People From Around The World Share How Karma Caught Up With Bullies

People From Around The World Share How Karma Caught Up With Bullies

Bullying is one of the worst things that there is. Bullies make us feel worthless -- usually at times in our lives when we're already vulnerable. It can feel like there's no justice in the world, like it's not worth fighting back, like there's no point even going to school because it's just going to be the same song and dance all over again.

But if justice is sometimes lacking, karma seems to be more reliable.

These people recently took to the internet to share their stories of how karma got their bullies in the end. It may have taken years, but these bullies eventually learned the hard way how it must have felt to be one of their victims.

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40. The rival dojo

I've posted this before, but it fits here.

A few years back I was the assistant manager at my karate studio. It was a slow, quiet day when in walked Paul, my old bully from public school. I wasn't sure at first, it had been a long time, and it was hard to tell.

I didn't say anything. Paul was interested in joining the dojo, and I showed him around, discussed pricing, etc. I didn't treat him any differently than I would any other potential client.

At the end of the tour, Paul decided to join our dojo. We sat down in the office and he filled out the paperwork. When he wrote his name out on the application, I knew for sure that this was, indeed, my old bully. The guy who used to torment me every single weekday. Who made me kneel in dog crap.

I still didn't say anything until after pre-paid me for an entire year's membership. As I walked him to the door, I smiled.

"I'm really looking forward to training with you." I smiled.

"Thanks, me too," Paul said.

"You don't recognize me, do you?"

"No, should I?"

"Yes. We went to school together, Grade 3 through 8. You bullied me every day and made my life miserable. Can't wait to see you in class."

Paul went white and walked out without another word. And never walked back in. He willingly threw away a year's membership payment, almost $500, rather than have to be in the same class as me.

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39. The bully becomes the bullied

I befriended a larger red-headed girl when I was in grade 3 or 4. She was new to the school, everyone had their own friends and no one accepted her. I didn't have many friends so I gladly accepted her. We became best friends.

Fast forward to middle school. She was still large but got boobs and wore makeup, so she became popular. I was still a way too tall and too thin awkward girl with a lisp. Everyone made fun of me and she joined in so she could be cool. It got worse and worse until she started instigating it, would circle beat me with other girls and egg my house.

Fast forward again to high school. I filled out a bit and got better friends. About halfway through grade 11 people started realizing how mean and fake she had become and turning on her. She was crying in the hall one day and I went up to her, asked if she was ok and offered my phone to her if she needed to call her mom. She transferred schools for grade 12 because now she was being bullied. Funny thing is, I still feel bad for her. Bullying sucks.

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38. Justice isn't always swift, but it's inevitable

In 8th grade (age 13-14), this kid threw a wooden block at me, probably thinking, "Oh, let's pick on the punk girl, that'll be so hysterical!" I blacked out for a good 10-15 seconds after it clocked me in the head. When I came to, he and his friends were all on the ground laughing at how funny this was. I ended up having to go to urgent care and not participate in gym class for a few days.

His mom was on the school board and had a large role in the financial decisions of the school, so the administration was afraid to punish him and did nothing. My math teacher was this kid's football coach and made him run extra while everyone else got to take a food/water break, but that was the only justice I got.

Fast forward two years: everyone is freaking out that this guy can't play football for the JV team that year. He ended up spraining his back and breaking a few ribs from a stupid post-party escapade into the woods the week before his sophomore year started, and the concussion that he sustained from this was severe enough that a second concussion could have caused serious mental damage.

Two years isn't that long of a time, but considering there were witnesses and the kid should have been arrested and suspended at the very least, it seemed like a long time to wait for karma.

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37. This clown doesn't blow balloons

In middle school, I knew this Juggalo kid named Eric that was a pretty big dick to me. He was older and had failed a couple of times, and because of his style (and the fact that he once showed to school with clown paint), he was known as 'Clown' to most. He harassed me as often as he could, once lighting part of my hair on fire at the skating rink and pretty much stole my first girlfriend from me. He ended up getting expelled for decking an older female teacher in the face.

Fast forward to my senior year of high school. I'm hanging out with some friends and a preview for the nightly news comes on. The top story that night was about a deadly assault. The guilty party? You guessed it. Clown is now doing life without parole.

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36. This is what Facebook is for

A guy I went to high-school with "friended" me on Facebook. He was caught stealing from my house once back then, bragging about it to mutual friends (whom he thought would not tell me). After the incident we never spoke, although we had the same circle of friends, I kept my distance, he kept his.

Flash forward 20 years to now and we were "friends" on Facebook. I have a pretty cool job in the music industry, good money and I travel the world. I usually add these former "friends" just so they can see my life turned out pretty awesome while most of them are in our old home town working crap jobs...anyway.

He updated his status saying that he was devastated that someone stole something from his son and karma this, blah blah blah. Amongst all the posts from his friends being sorry for him, I simply wrote something like "Yeah, it's really terrible when someone steals from you eh? That must really suck. Karma does have its way of evening things out though." I immediately started getting PMs from mutual friends congratulating me, who remembered the incident in school. He "un-friended" me after that to my extreme pleasure.

