Phenomena: The Lost and Forgotten Children
I was raised within the community of the New Zealand, Seacliff Mental Hospital village during the 1950s, with each of our family members working in the psychiatric hospital at some time or another. We sometimes shared our primary school with young patients who came down from the hospital. On... show more
I was raised within the community of the New Zealand, Seacliff Mental Hospital village during the 1950s, with each of our family members working in the psychiatric hospital at some time or another. We sometimes shared our primary school with young patients who came down from the hospital. On turning fifteen we often worked up the hill, helping in the canteen, laundry, wards or occupational therapy. From a young age we absorbed the stories, and it was difficult to know where fiction ended and the greater truth took over.To separate the truths from the almost-truths at this stage would be an impossible task as many of those concerned have died. Therefore I have blended together various stories in this narrative as representative of our family and friends' combined belief of what most probably did happen during the period covered by this narrative. Wherever possible, I have used correct dates, names and places. When there is a modicum of doubt in my mind I have changed names and details for the protection of those still living.As a child I knew Malcolm, who was then a young man, since Dad often invited him home for meals. He was one of the lost children, those forgotten or abandoned by their families. We followed Malcolm's story from childhood to adulthood as best we could even after he was eventually discharged back into the community. When considering the tragedy and abuse of Malcolm's wasted earlier years, it is a story of immeasurable sadness. Yet he ultimately rose above it all, and with admirable strength, courage and innate resilience, was finally able to 'free the regular boy within' as he had always wanted.This is Malcolm's story as I believe it unfolded.
Publisher: Planettopia Publishing LLC
Pages no: 222
Edition language: English
Talk about an author with a fantastic voice! Susan hits the nail on the head with a topic that is very difficult to turn into a strong story. Malcolm, an inmate of a mental asylum, tells his story and how society has perceived him in relation to it. There is so much to this story that will haunt the...
Look forward to sitting down with this one!
You hear about the washing girl’s stories of mistreatment as they had their illegitimate babies in Ireland, but Malcolm’s plight, and his story, and the stories about the other inmates in New Zealand’s insane asylum were grippingly different. This is indeed a Phenomena that I have never heard of in ...
A haunting story of how a group of children were mistreated. Compelling story.
I would not have chosen this book but for the recommendation of a friend. I am glad I did. It is a wonderful book that brings into the open the hidden fears and stereotype around historic mental asylums. That most of the hidden fears are valid made this read the more interesting. It’s truth based on...