A mom in Connecticut had enough of the bullies who were
tormenting her son Michael at school, so she took to Facebook to post an open
letter to his tormentors that has struck a chord with thousands.
MaryAnn Parisi, 36, of West Haven, Connecticut, gave birth to
Michael three months prematurely, which led to some developmental issues that might have caused his peers to single him out at school.
Parisi told ABC News that Michael's sixth grade teacher
informed her that he was being picked on by his classmates during an assembly.
When his teacher spoke with Michael about the issue he told her, 'It's OK, I'm
getting used to [the bullying].'"
Parisi didn't take it as well as her son, who she
described as a fighter. She decided to
do something about it, sharing a post on Facebook, detailing her son's angst at
the hands of his classmates.
"He didn't learn to talk until he was 3 years
old," Parisi wrote on Facebook. "Walking was very delayed. He didn't
have teeth till after his first birthday. He was so very behind. But he loved.
To this day, his smile is the best thing ever. There is not one person he
doesn't like/love, including those who tormented him today. He forgives and
honestly, he forgets too. There is not one judgmental bone in his body. I
strive to be more like him daily but fall very short."
"Kicking his chair, calling him 'stupid,' 'ugly,' 'brace face,' 'bucky beaver.' Telling him to sit down and shut up is
not the way. You don't have to like him, but you do have to respect him," she
After the post went viral, Parisi said she received an
outpouring of support from family and friends that helped lift Michael's
"He's tough and it warms my heart that he is so
resilient," she told ABC News. "Clearly in the post, you can see he has not
had an easy life and it comes into who he is—the silly, the goofy, the
confidence ... e knows he's different from other kids, but he accepts it. I'm
proud of him."