Author Topic: Cascade School  (Read 28873 times)

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Offline Bobinator

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Re: Cascade School
« Reply #105 on: November 08, 2008, 03:41:21 AM »
My contribution is long, but try to bear with me...

I went to Cascade in 1986.

I think I am one of the oldest people to post.

At the time that I was there the sessions were called Raps, and the 24 hour long sessions and beyond were called Celebrations.

The first "Celebration" was called, "The Truth". Once in the room, we were kept up all night, as I imagine you all were in the years following my short stay. They expected us to talk about masturbation and our first sexual experiences,if any. I distinctly remember Eric Melzer, (and there was a really large man there...I can't remember HIS name, but I believe he was removed after molesting a student....), having the boys talk about how long they lasted before they ejaculated in that first sexual encounter.

I do not believe that those topics are appropriate for group therapy for young people. What's worse, they belittled the boys by saying that if they lasted for any longer that a few seconds, than they were lying.  

That was my first inkling that something was amiss there.

My sister visited and burst into tears when I used the bizarre vocabulary that they generally forced on us. She knew something was wrong too.

I was considered "a bitch" for most of my stay there. When we were in our "Friends" celebration my whole "Family" had engaged in a ton of "inappropriate" behavior. I honestly had felt left out that I wasn't considered good enough by my peers to engage in dissident activities behind the "Mentors" backs. But I suppose it was for the best: I was more of a good kid, than I ever knew or was told, and that's part of the proof, I guess.  

I was yelled at the Rap that happened after our "outward Bound" because I had complained a lot about my feet. The hiking boots my parents had bought for me were stolen out of the barn? Or whatever the building was called by where they kept the sheep. Because I was basically an outcast there, no one believed me about the boots, and I did the entire Outward Bound in soft 80's Reebok's. I couldn't understand why people thought that I didn't get anything out of the trip, because how could ANYONE not get something out of being in the woods and hiking? (It had NOTHING to do with the program, however. I'm only human, and like the outdoors.)

It was right after "the Dreams" Celebration, when my "family" chided me for being an Artist. They accused me of doing art to escape. Perhaps they were right to some degree, but I don't regret being an artist, and I certainly did not then either, as I made that perfectly clear when I yelled back at all of those kids. They were getting so swayed by the Mentors. I do not blame the kids in my Family for trying their best to adapt to those situations, considering how hard the program was on all of our young minds. But when I yelled about how I would NEVER GIVE UP on doing what mattered most in my life, I felt a surge of individuation rise up in me. I was on "Indefinites" (dishes) after that, and a few weeks passed. One afternoon, when it was way after the Sunday brunch and I was the last kid in the kitchen doing pots and pans, I "refused" dishes. I was put on "bans" with the entire school.

I had heard the threats for how horrible Provo would be if any of us were to get kicked out. But at that point I didn't care anymore. I attended one more Rap where I was promptly screamed at because I had no longer held the title for being a bitch but then I had became an all out cunt. It hurt. How does it come to that, anyway? Is it not OK to be young and angry when you come from a totally dysfunctional family? Everyone there had veritable problems:  

I remember one girl really had to process having been molested. It had happened over and over to her for a long period of time, and she really needed to process. It was heartbreaking to hear about it in detail from her, and she seemed to be reliving it every time she talked about it. You know what they did to her? They told her to STOP COMPLAINING about it.

I remember another boy who was there from a Southern state and I think the only reason he was there was because his parents knew that he was gay. How the fuck is that ever OK to do to your kid? Worse things have happened in the world, but I knew that boy was a really healthy person. In fact, it seemed like A LOT, not all, but a lot of us had not done many risky things to be there.

I will admit that I had terrible anger problems, and very low self-esteem, and it was the best thing for me to be away from my family in a very structured  environment to be able to graduate high school, but Cascade was seriously fucked up and I am not in the least surprised that it eventually got shut down.

I did see the that the faculty and the scholastic curriculum were exceptional there. If I had stayed, it would have been one of the only good aspects. Even the constant work crews and chores were not the reason I became responsible later in life. If you force that stuff on kids they resent it. I do that stuff now, because I like to have a good life in my home, not simply because I am supposed to. So in the long term that had no bearing on becoming responsible.

One of the last things I also remember about Cascade before I joyfully departed to Heritage in Provo, (Maybe not joyfully, but I was certainly glad to get the fuck out, and Heritage let us listen to music, dress how we wanted, earn our privileges. It wasn't hard to behave for those freedoms.) , was Eric Melzer started dating an Alumni. She was 18 or 19 at the time, and I believe he was in his late 30's. I never heard what became of that, but that is just wrong. (It's legal, but not psychologically hale in such an institution.)

I wish I could remember the name of the huge man that was kicked out. I only found out about that when I ran into someone who had graduated. What did he do to the student, and was he ever legally penalized for what he did? Was the school? I'll probably never know because this thread is super old, and no one on here is from the same year that I was. But I wanted to contribute so that you younger folk can know that I too saw that there was sexual deviancy committed against the students.

For my own development, Cascade was a crowning moment that screamed in my face that my parents would rather pay to have their kid fixed by some quacks, as the kids in the school finished the job and screamed at me three times a week while the Mentors looked on and encouraged it. They always had the kids do a lot of the work for them. If there wasn't ACTUAL embezzlement going on, believe those of us who know something WAS wrong. How else does any institution save money?  You get others to do it for you, and they brainwashed the kids to boss each other around.  

The School was incredibly Cultist. The form of behavioral therapy that they used is pretty much defunct now, and rightly so. It was a phase of time from the sixties that started it all and it dwindled off into the time where some of you witnessed its downfall. You were lucky to be there at that time. If anyone wants to get haughty and moralistic about the orgiastic way that the dissidence occurred, I'd encourage you to rethink you judgment call. Many people build sexual alliances when they feel threatened. It is sometimes the only way to feel safe. That's basically what the baby boom was all about. And when the plague was so bad that the last rights were read to all of Europe, people fucked in the street and looted the shit out of it. I'm not saying it's the right thing to do, its just a fact.

If anyone out there is scared and feels bad about their experiences in Cascade, it is OK to still seek out one-on-one healthy forms of Psychotherapy. It's not a cult, it's not giving in, and a real therapist would never tell you that you're a piece of shit for talking about what upsets you. I'm still on the road to recovery, and it's been a long one, before AND after Cascade, but I am a much happier person today for taking the step to help myself and find joy in life, even if I had to fight for it. Even if I sometimes had to fight for it within myself.

I wish the best for all of you, and congratulate you on surviving the School. Some of us didn't make it after we got out. I heard that lawsuits that took out the school, may have been connected to suicide brought on by abuses within the school. I have not found out for sure yet, and I do not know any details. If anyone DOES know, I would like to hear their story.

Also, to the people asking: I have heard a little about the last celebrations, the Symposium, or whatever: I don't know details because the person I am in contact with that also attended does not have a really good memory regarding his experiences there: He was there in '89. But from what he remembers, there was a film shown to the group that has really violent music playing with snapshots of violent images. One of which was the famous shot from Viet Nam when the young man is shot in the head, as well as a Nuclear bomb being detonated. I asked him if he remembers what they said to him, what the significance was in that, and he could not recall. It just sounds like more brainwashing to me and he agreed when I mentioned so.

Another student from my family told me that in the latter Celebrations, they asked them to admit to who they would let die and who they would let live if they were in a sinking ship together. REAL nice.

My name is Ra'Bia, and if anyone remembers me, feel free to write to me. Even if you don't know me but want to ask me anything, I am happy to correspond. I also have questions I would like to ask the well informed, so please, don't hesitate to contact me: bobocruser@yahoo.com
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Bobinator

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Re: Cascade School
« Reply #106 on: November 08, 2008, 04:03:50 AM »
Also, I do not mention names except my own to protect privacy, but anyone who is open to discuss, I'm out on the table personally.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Anonymous

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Re: Cascade School
« Reply #107 on: November 09, 2009, 05:21:00 PM »
Quote from: "jrsusmc"
I was a student at cascade 1993-1994.  Is there anyone out here that was there the same time frame as me?  I spent 6 days short of 13 months there.  (Not that I was counting or anything.)Get back to me if you think you remember me.  I was in left wing hughes dorm at first , but I was switched my my counsler bill mcnight because I was on bans with upper school and below.  So I was switched to right wing pendragon.  I left december of 1994.  I went through truth, youth, friends, brothers and trek.  Get back to me if you were there that same time.

I was there at that time, only stayed a brief few weeks, but it certainly had an impact.  e-mail me at lgvankirk@yahoo.com
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Anonymous

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Re: Cascade School
« Reply #108 on: November 20, 2009, 12:06:44 PM »
I was there I believe it was there some of 94' and 95' It was along time ago though. I'm 28 years old now. I went to this wilderness camp called SUWS before Cascade. What a messed up time that all was. Even the thought of Cascade is so disturbing to me. my email is ocashleyv@yahoo.com
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Anonymous

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Re: Cascade School
« Reply #109 on: November 20, 2009, 12:46:57 PM »
You guys got strip searched when you got there too, right? Running anger remember that. People screaming ,crying, snot running down there faces. THe workshops. Being on banneds, popping off, dishes, level 1's 2's and 3's. Brainwashed... Knowing they are lying to your parents. I couldn't believe my parents sent me there. THey gave up on me and payed other people to try and fix me. Cascade was totally messed up and I feel sick to my stomach when I think about that place. I can't remember my counselors names. maybe kurt or something like that or greg. I'm not sure. FIrst I went to a wilderness program called SUWS in IDAHO and then from there an escort flew me to northern,ca to go to Cascade. I had experimented with pot and drank a little before ever going to cascade and I would not come home alot and parents found out my twin sister(twin didn't go to cascade) and I had been molested by the man they chose to watch us while they went on all there trips and vacations. after I left cascade I got really bad into speed about a year later. I've done crack, speed, herion(slammed) extasy, pot, acid, alcohol. I'm finally clean and sober and i've got 2 years clean.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »