I saw very early on how certain people would only show us, what they wanted us to see. How people used and still use, social media as a tool, to manipulate and engineer illusions. Negativity I could sometimes let pass but not when it gave cause for concern and having been able to be there for others gave me reason to remain. I know how and what some of you are experiencing… for I do see YOU. 💖
YOU have been the only reason why, I am still on social media. Sure, I have my own frustrations and my own ghosts to deal with but they’re mine and not anyone else’s to bear. I find myself having to sit on my hands sometimes, bite my lips whenever I witness one of the many forms of injustice… Sometimes I just cannot resist! 😝 I dislike being a bystander to it, for fear of inviting it. Some people find me intimidating but that’s their problem. Some people choose to ignore me, that’s once again their problem. Some people choose to be angry… let them waste their time being so. They and my ghosts should not, and do not, dictate me or my precious time. Don’t let them dictate yours.
I choose to focus on my kids because who knows where we will be, this time tomorrow. It is only those who have knocked on deaths door who understands where I truly come from, only those who have personally experienced the quagmires of depression who can relate. Why I am, who I am.
Everyone is different and are at different stages in their lives. How you choose to proceed or react, is up to YOU entirely. Let nothing negative influence or manipulate YOU.
I have been (un?)fortunately reminded why I did not want to be a part of any social media groups, relating to or based on deafness / sign language. For I am now much happier, without, having since left quite a few.
Having this extraordinary second chance at life has meant I have very little tolerance for such toxic “deaf world” attitudes. For me to get extremely angry nowadays is very rare but as always, is justified.
My personal experience (here in the UK) is that because deaf people do not support each other, that often makes matters worse. Sadly, causing mental health issues from within.
The deaf community has however, come a long way and that should not be forgotten. From being hidden away, or being forbidden to sign, to what it is today for we now, are able to be an equal. There is still a lot to do to improve the mental health state within the deaf community and it is down to the deaf community to work harder through legal means to improve situations.
Each and every being, deserves to be respected – regardless.
Each one of us, deserves better.
I would like to publicly thank my friends, for your continued support. For one another especially. For your courage and conviction.
Much love and admiration to you all. 💖💖💖
Bless your cottons! 😜
May positivity and peace reign over us all, once more.
Oftentimes I am reminded of the challenging positions of past that I was subjected to on different occasions by those who let their negativity and jealousy get the better of them, by those who had one rule for themselves and another for others, by those who conspired to overtake my role as founder and owner of The Tree House. There were also those who dared to manipulate (others) in order to engineer situations for their own gains, only, for it to be all in vain.
Only a select few has stood the test of time, remaining by my side throughout, giving continuous support and respect and so, it is they who deserve to be applauded for their courage to do right by others. Their moral values are both honourable and admirable.
Inevitably, there came a time when I became extremely deflated, of all the triviality and nastiness out there, so much so that I was determined not to close down The Tree House, in defiance of those who then chose to exploit and/or bully me, for being who I am. For being different, for being honest and for standing on my own two feet. For not following the (m)asses.
Fortunately, I soon realised all the unsavouriness was still dictating the quality of my time, which, to me, is very precious knowing how short life can be. My beloved children consequently became my first, second and last reason, hence the decision to take a sabbatical.
All I ever wished for was a space (for people) to speak freely with the greatest of respect, without fear of being judged. This is actually possible but only as long as people remain respectful and open minded of one another, willing to improve and learn, even from one’s (their own) mistakes. Except, there is yet much to absorb and practise regarding patience and relatively, respect. Everyone is different and there will always be those from all walks of life, who will teach us who not to be.
Even, those who may choose to knowingly associate themselves with the likes of the unsavouriness still, after having witnessing events or having seen evidence of the events, after allowing “them” to manipulate them into choosing “their” side – “they” are now, their problem. Their conscience.
To get by in the world of politics, one has to lie, be cunning, devious, manipulate and hold no or very little regard for others. It is all a game of ego and greed for power. Whereas a honest and genuine person trying to do their best by the people, for the people, will unfortunately be singled out and descended upon by a baying pack of wolves, those who are in fact afraid of having their true colours exposed, fearing the truth and subsequently, being embarrassed of their own flaws.
There are those of us who may (appear to) stand alone for speaking the truth and telling it like it is. However, that is okay because our conscience is clear.
