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According to the NSPCC 1 in 5 children experience childhood sexual abuse at some time during their childhood. Nothing wrong with military school for a child who is going off the rails. The issue for me and a number of other children was that we were all just labelled 'maladjusted" This was how the state viewed any child who did not fit into a normal school. Autistic, Asperger, Kids from broken homes, A lot of children in the care system and children on their way to being criminals.
We were all put together in one building called 'Berrow Wood School' There we met Mr Morris the school head, If anybody was maladjusted he was. You don't tell a 12 year old maybe autistic child who has just been removed from his family and placed in this establishment."The only rights you have here are to eat and breathe." You don't tell this child "There is nothing your parents can do about your being placed here as you have been placed in this school by the state." Well not unless you intend on abusing this child from day 1?
So now I know the rules, keep quiet, don't be noticed and then maybe they will leave me alone? Of course I need a friend and Mr Hastings is the hard nut Ex SAS soldier, or that is at least what all the children were led to believe. I was pretty low in the pecking order when it came to looking after yourself in this school and what better friend to have than the Ex SAS soldier?
I was 14 maybe 15 and not the brightest light on the tree. Mr Hastings was my protection from the other students and he was plying me with cigarettes. He was letting me out on my own when we went into town. He was waking me up for a midnight smoke in his room after lights out and the chat about nothing. I had no idea what was going on until I found his hand down my pyjama trousers having a grope. "I'm not gay because I'm married with a daughter" he told me. I knew I was in the sh*t but had no one to turn to. No childline 08001111 I had gone out of my way to be friends with this man and thought right up until I turned 21 that it was my fault. I could not get away this was borstal. I could not turn to my parents or at least that's what I thought and Mr Morris was nightmare who punched kids who had a problem.
Well this lowlife is in jail now and I hope its as good for him in jail as it was for me and a number of others in Berrow Wood School and maybe he will like Mr Morris die of a heart attack on his release.