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Hello everyone! I’m Dr. Teddy, the teddy bear counselor Kevin and Karen use in their counselling practice. During Labor Day weekend I had the opportunity to view Hans Christian Andersen, starring that funny and talented, Danny Kaye. Hans Christian Andersen was a poet and author. One of the stories he wrote that I would like to talk to you about is The Ugly Duckling. It’s the story of a duckling born in a barnyard, who is teased and abused by others around him. Not everyone knows that this is a story about Andersen’s own abuse by a schoolmaster at one of the schools he attended. 1
This ugly ducking wished so much to be a beautiful swan. He felt so sad about the way he looked. All the awful things others said only helped to make him feel so ugly. He thinks this about himself all winter long. Spring comes. He gets so down he decided to throw himself into a flock of swans to be killed. But something wonderful happens! When he sees his reflection in the water he’s not ugly. He’s a beautiful swan!
Kids, do you get made fun of at school? I was called so many bad names when I was only a cub in the universe of Ted. That’s where my mother, Theodora, and my father, Theodore, come from. God has sent me here to help children, teenagers and adults with their problems. They called me Professor Four Eyes and Professor Piddle Face. I didn’t have very good vision when I was born. I had to wear glasses when I was only five years old. I felt so awful because of the names I was called. I was like that ugly duckling. I was abused in school by a kindergarten teacher when I didn’t get into a group of her other students fast enough. She pulled me by the ear. It was really painful.
My father was a sick man in his mind. He hit me a lot. He said I was stupid. He told me I would always be a failure. He suffered from a terrible disease called schizophrenia. This means he heard voices telling him to do all kinds of things. One of them was beating my mother, me and my sister, Ballerina. My father made us feel so ugly. I hated my father so much I made a plan of how I was going to kill him. I would get him so angry at me, he would want to hit me. I would stab him with a knife. I thank God I never got the chance to do that. I would have had a very bad life. It took me many years to begin forgiving my father.
Do you ever feel like that ugly duckling? You think you’re not beautiful. Did you know a man named David says in the Bible that we are not ugly? If God says through David, “You’re beautiful,” believe it. I know. People have said all kinds of awful things about you. They have made you feel you will never do anything special with your life. When you think things like that about yourself, please remember Dr. Teddy telling you about his life. I have grown up to become a bear counsellor. If with all I have been through I did this, you also can do wonderful things with your life. You could never be ugly in God’s eyes. You’re so beautiful to Him. Whenever you think things about yourself that aren’t true, I hope you will come back to this story Dr. Teddy told you.
Have a beary great week!
Kevin and Karen Osborne are Christian pastoral counsellors and psychotherapists. Kevin is studying to become a psychologist and professor of Psychology. He feels called to also be a chaplain. We have started You Can Hope Again Counselling. Karen enjoys doing cross-stitch while I like writing and singing songs. Karen makes me laugh when she sings the kitty bed-time song saying, “It’s that time. It’s the bestest kitty time of the day!” Kevin enjoys teasing the kitties and making them do kitty dances with music. Their kitty, Catherine, loves it when kitty daddeh sings All Things Bright and Beautiful. Kevin likes doing impressions. He tells children’s stories and helps others with their problems using his hand puppet, Dr. Teddy, who is a therapy bear. He is a partner with us in our counselling practice.We are available to assist with worship and preaching to give busy pastors and ministers a much-needed break. Please visit our counselling website, where you will also find our blogs. We offer in-office, and phone counselling to anyone in the world.