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Anti-Bullying Book Club!

Published April 7, 2019 by Maryanne

IMG_20190406_172624_591 (1)Say “yes” to acai bowls and “no” to bullying! (Photo by Sara Liptack)

I was so honored to be a part of an anti-bulling club this weekend!

Sara Liptack of the Little Free Library, Westfield, New Jersey, invited me to her home to discuss my book, “I Don’t Want to Be Like You” with young readers in the Westfield neighborhood.

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is about my experiences growing up in the 1970s and dealing with bullying throughout grade school and high school. The girls had a few weeks to read the book, but they all said they finished it in one or two sittings.

It was refreshing to be in the company of such inspirational young ladies who are all anti-bullying advocates and have dreams for a bright future.

What I’ve learned, unfortunately, is that when it comes to peer pressure and bullying, not much has changed in the last 40 years; especially now with the internet.

The good news is, the four girls I’ve spoken with were confident to be themselves and truly have it together when it comes to standing apart from the crowd, going after their dreams, and not worrying what others think of them.

One commented, “I can’t wait to go to college. I’m going to learn so much!”

I asked the girls what part of the book they liked best. Most agreed they liked the whole book, in general, and that it was a quick read. One young lady said her favorite part was when I started fighting back.

In a comfortable, private setting, everyone, including the adults Sara and myself, shared their experiences with bullying and how they handled it. It was an awesome event and a great learning experience.

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for motivational speaking engagements and is the author of the following books: 

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

Anti-Bullying Talk at Montville High School

Published June 18, 2018 by Maryanne

DSCF2324

Left to right Anthony Sia, Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta, and Alus

Sunday, June 9, 2018, I was incredibly honored to speak on anti-bullying at Montville High School, Montville, New Jersey. I was invited by teacher Anthony Sia who started the Coalition for the Human Condition (https://www.facebook.com/Coalition-For-The-Human-Condition-209170233169424/) with Alus (https://www.alusofficial.com/).

I was up first, then followed by a powerful performance from Alus, and later, the incredible Montville School of Rock (https://www.facebook.com/msorrocks/).

Supported by my husband Dennis and some friends, I was happy to speak for the first time in front of a high school. Prior to that engagement, I’ve done mostly libraries and senior citizen groups. I didn’t have much time to get into how I was bullied as a child and teen (though I am writing a book about it!) but I did get to speak about teen spirit. And that the one most important thing we need in this world today is love.

I look forward to more speaking engagements with the Coalition for the Human Condition, spreading the good word of “love.”

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an author and award-winning journalist. She is available for speaking engagements. Will travel! For pricing and availability, email Maryanne at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

Judging is Bullying

Published June 9, 2018 by Maryanne

Stop Judging

Tomorrow, June 10, 2018, 2 p.m. I’ll be speaking at Montville High School’s Amphitheater on the topic of ANTI-BULLYING for the Coalition for the Human Condition. I am officially a spokesperson and even off duty, I am on duty.

Yesterday, it broke my heart when I was shopping in a health food store that is located in a strip mall. The owner told me that 70 percent of his customers were livid that a dollar store is coming to the strip mall and that would bring (his words) “undesirables.”

I stood up to him and told him that people who look down on others and judge people are the REAL UNDESIRABLES! The only way we’re going to get anywhere on this planet is by LOVE and LOVE only!

One thing LOVE isn’t is turning your nose up on other people. It doesn’t make you look better, it makes you look worse. Everyone thinks it’s so cool to bash The Bible, but whether you believe or not, there are good stories — especially the ones about Jesus breaking bread with EVERYONE. The word “undesirable” should be in NO ONE’s vocabulary! JUDGING IS BULLYING!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an award-winning journalist, author, and public motivational speaker. She is available for speaking events; will travel. Contact her at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

More on Anti-Bullying

Published June 2, 2015 by Maryanne

Cover proof 4Photo design by Darlene Foster

My first book, “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” shares my experiences with being bullied in high school. I want all parents to know, that when a child is bullied, it’s not about your child, it’s about the bully being incompetent. The best advice was given to me by my grandmother, to let them know you are not afraid. That worked, but sadly when there is one, there’s another and defending yourself is a work in progress.

In my later years, I look back in pity on the bullies as I realized most of them were bullied at home, by their parents. It’s up to EVERYONE to work together on this. I truly believe when parents say, “Not my little darling” it could be their cover-up for child abuse. Children do re-act to how they are treated at home by duplicating in the playground and the locker room. A girl from Germany who was a whole year older than me because she got left back to learn better English harassed me (that means she was 18, picking on a MINOR, so my mother could have pressed charges on her!) in the locker room taking a photo of me when I was changing. (God bless my little sister who said, “At least you have great legs!”) I learned this girl’s father abused her by making her walk around the house naked because she walked in on him while he was going to the bathroom.

That girl used her anger towards her father on me and abused me in both grammar school and high school. One day she had a bad acid trip and was crying to me and confessed she was jealous of me. When I brought this up to a guidance counselor, the bully lied and said she never said such a thing and said she didn’t like me because I was a punk rocker. (That’s hilarious and even more of a reason to pity that person who was legally an adult tormenting me).

I share because today I am extremely happy and blessed to have the best husband in the world. Anyone who reads “Guest List” will see that it’s a very positive story with no dark descent into drugs or alcohol. And though it’s not a children’s book, it’s an inspiring story parents can share with their children.

Note: I recommend parental guidance for “Guest List” because of bad language (hey, it’s a punk book!) and some delicate situations where I share about being a young woman navigating NYC during a more dangerous time.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is available to speak in schools on anti-bullying. Please contact her at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com for pricing and availability. Will travel!