Neglected, Abused, and Molested; Ron Couldn’t Escape

“I should be dead now from the things that were done to me. I truly believe it is because of God that I am still here.”

Ronald T. (but he likes to go by Ron) spends nearly every day of the week in the gym, is a trained boxer, and holds a black belt in karate. At 6 foot 3 inches and 225 pounds, but with a warm, friendly personality, it’s difficult to imagine Ron was the victim of daily, inescapable abuse for nearly 15 years. Because of the brutal abuse, Ron must live everyday of his life coping with both the psychological turmoil and lasting health effects caused by those who neglected, abused, and molested Ron as a child.

Ron was just a small child when it started. Bath time had become more than soap and bubbles when Ron’s mother introduced asphyxiation into the childhood ritual. While in the tub Ron’s mother would hold a bath towel over his mouth until he screamed "I can't breathe!", she’d let go, but then do it again. “She’d do it over and over, for what felt like hundreds of times,” Ron explained. Soon, it wasn’t just bath time, but all the time. Ron’s life was becoming an ongoing nightmare. A padlock was latched on his bedroom door. Ron’s mother used the lock to keep him caged in the room for hours on end. “I’d be locked in there so long, eventually I’d have to relieve myself on the burgundy carpet.”

“It wasn’t just physical. My mother would call me MF-er, a bast**d, and tell me that I wasn’t my father’s son,” said Ron. Sleeping in the car and digging for food out of the trash became part of everyday life.

Ron has four other siblings. An older sister, as well as two younger brothers and sister, with Ron right in the middle. Inexplicably, his youngest brother and younger sister were never abused, but with the three other children the abuse was commonplace. “We’d be in bed and hear my mother walking in the hallway and pray she wouldn’t be coming to get us.” If she didn’t come for Ron, he’d often hear through the vent his mother accusing his older sister of having sexual intercourse with their father.

There was no restraint to the abuse, or any compassion towards Ron and his siblings while growing up. “If we wet the bed, she’d hit us with a closed fist and kick us out of the house in the middle of the night,” he said.

Eventually, Ron was taken in by various family members because “his mom doesn’t want him around”— a statement he knew and heard repeated over and over again by those around him. He bounced around from aunt’s and uncle’s houses, sometimes for the better, but often they had their own children to take care of and the additional stress of another child to feed had Ron back at his parent’s house once again.

Unfortunately, escaping his mother’s reach did not always provide him the refuge the young boy needed. By 13, Ron was living with his 20-year-old cousin. A friend of Ron’s cousin owned and worked at a gas station across the street from Ron's apartment and was often around their house. At 300 pounds, the friend dwarfed the young Ron and consistently bullied him, sometimes going so far as touching his genitals. Ron recalls sitting on the couch in the apartment and the friend coming in, pulling down his pants and placing his buttocks on Ron’s face. “Do you know what that does to a child? To have that happen in the place that they are supposed to call ‘home’?” Ron asked. They knew Ron came from an abusive and broken home, and felt as though he had nowhere to run or no one to tell what happened to him. They would say to him: “Ronnie doesn’t have a daddy.”

Ron’s life was forever changed after one day stopping by the gas station with his cousin to visit his cousin’s friend. In what was later described as “things getting out of hand,” the 300-lb. friend threw him down on the concrete floor. Ron's cousin pulled down Ron’s pants, spread his ankles while the friend sodomized him with an air hose intended to fill car tires. Blood spewed out of Ron’s mouth when the trigger of the airhose was pulled. His gallbladder and appendix were so severely damaged they had to be removed. Doctors believe it to be amazing that he even survived such a horrific event. He now suffers from health problems including requiring adult diapers during any strenuous activity and regular meetings with a therapist to deal with the mental scars.

“I should be dead now from the things that were done to me. I truly believe it is because of God that I am still here.”

Ron has been able to cope with such incredible strife by seeking help and talking about his past with his friends and therapist.

What Ron experienced may have been avoided had he been able to get help. Ron believes that the key to ending the abuse is telling someone. "I know it’s very hard when you’re being abused to trust someone. Are they going to call my mother and father to verify what I’m telling them?” he said. Ron’s family knew what was happening to him, but nothing was ever done for fear that they would get their own family in trouble. Because of this very situation, Ron suggests reaching out to someone you trust outside of the family for help, like a police officer, a teacher, or a firefighter and to call the Childhelp hotline. “Once people know what is happening, something can be done to stop it.”

He also has advice for those that, like him, have gone through abuse and trauma: “Get help. I held it in for so long, but finally started to tell people my story.” 

By talking about what he’s been through, Ron has begun the healing process. Ron also suggests writing down your daily thoughts of your past and your present, and pursuing guidance through religious faith to move forward on the path to recovery.


There is no argument that Ron has survived a vicious past. Despite what he has been through, Ron finds the strength to tell his chilling story in hopes of bringing greater awareness to the issue and preventing children from enduring what he did as a child.

Childhelp was founded to give children the power to let someone know what they may be experiencing, and to get help when they are in need. The Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline, 1-800-4-A-CHILD®, is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, as a resource both for children, parents and caregivers and those who may suspect child abuse.

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