Beating up the Bully

Bully ready to punchBullying is bad, very bad.  Violence is bad too.  Never, ever be violent. It is mean, the man upstairs doesn’t like it and legal fees are expensive.

I was never a bully when I was younger.  Fortunately, I was never bullied either.  I was simply a go with the flow type of kid.

Funny then, how as an adult, I so enjoy beating up on a bully even though I am nonviolent.

In my twenties, I took my nephew to a zoo with an awesome play structure.  He was five.  The structure had a Tarzan-like swing where kids reached up to grab a bar and then would swing from one side to the other.  I noticed that Drew had been at the head of the line for a while with a bunch of little kids behind him.  The line was not moving.Yvonne childhood picture

I went over to investigate and saw that while my nephew and the other kids patiently waited, a taller, older girl, probably at the cruel age of nine, was grabbing the bar first and swinging in a taunting manner.  I watched her do this several times.

Finally, I grabbed the bar just as she went to reach it. It was all she could do to steady herself and keep from falling.  I glared the meanest bully look I could come up with and said, “it is HIS turn now,” and handed the bar to Drew.

She looked at me terrified and ran away.  I let Drew take a few turns and then I passed the bar to the next short kid in line.  One might say that I shouldn’t be picking on someone younger than me and/or that I missed an excellent teaching opportunity to show the brat, oops, I mean sweet little girl, a wonderful, life altering lesson. But I must admit, I still get a sadistic moment of glee when I think about it.  Does that make me bad?

What does this have to do with multiple sclerosis?  Well, I see MS as the ultimate bully. The meanest playground stalking, slang calling, tear inducing, skinned knee causing bully around.  And that sadistic moment of glee encompasses me again when I feel like I am beating up on it.  Since violence is wrong, and really, who would I be violent towards, my bully beating weapon of choice is a giggle stick.

Soon after my diagnosis I decided that whenever possible, I would laugh when MS was trying to make me cry.  It isn’t always possible of course. Sometimes the meanest bully actually bites.  But when I can taunt MS by making fun of it, it is sadism of the righteous kind.

Unfortunately, MS has given me way too much material to work with.  I have a lot of giggle stick beating to do.  So much so, that I have decided to write a book.  I actually wrote a bunch of stuff right after MS started creeping around my life, but now I must work on putting it into something reasonably book-like that other people will want to read.

I will be focusing on that this summer and have made the bummer decision to step away from   It wasn’t easy to decide this as Linda, Trish and MSrelief are just awesome!  I will miss working with them but will be following regularly.

I hope to be back on here sometime in the fall when I can tell you about my book and beg, plead, cajole, bully, all of you into buying it.

In the meantime, if you need help with the MS bully in your life, please check out my ongoing weekly blog at

Thank you all, you rock!

Yvonne de Sousa


  1. I’m going to miss you Yvonne! Every post you’ve written for has made me smile, this is no exception! I was empathizing with you when you went up to the bully thinking to myself what a perfect teaching opportunity before I read the next sentence and I laughed out-loud realizing I’m one of those you were talking about!

    You have a great summer and let us know when your book is published! I can’t wait to buy it!

  2. Too funny Linda! And for the record, I wouldn’t have actually let the kid fall when I grabbed the bar away from her!

    Thank you so much for the opportunity to share my work with all of you at it has been a pleasure! Please keep up the wonderful work that you do…

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