Author Topic: Missing Alumni  (Read 13600 times)

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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #30 on: July 04, 2005, 05:28:00 AM »
DOES ANYONE REMEMBER MIA SCHIMMEL?  I REALLY LIKED HER ALOT.  I WONDER HOW SHE IS DOING?
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #31 on: July 30, 2005, 03:47:00 PM »
was told norina edelman was 3l at harvard - wasn't she seriously ill, mpd, disassociating and shit? smart so was suprised kat when heard MMS helped her and she wanted to move on. i always thought she had something strange going on with her can't put finger on it. i dont know if she talks to nadine though.
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #32 on: July 30, 2005, 03:48:00 PM »
i just would have thought mms would have really messed with their identity because they were really fragile what with all the attempts to uncover repressed memories going on at that time
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #33 on: July 31, 2005, 12:01:00 AM »
WHAT???!! the second to last post doesn't make any sense........
what are you talking about????
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Offline katfish

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« Reply #34 on: July 31, 2005, 12:27:00 PM »
MMS was doing all this repressive therapy work when Norina was there, and of course while I was there. Some of the girls did intense work, myself included, that often involved free writing of past painful shit- the aim: getting in touch with that inner child that has hurt so badly, presumambly in hopes of uncovering past memories???  Who knows, I don't think they had any idea what they were doing.  But at that time is was common for girls to go in and out of dissaccociative states and fall into 'different personalities' for lack of better term, that would bring out different stories from their childhood. MMS even named the different 'personalities' - well, John would name them and he really focused on that for a while.  I would call us his guinea pigs given he had NO IDEA what he was doing.  After a while it was virtually impossible to discern truth from fact.


I know MMS got much much worse once I left- I almost have nothing to be alarmed by in terms of my own experience comparatively, that's alarming in and of itself!  It's not about me, though.  While I feel I have an obligation to myself, yes I feel it more toward the girls who's stories I hear and who feel all messed up about the experience- and for the girls who are there now who are being molded into MMS atomatrons and who, for the next few years will go through the shock and agony of having to relinquish their minds and instead of thinking, will be regurgitating rhetoric with the fear of never going home/getting love at home and work/excersize miserably until they one day
leave, peice of paper in hand delineating protocol to prevent certain 'old behaviors' from reappearing (that doesn't work b/c often issues are exaggerated while there and real issue not dealt with- whatever 'tools' received are meaningless/worthless in real world) Then realizing that John Mercer's methods of teaching were not really applicable to the real world, and the therapy was in reality non-helpful in its simplicity, they make a phone call which are
never returned in hopes of some answers as to how to proceed.  Like the article that PhD wrote  posted somewhere on MMS/fornits, explaining that forcing a kid in a contrlled environement does not mean it will be a success outside of the program b/c it assumes that somehow the kid will internalize that outside control and that has not been seen to  be the case nor the method effective.

I would say most of us at MMS wanted help.  I think it unlikely most of us got the help that was appropriate for us.  Common sense would certainly dictate otherwise.

Again, po'dunk therapy IMHO.[ This Message was edited by: katfish on 2005-07-31 12:59 ]
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #35 on: July 31, 2005, 12:56:00 PM »
so Kat...you always say mms got worse once you left but you don't say how.....
how did it get worse.....just exercise and stuff???
I remember still doing the writings and trying to find that little girl deep down....
but how else?? what got worse exactly??
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Offline katfish

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« Reply #36 on: July 31, 2005, 03:32:00 PM »
I just heard there were more incidents of intense isolation of kids for work crew and the period of time increased to months rather that while I was there the work amounted to weeks at a time- longer work crew hours, increase in work crew generally speaking for all the group, more restrictive code of conduct in general- specificaly i've heard mealtime involved restrictd conversations... Given it's bigger I would imagine in many ways it would have to be for staff to mantain the coercive control they had in the earlier days when it was smaller.
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
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Offline katfish

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« Reply #37 on: July 31, 2005, 03:44:00 PM »
annony- what years were you there?  YOu guys had to do the free writes?  But was it about also disassociating?  I guess the difference that I see b/w the 'getting in touch with your inner child' and the work we did while I was there-  is that the main purpose seemed to be to unearth memories of these events, then to cry about it---but under these conditions of fear I doubt that other girls did not feel like I did, that we were expected to find something in our past to wail about, thereby creating a need to find or being led to create something b/c it needed to be there- it had to be b/c we were so troubled (accrording to MMS) there had to be this major cause.  Does that make sense?  We were led, I beleive, to find something in that back of our minds.  Memory is a fragile things and studies have shown that therapists can influence through suggestion memories of abuse- I wonder what happens when you insert fear and the desperate need to please into the picture?  

