This web site contains stories of physical, mental, emotional, and sexual child abuse.

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After having the living hell beat out of me almost everyday of my first four years on this earth, having human waste and urine rubbed in my face, because it was either beaten out of me or I was too afraid to go to the bathroom, I made my way to the orphanage at age 5. From there, I went to the reform school at age 12 and then out to live in the streets of Jacksonville, Florida. Then I went back to the reform school at age 13, because I had no place to go. On I went to the army at age 16 and by age 17, found myself in the military brig for 6 months hard labor. From there, I made my way back out on to the streets, on to jail and then finally to prison at age 19.

Why did all this happen to me?

It happened to me because that was my lifestyle. It was the only lifestyle that I ever knew. I had no idea that a better way of living for a young boy even existed on the face of this earth. I never knew that there were kids who woke up every morning with a smiling face staring at them, that they had someone to hold him or her when they got hurt or someone to fix them whatever they wanted to eat for breakfast. I never knew that there were kids who went to bed at night without having to worry about what was going to happen to them the next day. WOW! That must have been a really, really nice feeling.

When I finally got tired of grown people touching where they were not suppose to and beating on me, I would run away. When the police caught me, I would tell the kids’ judge what they were doing to me, but he would call me "a little liar" and a juvenile delinquent." Then I would be hauled to the Juvenile Shelter and finally back to the orphanage. Then it would happen all over again. It never stopped. Then I would run away again.

I could not hang around in the good parts of town, because I would be arrested right off. They always called the police on you when you didn't have good clean clothes on or were not in school besides there was nothing to eat in the good part of town anyway.

I always hung around in the bad parts of town, because that is where I fit in best and I looked just like everybody else who was there. The bad part of town was where a majority of the trouble always took place. When you got hungry you had to eat, one-way or other. If you did not have any money, then you would just have to steal something to eat or you would die. Of course, sooner or later you would get caught doing these types of things, but that is the name of the game and that is just the way it was played, and we all knew that.

Back to jail or Juvenile Hall you go and when you get out, you just continued to do the same things over and over and over. That is all you knew how to do - just steal food and something to drink. Oh yes, there is that JOB THING that everybody talked about. Let's see. I have no clothes, other than what I am wearing. No food and my shoes are worn out. OH YEAH! I don't have any socks or underwear. I have any money, no vehicle, can't drive at 12 or 13, no way and there's nowhere to live. There’s no way to clean or wash up, except maybe the local gas station. I have no I.D. and that really makes things difficult if you do want to work.

The people that I hang around with are just as poor and confused as I am, so there is absolutely no positive direction in my life. All I can do is continue to do what I am doing to live, because that is all I know how to do. Then one day, my life caves in around me and I don't understand what it is that I did wrong, except for the stealing part.

Then maybe someone, who did not have to worry every night as a child, comes along and says, "What this boy needs is a job and a place to live." So they give you a few dollars in your pocket and they find a place for you to live. Now, I guess they expect me to know how to do ‘the live thing.’

It is true that I can go to work at the job they gave me and can live in the place they arranged for me, but what do I do for ‘a life.’ I mean… when I am not working or sleeping, what does a 12 or a 13-year-old boy, do for family and friends, especially when he has none at all? Does he just sit on the side of his bed and be a good boy, like at the orphanage. Does he just sit there being lonely, day after day, year after year, until his life just happens one day? He doesn't even know what ‘real life’ is. All he knows is the battle of survival.

It is very hard for a young boy or girl to not be a criminal and live in the criminal element when he or she does not even realize that is what he actually doing and that is where he or she is at. A young person being or becoming a criminal is more than just a physical thing. It is a mental state of mind - a state of mind that appears to be the ‘normal way of life’ to any young person caught up in that lifestyle.

What is going to make that ‘young criminal’ change? First of all, you have to fix that deep, dark, hurting hole that lives deep down inside him or her. Then they will come. They will change and live in a better life in a better part of the world, but only when they know (and feel inside themselves) there is someone over there who really cares about them - someone who can make them feel safe and secure. They have to begin to realize and understand that there is a reason to change. That reason not being, "You change and do it our way or you are going to jail." Just because you give a child ‘a chance’ by giving them a place to live and a job, it does not mean he or she wants to walk through the darkness of life all alone. It is not ‘a job’ and ‘a place to live’ that they are looking for. What they seek is a happy life of their own.

’Normal people’ already know this format is the process of how a happy life and independence are achieved. These kids do not know that. What you already know and have learned, as ‘the right way’ to live is nothing more than a deep, dark, black hole to these abused kids. It is even very difficult for an adult to be responsible, hard working and loving when they are very lonely and feel alone in the world. It is even 10 times harder on a young boy or girl. There are a lot of kids born on this earth every year, who feel that life is not a fun place to be.

If a young person is going to have to ride the scary roller coaster of life all by his or herself one day, it would be sorta nice if adults would not jump off the damn ride, before the kids learn that life is really nothing to be afraid of.

If you think that what I am saying cannot possibly be true, then you are just as much in the dark about their lives as they are of yours.

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