Seeing the Truth

How do stories affect us?
They help us see our own stories more clearly.

One student reflected after reading The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton…

The Outsiders
     She wrote, “I always thought you could be nice to everyone, even if they were “snotty.” She didn’t simply “pretend to like them.” She really did like them even though they were rude. She would say to herself, “Oh it’s just a phase. They aren’t feeling so hot today.  I’ll be nice.” As a result, people always told her that she was “the nicest person they have ever met.” She said that she “wanted to be nice and sweet to everyone.” That way she “could make friends.” She told herself that perhaps they had maybe they had “a hard life at home and all they know is to be mean.”
       “Then, reality hit me.” She decided she couldn’t be so nice anymore to people who are rude to her.  Now “if people are rude to me, I’m rude to them. I don’t mean it, but I have held my anger for so long that now I’m done.” So if someone is rude to her, she will “call them out. I got rid of all my old friends, because I realized they are the rudest people I have ever met. I got new friends who make me happy, and I don’t talk to the others. They might say the occasional ‘hey’ and I’ll say it back to be nice, but since reality has hit me I have been a ticking time bomb. I lose my temper, and just want to scream. They made me like this, the girls and boys who thought it was funny to be rude, the girls and boys who thought ‘Oh,  she’s too nice, she won’t say anything.’ Well, look at me now. Freaking out over someone tapping their pencil.”
The Call of Stories
         She wrote about how she is learning to manage her anger, and how she is learning how to be patient “…because these people think they are so great at everything they do, and I can’t handle them.” She said she needs patience “because the littlest things bug me. Like my sister, who takes forever in the morning….” She added that she is also learning how to be kind “because people are so mean and act like they are your best friend, when in reality they aren’t.  They are fake friends who suck you in.” She has decided that from “now on, I am going to roll with it and try not to be their friend.”  She is using her kind heart to let go of her anger and is spending time with people who are kind to her.

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