(although let the fact be know that I think the whole 'getting in touch with your inner child'  is also a major problem of the program- at least it was in the way implemented while I was there and from what I've heard  b/c it allowed us to regress into this weird helpless child-like state- i guess this was also an 'side effect' of them stripping away our identities and breaking us down- that was not at all helpful in creating independent strong minded girls with will/knowledge and wherewithall to achieve their goals. It encouraged the opposite response- submissive, dependent, child-like (like attempts to desexualize girls by making them where pigtails I thought was very innapropriate)



I also wonder why the school never bothered to do anything with these memories- I dont think MMS has one time reported that allegations of abuse that have come up in therapy- sometimes those allegation involve parents and yet not report filed to CPS.  Aren't they mandated reporters like other people who work with kids???  Aren't they required by law to report abuse, especially if the school with be returning that child home to the parent who has abused the kid??[ This Message was edited by: katfish on 2005-07-31 12:53 ]
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
Margaret Mead

Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #38 on: August 02, 2005, 02:55:00 PM »
Interesting point kat, about mandatory reporting of said abuses.  Interesting thought, especially when it concerns the parents because they were the ones paying their salary.  I'm not necessarily sayting they only cared for money, but obviously...that's a little curious.  And yes, after your time, things did get worse, especially in my time 94-96.  I could share many specific memories about my "sentence" on workcrew, isolation, the mind-game of being given no concrete or logical ways to "right my wrongs" or get out of my punishment.  John would often give me directions, I would follow them exactly and then be berated that night in group for not doing what he said...I would try to argue and more work would be threatened. ONe time I was digging a corner post, it had to be five feet deep and centered in exactly a certain spot because a gate had to attach to it.  In the bottom of the hole was a very large boulder, probably three hundred pounds??? There was no way I could have pysically removed it by myself.  I asked Mike and he I got it out using come-alongs etc etc. I was in BIG trouble for asking for help...I was "manipluating" using "sexuality."  But I was given no alternative as to how I should have done it.  I felt so alone and so crazy....this i believe, is child-abuse. The stories go on..to girls puking up dinner and having to eat more while all of us sit and watch.  anyone can argue their opion of whether it helped or not, no one can argue the facts..
claire
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #39 on: August 03, 2005, 02:28:00 AM »
So I do remember John being really hard on you Claire and even hated the fact that you never got to go home. god that must have been hard....
But I don't remember girls throwing up and having to eat it.....that i don't believe happened.
Work crews were a pain and the military style exercise was at times extremly intense. ex...3hr exercise and running up the "big gahuna"
also exerciseing in the moring and than having to do a "afternoon activity." yeah my ass...activity...another long day of just exercise.
But i must say my arms were strong. This is probably why exercising is a something I don't like to do so much. I remember girls having experinces and were only allowed to talk to staff about it and were told to just move on and not allowed to talk about what happened.
Yet, you had friends....i was off talk and had no friends...everyone pretended to like me and no one did......or very few did.
Sarah F took shit out of my room and put it in the lost and found just so i got work crew and no one told her what a ***** they though she was but they had not problem telling me.
Anyway now im getting mad remembering some of the oh so wonderfull times at MMS.
Yet im conflicted....I still support the school and im better for having been there. Like i said before....maybe i was there to long.
B
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #40 on: August 03, 2005, 12:07:00 PM »
I wasn't at MMS, just a reader here. But I must say, B, it seems difficult to understand how you could support a school that treated you and others the way it did. It's abuse, don't you know? This just isn't normal.

It seems to me there must be a better way to put this all into perspective.