Now would be an ideal time to remind you of one of my posts titled “Positivity rules!”
There is no shame in being introspective, in being honest albeit respectfully, in seeking further knowledge, for it will all help you to become a better person. It is courageous at best since it is all about the survival of the fittest in our test of a lifetime.
On that note, do look forwards – not backwards as any impurities, which have been filtered out and left behind, are behind us for valid reasons.
Thus, why, I have decided to move on from such experiences. I have learnt so much more about people and their ways, the deaf world and how it functions. I can only hope you will appreciate this level of honesty, as I believe people deserve to know the truth since the truth always prevails.
We all have our own lives to mind and so, I wish you all the best in yours.
A token of gratitude and a tip of the hat please, for Andrew, Paul, Mervyn and all our readers / contributors simply, for being you.
Upon tidying up my hard drive, I stumbled across a folder and foolishly thought I could clear it out. Yet having gone through it all, being the evidence of what bullying I had previously endured and subsequently saved, it left me reeling once again with such utter disgust at the world – especially those who wish(ed) to behave and present themselves quite despicably. As I was not their only victim, I can wholly sympathise with the others too, this weighs my heart down even more so. It has been what seems to be a never-ending, extremely painful experience to undergo all that nastiness at the hands of such evilness.
“The good writers touch life often. The mediocre ones run a quick hand over her. The bad ones rape her and leave her for the flies.”
~ Ray Bradbury.
You can only imagine how elated I felt the other day, to learn that someone, Sean O’Brien, he who had been targeted via social media for his size and confidence was in fact being supported against his bully. His predator’s attempt to feed his own ego was thwarted. Big time. People’s attitudes and perceptions of today are changing, for the better and this means sociopaths are gradually being exposed. People are standing up, taller than ever before, having their voices heard, against the bullies – they are no longer following the flock of sheep but their own conscience for peace of mind and heart.
Please, do not be afraid to walk alone, to be yourself – ‘tis way better than letting them walk all over you – they are potentially manipulating, exploiting, engineering and compromising you for their own gains with little or no regards for your feelings or any consequences. Do not be afraid, to speak up – to anyone. Think of it all as a good test because in the end it will help you to find out along the way, whom you can trust and who you are or want to be since they are showing you, who not to be.
I have taken measures to prevent any further undesirables from entering my life for my children, and my family comes first. They are why I do not dare let the sadness, heartbreak, past memories and any thoughts of “them” creep in. Feelings are deceiving and extremely compromising.A true friend would never abandon your side in your time of need, through thick or thin or even encourage the thought of compromising you – in any sense. Anyone that does can effectively “Do one”…
“Don’t walk behind me; I may not lead. Don’t walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk besides me and be my friend.” ~ Albert Camus.
I am more than certain you will believe me when I say I know who my friends are, they may be rather few at that but I do not mind because with me, it is a case of “Quality Rather Than Quantity”. On that note, here is a token of gratitude for those selected few who manage to stay true, for not looking down on any one except to help them back up. For they are the ones who know how it feels, to be felled.
It is oftentimes like this when I have to remind myself not to let “them” win and to soar even higher up above with an abundance of courage and positivity.
Social media has unfortunately become quite the tool for adults to manipulate others on what was intended to keep “Friends” in contact – socially. However, if one falls out of favour, it becomes quite the playground for those to bitch, backstab and sometimes publicly, but for sure privately, defame characters.
People have approached me asking me not to allow certain people into my FB group – who are they to tell me what to do? Just because their experience with them was more or less negative does not mean my own experience will be the same so to avoid being influenced by hearsay and rumours, I gave those concerned the chance that no one else would and I am so glad that I did because every being deserves respect – regardless.
Social media has otherwise become the perfect platform for deaf people to visually keep in contact, real-time wise. However, the deaf community is oh so small so when one doesn’t get their way, they will stamp their feet and go one step further to manipulate friends, even mutual friends away from the person who stood up to them and held their ground. Is this behaviour acceptable? No! In a school playground, this would be extremely petty and childish… So much so, they would be laughed at and frowned upon by their teachers. Now, let us apply the same perceptions on people’s (mis)behaviour albeit via social media.
