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This is a question The nicest thing someone's ever done for me

In amongst all the tales of bitterness and poo, we occasionally get fluffy stories that bring a small tear to our internet-jaded eyes.

In celebration of this, what is the nicest thing someone's done for you? Whether you thoroughly deserved it or it came out of the blue, tell us of heartwarming, selfless acts by others.

Failing that, what nice things have you done for other people, whether they liked it or not?

(, Thu 2 Oct 2008, 16:14)
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My dark period
Oh well, here goes...

Everyone seems to be revealing their darkest secrets here, so I thought I'd jump in. I should warn you, parts of this story are pretty disturbing, so if you came here for the fluffiness, please move on. I have been wondering whether or not to post this, and have no idea how people will react, but have spent so much time writing it that I thought I'd post it no matter what.

This story continues from where this story left off. In a nutshell, from an early age, I was brought up in a foreign country. My parents in their infinite wisdom sent me to a school that spoke a different language, and obviously, speaking a different language at home than at school had an impact on my social development. This had the unsurprising effect that during kindergarten and infant school, I was often left out.

This lack of stimulus must have lead my mind to generate its own worldview and sown the seeds of my fertile imagination. Because I had no way of expressing it, nobody knew it was there. This also led to frustration and me often being bored out of my mind. I also suffered from the usual childhood phobias (e.g. being scared of the dark) and unusual childhood phobias (e.g. being scared of milk), so having not much else to think of, didn't move on from them so easily. This meant that for much of my early childhood, I was either scared, bored out of my mind or in an environment where nobody liked me (although I did have a small number of not-so-close friends). In other words, I was under stimulated. To top things off, my infant-school teacher was a total bitch who I hated with a passion. She would often use me as a scapegoat to blame whenever she couldn't figure out who did something, and not having well-developed verbal skills, if someone accused me of something, I couldn't protest, but anyway, I digress.

So what better thing for an under stimulated toddler to do than to fall in love. Aged 4, I started infant school. In my class, there was a girl who I'll call 'I'. I cannot for the life or me remember why I fell for her - all I do remember is that she seemed pretty in my 4-year-old mind. She also lived on the same street as me. Once, when me and my mum were walking past her house, she was just outside her house. My mum pointed her out to me. I was shy, and my mum told me that I appeared to fancy her, and not to be shy. This is actually the first memory I have of having some sort of crush on 'I'.

So anyway, to my scared/under stimulated/isolated mind, she seemed like a beacon of light in a hostile and boring world - a world in which I had come to terms with my perception that there was no alternative. At first, the crush was just something that happened. I do not remember how long I was at school with her - it could have been up to two years (to the mind of a four year old, that's a very long time). It started off as just a small crush, but over time, turned into something that completely consumed me. This was pretty intense. I'd even go as far as to say it rivalled many of my teenaged crushes in intensity. How someone could develop a crush on someone at such an early age remains a mystery to me (I was only 4 FFS). Maybe it was a result of being under stimulated for so many years.

I had absolutely no idea how I could express my love. At first, I just let things pass, but as time went on, it became too overpowering not to do anything. I was shy and completely useless at verbal communication, so I showed my affection by stroking her. 'I' was not keen about this and tried to avoid me. Even so, I persisted. It looked more like pestering than showing affection. This was becoming obvious to the others in the class. Whenever we sat round in a circle, I always made it a point to try and sit next to her. The other kids always tried to sit either side of her before I could find my place. In fact, at one time, things got so bad that the teacher even sent me outside the class for being 'over-affectionate'. This troubled me deeply as I had done something so nasty to the one I loved that I had been sent out of the class for it.

This of course did not deter me in any way. I continued to look forward to seeing her. So intense was my crush that even during school holidays, I was looking forward to going back to the hostile environment of my school and Mrs. Bitch just to be with ‘I’. Still, there was no reciprocation of feelings and I had nobody to talk to it about. I was well and truly cursed.