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35. Swing and a drive

When I was in 5th grade, there was a kid who spit on me and bullied me for about 2 months on the bus. When he moved to another bus route I thought I would never get a chance for revenge.

But one day at a Little League baseball game I was playing in, I saw him on the opposing team and my blood started boiling. He was the 2nd baseman and he would laugh whenever I would go up to hit the ball.

In the last inning, I was up to hit and missed the ball twice and heard him laughing from 2nd base. That got me really mad and when the pitcher threw the ball I hit a line drive straight for the bully's face. (I'm not a great hitter; I just got lucky.)

After it hit him, he dropped and cried and the players ran over to him, but no one called time out so I ran all the way to 3rd base without getting out.

I sat there on 3rd with a HUGE smirk on my face while they picked him up and walked him to the dugout. I didn't feel bad about it all and still don't feel bad about it.

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34. I'm here to buy, but not from you

From third through sixth grade, this punk made my life a nightmare. That fat turd Lenny had a gang even.

Fast forward to just after college, making real money for the first time. I go to a shop to buy a high-end sound upgrade for my new car and guess who's there. Lenny, crappy shirt and tie and all.

Salesman shuffles up to me and I say, "Hiya, Lenny. I'm here to buy, but not from you." I walked over to another salesman and requested his assistance instead.

I spent over twice as much as I intended to, sort of my version of both middle fingers in the air. The look of hatred on Lenny's face as I pulled out the credit card made 8-year-old me very content. Worth it!

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33. I'm bigger now, idiot

I was a really small freshman in high school (like 5'2") and looked like I was probably 12. I was always picked on for being the smallest. I transferred to a private school and fast forward 3 years and I go to a party with all the kids from my old school.

I see one of the kids that always had it out for me because he was bigger at the time. I'm now 6'1", obviously a lot bigger than before. So he talks some crap to me and I give it back. He shoves me and without even thinking I one-punch KO's this chucklehead in front of about 80 people. Everyone thought I was a freaking hero.

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32. Billy Madison, anyone?

I was the nerdy picked-on kid in school. Almost 10 years after graduating from high school, one of the guys who used to give me a hard time contacted me on Facebook.

Apologized for being an idiot, then asked for advice on going to college for the thing I have a bachelor of sciences in. I helped him. It's important not to carry anger around with you for your entire life. But I'd be lying if I said it didn't feel good.

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31. Bullies seem to have bad memories

This jerk who used to torture the crap out of me when I was in 7th grade, insisted I was ugly and should kill end it all, is now on OkCupid. A few weeks ago, before I got into a relationship, he asked if we went to school together and told me I was hot. He didn't recognize me, clearly, but it was delicious to know he'd been searching for months and no one was biting.

For clarity, I am not suggesting anything about my looks with the last part. I just take great delight in him being alone right now despite all the try-hard and being on the actual website for months without success. I never went on a date with him, I just deleted his message.

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30. I've never been glad someone got hit by a truck before

I once got punched in the pregnant stomach by my ex-fiance (not the father of my baby). I told him that I hope he got hit by a car.

Three days later I found out that he was struck by a truck while riding his bicycle to a friend's house. He survived but had to have extensive surgery to correct his broken bones and save his life. He was uninsured so now he's stuck with crippling hospital debt from being in ICU and having surgery. I did not have to wait very long for that one.

I should note that he punched me hard enough to where I was bleeding. I had to go to the hospital. Cops were called, but they chalked it up as "suspicious activity", but he now has some sort of record in the shape of a police report against him.

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29. Crazy is as crazy does

When I was about 8 and my brother was 11, he got in trouble for punching a kid in the face on the school bus (my brother claims he was defending someone else...I don't really remember it all that clearly). My brother paid the price, was banned from the bus for a while, faced repercussions at school, and my mom made him apologize to the kid he punched in person.

A couple of months after the incident, the mother of the kid he punched decided to flip the crazy switch and sued my parents for mental anguish, claiming that her son now had crippling emotional problems stemming from the incident. She showed up at board meetings, tried to get my brother expelled, painted a picture of my family as shady and my brother as a delinquent and violent.

My parents ended up escaping the legal battle with a little bit of dignity intact, but feeling ostracized in our community of 90 people.

Fast forward. I'm now 27, my brother is 30. My Mom sends a newspaper clipping to him in the mail. It's the indictment of the crazy mom from our childhood. Come to find out, she had been embezzling money from her employer for 5 years, totaling more than $50,000. May have taken two decades, but she finally got what was meant for her.

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28. Sounds like he took a bullet for you

I dated this girl for a year or so. She broke up with me and immediately started dating another guy. I went to talk to her and he basically told me, "Look she wants to be with me. I have a job and she needs someone stable in her life. You're a loser who's going nowhere."

...His job was as a line cook and he was in a band part time. Real career prospects.

About a week ago I went to a friend's house to play poker and this guy happened to be there by coincidence. We acted like men and just pretended nothing had ever happened. He had a couple of drinks and asked me what I do. I graduated from college and make very good money as a consultant for a very large and well-known company. I ask him the same. He is going to truck driving school because he's had like 9 jobs in 7 years and my ex is pregnant with his baby (the second baby of his by his second girl).

