’s like to be down, to be bullied, to feel alone suicidal, to not have friends, to not have a role model, to not have someone to talk to, to have a crappy home life,” he told The Huffington Post B.C. in an interview.
But what really pushed him to start his anti-bullying talk in schools and to go out there and speak to more than 15,000 kids was the story of Jamie Hubley, a teen from Ottawa who committed suicide after being bullied day in and day out.
“I recognized that I didn’t want to be a person reading headlines anymore and hoping the world would become a better place. I wanted to do something about it,” he said.
Milmine has put out his own time and money to go around Surrey, B.C. presenting his story in schools, and to maintain his website, Bullying Ends Here, where he encourages young people to email him directly to “just share their story.”
His website went viral among teachers in Surrey, and soon he was in high demand. The RCMP saw the positive social impact of his talks and is currently arranging for Milmine to be paid to visit schools around Canada and the U.S. The arrangement will be re-evaluated at the end of this school year.
“I’m peeling back the layers. They’re not seeing a gay man, a police officer. They’re seeing a human being,” he says. “I’m creating a bond, not just throwing information at them and hoping they get it.”