By then, being in a foreign language environment was having its toll. My communication skills weren't developing. Concerned, my parents sent me to a child psychiatrist. As a psychiatrist, he was not much use, but he was a fun guy and I enjoyed seeing him. Soon after (aged 6), my parents finally sent me to an English-speaking school, but by then, it was too late - the damage had been done. Being in an English speaking school seemed strange at first but quickly got used to it. The teacher I had (Miss C) was much nicer, and I felt more at home. It was as if I was having a nice dream and was worried I'd wake up from it. By then, I had been at the previous school long enough to become bi-lingual, but I wasn't very good at making friends. I did manage to make a few friends, but because it was mainly a school for expatriates, there was a high turnover of pupils. I was unlucky enough to pick friends who would leave shortly after. It was as if everything I tried to build up in life kept toppling over.

I was glad to have left the old school behind, but there was just one drawback - 'I' was no longer at school with me. While my life had a more solid foundation, I found that I did not feel for any of the girls in my class the same way I felt for 'I'. This void in my heart, along with the constant departure of what few friends I made made me feel like I was trapped in some kind of pit of hopelessness. It had been some time since I was in my new school. I still had the feeling of sadness I had of being apart from 'I', but had forgotten what it was like to be in the same class. This made me depressed and because the status quo did not involve 'I', I believed this state of depression was my natural state of mind. In time, I forgot about 'I', but this void in my heart persisted. I guess that if this were to have happened today, I would be labelled 'Emo'. I had very little hope and just learned to accept things the way they were.

But then, one fateful Tuesday afternoon, something happened. While gathered around in semicircle listening to something or other, a girl who wasn’t in my class joined us. I had a more or less instant crush on her - something that I had not had for any of the girls in my school. This was just a one off event, and I didn't get to see her again. This had the effect that from then on, I would be constantly thinking about her. As it turned out, she did not join my class. At first, I thought that because this had happened on a Tuesday, I might see her the next Tuesday afternoon. This of course did not happen. It was only two months before school broke up for the summer holidays. Maybe she'd join us once school started again. Needless to say, I was dieing to see her again. I felt really bad for myself for not having talked to her when I had the chance. By the end of the summer holidays, I had absolutely convinced myself that she would be joining my class.

September came. It was decided that I wouldn't be moved up to the next class. This was because my mind had been too unsettled to sit down and do some work, so I it was decided I was not ready to move up a year. This meant I was now the oldest kid in my class. The girl I had seen a few months back had not joined my class. However, I soon found out that in the class above, there was a girl who looked just like her. Her name was 'P' and to me, could have been the same girl I saw earlier. I soon found out she wasn't but even so, felt frustrated at not having been moved up a class.

I cannot remember the sequence of events very well. I guess I may have tried to be 'affectionate' to 'P' in the same way I was 'affectionate' to 'I', or I may have just made a brief but shy attempt to talk. 'P' of course was uninterested. After that initial display of non-interest, something inside of me just snapped. That rejection pushed me over the limit. There was already a part of me that was dead. Something else must have died at that time. Any hope I had had was completely crushed.

What happened next is something I am not proud of in any way.

Feeling frustrated at this turn of events, I turned my anger towards 'P'. This manifested itself in a physical way. At first, I would just hit her whenever I had the chance. Initially, there was a part of me that was shocked by my own behaviour, but I soon got used to it. In fact, I was starting to find this addictive. It wasn't about vengeance for being rejected - I was enjoying this. What started off as just hitting her soon turned into a full-scale bullying campaign. I would attempt to beat her up and at one stage, even tried to strangle her. My inner demons that had been nurtured were now well and truly unleashed.

Fortunately for 'P', she had her posse of friends. At one time when I tried to beat her up, she ran off into the bushes. All the other girls in the posse broke off a branch from nearby shrubs and started to hit me with them. In my frenzied state, I was oblivious to both the physical pain and the mental anguish that so many would gang up to do so much to hurt me.

This behaviour did not escape the notice of my teachers. At first, the measures taken were ineffective. Once, I was brought in during the lunch break and made to sit by the headmaster's office. While he was not paying attention, I escaped. I then got into trouble again, was brought in and escaped again. This repeated itself one more time that lunch break. In frustration, I even bit the headmaster when he tried to catch me. I was so consumed I did not care about the consequences.

By now, I had dug such a deep hole for myself that I had absolutely no hope that I'd ever get out, and that things could not get any worse. My thoughts were consigned to me thinking I had no way out.

This was also having an affect on my performance at school. I was extremely unsettled. I would not sit and do any work. I would often pace around the classroom. My teacher (still Miss C) was understandably having a hard time coping. By now, my parents and teachers were starting to throw threats at me saying if I didn't change my behaviour, there would be trouble. This made me stop and think for a bit. What had happened to me? Here I was tormenting the girl I loved so much. How could this state of affairs have come into being AAAAARGH! Panic!!!

My solution was to somehow be able to make amends. It would be a long and steep uphill path, which just exacerbated my panic. I would have to give her some sort of gift. Not being in possession of much to give her and not knowing what she'd like, there was only one choice - money. Now, I had never stolen any money off my parents before, but my mind felt so 'disconnected' that I thought I'd do it and be able to get away with it. So I took some of their money (about £2 which was a lot for a kid back in the early 80's), hid it until I got to school (btw, my way of hiding it was by building a Lego 'box' around it). I approached 'P' and offered her the money. This was an incredibly creepy thing to do, but to my disturbed and panicked mind, I thought I had no alternative. At first, 'P' was reluctant to accept, but in the end, it somehow got passed round to the headmaster of the school, who told my parents. My parents were understandably shocked at this turn of events - after all, it was the first time they had heard I had taken money off them, but by then, my mind was so 'gone' that I didn't seem to care much.

Meanwhile, a new girl joined my class, 'M'. She had a similar effect on e that 'P' did. In my troubled mind, I realised that so I just unleashed the same treatment on 'M' that I had on 'P'. This was obviously causing my teachers to think that something had to be done. I was pretty close to being expelled from my school. My parents realised that if that were to happen, I'd have to go back to a foreign language school - possibly even the one I hated so much. Having learned from their mistakes, they realised that sending me to a foreign language school was the last thing I needed, so they tried very hard to keep me in the school. This lead to them becoming involved in the affairs of the school so they could have some leverage on any decisions they made. My mum became involved with the PTA, and my dad became the treasurer of the board of governors.

After some discussion with my teachers and headmaster, it was decided that I would only be at school for the first hour of the day. My teacher would have a policy of ‘earning time’ where if I behaved myself, I would earn some more time at school. To my 7-year-old mind, this seemed like a sort of anti-punishment. I would only be spending one hour a day at school. This seemed too good to be true. What kind of way of punishing someone was this? Looking back on it, I think my teacher just wanted to get rid of me and this was some sort of compromise reached to prevent expulsion.

Even though I thought having all this free time was a privilege, I found that in practice I did not have may opportunities to torment 'M’. Of course, I kept this a secret from my parents and I just expressed this sentiment by saying I wished I was at school longer. Of course, my parents interpreted this as me missing being in school. My mum ended up home-schooling me for part of the remaining day.

My behaviour did not improve much. In the first two months, I only earned an extra 15 minutes. It was around this time that the headmaster resigned. He had only started at the start of the school year. It remains unknown if his inability to expel me contributed to it. At school, I was still tormenting 'M' whenever I had a chance. My parents had decided that drastic measures needed to be taken to change me. Their solution was to offer me bribes in the form of toys (usually in the form of Lego-sets). This seemed to mostly work with regard to not bullying my fellow pupils, but it did not help me settle down at school.

At this time, my only real pleasure in life was going to the arcades and playing video games. This was 1982, but even so, the games they had were fun. For me, playing these games was a form of 'meditation' – I could put all my focus into playing them. I only got to do this a few minutes a week. Computer game consoles did exist at the time but were hideously expensive. When at home, I would spend a lot of the time drawing. I wasn't good at it, but I loved drawing. I decided that when I grew up, I wanted to make cartoons.

