You Can’t Stop Christmas from Coming: What the Grinch Can Teach Us


Fairy Tales and Evil Characters

We are all very familiar with the dark character of the Grinch, a Dr. Seuss classic tale first introduced to the world in 1957. The whole idea of stealing Christmas away from the masses certainly struck fear in my child size heart, much like the Wicked Witch of the West did in the Wizard of Oz.  The witch realizes that Dorothy’s ruby slippers can be removed only if Dorothy dies, so she makes her plan, but, ultimately, it is the witch’s death when water is splashed on her and she melts. Sweet, accidental revenge.

Another greedy, wicked character that frightened me to death was the volatile Cruella de Vil, of 101 Dalmatians. She is a wealthy heiress married to a furrier. She treated all people and  animals abusively and seeks to acquire them for her own malicious pleasure. She  kidnaps nearly all of these rambunctious pets, for she falsely believes she can convert them to valuable coats.

How did baby boomers ever make it to 2017 with such vile models in our childhood experience? I can only believe that there is a back story and multiple messages in every tale from which we can learn. Psychologically, perhaps these meanies are our conscience, designed to warn us that if we act as they do, harm will come to us with negative consequences, and to others as well. 

But wait! These are fairy tales after all, with happy endings. Isn’t it true that Christmas came to Whoville in spite of the Grinch – even with his change of heart? Dorothy can return to Kansas by clicking the heels of her ruby slippers and repeating, “there’s no place like home.”

After wild chase scenes by Cruella and her crooked accomplices, the trio end up crashing their vehicles and land in a deep ravine, utterly defeated with the Dalmatians returning to their loving humans!

A Closer Look at the Grinch

The narcissistic character named Grinch sees what he can’t have in the very modest village of Whoville, (i.e.ultimately a happycommunity that operates with joy without material goods.) He has a wonderful awful idea trying to stop Christmas from coming after 53 years of witnessing joy.  He sets out to impersonate Santa and his reindeer. How gullible we were, along with Cindy- Lou Who, to think that this skinny, ugly, green character and his scrawny dog Max would EVER be the real Santa. But, I guess if you’re half asleep and interrupt a thief in costume, and expecting only one visitor in the middle of the night it must be the real Santa! 

Arriving with empty sacks he begins to rid all households of every sign of Christmas festivity; packages, wrappings, bicycles, trees, lights, and all food in the refrigerator, and even a crumb that was too small for a mouse!

He was so wrong that being stripped of earthly goods would crush their Christmas spirit. He wanted to hear crying, despair and feel like King of the World, but it didn’t happen. Why? Because, Christmas and its spirit, whether you have religious or spiritual leanings, is really internal, in one’s heart and has very little to do with commercialism or material goods!

The Turning Point

He was puzzled…. It came without ribbons! It came without tags!”
“It came without packages, boxes or bags!”
And he puzzled three hours, till his puzzler was sore.
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before!
“Maybe Christmas,” he thought, “doesn’t come from a store.”
“Maybe Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!”
And what happened then? Well…in Whoville they say,
That the Grinch’s small heart Grew three sizes that day!
And the minute his heart didn’t feel quite so tight,
He whizzed with his load through the bright morning light,
And he brought back the toys! And the food for the feast!

And he, HE HIMSELF! The Grinch carved the roast beast!

Unconditional hope, remorse, joy and the sense of coming together as a family!  The Grinch and his selfish ways were resurrected to be a part of a community that stood tall even when Christmas was stolen!  

For Survivors of Crime During the Holidays

It surely is no fairy tale when you join the ranks of crime victims!

How I wish there was a storybook in which homicide, missing persons, intimate partner-family violence, human trafficking, sexual assault/rape, suicide and other tragedies were told from the perspective of the victim and their family, with barely a mention the perpetrator. The story would relate how despite incredible courage and effort, they persevere without their loved one and personal losses. How they rebuild their lives minute by minute with the support of others who know from personal experience. Should no resolution to their story be in sight, at least, they can begin to re-write the next chapter with the knowledge that they have already travelled the worst path imaginable! They can, with help come to the crossroads and chose the path they will walk in the future!  

Continuing Coping and Fostering Hope-

Homicide prepares you for the best in life, for you’ve already lived through the worst ever!  

Read about  how to cope and chose the path of hope and preparing for victim impact statements with these two books! (Proceeds donated to the Cue Center for Missing Persons)

Grief Diaries: Surviving Loss by Homicide









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Donna R. Gore, M.A.

Donna R. Gore, M.A.


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7 Little White Lies for Christmas




Ladyjustice has spent more than her share of Christmases in New England… tolerating and shivering in the white stuff… 

Spending one Christmas in the Phoenix desert… and now a true Carolina Christmas.


Although many geographic locations have their affluence if you look for it, it’s heartwarming to know that less can…and usually is more…  That all we really need when push comes to shove can fit in a Christmas stocking… or maybe an overnight bag.       If we stick to the simple, we have less material and emotional baggage. However, we frequently get caught up in the glitter and mythology of it all.


White Lies…


1)   “If you’ve been good, Santa will bring you whatever you  want.

Reality: Want versus need. ‘Since when is life fair? What we really want is not a material good… and often comes from within with self-reflection and a little help and encouragement from our friends;


2)   Buying the hottest or most expensive gift will cover a multitude of sins or neglect during the previous year;

Reality:  Naught! Don’t even try this one…


3)   You must do what you always do with family for the holidays “because it’s tradition.”

Reality:  Of course not!  Start a new tradition…or do something totally new that makes YOU happy!


4)   If you can’t afford it…charge now, pay later…

Reality: Deferred gratification when you can’t afford it is always better. Don’t be a slave to interest charges…. Plan ahead… Do it differently;


5)   “I can’t afford to give to charities.’

Reality:  Oh…yes you can…Think out of the box… Pick one charity close to your heart and make a homemade gift that would be appreciated, or pass the word about the organization in your community, or on-line, or volunteer… give your time NOT money!


6)   ‘I have no idea what to give him/her.’

Reality: If you’ve known your sister/brother for 30 years…you know what they like…Think about there life needs now and priorities.  What is most important to them? You will come up with something that is cost effective. If you can’t afford the “whole enchilada” buy an accessory to go with the big gift for others to chip in.

However, if you really are Mr./Ms. Tacky and a challenged gift giver, do enlist the help of someone who has better skills.  Barter…”I’ll bake you cookies if you’ll buy for…”


7)   “I promise to do it differently next year” procrastination…

Reality: Do it now… Turn over a new leaf…Take up a cause and do something once a month by paying it forward.


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