This is the story of Joyce’s petty revenge on a guidance counselor who told her she wasn’t “university material” – words that stuck with her for life.
Joyce’s Difficult Childhood
Joyce, as a teenager, had it hard. Joyce felt isolated growing up with an adoptive stepfather who sidelined her throughout her life and a mother who was more focused on this man than her.
The stepfather was what many would label a typical narcissist, and her mother often played the role of his enabler or “flying monkey,” as Joyce puts it.
Joyce’s Battle with Anxiety
High school wasn’t easy for Joyce. The weight of her household issues manifested as anxiety, making it a struggle for her to maintain her focus.
High School Struggles
Even though she tried to be a good student, attending classes and often excelling in her assignments, sometimes she had trouble completing them due to her distracting thoughts.
Annual Meetings with Her Guidance Counselor
At the start of every academic year, Joyce would sit across from her guidance counselor for their annual meeting. For all four years of high school, she had the same counselor.
In these meetings, Joyce tried to explain her struggles, hoping for some understanding or assistance.
But each time, she was brushed off. She used to tell Joyce that she “obviously wasn’t trying hard enough” and that there were no excuses for her grades.
A Disturbing Connection
The counselor’s dismissal of Joyce’s concerns might have been influenced by the fact that her stepfather, who adopted her, worked as a social worker for the school board and was, ironically, a close friend of the guidance counselor.
Aspiring for More
In her final year, when students had to think about their next steps, Joyce expressed to her counselor that she wanted to study psychology at a university, aspiring either to be a counselor or a psychology teacher.
The Counselor’s Discouraging Words
Instead of encouragement or constructive advice, her counselor scoffed! What she said next haunted Joyce for years, “please do not apply to university.
It would be a huge disappointment for you. You are not university material, and you may be better with a community college or even a certificate in administration.”
She Took the Words To Heart
Joyce saw nothing wrong with these paths, but to be told she wasn’t good enough for her dreams was a blow she’d keep with her for life.
Years passed, and life took Joyce in different directions. She held various jobs, and, as it sometimes does, life was getting to her, and she was becoming very depressed.
A Turning Point
So, one day in her late 20s, tired of feeling down, a spark ignited within her. She thought, “Why not?” and applied for university! To her delight, she not only got in but also graduated with honors!
Graduating with Honors
Hungry for more, Joyce then enrolled in a teacher’s college, where she achieved another bachelor’s degree, again graduating with honors.
Not one to slow down; about five years ago, Joyce finally finished her masters in behavioral psychology.
But life has a way of bringing people back together. Two years ago, after her stepfather’s passing, Joyce found herself face-to-face with her old guidance counselor at the visitation.
A Sweet Moment of Vindication
The counselor, recognizing Joyce, approached her with all the familiarity of an old friend and began talking immediately.
But Joyce seized this moment. She cut her off, feigning ignorance, and said, “I’m so sorry, you must be confusing me with someone else.” The counselor looked shocked and said, “I was your guidance counselor! For four years.”
I Don’t Remember You!
Joyce kept a straight face, gave the best blank look she could muster, shrugged, and said, “Sorry, I honestly don’t remember you,” and walked away! Boom!
As Joyce walked away, she noticed the unmistakable look of disappointment on the councilor’s face.
Joyce’s Petty Revenge on Her Counselor
It might sound petty, but it was a sweet moment of vindication for Joyce. The councilor had hoped that Joyce would have great memories of her as a teen, about how helpful she was to her and how she’d set Joyce off on the right career path.
But nope! Joyce wanted her to feel that she was nothing to her and that her negative words and dismissive attitude had no lasting effect on her, even if, deep down, they did.
Brushing Off the Counselor’s Expectations
Joyce reclaimed her power by brushing off the counselor just as she had been brushed off in the past.
She had risen above the doubts and achieved her dreams, and nothing – especially not the skepticism of one person – would diminish her success.
Rising Above Doubts
Redditors loved Joyce’s story of petty revenge. One user joked, “Oh look, it’s a former student of mine. She did well, thanks to me. I should go over and pat both our backs.
“Lady, I don’t even know you, let alone remember you.” Soul and ego crushed. This was a beauty. Police should tape the area off, there’s been a murder.”
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Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Roman Samborskyi. The people shown in the images are for illustrative purposes only, not the actual people featured in the story.