Here are some questions to ask yourselves:

Do you think that the girls were better for having been treated the way they were at MMS (in many of our books, that would be called "abuse"?)

Do you think they (the school) might have accomplished healing and help for the girls in other, non-abusive ways?

Don't you think that perhaps they were wrong in their approaches?

And don't you think girls suffered at their hands, and still do, years later?

And what about the girls who are still there?

Don't you worry about them?

I read where Mercer, the guy everyone says is bad, is spending more time there again, not less time. Don't you worry?

Everyone who says they'll support the school is saying they are supporting what is done at the school and that it's OK for it to continue. Think about it ...

I picture myself a girl at MMS right now. I know the school's been around a while, others must have suffered at the hands of these people as I am suffering, but where are they? Where are the alumni? Will they come to our rescue at the reunion? Will they be brave enough to stand up to Mercer and the rest of the abusers? And will any of their parents who feel they were wronged join them?

I hope so.

Instead of allowing this type of treatment to girls, treatment that obviously leaves long-lasting scars and is emotionally damaging, why not do something to try and stop it. If not it will continue for years to come and more girls will be affected.

My thoughts are that they need to revamp the school and stop allowing people who have no degrees in psychology to hold group therapy-type sessions where girls are asked to reveal their innermost secrets. That would be a start. And what about if Mercer and his clan do some of the work on their own properties instead of making girls do it for them? What about child labor laws? Why don't they apply here?


Anyone who supports the school supports abuse, in my book. Just read all of the pages and pages of stories here.
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #41 on: August 03, 2005, 09:58:00 PM »
Thank you for your insightful post. my granddaughter is currently incarcerated at Mission Mountain School. I haven't seen her for more than a year, and miss her terribly every single day. I loved her as she was, a typical opinionated teenager, full of life and personality. She didn't do drugs, alcohol, cigarettes or sex and had never been in trouble with the law...her sin was speaking her mind and being stubborn. Mission Mountain and other such programs will incarcerate any child for profit, regardless of whether or not their program is appropriate for that child...it's all about the money, nothing else. Montana has become the mecca for these places because of their non-existent child protecive laws and economic greed. It is all so very sickening, and few "outsiders" seem to care. I thank you for caring.
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #42 on: August 03, 2005, 10:39:00 PM »
You are very welcome. I am sorry to hear about your granddaughter. We can only hope she has the strength to endure and to come out alright. It is oh, so disgusting.

Perhaps something will be done that will enlighten people to this mess. I fear things like "Brat Camp" will only serve to cause parents to think this is just the thing they need for their child. Disgusting, really. What ever happened to taking care of our own kids. Seems everyone wants the quick fix these days, no matter what the cost (in dollars and to their child and family).

Keep on keepin' on, that's all we can do.
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #43 on: August 04, 2005, 09:52:00 AM »
i'm sorry, this is such bullshit.  they don't just take anyone on.  there is a long application process... there are conversations with the parents, a look at the families history.  if they just took everyone on for profit they would have hundreds of children at their school, but no... it's not that easy just to end up there.  there are 30 something girls at a time... they dont' accept every stubborn child who comes along.  it's not incarceration.  no one is locked in.  this website is hateful and malicious and ridiculous at times.  sharing personal stories, sure... but random outsiders coming in and making judgements... making claims that they have no knowledge about... stupid.  anyway.  i'm sure this will start a debate.  fun.
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #44 on: August 04, 2005, 09:56:00 AM »
and i'm sorry... my parents did their best to raise me.... no one is perfect.  if i'm expected to be perfect as a parent, then fuck... that sucks.  my parents are amazing, loving, intelligent people who only wanted what was best for me.  when i ran away from home i broke their hearts, they were so scared they were going to lose me forever... they were panicked.  they pooled from all their resources and found MMS.  not perfect, they agree with me on that, but it saved my life and gave them piece of mind which they hadn't had in years.  it's not my parents fault.  they raised my sister to be an amazing girl, without the help of anyone else.  i was just a depressed kid who got lost in the teenage wasteland and needed to get out of the shittown i lived in.  and please feel free to get angry and "yell" at me now.  i really could care less.
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