Bully Incident: You Killed Jesus (1976)

This story was the first story about the bullying that happened to me as I recalled it. It certainly set the tone for the stories that were to come when I started this site in 2007. As I look back on these stories with a fresh eye, I realize that, for many stories, there was little to nothing I could do to prevent the bullying or, in the case of this story, the hurtful words of some young children. Life has that happen and certainly plenty of African-Americans, Hispanics, and many other groups also have mean and debase things said about them. Part of my learning is to be less sensitive to these comments and look at them more holistically as a bigger problem. For example, it is interesting to me that now, in the US, we have an African-American sitting President, but more racial divide between the police and African-Americans than I can recall in a long time. We can’t change these things easily, so sometimes it’s best to handle them with less emotion and more discussion. ~Alan Eisenberg


As part of my understanding the bullying that happened to me, I’ve decided to chronologically tell the incidents of my being bullied starting from my earliest memories. As an adult, I often wonder if these stories are exaggerated from the mind of the child I was. I don’t believe so, but I’m sure the perspective is different. But that’s part of the problem!

As adults, of course we can rationalize what happened when we were children and see incidents as much less impactful. But it’s not happening to us as adults, it’s happening to us as children. And wherever we are emotionally and mentally when the incident happens, that’s what sticks with us. So, the incident I’ll describe below may not be that big, but it sticks with me. I don’t know why, but as a child, it was my first real brush with hate.

For the first 7 years of my life, I don’t recall any bullying. I don’t think that is unique. I feel like bullying really starts around mid to late elementary school. We moved in 1975 from Maryland to Lexington, Massachusetts. In Maryland I had lots of friends. Lexington was different. Somewhere in the first year there, I was walking down the street in my neighborhood when two twin neighbor girls who were maybe 6 approached me. They looked me straight in the face and said “you killed Jesus” and spit on me, then ran away.

I should say now that I am Jewish, but don’t wear it on my sleeve. It seems obvious to me that they found out I was Jewish and heard that Jews killed Jesus (not that uncommon back in the mid-70s belief). I’m not even sure I had talked to these two kids before and I just remember being embarrassed about being Jewish. What did I do? Why the hatred? To this day, I still don’t know if I can answer those questions. But I know that I’m not the only one who has heard that.

That’s the first incident of bullying I recall. You may say to me that was not bullying. But to me, it is. I didn’t do anything to provoke it.

Or did I?

It’s a question I do ask myself. What do you think? I will continue to add the stories of the bullying in my young life here. This is just the beginning. The ending, unfortunately leads me to this point, 28 years later, to want to tell the story and hear your stories, so we can all learn, and hopefully help others. Thanks for reading.

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The Workplace Punching Bag (A Personal Story)

I have learned through my website that bullying is not something that just ends at school age, but that bullies can grow up to be workplace bullies and victimization from bullying happens to adults as well. If that wasn’t clear before, it has become abundantly clear to me through stories like the one below. As with school administration, I wish all HR departments at companies would have a “no bullying” policy and follow it when needed. ~Alan Eisenberg


Stop Workplace BullyingI want my story to be heard as I know many others that have suffered through similar and bullying and victimization is not limited to the school grounds and early years, but is sadly alive and well in the workplace.

Last year I felt like a punch bag… it was like a vendetta was being launched and the HR Department were powerless from stopping it from happening.  It is not what you know, but who you know.

This is how it all began…

I was appointed the Head of Marketing. I embraced the challenge and was extremely upbeat and enthusiastic to begin with. I started to make various positive changes… rebranded, created a corporate brand guideline and developed social media.