Meanwhile, the school got rid of Miss C. I'm not sure of the circumstances, but it was said that she was offering a sub-standard education. Miss L. the substitute teacher became the de-facto teacher of my class. Even though this policy of 'earning time' was Miss C's, it was continued under Miss L.

Because of the bribes my parents were giving me, my behaviour had stabilised. I still didn't do much work at school but instead just sat in a corner and read various books and comics. By then, the school felt it was safe to let me out during the morning playtime. To my twisted logic, I thought that if I pestered girls outside of school that it somehow didn't count. I won't go into the details here as I've gone into enough details as it is.

At this time, I had this fantasy that had been brewing in my mind since the 'troubles' began. I would imagine capturing any girls I fancied and keeping them imprisoned in some kind of hidden underground harem underneath the back garden of my house. At the time, I had absolutely no idea what I'd do with them once I got them there, but I thought about building an upright wooden box on wheels as a means of bringing them there.

My worldview at the time was of a world full of forbidden pleasures. My mind was completely consumed by these unholy thoughts. I was well and truly a pariah. I could see no way out of this downward spiral of destructive behaviour.

Towards the end of that school year, I came to the conclusion that I wanted to get out of this hole. I was too afraid to approach anyone for help (even the child psychiatrist I was still seeing who was not much use), and even felt uncomfortable making the necessary change in behaviour pattern required to get me out. I was overwhelmed by how hard it would be. At one time, I did try much harder than usual to do some good school-work once - I put lots of effort into it, was praised by both Miss L and my parents, but it seemed like so much effort to me it didn't seem worthwhile. Looking back on things, I now see that this must have been a cry for help!

But then, things reached a turning point. After the summer holidays, I was moved up a year. I was still the oldest in my class, but I had a new teacher - Mrs. D. She was also the head teacher of the school. She was well aware of my behaviour problems of the past year and I damned well knew it. Even though, she acted as if she was oblivious to all that had gone on before, gave me a fresh start and encouraged me to move forward. I took up the challenge to turn over a new leaf that had been laid before me.

Mrs. D gave me positive encouragement, and this inspired me to settle down and get some work done. I still hadn't earned my full day so still ended up spending plenty of time not at school. However, I sat down and always did what was asked of me. She knew how to bring out the best in me, brought it out and it stayed there.

Just about every aspect of my life was improving. Be it little things such as my handwriting, or larger things such as developing the ability to sit down and concentrate and improvements in behaviour. In fact, after only a few months, I had improved so much that when I looked back at some of my work from even only a few months ago, I would feel ashamed that I could ever have done something so badly. Things seemed to be going well, but as the Christmas break approached; I had a bit of a re-lapse on the behaviour side. My old ways were coming back in the playground, but fortunately, Mrs D noticed this and put me to shame. She was very good at doing this and knew just the right thing to say.

After the Christmas break, we went back to school. Using my imagination, I had invented a weird story to try and explain my behaviour over the past few years. This involved some sort of alien abduction (obviously). I was one of the first to arrive on the first day. Most of the early arrivals were girls, but soon, some more boys started dribbling in. The kids were discussing the number of boys compared to the number of girls. I absent-mindedly said, "There are now enough boys to beat up the girls". Mrs. D picked up on that comment like a shark smelling blood. "Stop saying that nonsense!" she said. This one comment hit its intended target with great force and accuracy. It made me look at myself objectively for a bit. In that brief moment of clarity, I saw myself how others expected to see myself. Mrs D put so much shame into me that I did not tell the story I had in mind in the end (in fact, I've completely forgotten the story I came up with except the bit about the alien abduction). I can say that those few seconds were the fastest I had ever done some 'growing up'. As it was the first day after the New Year, we were asked what our new year's resolutions were. Spontaneously and out of nowhere, I decided that mine was that I wouldn't hit girls. I kept that resolution right the way up until my year with Mrs. D ended and beyond. I soon earned enough time so that I got my full day of school back. By the end of the school-year, my behaviour and level of accomplishment at school had long since returned to what was expected of me, and I felt like my troubled times were so deeply buried that I just concentrated on the present and future instead. In fact, even back then, if I looked back, I would be so washed over by shame that I would immediately drag myself back to the present again.

