‘Just be kind’: 9-year-old Lincoln girl with incurable disease writes anti-bullying book

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — When nine-year-old Abigail Murphy of Lincoln started to get bullied at school, she took matters into her own hands.

“I feel like I needed to take it a step up,” Abigail said. Because the now 4th-grader knows what it’s like to look a little different.  

Abigail was diagnosed with Alopecia Areata at one year’s old, a disease that attacks hair follicles in the body and made famous by actor Will Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. 

For Abigail, the bullying started when she got to school and last year, she decided she’d had enough.

That’s when she first talked to her 3rd-grade teacher, Allison Ward, about her idea for a book.  

“Helping everyone realize that we’re all different,” Allison tells Channel 8. “It’s great that we’re all different, because it’d be so boring if we were all the same.”  

Written by Allison in Abigail’s words, the children’s book explains why some people look different from others.

Shortly after it was finished, Abigail read the story to her classmates and then the entire school.

“It was really cool to see the kids be so receptive to it,” Allison said.

And now it’s available for everyone.

“I didn’t really think it was going to go this far to be published and have so many interviews and people buying it,” Abigail said. 

And with each purchase, Abigail’s message of “being kind to others” continues to change lives.

“The fact that she had the belief in herself to go and read it in front of a group of 5th graders that had been picking on her a little bit, that’s pretty brave,” Allison said. “I feel like I’ve learned A lot from her this year. She just really inspires me.” 

The book was published by Northern Books and illustrated by Lincoln native Sydney Satthoff. You can purchase it at “Kind People, Kind Hearts” website or at their Facebook page.


Categories: Nebraska News, News