I received praise from the ‘outside world’ and from most of the board members, however there was one department and one Director in particular that I was required to work with in order to succeed in the marketing in its entirety and this particular department and Director made my life a living hell for approximately 12-18 months. By the end of it, I was nothing more than a nervous, insomniac wreck of person. 60% of what I had been tasked with meant I had no choice, but to work with this particular department. I am a proactive individual so made bi-monthly standing meetings that were often cancelled and yet I soon discovered that ‘secret meetings’ pertaining to the marketing and various events had been held. I was once accused in a meeting in front of many individuals of making some terrible mistakes that had caused some embarrassment… it had to do with the proofing, the print and the delivery. They didn’t like it when I was able to back up all my documentation to show that:

  1. Deadlines had been missed by this department for final changes so late submissions caused the additional pressure on the print suppliers to deliver within an unreasonable time frame.
  2. Some of the supposed requested changes to be made could never be backed up/supported and all requested changes received were made by me.
  3. Due to the missed deadline the booklets would have to be delivered directly to the venue.

The printers were instructed accordingly, but at the last-minute a rather odd request was made to have these delivered directly to the hotel. I queried this at the time, but as the request came from someone far more important I let it be. However it was brought up in the meeting and I was accused of making a silly decision to deliver to the hotel which caused additional work and the cost of a taxi to ferry these booklets in several trips to the event. However I had the supporting emails to prove that the decision had not been made by me which I produced and this caused embarrassment to the important person concerned. I was not about to be humiliated again for a mistake I had not made! This is where I fear that the real vendetta against me and my team began.

It was indeed a very sad year as I was desperately trying to justify everything I did. The ‘bullies’ were however allowed to continue with the harsh tones, failure to respond to emails, stonewalling, secret meetings, missed deadlines and worst of all were the fabricated stories and lies and the stalking on my own personal social media sites that followed for at least 6 months. There was little I could do except do other than the best that I could and to persevere. Thankfully others supported me, but the damage of the stress had taken its toll and eventually something had to give… the marketing was yanked from under my feet through no fault of my own and the person appointed to take over the role was none other than the Directors sister-in-law and the daughter of the big boss.

I am hardworking, diligent and dedicated and usually achieve my goals. I have never cheated, lied or stolen in my life… I am as honest as they come. I am direct and truthful and I have strong morals and integrity, but what I saw and went through gave me a cruel insight to the harsh reality of the business world. I was advised that if I decided to take the matter further I would almost certainly lose as the company had endless financial and legal resources and even though this particular Director has a file a ‘mile long’ (slight exaggeration!) of complaints of bullying and various other charges against her she was untouchable and no one who came up against her ever won! If I pursued the matter I might just not have a job right now so how would I then pay my bills and mortgage? My very kind, caring and wonderful colleague who was working with me resigned out of principle to what was happening and also because with the loss of the marketing she was forced into a menial job that she did not wish to do. I felt cowardly for staying, but at that point I had lost all confidence in myself and the system that was supposed to protect the bullied victim.

I speak Afrikaans as part of my home language and I am proud to be bilingual. Hearing others speak foreign languages in and around me is refreshing… it shows we are a proud multi-cultural society. It shows I am not racist. The definition for ethnicity is: the fact or state of belonging to a social group that has a common national or cultural tradition which to me equates to an Afrikaans speaking South African and for this I was forced into writing a letter of apology for speaking a language which apparently caused a colleague some offence. This colleague never brought it to my attention, he never even politely asked that I refrain from speaking another language in front of him… he went straight to the very top with exaggerated claims, false accusations and goodness knows what else so the HR department were therefore instructed to deal with myself and another colleague and we were told under no uncertain terms that should we choose not to write an apology letter for speaking Afrikaans our jobs were under threat. Other languages openly spoken in the office have never ever been brought into question… a different rule applied to us. We were not being treated fairly. This gang of colleagues at work had rallied around to ‘get me‘ and they were to succeed. The worst was a twitter claim that could never be supported (nothing was ever captured or photographed) and it was exaggerated to all on the board. I was beyond mortified. Even my own boss never believed me. Unbeknown to me HR and the CEO had already trawled through a 1000 twitter messages on my feed and found the retweet (yes a retweet from UberFacts!) that had upset this particular Director who was out to get me to the point that I lost my marketing position, but the build-up to this had continued for months and perhaps because I did not break sooner this just had to be manipulated and twisted into something it never was. Once the truth was revealed that it was a retweet, I never received an apology for the embarrassment that I had endured and suffered from the false tweet accusation and I felt that my honour and integrity was forever ruined. I cried and vomited for most of the night and when I eventually was so shattered I fell asleep I dreamt I never woke up and for the first time in a long time I felt free.