So what Mrs. D did to me was the nicest thing someone's ever done for me. She had faith in me. She gave me a chance. I took the chance. She gave me the encouragement I needed to sort myself out. I sorted myself out. Thank you Mrs D for having faith in me, believing me and putting me back on track. Thank you for teaching me that 'Emo' is a load of shite years before 'Emo' was invented. You are the best teacher in the universe. Also, thanks for my mum and dad for putting up with me and preventing me from going back to the foreign language school. And finally, thanks to you, the reader for having read this right to the end.

Even though I had gotten over my troubled times, the underlying shyness which may have been the cause of all of this in the first place still persisted.

To be continued...

Apologies for lack of pun. All of this really did happen, and I'm not proud of it. But once again, thankyou thankyou thankyou Mrs. D.
(, Wed 8 Oct 2008, 21:10, 33 replies)
After the year of Mrs. D, I had another teacher for the last two years of primary school. Unlike Mrs. D, I did not like this new teacher, but had leaned to accept what life threw at me so just behaved as expected.

While it was good that I had overcome my troubles, I think I may have over-compensated a bit. I tried so hard to be normal that I suppressed my true self (my imagination, weirdness etc.) and grew up too quickly (suppressed my childhood) (see future QOTW for how I overcame that). Thank god for computer games and my newly acquired computer, which seemed for some time to be the only outlet for my playfulness.

My shyness still persisted. I did have some friends, but more and more of my spare time was spent playing with my computer (in my teen years, I would be a shy nerd of the garden variety).

In the last two years of primary school there were one or two relapses to my old ways with regards to being 'over affectionate'. In hindsight, I now see that these relapses coincide with periods of low self-esteem. But once I got to my final term of primary school, my self-esteem improved to the point of no return (that's a story for another time).

So what became of the characters in my story?

'I' still lived in the same street as me for another four years after I started the English school. I would occasionally see her a few times in the street for next 4 or so years but never would I speak to her. She finally left in 1984 and I haven't heard anything about her since.

'P' left after about a year and I’ve not heard anything about her either. However, I did come across a member of her posse a few years later at secondary school. At first, I felt a bit awkward as I saw her as a metaphor for this by then long forgotten past who had come back to haunt me, but thankfully none of these events were ever brought up and I quickly de-associated her from the past. She only stayed in that school for one year.

'M' was soon left alone by me. The following year, she befriended my sister and even once came to my house to play with sister. I joined in the fun and did not revert to my old ways.

The story behind Miss C is somewhat of an enigma. Every time I ask my parents, they say that they made an agreement to not discuss what happened, but the gist of it was that she ended up being taken to court for offering a sub-standard education.

Miss L stayed on as a supply teacher until I left the school. She would occasionally take over when my regular teacher wasn't there. At first, I felt a bit odd being a well-behaved pupil instead of what she had come to expect of me, but I soon got used to it.

Mrs. D left the school at the end of the year I had with her. My parents still correspond with her.

My parents made me see the child psychiatrist for some time afterwards. Many years later, I heard through the grapevine that his wife committed suicide (this does explain a lot).

As for me, I had had my faith restored and was now eager to do what was expected of me. When I looked back at first, I felt more embarrassed at what had happened and whenever I did, it was as if a hand reached out from inside my brain to drag my focus back to the present. This meant I didn't have many chances to reflect or feel sorry for all those nasty things I did, I just moved on.

This 'doing what was expected of me' may have caused me to 'go with the flow' more often, and possibly be an origin of my laid back attitude I'm known for. Also, my keen-ness to become 'normal' again might have been how I nurtured my enthusiasm, perseverance and indomitable spirit.

