What horrifying experience did you have while growing up?

Mudassir Ali
Feb 25, 2020 01:49 PM 0 Answers
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Mudassir Ali
- Feb 25, 2020 01:49 PM

Here is an excerpt from my book, “The Journey,” to answer your question. It’s long, sorry.

My Secret – My Torture

We lived in the country, two miles east from the center of town. Back in those days, we did not have trash pick-up out in the country as the town folk did. We disposed of our garbage in a burning barrel. When the barrel got full of burnt trash, we would haul it down to a ravine where we would dump it. The same place trash had been dumped for years.

School started back in late August. By mid-September, I did not drive yet. Ann and I would not get our driver’s licenses until we were seventeen. In the meantime, we rode the school bus to and from school. I really hated riding the bus.

Soon I would avoid the bus altogether and chose to walk to school. The new school was a mile and a third from the house. Thank goodness, the beatings had stopped, even if I got beat up at school.

I hated school. I particularly hated many of the kids I went to school with. Every day was torture having to deal with them. Basically, I wanted to be left alone.

This one day would be more than a rough day. The bus was coming down our road from the east. It was not unusual to see a patch of smoke coming from behind our house. I simply figured mother was burning the trash.

It was a Friday, September 25, 1970. I was looking forward to a very quiet weekend. Ann was spending the weekend with her best friend. I was going to spend my weekend reading, writing and listening to music. Typical teenager things. Those were my dreams and thoughts. Until I was getting off the school bus.

Mother was in the back of the yard throwing something into the fire at the burning barrel. As I walked up the driveway and got closer to her, I could see she was throwing spiral notebooks into the fire. Mother was throwing my journals into the raging fire. Everything I had written.

All I could think of doing was dropping my books and run toward mother to stop her.

“Mom? What are you doing?” I screamed.

Mother turned and looked at me with evil, primal look.

“I will NOT allow this smut in my house. I am burning it.” She said.

“Mother those are not smut. I wrote those. You have no right to burn my writing. What were you doing going through my room anyway?” I asked angrily.

“I will NOT have this shit in my house.” She snapped back. With every angry look, she threw another notebook into the fire.

“Mom. STOP!!! Those are my journals. You have no right!!!” I screamed.

“I have every damn right. You have no secrets from me.” She snapped.

I watched in horror as she threw the last of the notebooks into the fire. I was dumbstruck. Everything. All my feelings, hopes, desires. My memories of Jim. My Hispanic boys. Everything up in flames.

I was numb. I had no idea what to do. I could feel huge tears rolling down my face. I felt like my whole soul had been ripped out of me. My eyes were burning, not from the smoke, but from the tears.

“Mom. How could you?” Was all I could say?

I realized she was no longer standing by the barrel anymore. I looked around and she had apparently gone back into the house. I turned back to watch in horror as the flames consume my journals. I never noticed mother had come out of the house with one of dad’s leather belts in her hand. I was lost in my own world.

Suddenly, I was brought back to reality as a searing pain cut across my back. I screamed out in pain. Mother was wielding the leather belt like a bullwhip. Every swing found its mark as it cut across my back. Mother was very good at using the buckle to add emphasis to her beatings. Every swing I could feel it cut into my skin.

Years later, the movie, “The DaVinci Code”, would have a priest from the Priory of Scion, who would wrap a device, a cilice, around his leg to where it would cut into his leg. Then he would take a whip, like a “Cat of Nine Tails” and perform self-flagellation with it. His reactions as he would punish himself is how this felt.

“MOM. STOP!!! STOP!!!” I screamed!

Every word from her mouth was punctuated with a swing of the belt. Every contact made with the buckle.

“I. (Whop) Will. (Whop) Beat. (Whop) The. (Whop) Hell. (Whop) Out. (Whop) Of. (Whop) You. (Whop)” She yelled. Repeatedly.

After the third hit with the belt, I could not stand any longer and fell to the ground. With every contact, my body would jerk each time the belt cut across my body.

I do not even know when I realized I had stopped screaming. Mother was relentless in the beating. All I could do was lay there on the ground, jerking with every stroke of the belt. I was afraid to move. Yet ever time the belt would contact my skin, my body would jerk. Afraid to say anything.

I reached a point where pain becomes irrelevant. They say this with burn victims when the body reaches beyond the pain sensors. It seemed as suddenly as it started, it stopped. The beating was over. I could see my mother walking away. The belt was still in her hand. I swear I could see blood dripping from it.

For a little while, probably ten minutes, everything was a fog. Maybe it was blood loss or simply my body was in shock. I had survived beatings before, some severe, nothing like this.

I would lay there in the grass a little longer. I go to sit up and realize my jeans, underwear and tee shirt are in shreds. I was numb. I pulled my shirt, pants, and underwear off there in the yard. They were soaked in my blood. Getting up was excruciatingly painful.