I realized then that I needed help. So I wrote the following message on Facebook to my bullies and I have subsequently received huge support from around the world and now realise just how many others suffer daily at the hands of bullies. I am sadly not alone.

“You and your gang of friends made my life so unbearable last year with the exaggerations and lies that it made me physically ill. I lost the marketing position, I lost my colleague, I was stalked on social network sites and I suffered from an ulcer and the physical and emotional stress caused elevated Cortisol levels and as a direct result of this I have gained weight. This is bullying… IT IS victimization, but sadly you won the last round and you are likely to win again. It was never ever a fair fight to begin with. Your ties and connections protect you and your loved ones… I am not afforded the same. Karma will prevail.”

My advice to those going through a similar experience is to please not suffer in silence as I want to let you know that you are not alone. Surround yourself with family and genuine friends that care and with their help you can get through it all. The advice I received today was to ‘forgive, but never forget.’ Perhaps it is time to heed this very good advice.

 ~Anonymous

How to Deal with Bullying

I am happy to have author and speaker Stephen Scoggins, who has his own blog website, and his book called “The Journey Principles”, share his thoughts and story here as he has on his site. Certainly, his tips on ways to deal with a bully help us realize there are things we are empowered to do to deal with this form of abuse. A big thank you goes out to Stephen for this post and his efforts to help deal with our bullies. ~Alan Eisenberg


Cowering girl with bullyWhen I think of the word bully, a mean kid from my elementary school pops into my head. In my childhood memory, he stood head and shoulders above the whole class and rumor had it he’d started shaving before 5th grade. We often associate the word bully with childhood, but bullies can exist in all walks of life. Adult bullies are usually more skilled at masking their behavior, but their actions can affect both our personal and professional lives. When someone treats us poorly, it can be difficult to see things from their perspective. However, we can change our approach to dealing with bullies by understanding their motives and sometimes we can have a positive effect on their lives.

The first thing to remember about bullying is that as much as it may be directed toward you, bullying is not actually about you. At its heart, bullying is a reaction to a force. What makes bullying so confusing is that it seems unprovoked, but the force that inspired it is still there. If this force comes from inner turmoil, the bully may seek to control or dominate to feel more secure. As mentioned in my book The Journey Principles, a bully/victim relationship is inherently a Giver/Taker relationship. If you are being targeted, it’s because you have something the bully wants. It may be an inner peace or giving spirit; whatever the reason, your bully’s aggression is an attempt to self-soothe.

5 Ways to Deal with a Bully:

Identification: Try to find the root of your bully’s insecurity. Does the insecurity stem from a difficult environment or something lacking in the person’s life?

Affirmation: Remind your bully that his or her words have a unique ability to change lives for better or for worse.

Discouragement: Do not reward your bully’s actions with the behavior her or she wants from you. This will only make the problem worse.

Physical and Mental Outlet: Encourage your bully to focus on a subject/activity he or she enjoys as a way to redirect energy in a positive way.

Outside Help: Seek the advice of someone outside of the situation. This person can add valuable perspective and keep you from suffering in silence.

When you seek to understand your bully, you might see an amazing transformation. Sadly, you might also see a repeat of damaging behavior. Remember that you can’t make people change, but you can deter them from treating you poorly. When you encounter bullies in your life, try to think of the motivation behind their actions. Everyone wants to feel valued, and when you sympathize with bullies, you’re giving them that gift. Your kindness may not fix your bully, but when you put yourself in another person’s shoes, you are ensuring you don’t become a bully yourself.

