Dad Has Brutal Lesson For His Sons’ Bullies
An Idaho father, Dan Bezzant, made a heart-wrenching appeal to parents to educate their children about bullying after witnessing the devastating impact it had on his seven-year-old son, Jackson. In a Facebook post from 2017, which has since gone viral, Bezzant described how Jackson, who has Treacher Collins syndrome, was subjected to relentless bullying at school due to his appearance. Treacher Collins syndrome is a rare medical condition affecting the development of facial bones and tissues. It leads to underdeveloped facial bones, sometimes hearing loss, eye abnormalities, and cleft palates. Jackson is one of the 1 in 50,000 people affected by this syndrome and suffers from a 74 percent hearing loss. Despite this, he is a spirited child who loves sports, video games, and nature.
In the post, Bezzant recounts the despair he felt after hearing older kids call Jackson a “monster.” This, along with Jackson’s revelations about being tormented with derogatory names like “ugly” and “freak” on a daily basis, being physically assaulted, and speaking of suicidal thoughts, moved Bezzant to tears. Jackson also expressed wanting to hide his face with a mask and avoiding wearing glasses and hearing aids due to the incessant teasing.
Bezzant’s message emphasizes the pivotal role that parents must play in fostering compassion and understanding in their children. While schools can implement measures to protect students from bullying, they cannot monitor every interaction. It is, therefore, incumbent upon parents to inculcate values of acceptance, respect, and empathy in their children, emphasizing that everyone is created equal and that differences should be embraced.
The response to Bezzant’s post was overwhelming. It garnered over 41,000 shares and 14,000 likes. Additionally, the family received messages from people offering friendship to Jackson. Jono Lancaster, a well-known Treacher Collins activist, offered to speak to the students at Jackson’s school, raising awareness about the syndrome and the importance of acceptance.
Dan Bezzant made it clear that his message is not just for those dealing with Treacher Collins syndrome, but for anyone facing bullying. He stressed that bullying is a widespread issue affecting people of all ages, and it must be stopped.
In the wake of the post, Jackson began attending local events and even became the guest of honor at anti-bullying rallies. He has made friends, and the “Supporting Jackson Bezzant” Facebook group showcases photos of him engaging in various activities and campaigning against bullying.
Through his raw and heartfelt plea, Bezzant hoped to ignite change and promote a more compassionate and inclusive society, where no one has to endure the pain and isolation that comes from being different.