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Desperate, Bullied Boy Knocks on Neighbor’s Door Looking For Friends – What He Got in Return Exceeded His Wildest Dreams

Maybe I just had a charmed childhood, but it seems to be that kids have it tougher these days when it comes to making friends, especially if they’re a little “different.” I’ve seen this play out with my own children, especially once they hit middle school age. 

But the story of Shayden Walker, an eleven-year-old boy from Amarillo, Texas, it broke my heart. It’s extreme to say the least. Shayden’s search for true friends after being tricked and bullied by his peers led him to knock on a neighbor’s front door in hopes of finding some kindness and some kids who would accept him.

His neighbor, Brennan Ray, caught the whole exchange on their doorbell camera.

“Um, I just wanted to see if you knew any kids around like 11 or 12, maybe,” the boy can be heard saying in the video. “I need some friends, like really bad.”

Ray answered compassionately, but told them that his own child was just a toddler and too young to play with him. He suggested some kids that lived nearby, but Shayden had been down that road already. “They’re not my friends anymore because they’re bullies,” the boy said.

His interaction with Shayden tugged at his heartstrings, so Ray posted the doorbell video to TikTok, where it went viral beyond his wildest expectations, receiving over 69 million views and counting!

“You never know what people are going through until you get a chance to talk to them. This young man is well mannered, kind, and brave. So TikTok can we help Shayden make some friends?”

An interview with Shayden’s mom, Krishna Patterson, gave some insight into his struggles. She told USA Today that he has multiple diagnoses that make him “different” from other kids, including autism, oppositional defiant disorder, bipolar disorder, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD.)

“That’s a lot of different diagnoses for one child,” she says. “People need to be aware that these mental health issues can make children, even adults, feel completely isolated and feel alone.”

Inspired by the millions of TikTok viewers who wanted to support Shayden, the Rays even started a GoFundMe for the boy, and it raised a whopping $37,000 in just hours! The GoFundMe states:

“We are raising money to help buy him a gaming system, school clothes and hopefully some amusement park tickets and anything else he may want or need. 100% of the donations will be given directly to Shayden and his family, he may raise enough to take a family trip. Let’s continue to show kindness to Shayden, and raise awareness for bullying and suicide prevention! You can keep in touch with his story on our TikTok page, much love, the Ray Family.”

After the fundraiser exceeded everyone’s wildest dreams, donations were turned off at Shayden’s mom’s request. She was grateful for the support but felt it was more than enough money and didn’t want others spending any more of their hard-earned wages on her family.

All the support from people near and far has done wonders for Shayden’s self-confidence. His mom says he wants to donate some of the money to tornado relief and the war in Ukraine, as well as take a family vacation with it. I think we can see that this bullied boy has a heart of gold, and I pray that many valuable and substantial friendships with his peers comes from this effort, as well as more understanding about disabilities and mental health diagnoses in both kids and adults.

As far as the Rays are concerned, they are glad that Shayden chose their house to look for new friends. “He is a beautiful soul,” Ray said. “His happiness is infectious and his smile is infectious. He’s a good kid.”

Jenny Rapson
Jenny Rapsonhttp://www.foreverymom.com
Jenny Rapson is a wife and mom of three from Ohio and the editor of For Every Mom. You can also find her alternately griping and gushing about her kids at her own blog, Mommin' It Up. You can email her at jrapson@outreach.com, or follow her on Twitter.

Chip and Joanna Gaines: 11 Godly Secrets to an Epic Marriage and Family

Chip and Joanna Gaines are teaching us important lessons about marriage and family as they walk away from their HGTV show for the sake of their family.

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