Tonight's special guest is Thomas Stone from Alberta, Canada, a NAASCA family member and volunteer who's telling his story in public for the first time tonight. His first 2 years were spent in domestic violence with physical abuse from his mother and emotional abuse from an alcoholic father. Eventually Thomas' mother left his dad and moved in with a man who molested him for two years, several times a week. She decided to have Thomas and his brother adopted. The parents they ended up with were religious extremist evangelicals who (supposedly) wanted to take in kids from abusive households and "give them a better future." They believed in harsh discipline, even for small offenses. Thomas reports that discipline included, "everything from grounding (confinement to my room for days on end), corporal punishment (sometimes partially disrobed), and fasting (24-48 hours)." Thomas did poorly in school and was constantly bullied. He was punished severely for bad grades and was made to stay after school regularly to do homework. "In my mid-teens," says Thomas, "my father resorted to fines and hours outside in the cold to "straighten me out" because I was supposedly being intentionally insubordinate and defiant. I was told that I was such a problem child that I needed to find my own place by the time I turned 18 or I would be thrown out on the street." He finally moved out of the home, but since he had no life skills, he's struggled since to have any real stability. He has learning difficulties that hinder his ability to function at a regular job and to understand work instructions. Thomas invites listeners to contact him at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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