With a new year come new resolutions and fresh starts. One ex-bully took this opportunity to make peace with his former high school victim from 8 years ago.
A couple of days before New Year's Eve, 2018, he messaged Mina Gerges on Facebook to apologize for what he had put him through.
One apology over social media, as opposed to face-to-face, may seem like too little too late, considering that Mina had gone through years of bullying, which most likely had serious effects on his mental and physical health. But, surprisingly, this was not the case for these two.
The ex-bully's apology turned out to be a fresh start for both him and Mina, who was finally able to move on from the pain. The story has also resonated with dozens of other Twitter users.
Metro has interviewed Mina Gerges to find out more about him and the message.
Mina received the unexpected message on 29 December, 2018.
My highschool bully just messaged me to apologize and tbh this is the kind of energy I need in 2019 🙌🏽 https://t.co/BKQ5B9Md7Z— Mina (@Mina)1546061225.0
This move from the UAE to Canada was when it all started.
"High school in Canada was really hard."Metro.
There wasn't much support at home either.
And that was just a few years ago.
Having no one to turn to neither at home nor at school led Mina to feel extremely isolated.
It's unbelievable how cruel people can be in the classroom.
Now, 8 years later, Mina is bulletproof.
He had already buried the painful high school experience in the past.
@JoshuaJace121 This is so spot on. A lot of people were asking me how I feel about this apology now, and I’m like,… https://t.co/SpmbQ99Aix— Mina (@Mina)1546130640.0
And he didn't know how to feel about it.
Old memories came rushing back in.
But he managed to break through the old feelings of fear and anger.
Most importantly, he did something most of us would probably fail to. He forgave the bully.
This mature attitude is why Mina is successful and popular today.He then took it one step further and shared the message on Twitter, hoping to spread some positive vibes for the beginning of the new year.
The response made him trend on Twitter.
@RiyadhK I would love to say I would respond graciously. I would actually unleash the fires of hell.— Megan McCann (@Megan McCann)1546126777.0
He did it with grace.
@cornbreadsays I messaged him back and asked him why he thought about it 8 years later and he said he felt really b… https://t.co/LKcnWt7fY1— Mina (@Mina)1546148916.0
The ex-bully had a sincere response."He told me that it’d been weighing on his conscience for a while and that he’d wished he’d apologized sooner and that even though he can’t undo his actions or their impact on me, that he hopes that owning up to his actions and this apology and will help me heal."
Then he thanked Mina.
@itsMinaGerges So much love for people who grow and learn and still own their behavior. I'm sorry you had to go thr… https://t.co/bBoPMt8ZQw— Kae Winters ✊🏿✊🏾✊🏽✊🏼✊🏻 (@Kae Winters ✊🏿✊🏾✊🏽✊🏼✊🏻)1546405767.0
And that was it.Metro that only after having this conversion was he able to really move on from the past.
He also hopes that sharing this story with other people will help them make peace with whatever has happened to them and be finally happy.
The isolation he had felt for so long didn't hurt anymore.
The effect of Mina's tweet was touching.
@itsMinaGerges @Mrs_ARockstar Wow I’d save that one! That’s legendary. No one gets this kind of thing! 👏🏻👏🏻— Shannon (@Shannon)1546189753.0
Some people shared their own experiences with ex-bully apologies."One of my middle school bullies did the same thing to me this past summer and it honestly made me cry," said tylerkend12.
Others were less forgiving.
@itsMinaGerges Mine did the same in person one night in a bar, I just walked away.— Ding Dan Dong! UK hun? (@Ding Dan Dong! UK hun?)1546136982.0
Not everyone's been that lucky, though.
@itsMinaGerges If only bullies matured and realized the impact they have on people.— BrittanyAnnette (@BrittanyAnnette)1546165436.0
Others encouraged empathy and forgiveness."This has happened to me on a few occasions, and it’s so important to forgive and appreciate when people grow and learn and want to make an improvement," said David Godfrey.
But the most moving ones were other ex-bully confessions.
@itsMinaGerges @baldingredhead There are some people I treated horribly in high school, and it’s by far my biggest… https://t.co/lOnpoQnNDj— Alex (@Alex)1546201495.0