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Word Count: 474
One of the worst cases of child abuse in the state of California has been documented by the child himself in the book A Child Called It David Pelzer provides a detailed outline of his terrible life growing up the son of an alcoholic mother and a father who stood by and watched the abuse The story takes a circular trip around the many years of abuse It begins with what ended the torment and pain and continues with the years prior In this section of the book Pelzer speaks of the unthinkable horror his mother put him through His mother thought sleeping under the kitchen table with only newspapers to cover him was too humane and ordered him to sleep on an old Army cot in the garage Pelzers mother made him an outcast in the family She treated his brothers as everyday children but him as a slave Doing all the chores and lucky to receive food as his reward he was eventually referred to as The Boy and no longer part of the family Pelzer was starved for days at a time and often punished for attempts to feed himself Forms of torture existed for the young child which included drinking ammonia laying across the hot stove or having his head held in a dirty diaper Several other punishments came from the middle-aged mother addicted to alcohol in her co nstant attempt to degrade a son she treated worse than the family pets Not only was this outcast of a son banned from the family but also in public Pelzer was granted only one change of clothing a year which he wore daily to school He was unable to bathe and often looked upon as a disgrace by neighbors and school officials This intense life-style seems unbearable especially to a young child His story of working to stay alive brings a queasy feeling to the stomach and a pain
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