The type of job is not the point, it's more that he can't hold a single job down for longer than a year or so. ALSO, they aren't together anymore. She already has a kid, she is preg with his, and he has a kid by another woman. They were engaged and she left him because, as it turns out, he is a loser who can't keep a job.

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27. Saving your bully from himself

A guy in high school really went after me a lot. We got into a big fight (he broke my nose and I knocked a couple of his teeth out) off-campus. No police were involved but about 10 years later I saw him sleeping on the street near where I worked.

I woke him up and asked him what was going on. He told me about his life after high school. He knocked up his girlfriend, her parents made them get married, divorced a year later. He got into partying too hard and ended up alienating everyone. I asked him if he was still using and he said no, he couldn't afford it anyway.

I felt bad for him so I asked if he'd like to stay in my guesthouse (a one-room cottage, set up like an efficiency apartment) for a while. He took me up on it and got a night's sleep in an actual bed for the first time in years (his words). I bought him some clothes and fed him for about a month until I found him a job with a contractor I was doing some work for.

Long story short, it's been 6 years, he now owns a contracting business, has a wife and a new baby boy, and just bought the house down the street from me.

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26. The forgettable bully

We met at a bar where a large number of our high school class happened to be. My old bully described me as his arch-enemy. I realized I hadn't even thought about him in ten years. That’s really the worst insult of all, isn’t it? You’re still obsessed with hating someone who doesn’t even care that you exist anymore.


25. It turns out Rusty was a little... rusty

When I was a kid, I was fat. I used to get picked on all the time by this kid at church named Rusty. He was about five years older than me and every couple of weeks he would beat me up.

I moved away when I was about 14, and thankfully, I didn't have to deal with him anymore.

When I went to college, I decided to get my act together and get healthy. To that end, I started taking mixed martial arts. I did it for about two years and lost about 40 pounds.

When I graduated, I moved back to where I was from and started looking for a new MMA gym. I went to the most reputable one, and who should be there, but Rusty. It sounds too good to be true, but I swear to God, it happened.

He hadn't changed a bit. The first thing he said to me was "Finally trying to learn to defend yourself, huh?"

I had called ahead and the instructor knew my deal and had arranged for me to come to watch. I left my gear in the car. At the end of class, they do free rolling; Ju Jitsu sparring.

Rusty comes up to me, having no knowledge that I am the least bit experienced, and starts begging the instructor to let him spar me, so he can "show me the ropes". After all, he's been in MMA for three months now, AND he never misses a UFC pay-per-view.

I went outside and changed. Long story short, we sparred, and I choked him out three times. Afterward, I signed up for classes, he grabbed his bag, left, and never came back.

This is my favorite story out of everything that has happened in my life thus far. I'm the only person I know that got to beat up my childhood bully as an adult.

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24. Artless

The jerk who bullied me and stole my rare Pokemon cards went to the same art school as me for a bit. Turns out he freaking SUCKS at drawing! He flunked out after a month or two. I hope my Charizard warms your cold house of failure, you talentless thief!

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23. A knife to the heart has a way of changing you

I go into my mechanic to change my brakes. The usual cashier offers me coffee, I make small talk (been going there forever, they're an honest car repair shop, believe it or not). Then I notice the guy hunched over a Honda.

I call out. He turns, squints his eyes, goes ''...Jim?'' I call him out on his behavior, he tells me he's straightened up after mouthing off to the wrong person nearly cost him his life (he showed me a shank wound 3cm under his heart). He's apparently happily finishing a course in auto repair and had just been hired at the garage.

He turns out to be a nice guy, having sorted out his issues. I routinely bring him donuts when I bring the car in and he gets me rebates because dude, I brought donuts.

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22. A literal cry for help

Ours was extremely smart and very athletic, he was an incredible wrestler and undefeated throughout highschool.

I saw him at a party at a friend's house randomly and we caught eyes a few times and eventually, we just approached each other and said hello, exchanged bro hugs. Mind you, we hardly talked. The only time we really did was when I told him to stop picking on someone and told me he would beat me up instead. He was a lovely guy.

Anyway, he hadn't changed one bit. He tried to pick fights with people throughout the night and kept looking at me while he was in yelling matches with people. So I kept getting in between him and the other person telling them both to calm down. This happened a few times until it started getting a little physical and he looked at me again.

So I stood up and he tried to push the guy one more time, so I grabbed him by his shoulders and started pushing him back telling him to cool it and I thought "What the heck am I doing? He is an angry wrestler that can take me down..." Once I got him back a ways and told him to knock it off he just looked at me and said, "You know what I could do to that guy, but I don't want to. Please, stop me."

It was the saddest "HOLD ME BACK BRO" moment I have ever been a part of. It was odd that he kept looking for me to stop his fights, but I was glad I was that guy for a bit.

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21. Good for you for choosing to help her

I own my own gym and have for a few years now. I received a message one day from a familiar-looking name on the business' Facebook page from a woman asking to come try us out. We set it up, she comes in for an introduction, she's very out of shape at this point. After about 5 minutes of working with her, it hits me that this lady used to be about half her current size and was an absolute piece of work in her hay day.