“God blesses those who are humble, for they will inherit the whole earth.”
(Matthew 5:5, NLT)

In your service,
Stephen Scoggins

Tried and Tested Anti-Bullying Techniques for Teachers

Bullying CloudBullying in schools can take many forms and result in physical or emotional harm. The consequences of bullying can be detrimental to the victim or victims involved, so schools take this issue very seriously. In fact, by law, it is a requirement for all schools to have measures in place to prevent and tackle all forms of bullying.
There are lots of different anti-bullying methods and procedures that a school can adopt, and each school needs to decide how best to handle different situations that affect its pupils. There is no one single anti-bullying solution that will suit all schools, so a multi-faceted approach is often taken.

A successful school that tackles bullying will have clear policies in place to deal with instances of bullying. They will also look at preventing bullying from occurring in the first place.

Bullying is a really complex issue, and the motivations behind why a child might bully another child in the first place are often wide-ranging. Sitting down with pupils and involving them in discussions about bullying can have a really positive impact. Educating children about differences between pupils and embracing those differences, whether they are based on religion, ethnicity, disability or appearance, for instance, can help to foster an inclusive environment where every child is accepted and feels safe and secure. It can be useful for a school to promote anti-bullying by getting children involved with designing posters and taking part in role plays that emphasize that the school does not tolerate behavior that is hurtful or upsetting to others.

For young children, the differences between right and wrong need to be taught, so using positive-reinforcement approaches when good behaviour has occurred is just as important as recognizing when bad behavior takes place. Positive reinforcement can take many forms, including rewards such as extra playtime or stickers. Generally, it is something that a child will find of value to him or her. Working with expert organisations such as Brainwaves, who can provide different rewards for improving children’s behavior and motivation, can be a positive step to promote anti-bullying. Making use of specialist resources or organisations that have a proven track record in tackling bullying can be hugely beneficial to a school.

Successful schools should also make it easy for pupils to feel that they can report instances when bullying has occurred without any repercussions from the perpetrator. Policies should be in place to stop the behaviour from occurring again and disciplinary sanctions implemented. Schools should also involve parents and caregivers as part of this procedure.

A school also needs to regularly update and review its anti-bullying policies to ensure that they are current and take into account developments of new forms of bullying. Cyber bullying, for instance, has grown enormously in recent years with the advent of the internet, smartphones and social media. Pupils need to be educated about bullying online and what this might constitute.

A successful school will also ensure staff are fully trained to deal with bullying issues, as well as how to engage with the wider community to tackle issues. As bullying can also take place away from the school premises, a school needs to work with organisations such as the police and children’s services to crack down on any off-site bullying offences.

~Sally

How to Prevent Bullying Through the Martial Arts

Boy Martial ArtsFor children who may experience bullying, participating in martial arts is a positive way to build both coping methods and ways to deal with bullies on the spot. The effects of learning martial arts such as karate, kickboxing, or jiu-jitsu, are long-term, and changes can take effect immediately in some children.

The martial arts improve both physical and mental health. The obvious benefit of physical health improvement through exercise can give children and adults alike a feeling of well-being. But Martial arts also allow children to build confidence and self-esteem through goal setting, learning self-defense tactics, and making like-minded friends. For instance, if a child’s quest is to earn a black belt, he or she must take steps along the way and set individual, smaller goals to reach the final result. With each achievement, that child will feel more powerful and resilient.

Children who understand self-defense poses, stances, and maneuvers because of martial arts often have a sense of preparedness when faced with bullies. They are more likely to be able to defuse a bully without having to resort to violence. Role-playing responses on how to deal with a bully can often be helpful, and the martial arts teach just that. In addition, the confidence this preparedness and sense of worth provided by martial arts training may even ward off bullies altogether.

Why, though, do children bully? Commonly, bullying is a cycle: bullies may be bullied at home or have been bullied in the past. Oftentimes bullies haven’t learned the social or problem-solving skills they need to get along with children and in their day-to-day lives. Bullying becomes an aggressive, hateful response to being insecure, socially awkward, or even just bored – all of which are situations where these bullies may feel powerless. Bullying gives them a feeling of power. Regardless of the reason children bully, it is never okay.

