Author Topic: Missing Alumni  (Read 13765 times)

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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #75 on: August 29, 2005, 03:47:00 PM »
i understand that la does not want to talk about her time as a staff memember at mms, but there are a few things i would like to say.  i attended when la was a staff there and interacted with her in a close setting almost everyday.  when she "left" the school it was not on the best of terms from my understanding.  i endured what i would call "abuse" from her on a regular basis and still have unresolved feelings about it.  there is still anger and resentment there.  nearly everyday i felt that she exploited and made fun of the deeply intimate issues i was working through while enrolled at mms.  at that point in my life i was too young and lacked the know-how to stand up for myself.  i regret that now and wish i had had the strength to stand up to her abuse and mockery.  this was just my experience with la...others might have gained a lot from her being a staff, but for myself...i was very hurt and confused by the way i was treated by her.  i didn't understand why she was so unsupportive of me.  i was at the last group before la left...and everyone was allowed to tell la about their experience with her.  there were many who felt the same way that i did...that she was a bit of a bully.  i was very relevied when she left the school and i'm glad that she did not seek another career involving the care of adolescents.  i'm also glad that she found something she enjoys and is doing well with her life.  

it is because of all of the above that i am not suprised that she said "fuck 'em" and did not attend the reunion.  i personally would not have enjoyed seeing her there.  however, i did enjoy seeing all the wonderful ways that the school has changed, the new freedoms that the students have, and enjoyed reconnecting with old friends.  

la, if i have violated your privacy, i apologize.  i am only sharing my experience.  i also think it is important to represent the school with the most accuracy possible as this site is viewed by parents, teachers, students, alumni, and potentials.  

if anyone has anything to ask or say you can contact me :  lleezell@yahoo.com

Laura E.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline katfish

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« Reply #76 on: August 29, 2005, 03:57:00 PM »
Laura, was Mike there while you were at MMS? As I see it,from what I have heard, it appears that there are some very clear similarities between Mike's bullying and what you describe as Laurels bullying, would you agree?  Or perhaps similar to Johns? I also want to point out that mockery, at least in my experience, was kind of an expected thing to some degree- for instance, i recall the first day i arrived at MMS and Mike was absolutely beside himself, greeting me with a knowing smile and a 'welcome to MT, it's you're lucky day' - he very much took pleasure in my misery and fear.  I sensed that thorughout the entire time i was there- same with John (but perhaps in a less day to day torture kind of a way).  So, I found both Mike and John to be quite sadistic, even Colleen and Deb to a lesser degree, but still in a very similar sense.
 
In La's defense, she was young and equally susecptable to the need to be approved by them- as we all were.  I'm not excusing her behavior, but what I will say is that MMS created a structure by which we all functioned in an equally...power hungry (for lack of better term) manner.    I could be wrong, but from what I recall it was much better to be the person calling a peer out, than being the one called out- there was respect to be had in that...and a certain amount of privildge and power. Senority (with staff approval, fo course) was the ultimate aim, and frequently that involved a ceratin amount of false superiority that gave way to the same abuse demonstrated by the staff reflected in the older students- the sense that they know better than you and in that way are superior.  In a hierarchial structure such as MMS, I can't imagine it any other way...Maybe I lack imagination though- I would like to hear more about how things are run now.  It's hard to envision the same power plays absent given so much of their philosophy is based on it. woa- much longer than i intended, sorry laura.  You attended the reunion, so it would be great to hear your thoughts given your clarity and openess.

I'm sorry you had to go through that though.  DId you feel like it interferred with your MMS experience, in a way?  Would it have been different? Also, what years were you at MMS?
Anyway, what's that saying...'power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.'  I think that sums up a great deal of the problem, as I see it.

best,
kat

[ This Message was edited by: katfish on 2005-08-29 13:12 ]
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
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Offline katfish

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« Reply #77 on: August 29, 2005, 04:15:00 PM »
also, i wonder how long was la at MMS and under what circumstances did she leave?
Also, didn't Mike leave under similar circumstances?
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
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 Anonymous

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« Reply #78 on: August 29, 2005, 04:48:00 PM »
kat, i attended 97-99.  although there might be similarities between la and mike...i don't believe this to be one of them.  even when mike was hardest on me whether it was screaming and yelling or discrediting progess that i thought i had made, i could sense that he still cared for me.  mike was good for me in that way...everytime i thought i might be "cured" or "normal"..he, in his way..would remind me of the emotional growth that was to come.  although i hated it because i would have very much liked to believe that i was perfect and wanted the staff to believe it too...i appreciate it now and think of him fondly.  i NEVER got the sense that Mike, John, Colleen, Deb, Gary, or any other staff recieved pleasure from my misery or fear.  they were mostly sympathetic and caring towards me.  perhaps that is why i was so confused and suprised by laurel's behavior towards me.  you also have to understand that i was only 13 when i arrived at mms and was not terribly defiant or rebellious.  it was my idea to be sent away to retrieve help where my parents had failed me.  at that point in my life....i had looked everywhere that a 13 year old knows where to look for answers...and my parents had exhausted all of their ideas as well.  my mom is a very successful marriage and family therapist here in nashville and was still not able to give me what i needed..despite all her knowledge and experience.  it is a hard thing to realize that you cannot control your kids...or anyone for that matter.  anyways, i'm rabbling, but i thought it might help if you had some back story to understand my situation before coming to mms...back to your question.  

when la was confronted by the students....i remember that all the staff was shocked at our responses.  i do not believe that la was acting on the need for approval.  just sensing that from the reaction of the rest of the staff when they learned of her behavior.  still to this day...i am not sure what caused her behavior towards me, so it would probably benefit you more to speak with her about it.  i'm happy to answer your questions the best i can kat.  but i would like to avoid guessing or projecting my experience onto anyone else.  

i was not there when mike left...i hear he is doing well and i wish him only the best.