I decided not to bring it up to her as she appeared to be struggling in life and came to us in a time of need and I took it, as I do with all of my clients, as a cry for help. Not to mention, I'm a grown man now and that seemed pretty silly and insignificant in life today.

Months later during one of the classes, I noticed her struggling real hard so I go over to offer some encouragement. As I leaned down to say something to her, I notice she's crying faintly to herself. She looks up at me and quietly says, "Sorry for how nasty I was to you years ago and thank you for doing this for me."

Turns out an old mutual friend told her about my place and she recognized me as the owner and came to me on purpose.

No, not a story of revenge or retribution, but, she reached out to someone she was terrible to and today, she's re-purposed and I find it to be quite inspiring.

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20. Buffalo soldier

This girl was 'the prom queen' basically - the stereotypical mean girl dating the football player. My opinion of her was always that she was just spoiled, worthless, and dumb. I don't usually take joy in other people's misfortune, but I felt schadenfreude in unparalleled amounts the day I walked into Buffalo Wild Wings and saw her standing behind the counter.

This is maybe 10 years out of high school, she looks exactly the same. Put on some weight, maybe, but hair still done the same, still looks like she got Effie Trinket to do her makeup, so on. You can tell at a glance that she's never mentally moved past 8th grade. I asked how she'd been, tried to politely talk to her because hey I want people to do well.

She was still a bully. She was like "Ew, you're Cassie! Gross." I just raised my eyebrows at her and let it go.

Long story short, her boss was my friend. I asked him about her - single mother, just got kicked out of her mom's house, he had just hired her like 2 weeks earlier. He confronted her about talking down to customers and wound up firing her. Felt like justice.

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19. Would you like fries with that?

This girl used to torment me all through high school and middle school. Really went out of her way to tear me down. Whenever we had a class together, she would make her extreme dislike for me apparent and, of course, other kids followed. I couldn't open my mouth without some kind of ridicule. Of course, I was miserable, and my dad would try to cheer me up. "Don't worry kiddo, one day she'll be working at a McDonalds and serving you fries." He actually referred to her as McDonald's for years.

A couple of years after graduating high school I went to a Hardee's with my dad. And there was McDonald's behind the counter. So I go up to place my order and before I finish she says, "you don't remember me, do you?"

"Oh, I remember you."

"Oh... so, would you like fries with that?"

"Why yes, yes I would."

Way to go, dad. Called it 9 years in advance.

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18. The teacher learns a lesson

I had a grade 11 history teacher who picked on me, insulted me in front of the class and gave me crap grades. He told me he would never send his own children to public school with such morons.

Fast forward 5 years or so, I'm almost finished my first degree and have made all A's in university so far. The crappy teacher comes into the physiotherapy clinic I'm working at. My coworker deals with him and I tell her the story.

When he comes back to book his next appointment, my coworker started talking about me as if she didn't know he had been my teacher. Bragged about how she loved mentoring students who are doing so well in school and how successful I had been at work so far. He never returned for his second appointment.

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17. "This was one of the greatest moments of my life"

Kendal was the little jerkwad bully, his older brother Adrian was my friend. Kendal made my life in high school a living nightmare, lots of teasing. He beat the crap out of me in the gym lockers one winter, took my clothes and left me to walk home naked. But Adrian and I joined the Army together.

Years later, Adrian was in my unit, a different platoon, and was killed in Iraq. I volunteered to fly with his body back home for his family. Kendal never showed up, not even to the funeral. I heard that he was shacked up downtown and running with a bad crowd. So I went over there, kicked in the door, dragged Kendal out by his hair, and pushed and kicked and dragged him the two and a half miles to the cemetery where I had buried his brother that morning, berating him for how horrible of a person he was.

Kendal was a bloody mess by the time we got to his brother's grave. I told him he needed to turn his life around because he was an ungrateful piece of garbage, then I left him there.

A year later, on the anniversary of Adrian's death, I returned to his grave. Kendal was waiting for me. He was cleaned up and sober and apologized to me incessantly. After lunch, he asked me to take him down to the recruiter's office to join up and make his brother proud.

This was one of the greatest moments of my life.

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16. Teacher bullies student, pays for it years later

My dad is a very large man. We're talking 6'7" 300 lbs big. He would always tell me this story to cheer me up when girls would be mean to me:

He was pretty chubby in high school so he played football and was good at it, but just really loved playing basketball. So his freshman year he tried out for the team and didn't make it. The coach, who was a history teacher at the school, stated his weight as an issue. Fair enough, he worked hard to lose some weight over the summer blah blah blah.

Fast forward to sophomore year: ends up having the coach as his history teacher. Great, he thinks. He can be a good student and hopefully get on the team. Wrong. This ADULT MAN decided to call my father names related to his weight and harass him in front of the class. Not cool but my Dad was too proud and never said anything. He ended up making varsity his sophomore year because of a coaching change.

Fast forward about 5 years my Dad was working as a bouncer at a bar in a nearby town to where he went to school. It was a regular night when who walks in? Idiot history teacher. Perfect. He thinks "ah I'll let it go, be professional." Until the teacher calls out my dad as "the chubby kid who was a coward".

My dad looks at him and says, "Sir, I think you've had too much to drink, its time for you to go home." The coach is saying no, no I'm fine, etc. My dad grabs him by his shirt and says, "No, it's time for you to step outside, you have had too much to drink."

The coach decides to swing at my dad and that's when he loses it.  Dad says, "This is for all the kids you've called fat you piece of crap" and proceeds to beat the tar out of him.

A long story I know, but my favorite by far. My dad and his old bouncer friends always tell it when they get together too. Ahhh revenge.

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15. The most insulting part is the tip

At the tender age of 14, and standing a bit over five feet tall I was sent to boarding school. I had braces, a "body-perm", and weighed not more than 70 pounds. About as scared as a rabbit in a thunderstorm, I kept my head low and tried to stay "under the radar".

A group of older girls somehow noticed me anyhow and began harassing me -- at first in small ways such as making snide remarks, but quickly escalating to physical bullying. One of the girls in particular seemed to really have it out for me and long after the others lost interest, she'd still openly make fun of me and corner me at every opportunity.

I'd lie in my bed at night conjuring all sorts of scenarios in which I could humiliate her. It was all for naught, though, as the morning would come and I'd still be the nerdy little kid who'd be wise not to try anything. She'd still be the big-boobed popular girl who walked around pulling a wake of disciples in her path.

Many years later, now standing well over six feet tall and known within my circle of business as an attractive woman who was not to be messed with, I scheduled a lunch meeting with a few possible vendors to be located at the shopping mall I was helping develop.

Seated with representatives from Radio Shack, Sears, and a few others, our waitress approached the table. She was a wreck of a woman -- crispy-fried bleached-blond hair, pock-marked complexion, and cheap clothing stretched over a body several pounds too large for it. As she fumbled around for a pen in her apron, our eyes met and it would be difficult to describe what was exchanged wordlessly as we recognized each other. The tables had turned dramatically. Vengeance was mine.

I said it was nice to see her after all these years, and that I couldn't think of anyone I'd be happier to have as my server. The meeting went well, table service was impeccable, and I left a tip equal to our tab for the meal. I haven't seen her since, but now when I think of her I get all warm and tingly with the deliciousness of winning.

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14. Who's the chicken now?

Dealt with a bully in high school. Smaller guy, made up for it by being really, really aggressive. I was kind of small, too, so he could push me around. Not really a lot of constant bullying, just random acts of being a jerk.

Fast forward a few years. I'm bigger. Much bigger. I'm tall, I'm no longer rail-thin, I've lost my glasses because of LASIK, and I'm happy. I've almost entirely forgotten about this guy until I see him across the dining room at a restaurant.

His appetizers have just arrived, and my bill has just arrived. I pay up, leave a generous tip, and wander over to this guy. Stopping next to him at his table, I say "Hi." He looks at me, and I can see recognition flash across his eyes. He's eating wings. I reach down, take one, and calmly eat it. I toss the bone back onto his plate. "Nice seeing you again." Then I leave.

The look on his face at this tiny, random act of revenge, was pretty amazing.

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13. Zed has scars too

I moved to a new school in 7th grade and was doing fine -- making friends, good grades. Then somehow ran afoul of this bigger kid (he'd been held back a few times). Typical bully -- pushed little kids into lockers, loved to torment girls and ran with a pack of acolytes who adored and aped him.

In Texas at the time, if a kid didn't like you, he "called you out" (challenged you to a fight after school). Well, "Zed" calls me out one day, because I was from New York. Being clueless, I said, "Sure, okay."

A few days later, in front of his acolytes and a small group of my friends, he proceeds to beat the snot out of me. It was 7th grade, so the damage wasn't excessive -- mostly to my pride. Spent the rest of middle school known as one of the guys "Zed beat the snot out of."

Fast forward about seven years, home from college and going to the grocery store for mom. Who should I see bagging my goodies but Zed. Taking a look at him, I see a horrible scar running from the top of his head down around the back of his skull and neck and under his shirt.

His face lights up when he sees me, and he says, in slightly slurred speech, "Hey! Didn't we go to school together? We're friends from school, right?" He walks with me out to the parking lot, and as we walk I learn that he had been hit by a car in high school while biking home one day. The accident required a half-dozen surgeries and had left Zed mentally impaired and a completely different person.

He put my stuff in the car, shook my hand for a good 30 seconds and kept asking me to "come back and see me sometime!"

I had hated a few people in my life to that point, and no one more than him. But I almost cried driving home, I felt so bad for him and disgusted with myself for my previous hatred.

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12. I'd say you more than got even

I definitely didn't take the high road here but it was fantastic

When I was bouncing, I saw my ex-bully walk into my bar. This guy made my high school life dreadful through every method except violence (I was bigger than him by a fair margin).

I knew he lived a couple of towns over, this was small-town New Zealand after all, I also knew he was driving. I looked for his car and it was parked in a tow-away area. I gleefully called the company who handles this for us and they towed it. He was in the pub at the time, he was none the wiser. I also got one of our barbacks to follow him around and take his glass every time he put it down for more than five seconds. It was pretty busy that night and he wasn't overly bright, so again he was none the wiser.