Do children ever actually grow up, learning to respect others and behave accordingly or is this actually an evil trait that is being compounded by desires, jealousy, greed and god knows what else? Not that long ago I posted on my FB wall that I would be removing those (on my friend list) who appeared to take to social media like wildfire, to publicly bully and joined the (m)asses in embarrassing themselves, over some poor woman’s appearance. How dare people laugh at and pick on someone else’s misfortunes, beliefs or who they may choose to be?!
There was a time when I was an admin on another group and on that admin board; the other admins were taking the mickey out of a member’s level of intelligence. I was appalled to say the least and put them on the spot by making them look at how they were behaving. Nevertheless, because I am not afraid of saying things as it is, seeking justice for all, I am relatively made out to be the aggressor when in fact, they are the ones who have defined their true colours, by instigating and encouraging others to join ranks with them. Thank you but no thank you – one would very much rather walk alone than be associated with the likes of them.
What I find extremely sad is the fact that no one else is able to actually SEE what is happening before their very own eyes, who is influencing them – who exactly is being the manipulator thus becoming the manipulated. This I find annoyingly frustrating. Unfortunately, people can be rather trivial and lose perspective in the ways of life, unable to correct themselves and respect others. Perhaps most importantly, unable to resist these undesirable traits / people. I say, let them continue to (mis)behave in a childlike way for what potentially goes around, comes around.
I truly sympathise with those who dislike using social media and understand where they are coming from – even their untold reasons why which no one should ever have to explain, for life should not be about trolls and bullies who have nothing better to do but destroy those in their paths. They deserve to be labelled as sociopaths and exposed for who they truly are. Shame on them. You know who you are.
It is about time “adults” take responsibility for their own actions and for the consequences of such actions by treating people like pawns in what is a backwards game – competing for popularity. Seriously, social media platforms need to clamp down on such people abusing their intended services and for turning it into one of the biggest playgrounds – ever.
A word of advice into the ears of those being abused – take comfort in knowing they have shown you who not to be and please, do not be afraid to be yourself – remain patient, courageous, stand up and tell them to “Do one!”. Meanwhile, keep all the evidence and report them, to the social media moderators, the police and their employers. For if, they want to behave in such a despicable manner then so be it – let them be despised.
The Internet is littered with forums, social media platforms, chat rooms etc. where they should be a place you can feel safe and unthreatened and just be able to be yourself. Say what you think, have your own opinions on whatever and not feel ashamed to say or express them. Well, that is the theory… but we all know that theories are all great but when “the rubber hits the road” it can be, and often is, a very different story.
There are people out there, grown adults no less (!), who think it is acceptable behaviour to verbally bully and manipulate others because:
•Differing beliefs or points of view
•Not understanding a point made
•Because they feel their victim is siding with someone’s view and not their own
Let us be straight about this for a second, it is not ok, it is not right, not now, not ever! It just makes me wonder, how were these people dragged brought up in the first place? If either of my kids turns out to be a bully, whether physical or in this way, I will feel, I have failed in my position as a father and role model. There is a proverb in the Bible:
I am trying to talk about this, to bring all this rubbish to the surface and try and be rid of this baggage myself. And also, so other people out there who are suffering, or indeed have suffered in this way, know that it is ok to speak out against these bullies.
If you are indeed suffering and not sure where to turn, consider getting help. Maybe by speaking with a friend, (“A problem shared is a problem halved”. Remember?!), The Samaritans maybe or a quick Google search reveals there is organisations out there that deal with this sort of thing. It may even be worth a trip to your local GP to discuss counselling if you feel that is what is needed.
What is important though, is to speak out – do not let these animals, these scumbags win! I know it can be hard to speak out about bullying, I know that from my school days, but it is important to speak to at least, one person.
~ PAL, who can also be found rambling away on *here.
This (very much appreciated) post was inspired by and written in relation to SJ’s post called “Stop Online Abuse“.
Whilst out and about enjoying the Christmas cheer, a friend came up with an idea and asked for my technical know how in making this possible. How could I possibly turn down the challenge?! So in true Tree House spirit, the day was well and truly seized albeit adding my own twist!
This video we hope will help to lift everyone’s spirits and make you smile for “A smile is free and does wonders” – to quote the founder, Sara.
On behalf of The Tree House, we would like to present our parody of “Let it go” from the film, Frozen; “Let ’em go”
Please help The Tree House to stamp out any form of online abuse by not condoning it in any sense. Many thanks.
