It Really Does Get Better

Montrose Counseling Center was one of many organizations asked to co-sponsor the local book launch of It Gets Better: Coming Out, Overcoming Bullying and Creating a Life Worth Living, a collection of transcribed videos submitted to the itgetsbetter.org website. The book and the website were the brainchild of advice columnist Dan Savage and his partner, Terry Miller. They invited people to submit videos to give inspiration to young Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender persons after a rash of suicides by students who were being bullied by their classmates. The March 26 book launch was well-organized by Jane Moser at Brazos Bookstore. The bookstore had signed copies of the books for sale, and approximately 50 people came to listen to community members read excerpts from the book. MCC Community Projects Specialist Sally Huffer was there and read a selection by Ellen DeGeneres. Huffer pointed out that just the night before, MCC’s youth program, HATCH, addressed suicide prevention. Four HATCH youth were there, along with former HATCHling, Pamela Paige Palmer. Palmer is one of HATCH’s many success stories whose life mirrors the “It Gets Better” campaign. She is featured in the videos below, “Walk in My Shoes,” and “Too Many Empty Shoes” because her first girlfriend committed suicide. Palmer is getting ready to leave for graduate school to study anthropology. Literally hundreds of youth attend HATCH events and meetings each year, and youth services specialist Deb Murphy proudly boasts, “We have never lost a HATCH youth to suicide.”