I was totally naked. It made no difference. My clothes were in shreds. My dignity was gone. I did not care at that moment. I threw my bloody, shredded clothes into the burning barrel. Slowly I stumbled to where I had thrown my books on the ground. I did not care I was bare-ass naked. If someone had driven by, I would not have cared. Walking into the house was an adventure in pain.

As I walked in the backdoor, climbing the stairs to the main level of the house, was torture. I looked to my right into the kitchen. Mother was standing at the sink doing dishes. Dad’s belt laying on the kitchen table. I was right, I had seen blood. My blood.

I could have made a right-handed U-turn and went up the stairs to the landing through the kitchen, and another right turn up the stairs to my room. Instead, I thought better to make a left turn and go up the main stairs to the same landing to my room. I avoided this woman, the monster. I no longer would see her as my mother.

When I walked into my room, I put my books on my bed. I walked over to my dresser to get some clean underwear. I knew I was going to get bloodstains on them. I did not care. I considered the mirror. From the front, you could tell nothing was wrong. Bruising was beginning to develop along my sides.

I grabbed a clean pair of jeans out of the closet and a shirt to put on and headed to the bathroom down the hall.

I would have walked down to the basement and simply taken a shower, but the bathroom was closer. I drew a tub full of warm water. Slowly, very slowly, I eased my battered body into the water.

The warm water on open wounds sent searing pain cutting through my body. It took everything I had to keep from jerking in pain. Oh God, I wanted to scream. Even as I lowered my body into the water, my arms were shaking from the intensity of the pain. Nothing comes out. Every movement hurt like hell as I washed the blood from my skin.

The water had started turning pink the moment I stepped into the water. Now it was red. It looked like someone had bled a hog in the tub. Getting out was as painful as getting in.

As I was getting out of the tub, I heard the door open and see my mother walking into the bathroom.

“Mom. Excuse me?” I said.

“You will not say “EXCUSE ME” young man.” She demanded.

“Mom. Please. Can you leave me alone? Can I not have some privacy?” I begged.

“You will have never had privacy in my house again. Now bend over.” She demanded.

I bet fear could be seen on my face.

“No more. God Please. No more.” I screamed.

“Shut up Dammit. I am going to put some medicine on those cuts.” She snapped.

“No Mom!! Not the Mercurochrome.” I screamed.

“You will shut up while I doctor these.” She ordered.

“NO!!!!” I screamed again.

The withheld scream erupts from my mouth when the cotton ball soaked with Mercurochrome touches an open wound.

The mixture of searing pain and the burn from the Mercurochrome sent my body into spasms.


“You will take it and shut up, you damn baby.” She said through her teeth.

There was no arguing or reasoning with her. I shut down emotionally. Everything in my world was gone. Up in flames like my journals and clothes in the burning barrel.

The pain receptors had shorted out. I lost control of my body. To this day, I flinch when anyone touches my back.

I stayed as far away from my mother as I could. It did not always work, yet I did my best. I hated myself at this point. I gather she must have told dad. He never touched me. Dad never disciplined me ever.

He would make his point with bigoted, racist, and filthy words aimed at me instead. Those words cut as deep as the gouges the buckle on the belt had made into my skin.

I stayed away for everyone, including my twin. I would find places to hide. I did a lot of solitude during my junior year. I did not care about my grades. I did not care about anything. I traded desks with whoever was sitting closest to the corner and disappear. When teachers would call on me to read something, I would pass.

I never let anyone know I was hurt. I never let anyone get close enough. The rare times I got beat up I would walk home.

Only years later would I discover fellow students had noticed I had become a loner. I did not care what the weather was unless it was raining or bitterly cold, I would walk home. Sometimes I would walk to school. I enjoyed the walks.

A half of a mile from the house was a huge cemetery, named the Orient. It was my favorite place. I was never bothered. I have no fear of ghosts or dead people. I fear living more than anything.

I never trusted my adopted mother (the monster) ever again or the extended family. That beating she gave me, she committed a murder, without a body. She murdered my soul and left me to bury it. I had to become someone I never was. That part of my soul would stay buried for over 45 years. During that time, I was married and had children. The monster could not leave well enough alone. If she could not destroy me while she was alive, she did her damnedest to do it after she died. In a letter she wrote before she died she told my wife what she really thought about her and she outed me, viciously. She wanted to make sure to hurt me one more time. It nearly worked, although she never could understand the strength of the love my wife and I had for each other. We survived.

My wife died 5 years ago on Feb. 3, 2015, from complications of diabetes. Before my wife died, she wanted me to promise her I would resurrect the boy I buried so long ago. I am still working on it. I’m now 65 years old, soon to be 66 in June. I can openly admit I am gay, yet that doesn’t mean I have a boyfriend or living totally being out. I had to hide it for so long, I am taking baby steps on learning who I am. I still mentally feel that beating I got 50 years ago. The nerve damage is still as sensitive today as it was then. She hurt me really bad. Now I am able to pick up the pieces and become the person I was never allowed to be. Many things about me will never change. Only the parts I couldn’t show don’t have to be hidden anymore.

I hope that answers your question.

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