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Dolly Everett’s Parents Reveal The Full Extent Of The Bullying That Led To Her Death

“I wish she could see herself through my eyes and not through the eyes of the people who made her feel like that.”
Dolly Everett

On what would have been her 15th birthday, Amy “Dolly” Everett’s parents have spoken for the first time about the full extent of the horrific bullying their daughter endured before her tragic death.

Speaking with Tracey Grimshaw on last night’s A Current Affair, Kate and Tick ­Everett spoke about how their daughter changed after attending boarding school and was begging to come home.

“She just went from the most enjoyable little girl to someone that did end up in trouble at school,” Kate said, revealing the troubles her daughter was dealing with at Scots PGC College in Warwick, Queensland 

“There’s so much that I found out now, as opposed to then, and it probably would’ve made the outcome so much different.”

Tick agreed, saying he and Kate missed “so many alarms”.

“Living as remote as we were, we thought that was the best option for an education,” said Kate.

While initially Dolly liked the school, problems began to show.

“She told me that boys were calling her a slut, she was 12,” said Kate. “I don’t know whether 12 year olds even know what that means, they shouldn’t.

“I used to tell her: ‘It will get better, you’ll fit in. Everybody’s trying to fit in and they’re just working out their pecking order. Try not to be mean’.”

Kate says she called the school and asked what they were doing about the situation but that it was “just swept under the rug”.

Her parents detailed an incident with one of the boys who would call her names and push her over to which Dolly finally snapped and “turned around and decked” him. The school suspended Dolly and not the boy.

“Dolly probably shouldn’t have retaliated the way she did, but for Dolly then to become the person in the wrong and the other kid to be the victim … it doesn’t make sense,” said Tick.

Following that incident, her parents believed everything seemed to be getting better, but now they feel as though she was just putting on a brave face for fear of getting in trouble again.

Dolly became involved in a number of other incidents that landed her in trouble at school including where a boy had convinced her to send photographs of herself to him and drinking alcohol.

“As a parent, you don’t know how to deal with that,” Kate said.

“I kept onto the school. I said, ‘This is not my daughter. Something is going on, there is a ring of people’,” Kate said. “I said, ‘There are other kids involved’. They told me Dolly was a liar. And I said, ‘All kids make mistakes and I believe her. This time I believe her’.”

Finally her parents received a devastating email, with Dolly pleading to come home. 

“How long do I have to stay? Can I please leave sooner?”

“I started to panic because they were ganging up on me and I didn’t want to fight so I walked away,” the email read. “And one of them started screaming at me calling me a dirty slut, b***h and screaming about how I should kill myself and to go cut some more.”

But then after school holidays Dolly was adamant that she would return, perhaps to prove that she could, her father thought.

Then, one a seemingly normal day in January this year before school was due to go back, everything changed.

Kate and Tick say it was a day like any other, Dolly cooked her signature dinner for the family, they played cards and then went to bed at 9pm. Half an hour later her parents found her body.

“There was nothing we could do,” said Tick. “It’s the most horrible thing you, anybody, any parent … you just, you should never have to do that.”

“I actually just laid with her for hours,” Kate said. “Cuddled up with her for hours and just, I just made a promise to her that this wouldn’t be in vain … that I was so, so sorry that I hadn’t made better decisions.

“There was nothing I could do to save her. I don’t know if anyone thinks this is the answer to their problems, it’s not. It just gives them to somebody else.”

“She had so much to live for,” Kate continued.

“I wish she could see herself through my eyes and not through the eyes of the people who made her feel like that.”

The grieving parents are now tirelessly campaigning to raise awareness around bullying with their Dolly’s Dream foundation.

“We hope that we can tell parents what to look out for,” Tick said.

“Talk to your kids, see what’s on their phone. You’re going to upset them, that’s human nature, but had we known what we know now, Dolly would still be alive.”

If you or someone you know needs help call LifeLine on 13 11 14 or the Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800.

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