Taylor Swift is known for responding to her fans on Instagram with personal and heartfelt messages. One bullied teen named Hannah, who had tagged Taylor in a photo and told the story of how she was being picked on, was surprised when she actually received a long response filled with insight and compassion from the country singer.
Here’s what she wrote to Taylor:
Taylor, why are people at school so mean? Why do they always try to bring me down? I’m sitting here crying while I write this. I don’t know what to do anymore. No matter what I do, it’s never good enough. There’s always something that I do wrong. I get made fun of for having big dreams or what I wear or things that I like. I just want to know why they do it Taylor. Why do they do this to me? Why do they torture me and hate me so much? I’m starting high school Wednesday and I was actually pretty excited but now whenever I think about it I feel sick. I just want to feel wanted for once. I wanna feel like I belong. I just want feel better than I do right now. Taylor please help me I need it desperately. I need a hug. I love you lots.” Love, Hannah
Now see Taylor’s reply in full:
Hannahhhhh… Reading this made me so sad because I love seeing you in your videos and photos being so happy and wide eyed, like the world isn’t as harsh and unfair as it actually is. I hate thinking about your pretty face covered in tears, but I know why you’re crying because I’ve been in your place. This isn’t a high school thing or an age thing. It’s a people thing. A life thing. It doesn’t stop. It doesn’t end or change. People cut other people down for entertainment, amusement, out of jealousy, because of something broken inside them. Or for no reason at all.
It’s just what they do, and you’re a target because you live your life loudly and boldly. You’re bright and joyful and so many people are cynical. They won’t understand you and they won’t understand me. But the only way they win is if your tears turn to stone and make you bitter like them. It’s okay to ask why. It’s okay to wonder how you could try so hard and still get stomped all over. Just don’t let them change you or stop you from singing or dancing around to your favorite song.
You’re going into high school this week and this is your chance to push the reset button on how much value you give the opinion of these kids, most of whom have NO idea who they are. I’m so proud of you and protective of you because you DO. If they don’t like you for being yourself, be yourself even more.
Every time someone picks on me, I’ll think of you in the hopes that every time someone picks on you, you’ll think of me… and how we have this thread that connects us. Let them keep living in the darkness and we’ll keep walking in the sunlight.
Forever on your side, Taylor.
Many pop stars talk about being role models, but seeing a fan that’s hurting and actually taking the time to reach out and share wisdom? That’s amazing. Not only did it make her young fan’s day, it may even have changed her life.
Thank you Taylor, not just for giving this advice to Hannah, but for giving it to all of us. If you know anyone who’s hurting, share her incredible comment with them below.