The 21st of December 2014, I started out my Twitter profile. Just a teen at that time, technically a child, I started out my Twitter tweeting about what was happening in Donetsk. The choice of this has always been the best I have made, even though it did both good and bad to me. I was offered safety by someone from Yorkshire, England, United Kingdom, who admitted he was supportive to Russia, but didn’t support the harm of children by the Russians either.
But more than this, it led to some friends that I still communicate up until this very day. However, the bad being attacks by Russian trolls, who ended up breaking me psychologically completely, leading to me actually quitting Twitter myself in 2015.
In private, I kept talking to some. Especially notable is the British social media coordinator of a Polish foundation at that time. He gave me the moral to continue on Twitter, although going in a whole different direction than before.
My first tweet at that time was in memory of Daniel Pełka, a Polish-British boy that sadly died way too young at the hands of his evil mother and evil stepfather. Failed by everyone who could and should have saved him, showing the lack of protection children truly have. His story always in the back of my mind, even today.
In the years to come, I have switched from subject of activism many times. However, one thing wouldn’t change, it always being about the protection of children. Along the way, I learned of every interaction I made. And in time, one thing became abundantely clear to me, which is the fact that boys are failed by the system more often than girls are. This primarily caused by the sexism that exists, in which adult females are generally seen as less. However, the opposite side of this is how males are seen as always being strong and powerful, something which often is neither true. It’s an important reason behind my support of equity, while opposing equality. As in an equal world, things wouldn’t be fixed at all, as we simply aren’t all the same. Our differences are actually so very important.
During all of this, I would get reached out to by Elda Moreno in name of the United Nations SRSG on Violence against Children. It was a true honor to me, but I would eventually decline being named on their website. A mistake to those close to me, but looking at it back today, I would actually say it has been a great choice. Admittingly, I know most of the young people that were named on any website belonging to the United Nations have become stuck in activism, never marrying or having children as they grew older.
I am able to say my best decision in my life would be to give up on social media and focus more on my personal life. Moving from Ukraine to Poland before the Russian invasion would start earlier this year, allowing me to help my own family and one of my son’s biological family as they fled out of Ukraine. And even beyond that, as a citizen of both Poland and Ukraine, becoming the temporary guardian of 2 Ukrainian children. This situation becoming different after the news that the only living family member of 1 of them, the child’s father, got killed by the Russians in Ukraine. Which has changed something completely in my mentality.
[I am aware of the missing part in the subtitles in the video above. This is an independent work allowed to be published exclusively as part of this blog post by the original translator. The missing part should be added soon and will be published in a separate blog post.]
During my time of Twitter activism, I’ve always tried to look beyond nationalities. Therefore, I even supported Russian charities and orphanages at that time. But I won’t be able to deny that something has snapped since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. As much as I have always believed in the need of diplomacy, being often regarded as overly anti-war, I won’t be able to deny the grudge I have against both Russia and Russians now. Something that has made me lose many friendships in recent months, but also strengthening some with Russians that do believe what their country does is wrong beyond words. Same as it did with my eldest son, who’s Russian by origin, but who has been very clear about hating everything Russia is. As he clearly told me, it’s not what Russia ‘has become’, as the Russian history in itself shows that Russia has been this way for hundreds of years and simply never changed ever.
Related to this all, we could look back at the United Nations. There’s no denying that I have always been critical of them, being clear that I believe they do too little. Too much about words, too little about actions. Although the worst came to be seen by Russia, as the right of vetoing should never have been there. The failure of the United Nations being shown worldwide, being a disgrace to the entire world. The United Nations being founded on the beliefs of the events of the Second World War never being allowed to be repeated, but this happening several times since the founding of the United Nations, with the worst of all being today’s destruction of Ukraine by the hands of Russia. The United Nations claiming to be powerless, even though nobody dares to suggest the removal of all veto power in the United Nations, which would lead to the United Nations Security Council finally being able to take action, as the majority did agree Russia needed to be stopped.
And there’s so much more that could be said…
8 years of time and since I have become an adult. My life changed so much, being happily married with children, although at a younger age than many expected. But around me, nothing did change at all. An endless amount of lives lost to preventable causes. The memories of those who never deserved to die soiled by the act of inaction. There shouldn’t be a place for war, neglect and abuse in this world. Everyone should be protected. Everyone having the right to life, to be happy and free. But all these words remain meaningless in world where those that should be the protectors fail us. I will continue to fight for the protection of vulnerable children, but no longer in the open. As the reality of this is that those fighting in the open don’t show enough results at all. Useless agreements and laws that are not kept to. All to make ourselves seem better than we are. While the reality is that everyone active at activism and advocacy has failed for ages, as the results are still lacking, even today. I’m ashamed of this and all I can say is sorry to all those who can no longer speak. We failed you and we continue to fail others. I really wish this was different and I feel so very sorry…
Blog post dedicated in the memory Daniel Pełka and the many others who shouldn’t have died. Always in my mind as the angels you are. May you experience the good in heaven that you were never able to experience on earth.