This episode of my life story was repressed. At first, I stopped myself from looking back, and by the time I decided to stop doing that, I did not think of this much because it hadn't been thought of much. This has been one of my most well kept secrets. I've not mentioned it to anyone before - even my friend of 20+ years who went on an epic two month backpacking trek with me after he got divorced doesn't know any of this.

As I said before, I am not proud of what I did. If I could, I would track down and apologise to each and every person who this affected - even those who were shocked that there was someone who could even contemplate doing such things. Although to be perfectly honest, when I look back at it now, even though I consider my former self to be a cunt of the highest order, I can say with all honesty that I feel more sorry for myself than I do for my victims.
(, Wed 8 Oct 2008, 21:10, closed)
That was quite epic
I wrote more stuff but it came across as me being on a soapbox which wasn't my intention.
(, Wed 8 Oct 2008, 21:27, closed)
(, Wed 8 Oct 2008, 21:27, closed)
Bloody hell spakkaman.
I'll read this when I've got a day to spare : )
(, Wed 8 Oct 2008, 21:11, closed)
That click was actually deserved because of the trouble you took writing it out!

But seriously, I hope it helps to have told your story.
(, Wed 8 Oct 2008, 21:30, closed)
That's an awesome story.

I finished reading it 5 minutes ago and I'm speechless. It truly is something that you'd expect to see on a reel of film from Hollywood (only not, because it's not dumbed-down and shallow enough for Hollywood)

You've been through a mighty amount of psychological shit very early in your life, and it's fascinating to read how you've overcome it all.

Thank you for telling us all - it can't have been easy and I imagine it feels quite cathartic.

(, Wed 8 Oct 2008, 21:32, closed)
I do hope
that one of the things you have learned along the way is not to judge yourself...

We don't.


(, Wed 8 Oct 2008, 22:09, closed)
What a story!
Is there anyway you could find Mrs D and tell her this?

What was it that Mrs D did for you? What did she say? I would really like to know. Gaz me if you prefer.
(, Wed 8 Oct 2008, 22:16, closed)
My parents are still in touch with Mrs. D. As I said below, I only just realised last year that Mrs. D gets credit for this. I do intend to let her know someday.

I don't think I can pinpoint it down to anything specific that Mrs D said or did. All I can say is that she was willing to give me a fresh start and was very positive about things. Perhaps a lot of it had something to do with my desire to try and get out of this mess, but Mrs. D gave me encouragement and a helping hand whenever I appeared to be moving in the right direction. Maybe I just saw the change of teacher as an opportunity to turn over a new leaf.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 3:34, closed)
holy cow
I'm never going to complain about my life ever again

That was an epic tale, and I should add- with the benefit of talking through on the internet, pretty heartwarming. I hope life contrinues to be as positive in the future, mate :-)
(, Wed 8 Oct 2008, 23:49, closed)
Yet another post where the "I like this" button is totally incorrectly named...
The "Fuck me, what an easy life I've had compared to other people" button, perhaps?

*clicks anyway*
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 0:08, closed)

blimeh... what's next?!
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 0:45, closed)
Thanks for the responses.

It was hard writing this. It took ages to write, and at times, I wasn't sure if I would even decide to post what I had written - this put me off writing it for a bit because I never knew if it would just remain on a forgotten cluster of my hard drive. I've often seen people react to QOTW posts where they did something they're not proud of but letting it all out in a positive way. I honestly had no idea if what I was posting would cross the line, but as usual, the responses have been typical of many QOTW stories. Over the years, it has been hard to describe what I've been through because I was the antagonist of the story and I was worried that anyone who listens/reads would have turned against me. Because of this, the story has remained untold ... until now. I'm very glad I had an opportunity to share. On each page of an open QOTW, it says "Tell us your story". This never seemed more appropriate.