After a few hours of this, he came outside for a smoke, where it was pouring rain, and afterward turned around to go back inside. I blocked his way and he tried to shove past me. I told him he was acting aggressively and I wouldn't be letting him back in. He starting shouting that he'd left his wallet inside, I told him that if he'd thought of that before trying to shove past me, maybe I would have gone to get it for him.

At this point, in his eyes, I stopped being a bouncer and was again the scared little 17-year-old from 7 years earlier. He took a swing at me, missed, and fell over in the gutter. He wasn't hammered, it was just that the ground was wet and he slipped.

We had a couple of cops who used to come in for a few drinks off duty every now and again, and they happened to be smokers. They saw what had happened and called their buddy who was on duty and he swung by, picked this jerk up and took him to the station to sober up.

I am not proud of my feelings about this, but seeing the guy who destroyed high school for me getting thrown into the tank after being ripped off at a pub, getting humiliated while trying to look like the big man, being sober enough to be hugely frustrated over this whole thing and knowing that when he gets out of jail in the morning, his car won't be where he'd left it made me feel great.

I never messed with him again after that, I felt we were even.

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11. Being the better person is revenge enough

Background: I was bullied a lot in middle school, and (for unrelated reasons) ended up going to a different high school from most of my classmates, and obviously didn't keep in touch.

I was back home from college for Christmas a year or two ago and was at the mall with my little sister and my fiance. I recognized a girl from my middle school across the food court, but we had never been friends, so I simply made a mental note that she was there and went back to eating.

A few moments later my fiance and sister both got up to use the restroom and I was by myself. The girl gets up, comes over, makes nice for half a second ("Oh hi, how are you, haven't seen you in forever, blah blah,") and then immediately transitions into how I look pathetic and desperate sitting by myself, and how it's no wonder the people I was with left.

I am completely taken aback and it takes me a moment to form words. I hadn't seen this girl in 6 or 7 years and hadn't said more than 5 words to her.

I picked up my purse, stood up from my table and said, "We're grown-ups now," in the most condescending tone I could manage through my surprise. I wanted to say something about how she needed to stop acting like a child, or how there were no teachers around to stop me from leaving, but at that moment I had too many thoughts and couldn't express them all at once eloquently, so I just left. I think, or at least hope, she got the message.

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10. I am the manager, bully

This girl in high school tried to get me kicked out for bullying her, even though I'd actually actively been staying out of her way as I knew she didn't like me.

Fast forward a few months and I get an acceptance letter from my first choice university in my pocket, which this girl had spent the last year telling me I was too stupid to get into. She missed both her first and second choices and sat crying on the phone trying to find a university to take her.

Four years later I have my degree and I moved back to a town near where my family lives to work as a manager in a busy and successful restaurant. She comes in with a work party and sneers when she sees me waiting tables... Her face when they asked me for the manager to complain about me (for no reason I might add) was priceless. "That would be me, how can I help?"

Turns out she works as a coffee slave in a cafe in the local (crappy) shopping center, and last time I walked past I saw she'd stolen some of my business ideas and passed them off under her name. She still comes to the restaurant occasionally but I let my second in command deal with her table as I can't promise to be impartial, I even make sure I go nowhere near their food or drinks so there's no room for her to complain.

It's a small victory sure, but it makes me feel a bit vindicated!

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9. "Some bullies do grow up"

My then-fiancé took me out to dinner in my hometown where we had our first date to celebrate my new promotion. I recognized our waitress right away as the girl who had been mean to me in 6th and 7th grade (The only years we had classes together). She didn't seem to recognize me (I had gained a lot of weight and the restaurant was dark) so I let it go and treated her like any other waitress.

When the bill came I asked my now-husband how we should tip. She was a great waitress and deserved a generous tip like we usually do but the urge to stiff her was there as payback. I decided to tip her generously and let the past go. But I did leave a note next to the tip: "Here's to believing that people do grow up after high school." And I signed it "Class of 20**"

The next day I got on Facebook and she had sent me a message. She said she had recognized me but I looked happy so she said nothing and she treated me like any other customer. Then she apologized for anything she might have done to me in school. It was a hard time for her and she didn't like to think about who she was then.

Some bullies do grow up and I'm glad we both did the right thing.

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8. "I had changed so much, and he had stayed exactly the same"

A boy at school, [name redacted], was an absolute monster to me and my group of friends. I was raised as a fairly introverted kid and thus gravitated to people of a like mind. He could basically smell the pacifism on us and exploited it to no end. Kicked the crap outta my friends and I every chance he got, humiliated us in front of the class, basically assigned us to the lowest social rungs for most of our schooling year.

My own bio-father was a bully and violent, and it burned into me a deep-seated hatred of anyone who resorts to preying upon the weak. 

Fast forward to some 8 years after school. One Friday afternoon the bully walked into my place of business looking for something we sell, and (due to the nature of our business) revealed that since leaving school, he had been caught stealing a car, gone to juvenile prison (due to age), got busted for possession, more convictions, etc. and been living at no fixed address. We were his last chance for this particular product.

Before you judge too quickly, we had been at a fairly expensive private school, so he wasn’t exactly a down-on-his-luck hobo to begin with - he had just never once stopped making bad decisions despite the opportunities given to him.