Martial arts can provide skills for not only combating bullies, but for helping children not to be bullies. They can help stop the cycle of bullying by providing accountability and structure for children. If a child doesn’t experience discipline at home or at school, then he or she has the opportunity to do so through the martial arts. It takes a particular kind of rigor and focus to be successful, and martial arts instructors do not allow for goofing off during class.

The confidence that the martial arts instill in children can also benefit those who may be at risk for being bullies. The same way role-playing benefits those who have to deal with bullies, it will help children be prepared in case they feel like being angry or mean. The martial arts also teach being calm, as well as breathing in a calm manner to maintain composure.

Lastly, the martial arts teach children the importance of respect: respect for the teachers, for other students, and for themselves. Learning how to respect all kinds of people may help reduce bullying behavior.

For children on the East Coast, Tiger Schulmann’s MMA offers a bully prevention program every year. The program teaches children the definition of a bully, the different forms in which bullying may manifest, and how to stop a bullying situation without getting physical. All of these lessons teach the basic martial arts principles of discipline, respect, role-playing, and confidence to help children to better handle themselves in any situation.

~Tiger Schulmann’s MMA

The Elite Cyber-bullies (A Personal Story)

Sometimes, when I read a story, it is hard for me to connect with the writer, because their world of bullying is so much different from my experiences. Such is the case with this story and the world of elite hackers cyberbullying that is going on. It is hard to distinguish the pain that comes with what people post on the computer screens of the world, as is the case here. ~Alan


CyberbullyingCyber bullying for me started a few years ago when I was a member of a forum called elitehackers.info which now no longer exists. Yeah, this saga has lasted a while and these cyber bullies that are after me refuse to leave me alone. Back then I wanted to learn about computer security, infosec,…but I was not doing any thing bad on-line and had no bad intentions but some one got a different idea when I changed my nick to, “cy83r7r0n.”

At that point I was contacted by this low life called, “Nacky.” I guess it appeared like I was too hungry and really eager to get into black hat sort of stuff but she was wrong so when requested to crack into some ICQ e-mails I refused eventually out right and instead posted the entire conversation that took place on that forum to my site (that was hosted on a free account and removed by just one e-mail to the admin by Nacky) and later on my blog (was removed just as well with all the comments that the victim of the ICQ e-mail made) and that is where the abuse started because I refused to be silenced and continued posting that conversation and later on even the e-mails she sent to me on myspace and other bloging platforms.

Now I refer to her as a non-entity. Not just because I am pissed at her but that is how she referred to her self in one of the e-mails that she sent me over the years trying to confuse me and get me to believe that she was some outside observer and here is a typical e-mail from her,

“You may remember me, you had me confused with someone named Naky. I had contacted you some time ago trying to warn you about a Shawn person. I had gotten to the bottom of some things but not all re: elitehackers. Something about this Shawn guy and the admin there. I could resend the info I came into if you wish.”
I believe that she has mental issues as all e-mails that I have received from her show that she has an enormous problem writing any thing with a head and a tail and no clear idea is expressed and it always comes in rambling sentences with grammatical errors. Besides that I believe she is an individual who has been coerced into the abusive world of these cyber bullies who are using her as a proxy to as they are involved in various cyber crimes such as cracking into peoples e-mail accounts, harassment and they even put peoples personal information on the doxbin site that is hosted on the tor network and once there it can not be taken down (last year three Finish teens were arrested in relation to that:
http://occupypeace.blogspot.com/2013/10/scoop-doxbin-arrested.html),…

So when the initial phase was over two hate blogs were on line and are still on line to date:
http://lyecdevf-is-lame.blogspot.com/, (I would like to ask for help to get these two blogs removed), http://failtrolls.blogspot.com/2014/02/gregor-aka-lyecdevf-aka-cyber-cunt.html, (For now they can only attack my on line personality but they are determined to figure out who I am in real life), two abuse reports were made to Google, and I received a whole bunch of e-mails full of confusion and statements that angered me. So if any one is wondering why I am writing this it has in part to do with Nacky as well who writes to me in a way that equates me with some low life and I can not accept this type of attitude.

