GHOST CHAIN LETTERS
The origin main purpose of a chain letter is usually a pyramid scam, but they’ve expanded into a ‘threat’, essentially. You know, the stated version consisted of; ‘if you don’t forward this letter on then something would befall the person who broke the chain within the next 24 hours’. Today, these letters are sent through our social media, such as Facebook. But you also receive them in emails or text messages.
The statement within them usually try to justify the letter as ‘fun’ but the fact of the matter is they play on people’s superstition. Some even threaten death . These letters are meant as a form of ‘entertainment’ but as they have become more prevalent in our society, they have passed into folklore and have also become Urban Legends.
The letter I would like to discuss is, ‘The Ghost Letter’. These types of letters are actually harmful and threaten the recipient that a ‘ghost’ will kill or even ‘take the person’s soul’ if the letter is not passed on. These letter are sent to every age, and considering the majority are our youngsters, they are purely insidious in their nature.
There are different format of these letters and another one is entitles, Ghost Under Bed. These are more advanced from the origins, since they contain pictures to enhance the fear which is meant to convey. This particular version has made its way into the Urban Legends as well.
The recipient receives the letter with a picture which depicts a ghost under their bed, the picture here depicts the person in a hospital setting which enhances the feelings of fear. It is stated that the person was injured in an accident that caused the death of another. The threat is that if not sent on to at least 5 people the ghost of this dead person would track the receiver down and kill them. It even gives a description of how the person would be killed if they didn’t forward the chain letter.
The following is a classic Ghost Chain Letter that is passed around by high school students–it is entitled, Carmen Winstead. This story is about a 17 year old high school student who has the misfortune of being pushed down a sewer by a group of popular mean female classmates. It is during a school fire drill and when she is pushed her neck hits a ladder in the sewer and she dies. Her classmates’ later state that it was an accident, she fell. The police never discover the truth.
This message can have psychological consequences because it tells teens that their situation is hopeless. That the wrong people always win. This chain letter goes on to state that the only revenge this murdered girl has is to come back and kill others. A traditional threat is then issued that if the receiver does not pass this letter on– this murdered girl’s ghost will come back and push then down the sewer as well.
An even more disturbing Ghost Chain Letter is sent to children via modern technology. This letter is entitled, The Smith Sisters. The reader of this tale is encouraged to send it to all their friends. It is not a traditional chain letter, per se, but a tale about a young boy named John who sends Ghost Chain letters because he loves to scare people on the net. The story goes that John enjoyed his hobby so much he even starts sending chain letters to strangers.
One night in 2007 he received a letter back from two young strangers that called themselves the Smith Sisters. They claimed that they were his two older siblings. John being an only child emailed them back that they were liars. They then informed him that they had once lived in the house where he lived. Again he responded that they were lying.
After this the girls sent him an email with two attachments. The first he found disturbing because it was a picture of them standing in what obviously was his bedroom. They informed him that his room was once theirs. The second attachment was a newspaper clipping. This article mentioned how two sisters, Lisa 19 and Sarah 14 had been murdered in their bedroom while their parents were out. Gory details–like “no one heard their screams” are always included.
When their parents returned home they found their daughters bodies hidden in their bedroom closet. The sisters emailed John once more stating they really wanted him to know they were actually his sisters. They were angry that their parents had decided to start a new family after their deaths–they were even angrier that they had not informed John that they had once had two other children.
He emailed them back that it was all lies. He then told them to leave him alone. Within five minutes he was told that he should look in his closet. This was the last email the police read–they were never able to trace the sisters. This aspect makes the story even scarier. The police did find two strange carvings in the bedroom closet near the floor. The first read, “Lisa and Sarah 1993”, the second, “John 2007”. John was never found.
Chain letters’ “threats” are what are disturbing especially when they are sent to children. The Smith Sisters letter is disturbing in that it tells children sending threatening chain letters is fun. But this tale is not fun. Some claim chain letters are just entertainment with a cautionary tale attached. Admittedly, some are very creative but their underlying message is very deceptive.
A cautionary tale –fraudulent chain letters are sent out to adults all the time. These are illegal. Just two types include “games of chance” or a chance to win a lottery–both promise financial gain if the recipients send them on to friends. These are actually pyramid schemes.
Considering social media has provided means for teens to harass and bully others–which sometimes results in suicide makes one wonder if chain letters should be taken lightly.
This is yet another form of harassment by the dark side. Although people look at this as mainly a ‘hoax’, it is meant as an insidious attachment. An attachment by a demon to eventually possess the person and kill them. Don’t take this lightly. In fact, destroy it completely, someone’s life could depend on it!!