Tom, A Child’s Life Regained

By John Embling


…I’d always go and sit in the toilets each time they hit me…I’d just get tighter and tighter and I’d wanna kill people…they’d just beat the hell out of yuh, they knew yuh couldn’t do nuthin’ about it…’

This is how Tom described his treatment at primary and technical school, but it was only after almost two years of intense personal relationship that he could talk freely to me about his thoughts and feelings.

When I met him, Tom was thirteen, withdrawn, violent and self-destructive. Tom is the story of how we worked together to re-establish his life. It was a tortuous, often unrewarding and heartbreaking time, and the tragedy is that there are so many others like Tom who do not get the chance to re-direct their lives.

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