She was trying to shut me up her self for a while but she could not get Google to delete my account but then others steeped in. Who ever was behind all this wanted to shut me up. These cyber bullies do not want to see me post on line the conversation where I was asked over and over again to crack into an account by Nakcy because that is illegal as it is a solicitation to commit a hacker crime but it goes beyond that. They do not want to hear any one talk about there techniques, e-mails,…in fact they try to censor all posts including this one. So I would ask the admin already at this point in time to take note of that as this page is going to experience a lot of heat and I do not blame any admin who feels the need to remove this post.

Nevertheless as I am going to continue my campaign to shed light on these cyber bullies in spite of being aware that they are going to try and censor me and fill my e-mail in box with abrasive messages. I believe that some one needs to do some thing as they keep a very low profile so to try and keep undetected while they are just going go around hurting people unhampered. They are an organized group who may use proxies to log in to there stolen e-mails and stay in general clear of social media sites. Such behavior is not typical of cyber bullies and they may leave me alone on twitter but Shawn would e-mail me there comments about what I wrote on line in his poisoned demeanor.

Shawn is another non-entity who after Nakcy tried to shut me up and to intimidate me even further by threatening me in an e-mail where a picture of a dead snake and a picture of who he believes is me were included. His e-mail account he was using ended in “ucide.” It was all so clear to me and in my abuse report to google regarding the threatening e-mail I wrote that he may want me to commit suicide. Google seemed to respond quickly but after he received the message directly from the abuse department he wrote from the same e-mail account again to me the following, “I am cheering for you to commit suicide.” Apparently what ever google abuse department had to say to him did stop him from continuing sending the abusive e-mails to me. That is why in part I need to take things into my own hands as this non-entity has proven beyond doubt that he is the lowest scum who has anger management issues and the only thing out of his mouth is disdain and rage.
Many times I have received e-mails from these non-entities who seem to believe that they can trick me some how to stop exposing them down to outright threatening me. All this time they acted like I was the bad party and called me every thing from spamer, trol, creep,…They even forwarded to me an e-mail with a generic answer from the police abuse department when they made a general type complaint about an abusive person because they are trying to turn the tables and make it appear that I am the offensive party when it is the exact opposite.
The attitude is really some thing from some middle schoolers and that is one of the many things that angers me. They invest enormous amount of time and energy to silence me and for the last few years I let them get away with it but now I have had it. After I received another e-mail from Nacky after half a year of complete silence I decided to take this to a new step. I want to spread the word all over the net because for one I know they are going to try and censor this stuff from all the blogs but also because I would like to get advice on how to effectively deal with this issue appart from just sitting there quiet and never mentioning any thing. I do not believe that silence helps.

P.S: I have written this to post on blogs to inform people of what has been taking place during various intervals during the past several years. I would be willing to edit this if you were willing to post this on your site.


“The apocalypse is not something which is coming. The apocalypse has arrived in major portions of the planet and it’s only because we live within a bubble of incredible privilege and social insulation that we still have the luxury of anticipating the apocalypse. If you go to Bosnia or Somalia or Peru or much of the third-world then it appears that the apocalypse has already arrived.”

~Terence

The Ghosts of Bullies Past

“It is a fair, even-handed, noble adjustment of things, that while there is infection in disease and sorrow, there is nothing in the world so irresistibly contagious as laughter and good humor.”
― Charles DickensA Christmas Carol

Scrooge UnhappyI have seen and Charles Dickens “A Christmas Carol” in all its forms. I read the book, I saw most versions of the movie (including the musical, which is my personal favorite), and have even seen modern stage plays of it. But there was something in it, until this holiday season, I had never figured out. Maybe it is because I didn’t want to see through the obvious story to the heart of what Charles Dickens was saying, but I now realize that many of us are our own “Scrooges”.