I projected an outwardly professional demeanor, denied him service, and sent him dejectedly on his way. (I was required by policy and had no actual authority over the choice, but it still felt good.)

The best part? He didn’t recognise me. He looked at the man serving him and only saw a man. I had grown and changed so much, and he had stayed exactly the same.


7. Trying to get a job from someone you hate

Tonight a guy walks into my family's convenience store to buy a pack of smokes. I know him from my days growing up here. He and his younger brother used to give me a hard time, they were real bullies, bigot types who encouraged others to pick on me and even to turn violent against me. I hated him, and his family, for taking a part of my childhood.

He was unusually friendly tonight, smiling at me and cracking lame jokes that I smiled politely at but didn't really respond to. He counted his money with his gimp hand, which was partially blown in half (taking several fingers with it) by fireworks that blew up in his hand a few years ago. I gave him his smokes and change, said thanks, and went about my business.

Before leaving, he stops, hesitates for a moment, and turns around to ask me if there are any job openings at the store. While I had heard him correctly, it's almost as if the words didn't register in my mind, so I asked him to repeat himself. He asks again, "You wouldn't happen to have any jobs available, would you?"

I explain that we're sufficiently staffed at the moment, that with my sister and I around for the summer that we wouldn't be needing anyone else to fill in the hours, which were sparse enough as is. I told him to ask again in the fall. He said that it was okay, but that he needed something now because his wife had just left him. He said thanks anyway, and walked out.

Memories of him being a jerk flashed around in my head, He had amounted to very little, and his marriage was falling apart. And now, he had to come asking for a job from the local minority he used to make fun of and claim superiority over throughout his life. 

I should have enjoyed it, but I didn't. While I don't feel bad for him, not in the slightest, I don't feel like any kind of justice was served, or that karma had given him his comeuppance. If the universe is truly neutral towards what is right and wrong, then this was just the way that life played out for someone who did a lot of harm to people in his time. He could have been rich, he could have been powerful, he could have kept the use of both of his hands. But it didn't turn out that way. Karma had nothing to do with it, there was no justice.

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6. Cyanide and happiness

True story. I got bullied for roughly seven years straight daily when I was in middle school and high school. I had kids tell me I should die, I got beat up and I was emotionally destroyed by everyone who treated me like the most useless, void piece of crap. I didn't feel like I should exist. I sat at home contemplating just ending it a lot.

I always loved art, drawing, and writing. During my adolescence, I retreated to the internet. I didn't want to go to clubs where those people were, yet could still talk to people. I started posting animated Flash cartoons and comics to other people who were like me for critique. Due to the bullying directed at me, I developed a rather sad sensibility towards life and an ability to quickly come back verbally at anyone who wanted to give me abuse. It was a defense mechanism for sure, but the tone shone through in the animations and comics that I drew. Through all that, I met friends and eventual co-workers.

I now draw a cartoon called Cyanide & Happiness.

The local papers write about me. That school held an assembly in my honor once recently (I was told this by a friend who now works there). I live overseas and Jonathan Ross comes to hang out with me at Comic-Con every year, where again pictures of us appear in the local paper. My former bullies know all about this. The particularly bad ones now either avoid me in bars now or try to be my best mate, and I walk around my home town beaming.

Feels good man. Thank you, internet.

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5. He took his karma like a man

I grew up in Northern California, and every summer a bunch of people take to the water and go tubing down the Sacramento River. A popular stopping place mid-end of the route is "Can Beach" was here that I ran into this guy that was terrible in high school as I was docking my tube.

Me: "Heyyyyy."

Him (obviously uncomfortable): "Heyyyy, how's it going?"

Me (through gritted teeth): "Awesome"

Him: (pause): "You freaking hate me, don't you?"

Me (surprised at his astute observation): "Yeah... I really do."

Him: "What would make you feel better and us to be cool?"

Me: "Um...if you let me shoot you in the face with this Super Soaker."

Him: "Ok."

Me: "Really?"

Him: "And then we'll be cool?"

Me: "Yeah, we'll totally be cool"

...and then he let me. He let me shoot him in the face with a Super Soaker in a constant stream until it ran out of water. It felt amazing. He knew he deserved it. He took his punishment, then we both laughed and hugged. Worth it.

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4. Bullying cost this guy some serious coin

I was playing poker in Atlantic City about 7 years ago and one of the guys that bullied me, Chad, sat at my table. There's no way he recognized me. I was actually playing on a no-limit hold'em table while waiting for a seat to open in a 2-way hi-lo game.

Anyway, I stayed at the NLHE table just to take his money. I played probably 95% of the pots he was in. He had been drinking and wasn't very good. I got close to $600 off of him in a little over an hour before he decided to quit. I have no idea what he does for a living, but I am 100% sure he is a big loser when he plays cards.

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3. I am not a good person, but I am happy

The boy who bullied me horrifically at school for liking dance and being ugly (leading me to have just over $6,000 cosmetic surgery on my face) was in the city I now live in recently. I was with a group of dancers from a show I'm working at, all stunning women, and I've spent the last 6 months getting in shape.

He was with his now pregnant girlfriend from school and looked like he despised every minute with her. I wish I could say that I was classy, or said something smart. Instead, I belly laughed in his face called him a "cretinous little waste of a man" and carried on with my night. I am not a good person. But I am happy.

