VIRGINIA (WDVM) — Bullying can go beyond just grade school.
Andi Geloo, an attorney in Northern Virginia, knows this all too well. She was the victim of workplace cyberbullying from two attorneys in the same courthouse where she practiced law.
She had misogynistic and racist comments written about her online. “They wrote that they hope I’d ‘burn in a fiery crash’,” said Geloo. “You’d think a 14-year-old wrote this.”
Geloo decided to pursue a defamation case. She jumped through hurdles, convincing cable companies to provide the IT addresses of the bullies to find out their identity. When she finally did, they offered her money, but not the one thing she wanted most: an apology. Nevertheless, Geloo dropped the lawsuits.
“One of the things I learned is you can never force humanity on someone,” she said. “I got offers of money, which I didn’t want, but I never got that apology.”
Geloo went on to pass “Andi’s Law” in the state of Virginia, which allows those in the same position as her to have an easier process than she endured in court.
For National Bullying Prevention Month, she encourages those who are victims of bullying to defend themselves and take action.
“Document everything,” she said. “It’s so important to have that to go back to. When you document things in your diary, that’s actually admissible in court.”
Her last piece of advice? To stay classy and calm.
“Just remember, you didn’t pick this fight,” she said. “They’re coming after you, and you need to protect yourself. Don’t just do nothing, definitely do something.”
Geloo also says that no matter how alone you feel, teenager or adult, there is always someone you can reach out to. “There’s always one other entity you can go to,” she said.