In a viral TikTok video that has stirred controversy, a preschool teacher named Dede Duffy discussed her approach to teaching young students about the concept of “chosen families.” The video has sparked discussions and debates across various circles.
With approximately 17,000 followers on TikTok, Duffy, who goes by Watr.Bug on the social media platform and reportedly works as a preschool teacher in Cape Coral, Florida, took to her platform to express her perspective on this strange teaching method.
She began by sharing her personal experience, emphasizing that her approach has nothing to do with her sexual orientation but rather with her own childhood struggles.
“I feel like I had to learn the concept of chosen families really young, and it wasn’t anything to do with my queerness, but just based on the fact that I didn’t have the love at home that I needed,” she explained.
Her aim, she emphasized, is to help her young students understand the importance of love and support, even if it comes from sources outside their immediate family.
“I knew that I was valuable and deserved it, so I found it on my own early on, and I shouldn’t be blamed for that because blood, it still exists,” she went on, underlining the idea that familial bonds aren’t the only valid source of love and support.
However, her comments took an intense turn when she began discussing her own family and the struggles she faced growing up. “You were never there for me, and I found my own love, and that’s okay,” she said, delving into her past.
Exploding further, she added, “I think everyone should be allowed to do that, and that’s what I teach in the classroom, okay? I always say give it to your friend, not your mom, because fk your mom! And I don’t know, I’ve just been so sad. I am so sad, and I hate my sister, she is a fking c***.”
The emotional outburst has garnered attention and criticism from various quarters, with critics arguing that teaching young children to prioritize friends over family is problematic and may have unintended consequences. They also express concerns about the emotional impact of such discussions on impressionable young minds.
Indeed, DeDe Duffy's methods are a glaring example of what not to do—a severe overreach into the personal and spiritual domains of impressionable young beings. One should never underestimate the long-term impact of such teachings on these budding minds, almost akin to a form of…
— L. Ron Hubbard (Parody) (@FakeLRonHubbard) September 12, 2023
The video ends with Duffy in a classroom, wearing excessive makeup, and a caption that reads, “the only thing these [Florida] kids r learning from me is be gay.” This phrase and the video, in general, have been met with concern, with Lee County GOP Chair Michael Thompson stating that he has reported the video to appropriate authorities.
As Chairman of the Lee Co. GOP, I reported this video directly to the Chairman and other board members of the @LeeSchools, stay tuned 🇺🇸
— Michael Thompson 🇺🇸 (@Michael4FL) September 12, 2023