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2. Success is the best revenge

It's been roughly two years for me. After my first love broke up with me, my self-esteem took a huge hit. I felt insecure, like a terrible person, like I ruined everything good around me, etc. These insecurities manifested themselves in low self-esteem with regards to my body image.

I recently started getting hammered text messages from my ex. After a while, they progressed to him trying to get me to come to visit him. Once I agreed to drive the two hours it takes to go see him, but then he canceled saying he would be embarrassed for his friends to know we had hung out because I was "such a terrible person." I stopped being nice and polite, but he continued to text me. I should also mention, as it's relevant to the story, that my ex's life dream is to be on TV and be famous.

Then two weeks ago I was driving to a music festival up in Michigan when I decided to check my email. I found out I'd been one of 6 girls (out of an original 250 from my region) to move on to the next round of interviews for the casting of a new modeling show. I'd applied and sent in pictures of myself on a whim, I hadn't really expected anything to come of it since I'd only done some amateur modeling in middle school. I was absolutely beside myself with happiness. I felt confidence like I hadn't felt in two years. I felt good.

But it gets better. When I returned home I was shopping at a fancy local boutique when the owner approached me and asked me if I'd had any modeling experience. Then he asked me to come in for a photo shoot for the online catalog they were launching. I went in for the photo shoot and it was amazing. I felt on top of the world. Stuff like this does not happen to me.

I like to think that the world is paying me back tenfold in karma for having to deal with so many self-esteem problems stemming from this one guy and this one break up. Also... who's embarrassed now, jerk?

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1. "If I can change, everybody can change"

For years, I had a hard time moving past the depression and worthlessness I experienced in high school. I concocted all kinds of revenge fantasies, centered specifically on the comeuppance of one particular relentless bully, Sid. (Name changed. Sorry to the real Sids out there!)

Sid was the king of the school: you paid homage to him or else you got beat down while everybody else watched helplessly. From then on, you would get mercilessly insulted while everybody else laughed nervously.

I decided one day that somebody needed to stand up to this tyrant, and that person was going to be me. Maybe I thought I was going to be a hero. All I knew was that I just didn't want to be part of this schoolyard arrangement anymore, so one day I refused to lick his boots. Sid told a joke and I didn't laugh. He noticed: "What, you didn't think that was funny? The [bleep] is wrong with you... Come here."

I knew what was coming but I thought I could take it. And I could at first. I could hold my own, and I didn't back down. I never gave in to Sid again. But day after day, week after week, having to physically fight for my life and endure insults not only from Sid but now from the entire school who just went along with whatever Sid said -- it all became too much for me and I broke down emotionally.

I dropped out of high school and became a recluse. I had no friends and a family who didn't know how to deal with me. I was like a zombie shuffling his way through life. And I stayed that way for years, not knowing how to get myself out of the hole.

Eventually, I turned to writing as an outlet. It worked: it enabled me to work out my feelings and go over them again and again until I understood why I felt the way I did. I started submitting my work to various places, and one day, I stepped out of my house and into the real world: I had been hired as a magazine journalist.

As a journalist, I became committed to two things: seeking the truth and helping the downtrodden. I'm sure you can see why. Both of those passions eventually led me to Jesus. As a newly recommitted Christian, I poured myself into efforts to heal from my past and mature into my present.

I realized that I had a lot of room to grow: even as a high schooler when I was so busy painting myself as a victim, I was dealing with a lot of anger and immaturity within myself. I had to confront the idea that there were probably days when I was the one who went out looking for a fight.

I told myself that yeah, Sid was a jerk, but hey, maybe I was, too. To take a page from Rocky: "If I can change ... everybody can change." I let go of my anger and my pain. I was at peace. I even prayed for Sid!

Fast forward a few years: I move and need to find a new church. As I walk into the first one I visit, I hear a voice: "Is that you?" I turn around and see Sid standing there with a big grin on his face. I feel myself clinch a fist -- force of habit.

"It's so good to see you," he says. After the shock wears off, I manage to say the same and actually kind of mean it though I don't know why.

"I know we couldn't always say that before," he continues. "I'm sorry..." He starts to say something else, but can't find the words.

His lips start to tremble, and he lets out a long sigh. His eyes get watery.

"I... I'm really sorry for the things I did back then. To you, to everybody. I didn't think I'd have to deal with this again, but here you are staring me right in the face. In church, of all places." He lets out a half-hearted chuckle.

That's when I realized that he did still have to deal with this again because I still needed to deal with this. This was my last step.

I reached over, put my hand gently on his shoulder, and told him, "I've changed a lot since then. And I can see that you have, too." He broke down crying.

I never thought in a million years that Sid could be affected by our high school experience even more than I was. That got us talking, not just about high school, but about finding Jesus, about finding growth. 

Over the years, we've actually become good friends. I used to dream about gouging Sid's eyes out and kicking him down forty flights of stairs. Now I call him over to help me move some furniture and invite him to stay for dinner.

Revenge fantasies are fun in their own time, but the greater reality is good-willed reconciliation. President Lincoln said it best: "Do I not destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?"

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