As most of us familiar with the story “A Christmas Carol” know, at its heart is the story of a mean and crotchety old man who has no friends and no interest in family. The only thing he cares about is his accounting business and money. He has lost his soul for life’s love and feels resentment for what life handed him. He harbors old grudges and is a workaholic.

But wait…

I didn’t see it before, but Scrooge is depressed. He was mistreated in his early life. He lost the love of his life. He worked for people that bullied him and even though it is not shown, we can imagine what his parents were like and did to him. He let himself give up and hide away in his work and become a workaholic, which is a common side effect of depression. He was not treated well in his early life, so Dickens is really telling us what happens to anyone, Scrooge or another person, who is mistreated and develops a belief that life and the world is depressing.

Dickens must have known that psychologically, Scrooge is not right. That he sees everything bad and has lost the ability to see happiness and good. Again, this is a common problem in depression and bullied youth that are left untreated. Now Scrooge has grown up and he is not necessarily a bully as much as a lonely and unhappy person. It is almost as if he took his Oliver character and grew him up to be bitter like Scrooge.

It is interesting that many of the traits that Scrooge has as you read his story show this psychological issue to be there and that abuse in one form or another has molded him to be this aged man who really is just waiting to die. Dickens even shows us that as Scrooge sees both what his life is, what it was, what it can be, and finally what will happen if he doesn’t come out of his current state…a lonely death.

Then it struck me that I started this site to have my ghosts lead me down my path. I had harbored my past and let it control my future in both happiness, life satisfaction, and finally in anxiety and depression. My ghosts of my life past was my excuse for how I behaved as an adult. Because of what I went through as a child with my bullies, I was a negative adult with low self-esteem who always thought I had something to prove. Nothing was ever good enough and nothing I did, no matter if I was commended or not, met with my satisfaction. I wasn’t perfect and I wasn’t good enough. There was always an excuse to be negative.

Sound familiar?

“Men’s courses will foreshadow certain ends, to which, if persevered in, they must lead,” said Scrooge. “But if the courses be departed from, the ends will change.”
Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol

I was haunted by the ghosts of my bullies past and I let them be my reason for being the person I was. I didn’t let my past go and I didn’t think I could change. Now I watched “A Christmas Carol” probably more than 20 times, but I missed the real heart of the message that Dickens was telling me…telling us…it’s never too late and you are never too old to let go of the past and change. To let the windows open, the sunlight in, and be happy, as Scrooge is at the end of Dickens story.

Dickens lets us assume that the change is permanent and that he will no longer die a man alone with no family or friends. It’s never too late to let go of what you were, so that you can become what you should have been all along.

I love it! Dickens was a psychologist and I wonder if he even knew it. He shows us through ghosts of what we can and have to do to change. He allows, in this case, Christmas, to be the joy for Scrooge and the beginning of his new life. What a treat it is for me to have this realization that he is speaking to all who have been abused, neglected, and left bitter. It’s never too late to change who you are. To listen to the positive ghosts that show you what your life can be if you let go of the past and don’t allow it to haunt you any longer, just as Scrooge lets go of Jacob Marley and moves toward the positive side of what his life can be.

Scrooge HappyHow many of us hold grudges? How many of us don’t talk to our family anymore? How many of us don’t think that life has any happiness and that we just exist? Don’t just exist, but live your life, no matter your age. This may have been Scrooges last opportunity to change and when he does, so does everyone around him. Don’t you think you can do the same? I did make my change about six months ago, and I haven’t looked back since. The ghosts of my bullies past are gone. It was a long time ago and I have a right to have a happy life and not be haunted by my past. I think each of us can make that choice, the same choice that Scrooge makes.

So, at this time of year, as Dickens concludes, “God Bless us, everyone”! And for us other faiths, Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Happy Kwanza, Happy Bodhi Day, or whatever you celebrate I wish you to be happy this year. Turn that corner and make that change. I believe we all have the power that Scrooge had, to do that and make the world a better place.

“No space of regret can make amends for one life’s opportunity misused”
Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol