THIS is the heartbreaking photo of a schoolboy with Asperger's sobbing after threatening to kill himself over violent bullying.
The devastating picture was shared by the 12-year-old boy's mother – who today spoke out about the toll the verbal and physical attacks had taken on her son.
Emma Young, 31, said she had been horrified when her son threatened to commit suicide twice after allegedly being tormented by the bullies at Fleetwood High School in Lancashire.
Bravely sharing the image of her son, who has Asperger's, she claimed bullies had pushed him into a wall in the playground where his glasses smashed, pelted him with sticks and attacked him at a bus stop.
Emma said the photo had been taken while they waited to see a doctor – with the 12-year-old telling her "I can't take this anymore".
She said: "I don't know why I took the picture, it's not something I would usually do. I felt like I needed to take it.
"That was just him at the bottom of the barrel. It was complete and utter despair at that point.
"That was when he was saying 'I can't take this any more' and had his head in his hands."
'JUST BE KIND'
The mum-of-two said her son had always looked forward to school but had gone to "absolute despair" after the attacks.
She said: "He kept it quiet that he had been getting a lot of verbal abuse from a group of boys, with one boy in particular.
"The verbal abuse quickly turned into physical abuse. He was pushed into a wall and his glasses got broken.
"There was another incident where he was battered at the bus stop, physically attacked. It was more the name calling that was the most for him to deal with."
The mum-of-two said she had been forced to get rid of anything her son could have used to harm himself, as well as taking him to mental health experts.
That was just him at the bottom of the barrel. It was complete and utter despair at that point.
Emma, a well-being officer, said she had reached out to parents of the bullies but they ignored her.
Since moving him to another school, she said the youngster was already much happier.
But in a moving social media post, Emma begged other parents to be aware of the toll bullying could take on kids.
She said: "Please teach your kids that some children are a little 'different' and not always as 'cool' or as 'social' as them.
"To have more understanding and tolerance of those who are a bit quirky or sometimes say things that aren't always appropriate. Heck, to just be kind to your fellow human beings."
BULLY FEAR Bullying is ‘biggest threat children face’ as six in ten adults fear their youngsters being victimised ‘in or outside school’
BULLYING is the biggest threat faced by children today, a parents’ survey has revealed.
Six in ten adults say they fear their youngsters being victimised in or outside school more than any other risk.
They listed it well above sexual abuse, drug addiction, boozing and smoking a their greatest concern.
The everyday fears of parents were laid bare in a survey by telly presenter and campaigner Martin Roberts.
The Sun recently launched a Block the Bullying Campaign with the NSPCC – calling on internet companies to take down sickening videos of children attacking other children.
Richard Barnes, headteacher at Fleetwood High School, said: "I can't comment on individual cases, however, the welfare of all our pupils is our utmost priority.
"Our school does have a robust policy in place for dealing with issues, including bullying. Any incidents of bullying that are reported to us are dealt with immediately and investigated thoroughly.
"This is confirmed in our latest Ofsted inspection that took place in January 2019. This report clearly points out that incidents of bullying are rare in our school and that when they do occur, they are dealt with quickly and well."
- Youngsters can call Childline on 0800 11 11
- Adults can call the NSPCC helpline on 0808 800 5000
- Or go to: nspcc.org.uk/bullying
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