“Let ’em go” because The Tree House is positively moving onwards and upwards.
Being in the public eye for the past two years has subjected me to many forms of online abuse be it indirectly or directly. I have witnessed the “mob mentality” escalate appallingly fast when someone may have a different school of thought, or by simply being different. Take the time for example when I was attacked for choosing to speak instead of sign in my BBC interview. I naturally speak when I am with hearing people as I am more comfortable doing so yet my choice to speak was not respected by those who demanded that I signed just because I come from a deaf family. I was put between a rock and a hard place and I was damned if I did sign and damned if I didn’t. The sheer number of sheep flocking was astonishing – thank God I am not a sheep! These days, too many people take advantage of peer pressure to manipulate and dictate others what to do.
“Hate, it has caused a lot of problems in the world, but has not solved one yet.” – Maya Angelou.
There will always be someone who can put forwards different perspectives on issues and situations due to their experiences in life and knowledge, making the impact for change greater – surely everyone deserves to be respected with kindness just as much as the next person regardless? It is extremely healthy to have variations of viewpoints so one can be educated and decide – especially for themselves.
When having a different opinion one tends to be singled out as a “Troll” yet to single that person out as a troll must be another form of abuse in itself.
However I have recently experienced a new form of online abuse and I have been left saddened by it. This experience has made me want to retreat, have nothing at all to do with the world-wide web to distance myself from all the negativity and to restrain myself from reacting. Life is far too short.
To go onto social media and post potentially libellous material which names a person, persons and so on when they cannot defend themselves surely must be another form of online abuse? Especially when there is no evidence that the named party has attacked or done anything wrong yet people feel the urge to personally attack the named party? And what’s worse, people adopting the “mob mentality” by joining in and adding fuel to the fire. No one is born with hatred – it is instilled and mimicked. If only respect worked in the same sense.
Seeing that occur from a distance opened my eyes and I soon realised I had been in the very same position numerous times now. Unfortunately I know I am not alone in this experience for a friend of mine was personally attacked recently by someone posting a video onto social media publicly naming him and criticising him. If only he had sorted his dispute out privately with the named person – he would not be now known as a bully within our circle of mutual friends.
I will not tolerate or condone any form of online abuse around me especially bullying. I made it clear that I would not stand for this within the Tree House in the form of personal attacks (or when we are named outside the safety perimeters of the Tree House which subsequently is inviting us to take action) or be associated with those seen to be contributing to the very public online form of abuse. Yet making it clear, I was inevitably set upon. My position as founder in trying to protect the Tree House from any potential damage was questioned, undermined. oppressed and criticised. Being unbiased and diplomatic sets myself apart from others and this helps me to look outside the box – as always I will do as I deem just, adapting to each situation based on my experience. Was my being criticised and slated another form of online abuse? Maybe not in their eyes but it certainly felt like it to me.
To have thick skin is very important and deaf people are extremely vulnerable to the various forms of abuse, be it online, within society, at school, at work and unfortunately at home. In all walks of life, there will always be that someone who will try to drag others down no matter who they may be, for being different. My scars have healed over many times now hence why my skin has grown thicker and if I can refuse to be manipulated, so can you. Positivity rules!
Do not encourage any form of online abuse because these emotions which are associated with being bullied will exhibit themselves within the victim(s).
◾Difficulty trusting others
The offenders’ hatred should not dictate your time and you would only be lowering yourself to their level if you join in or encourage it. Rise above it because people who show their true colours in this manner deserve to be reported to the police so keep a record of all the evidence and present it in order to take action. I have done this in the past being a victim and they have listened – they issued warnings to the offending parties. With actions comes consequences – if they can dish it out, they can certainly take it.
Please, don’t have one rule for yourself and another for others – put yourself in the victim’s shoes and walk hundreds of miles in it first, taking a look in the mirror before passing any judgement or criticism.
“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King Jnr.
It is about time online abuse in its various forms is stopped. Help by being a part of that change in stopping personal attacks, cyber bullying and all forms of online harassment. Fight back – especially for justice.
Update: Defamatory gossip is now being spread about The Tree House and myself which is once again another form of abuse – Please keep evidence of this as we have built up a case which we have taken action on with positive results.