Book Review: Words Hit Hard as a Fist
Nov 02, 2011 | 21926 views | 0 0 comments | 1274 1274 recommendations | email to a friend | print
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John Carmichael, 13, Texas. Tiffany Maxwell, 16, Pennsylvania. Lance Lundsten, 18, Minnesota. Seth Walsh, 13, California. These are just five of the 4,400 teenagers who have committed suicide in the past 12 months because they were being bullied.

Nearly 30 percent of students are either bullies or victims of bullying, and 160,000 kids stay home from school every day because they’re afraid of being bullied. (Source: ABC News). Victims of bullying are between two to nine times more likely to consider suicide than non-victims, according to studies by Yale University.

As Charisse J. Rudolph says, “Getting an education shouldn’t be a death sentence.”

She is the author of Words Hit Hard as a Fist, with 18 Tips on How to Stop Being Bullied, a book published by Balboa Press, a Division of Hay House.

Rudolph, a bullying expert, offers strategies for stopping abuse before it leads to suicide.

Rudolph grieves for each one of these children – especially Walsh, who hung himself in his backyard in her own town of Tehachapi, Calif. She believes that if she or someone knowledgeable about bullying could have gotten to Walsh and the others in time, their lives could have been saved.

Her new book, Words Hit Hard as a Fist, is designed to give teenagers, parents, teachers and counselors strategies for dealing with bullies and for helping others to do so.

“If every school library had even one copy of this book, think of how many kids could be helped and saved,” Rudolph said.

Words Hit Hard as a Fist is a how-to guide for teens to stop bullying and gain self-confidence and self-esteem. Parents, relatives, teachers and even other teens can learn the same strategies so as to effectively intervene in situations where they see someone is being bullied – or with someone who is a bully.

It may already be happening. The Los Angeles Unified School District has ordered 20 books, and Rudolph says The Trevor Project, Teaching Tolerance, Model of Pride, Project 10 and the ACLU, The Seth Walsh Project are all taking a closer look.

In fact, The Seth Walsh Project allowed Charisse to bring her books to the 48th Annual Garden Party, in September 2011, and 20 % of the proceeds went to the ACLU.

Growing up in the 1960s made Rudolph want to learn how she could have a powerful life as a female, and being dyslexic made that more of a challenge. She experienced what it’s like to struggle through school not feeling able, or good enough, to achieve.

At college, she had to tape the lectures and sit next to someone who would share his or her notes.

The author and public speaker still struggles with words; her book, in fact, shows signs of her learning disabilities with a few misspelled words and punctuation errors. When asked if she wanted to change them, she declined.

“I decided to keep them. Part of my message is being okay with who you are and still succeeding. My errors allow the reader to be accepting and tolerant. Even though I sometimes struggle to pronounce and spell words, I’m still intelligent. I know what I’m talking about. I am proof that no matter what challenges one may have, anything is possible,” said Rudolph.

“Bullying doesn’t only happen in the schools. A family member bullied me throughout my life. It wasn’t all-bad, but when a person lives with someone they depend on that doesn’t have the skills to communicate kindly, it has an effect on you. This book is written to make sure kids know at an early age how to get around bullies like the one I had. I needed to take years of classes to get through my abuse and it wasn’t until I was in my early thirties. All that wasted time, struggling.” Rudolph added. Words Hit Hard as a Fist includes resources and a hotline. Learn more at You can order the book there, as well as at and other online booksellers.
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