Laura E.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline katfish

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« Reply #79 on: August 29, 2005, 05:25:00 PM »
wow, l, you were so young.

My experience was a little different with the staff than yours, Laura, so I can only make assumptions based on that.  I was at MMS with Laurel and know she was very close to Mike.  Maybe Laurel, you'd like to weigh in on the conversation?  

I understand Betsy also interned, does anyone have experiences they'd like to share with that?

I  wonder how many other former students worked at MMS- was there anyone else?

I was also very hopeful that MMS would be able to help me but, as I said before, I sensed a bit of sadism that made the entire experience quite painful.  The discrepency b/w experiences is hard to reconcile, but I'm glad that you found what you were looking for in the school.  If you don't mind, Laura, could you share why you were at the school to begin with? You were so young, were you depressed?  Acting out?  

Additionally, it sounds like staff were not approving of La's behavior (once they became aware of it) and that you are implying this may have been why she left, is this the case?  

When I was there Laurel was definitely Mike's favorite and in many ways they were very tight...from what I saw, as a result of this, she was considered the model MMS student, so that is why I say that perhaps that kind if sense of superiority may have been reflected in her actions and perhaps she took its logical conclusion.  While I was at MMS it was students like La that called people out and were responsible for holding girls accoutable to the programs philosophy.  That sort of leverage always seemed to border on sadism to me b/c girls always wanted to be in that position of being 'healthy' enough to recognize not only their own 'flaws', but have the 'clarity' to point out those of others.  Not everyone had that in them (that is, got an ego boost from their 'higher' position in the structure), from what I recall, but it always seemed to me to be a slippery slope that one could easily fall into if not careful.

talk to u soon,

kat
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
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 BarnardlyB

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« Reply #80 on: August 29, 2005, 07:02:00 PM »
"When I was there Laurel was definitely Mike's favorite and in many ways they were very tight...from what I saw, as a result of this, she was considered the model MMS student, so that is why I say that perhaps that kind if sense of superiority may have been reflected in her actions and perhaps she took its logical conclusion. While I was at MMS it was students like La that called people out and were responsible for holding girls accoutable to the programs philosophy. That sort of leverage always seemed to border on sadism to me b/c girls always wanted to be in that position of being 'healthy' enough to recognize not only their own 'flaws', but have the 'clarity' to point out those of others. Not everyone had that in them (that is, got an ego boost from their 'higher' position in the structure), from what I recall, but it always seemed to me to be a slippery slope that one could easily fall into if not careful."

I must say I agree with that statement.
I too saw La and Mike extremly close.  Maybe thats  why she views them as totally awesome people.
Mike has been everything but nice to me. He is mean, and rude, and thinks, yeah hes always right.
So Laura if you say La was like this, im not surpised.  Even when I lived with heather he told how full of shit I am and how hes gonna be there to raise hell...(statement in regards to a situation with me and heather).

Paul my boyfriend talked to him once and says hes not to sure about him. "He always had the im full of shit look on his face" "like he doesn't believe what im saying", all i could say was, thats mike. Imagine having to deal with him for 3 years every day in and out.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #81 on: August 31, 2005, 01:26:00 AM »
kat, i appreciate your interest.  the circumstances surrounding my being sent to mms is something i am comfortable talking with peole about...however, posting the intimate details of my life on a website does not interest me.  suffice it to say, yes i acted out....yes i was depressed...but no i did not find everything i was looking for in mms.  mms was not a cure for me, but provided me with some helful tools to deal with what had happened in my past and what was to come for me in my future.  in some areas i felt very prepared, in some ways i felt abandoned and clueless.  after returning home from mms i struggled...especially since no one was around to tell me what to do.  eventually i learned that i had to seek out help and ask for it....since that realization the quality of my life has drastically improved.  after mms i had to fill in the gaps they left behind but i still use some of what i learned there to improve myself.  

kat, if you have any questions i would be more than willing to share myself specifically with you.  my email- lleezell@yahoo.com

Laura E.
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Offline natalie

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« Reply #82 on: July 07, 2006, 05:27:00 AM »
Kat-

Have you found any of your list other than me...  I am curious about a lot of these girls too... and also Melissa R.

Love ya
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ne Love

Offline lablah

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« Reply #83 on: July 07, 2006, 06:29:00 PM »
Where is Katie H. and Kaywin P.?  and yeah what about Melissa R.?  I spoke with her probably in 96', but not since then.  Jesus, that makes me feel old!
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Offline BarnardlyB

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« Reply #84 on: July 07, 2006, 10:46:00 PM »
La,
I have both katie and kaywins info,...both are doing quite well.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
ou are you
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Offline babylove

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« Reply #85 on: July 10, 2006, 12:41:00 AM »
I have contact info on,
-Addie Harris
-Sarah Matheson
-Melissa Seminaro
-Katie Harrison
-Jessica Gestout
-Ashley Aaron
-Nadine Edelman
-Norina Edelman

send a pricvate message if you'd like to have their contact info.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »