DEGRASSI TALKS: ABUSE
Hello. I’m from the government and I’m hear to help.
Rebecca Haynes, who played Kathleen on Degrassi Junior High has an interesting story regarding this subject. It’s definitely more interesting than what happened to her after she left the show. We’re not going to tell you Rebecca’s story; we just wanted you to know she had one.
We are, however, going to let Debbie tell her story. Debbie was date raped.
Debbie: Now you are going to change my name in your documentary, right? I don’t want that guy coming after me.
Narrator: Sure thing, Debbie.
Debbie: So, I was fifteen and I had this boyfriend. One day I asked my mom if he could come over while she and Dad were out so we could be all alone together. She said yes because they had to go to my aunt’s funeral anyway. So, we were sitting on the couch watching TV and we started kissing and before I knew it he was trying to go too far. I kept saying no and trying to push him off but he forced himself on me and raped me. When my parents got home I told them about it and my Dad’s only comment was, “Well, why did you only say no three times? Why didn’t you say no more firmly. Goodness knows you were good at saying no as a baby.” … Well, the rape really hit me, being the day after my aunt got murdered and everything. We were really close. She was the first person in my family who had died, well I guess except for my ancestors.
Narrator: Did you and this guy meet again?
Debbie: Oh yes. He came over the next day and said he wanted to talk privately about what had happened. He asked me if the backseat of his car would be a suitable place where we could have a conversation and I said sure. He took me to the backseat of his car and raped me again. Then he kept coming over and wanting to talk. Well, after the fifth time he raped me I went to the police.
Narrator: Do you have any lingering effects from what happened?
Debbie: Oh yeah. For the longest time every time I looked at the couch where that boy raped me the first time I just wanted to scream. I think I would have eventually burned it or something. Fortunately the furniture store came and repossessed the couch anyway.
Now, let’s look at some facts about abuse:
- One out of five girls admits to having been physically, sexually or emotionally abused while on a date. Considering human nature, man’s inhumanity to man, this is not surprising.
- - Rape is never right, even if the woman was dressed like a total whore.
Now let’s consider a fact about men:
- Men are linear. They see a hot-looking woman and they think, “How can I get into that chick’s pants in as quick and socially acceptible a way as possible.”
- - When it comes to sex and other things, most teenage boys don’t think in the long term. They think, “I’m ready because I’m aroused. Let’s do it.”
Remember, you should wait till you’re ready to have sex, like when your parents are out, you’ve broken into the liquor cabinet and everything’s kind of groovy.
We are now going to hear from Matthew, who was sexually abused by his father.
Matthew: It happened for five years, from the time I was nine until the time I was fifteen. We ran a foster home and my dad was abusing me and this one other foster kid. I finally went to the police about what was happening and they asked me if I wanted to go to a foster home. I said sure because I wanted to go someplace safe. After that I was placed in a series of foster homes. I was sexually abused at every one of them.
Narrator: Did your father get any kind of help for his problem?
Matthew: Well, one day I asked Dad’s cellmate if my father was going to receive any kind of therapy in prison and he said, “Sure, kid, your dad’ll get “therapy” all right.”
Narrator: Do you have any contact with your father at this time?
Matthew: Not really. I just talk to him when I need to borrow money or something like that.
Now let’s hear from Kimberley, who was sexually abused as a child by a boy up the street.
Kimberley: Well, I guess as a child I was a naive Christian girl from a naive Christian family.
Narrator: That’s exactly what the producers were looking for.
Kimberley: This boy abused me from the time I was seven until the time I was twelve. I finally told my mom about it. We had an emergency meeting at our church where we prayed for the salvation of the abuser.
Narrator: I suppose, being Christians and everything, your family was too stupid to go to the police.
Kimberley: No, we went to the police. They took my story. I was at the station for hours and hours. After I was finished telling the whole thing the cop said there were too many incidents for them to bother sorting the whole mess out and pressing charges so they said have a nice life and escorted me out to the street.
We move now from sexual abuse to physical abuse. Let’s hear Matt’s story.
Matt: My stepfather hit me and I ran away from home.
Narrator: And these were prolonged beatings over a significant period of time?
Matt: No, he just sort of lightly slapped me one time.
Narrator: What did you do after that?
Matt: I ran away from home.
Narrator: What happened to you after you ran away from home?
Matt: I started drinking and doing drugs.
Narrator: As a result of the trauma the abuse had caused?
Matt: Yeah, sure, that sounds like a good reason.
Parents don’t have the right to hit children whatsoever. Sure, the Bible says it’s all right to spank but who are you going to believe: a book that has touched countless lives and has withstood the test of time, or this tear jerking documentary produced by a government organization in association with three other government organizations and a private company?
Next, we’ll hear from a victim of physical and emotional abuse. She is also disabled, just for that extra tug at the heartstrings.
Narrator: What’s your name?
Narrator: Say again.
Narrator: Oh bug off, cripple, we can get along without your story anyway.
A disabled child should never be abused. Instead, if you find out your baby is going to be born disabled, you should abort it.
Let’s take a look at abuse from the other side. Jim is an abuser.
Jim: There was this eight year old girl. I was doing sexual things to her, you know.
Narrator: Why did you abuse this girl?
Jim: Well, I was abused as a child myself.
Narrator: Well that’s all right, then.
Jim: Yeah, I know, eh. I don’t feel down on myself for abusing that girl because I’m getting help. I go to group therapy and me and other abusers reminisce.
Narrator: You do what?
Jim: We talk about ways we can help each other. Also, I’ll ask the parents of the victim about how I was during the abuse so they get to relive it and everything, which is cool.
If you’ve been abused, the best way to deal with it is through drugs and alcohol. Sure, it’s harmful to your body and mind and will probably kill you, but at least when you wake up in the morning you have the afternoon to look forward to.
This has been a documentary in your interest from your government.
Based on “Degrassi Talks: Abuse” companion book to the “Degrassi Talks” television series episode.