For many years afterwards, I tried to avoid thinking about any of this. This was mostly successful and I just got on with life without letting it bother me or haunt me in any way. I would occasionally browse parts of my past when my brain did not have much else to do. However, last year, when this happened, light was shed on some long-forgotten memories - especially from before the time before I went to an English-speaking school. For example, for the first time in more than 25 years, I realised just how deep my crush on 'I' was (this had been completely forgotten about). Using my experiences I had acquired over the years, I was able to put this in context, develop theories, use my theories to shed light on more events, find that things fitted together, and built up a whole picture that explained a lot of things that happened in the story. In fact, it was only as recently as last year that I realised it was Mrs. D who gets credit for 'fixing' me. Also, this made me truly aware of just what my parents had gone through. I decided to just let these repressed memories out into the open and let them wash over me completely unhindered so I could gain insight into myself. Learning things about myself is something I've been keen on for a while, but this has been one of the most revealing experiences yet.

As for not having had an easy life, I could go on about people in third world countries or people who experience the horrors of war firsthand or the victims of the Romanian orphanages etc., but at the end of the day, it's all relative. Things did get better in my late childhood, and I do have plenty of fond childhood memories as well.

This story will be continued in a future QOTW.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 3:26, closed)
Epic and a half...
It really underlines the difference a good teacher can make though - something consistently undervalued by society.

This is a thoroughly deserved click sir.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 9:46, closed)
Christ, that was tedious.
You were an irritating child. That's the whole story in five words. Please stop boring us with mind-numbing and numbskulled self analyses.

Get over yourself.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 9:52, closed)
No-one else has issues with this post, you're just being an annoying cunt.

From what I've seen as a lurker for a while now, you've been making a habit of it.

Oxygen thief.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 11:11, closed)
You've contributed loads to this site, haven't you?

You stuck up assclown
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 11:41, closed)
You seem highly skilled at blaming your parents
and everyone else around you for the fact that you were a horrid little bully.

Your parents didn't beat, rape or starve you. They put you in a school where you didn't speak the language. They rectified their mistake and spent years trying to make amends - home school, PTA, etc. Yet still, you've taken their error as a cue for a lifetime of moaning.

I'm glad your teacher helped. I know that we're not all wonderful, charming, adorable children. But I think less navel gazing and playing the victim card would help you. I also think you could at least accept some responsibility for the fact that you probably ruined a few years of your parents' lives, your teachers' working lives and your classmates' school days.

Get over it and be nice to your parents.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 10:24, closed)
You're being terribly harsh.
He probably has undiagnosed aspergers.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 10:36, closed)
Hee hee.
For once, that meme made me laugh...
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 10:38, closed)
Not even that...
I agree with most of this. Some children are a bit irritating. That's because they're children. They grow out of it. That's because they're children, too.

Not speaking the language is odd, too: young children are very good at gabbling to each other, and will, as a rule, not be phased by language barriers that (by and large) they never really notice. Guess what? That's because they're children.

EDIT: At risk of flogging a dead horse, being an irritating 6-y-o does not constitute a "dark period", ffs.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 10:37, closed)
I don't think his post is 'moaning' at all
It's an eloquent and insightful piece of reflection. If every arrogant person, bully etc spent a little time looking at themselves and the world around them, the world might just be a better place for it.

He doesn't seem to be making excuses or playing the blame game, and admits he isn't proud of his actions. Read it again - he looked inside himself, saw what was wrong and tried his hardest to make it right. Sounds like the right thing to do.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 11:22, closed)
My parents may not have gotten it right first time, but they put a lot of effort into getting it right in the end, which I appreciate. I've not been spending a lifetime blaming my parents - I just decided to turn over a new leaf and move on. At first, I didn't stop and reflect - I just looked to the future and took any opportunities for improvement I could take. It was only many years later once I had a greater understanding of how the world works and how the mind works that I stopped to reflect. I had a window into the past where I could view long forgotten memories and make sense of what was happening using insights I had gained over the years. While I've always been thankful for my parents for helping me get through those troubled times, it's only recently that I've been able to imagine exactly what must have been going through their minds.

For a long time, I've had a very positive attitude towards life. I often encourage people to have faith in themselves to escape from quagmires of hopelessness they may find themselves in. I just thought this would be an opportunity to share part of my life story in the spirit of what the QOTW is all about.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 12:47, closed)
thought it was well written and keeping in the spirit of this QOTW,

Surely the actions of someone else who stopped him bullying is a nice thing?
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 11:37, closed)
But does it really warrant this length of a post? It makes Proust look concise...
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 11:56, closed)
I think it does
We've had a lot of posts that have been quite long and some people find it cathartic to do that as it helps them. As you know I'm a pretty concise sort of bloke but some people are a lot more eloquent than that and if it helps someone confront their demons them I've got no problems with it
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 12:10, closed)
I'm just not convinced that "I was an irritating toddler" really counts as a demon.

Not a big scary one, anyway.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 12:13, closed)
To be fair
toddlers very often make crap demons anyway...

but seriously it's something that has been on Spakka's mind for a while, and it may seem trivial but to him it was obviously something that bothered him then and still does now (if it was me I'd now be thinking am I going to turn into a wife beater or abuser).

So perhaps demons was the wrong word but it's definitely an issue with him considering the majority of his posts are pretty light hearted in QOTW
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 12:18, closed)
if you do a bit of research into children with attachment disorders and other stuff then there's all sorts of stuff to deal with that makes a demon. "We Need to Talk About Kevin" is frighteningly allegorical to some folk as well as being a good book.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 12:43, closed)

it's a rare event for a post of this length to be read and responded to as much as this one.
a lot of people obviously identify with your post judging from the positive comments.
i found it an enthralling read even though some of seemed to me a little over-dramatic. i applaud your bravado at laying your self open to public scrutiny like this.
if you want to post more, do you ever wonder how your behaviour affect those that you bullied. and what fantasies they may have evolved in coping with this. maybe one day they'll all meet up and decide to beat the crap out of you.... so please post the rest of your story before those you've caused emotional turmoil prevent you from doing so by hacking off your digits with a rusty handsaw.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 12:41, closed)
Well I got throught it Spakkaman.
Knowing you a little and your special way of thinking about things I can see that your childhood would have been very troublesome.

Congratulations on overcoming your psychcological problems at such an early age and becoming a well-rounded adult.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 13:07, closed)
Aren't we feeling whiney today...
And I'm not referring to you, mistaspakkaman. It just seems that some of those who replied just fail to see the message behind the post.

Isn't it true that every answer to this week's QotW can be summarized in 3 to 4 lines? "I was in a bad position, and someone helped me out, not because they needed to, but because they wanted to."

Nonetheless, this is one of the most interesting questions I've seen in a while. And that's all because of posts like this, well written and loaded with emotion. I'm sure it took a long time - and a lot of courage - to get this epic written down. And still people here complain about length and lack of substance?

To those, I'd like to recommend re-reading any answers of your own, and summarizing those in 2 lines. You can, and each summary will be exactly the same, save for the names and specific nice acts involved.

Don't be so quick to judge, just because you lack insight to the feelings of the writer. After all, you deemed your own answer worthy to be written down in this QotW. And in all honesty, I've seen quite a few answers that would probably mean a lot more to those involved than it does to us, the humble reader.

If anything, appriciate the time and energy it took writing this down, even if you can't relate.

All ranting aside, this story got me clicking as well. I know how it feels, growing up alienated from the people around you. People seem to think that just because you're young, your underdeveloped mind doesn't see, care, or understand such a feeling of loneliness.

And b3tans, just think this through. If this story is not worth gracing this week's QotW, how come I've read a few stories that could be summarized as "I had no money, and this nice lady paid for me / gave me my lunch for free"? Not half as interesting to read, I'd say.
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 13:43, closed)
Hear Hear
That's put the message across far better than my clumsy ramblings!
(, Thu 9 Oct 2008, 13:58, closed)

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