My name is Ethan, some of you I have already met, but due to the circumstances under which my presence here started out, I think I would provide answers to question that may arise or have arisen with some of you, therefore, I would like to share my story, for I feel that would be ample explanation.
I was born into a rather large family, I have 4 brothers and 3 sisters, I am somewhere in the middle, age wise. Really, a great family for a kid to grow up in. Though we had our troubles, my youngest brother has Down's syndrome, I certainly can't complain in regard to my parents or my siblings in any way.
But a good home is no guarantee for safety, and as you may expect, a bunch of kids and a brother in need of a lot of attention, somewhat limits the abilities of parents to keep an oversight on it all.
The result was that my parents were really stressed out, pretty much all the time, things weren't going very well financially either, my dad found himself hopping from one job to another from the late 1970ties on. In the end, he just couldn't keep up the mortgage and we lost our house. For us kids it wasn't so bad, as we went to live with our grandparents, on the farm my dad grew up on. We liked it there and so did my dad, who in effect became a farmer again, a way of life so much better suited to him than factories and offices.
It was still tough though, I can't really remember how bad it was, but I guess we were poor by societies standards, not that we cared.
We just had lots of fun, we may not have worn the neatest clothes or go on holiday to some sunny place, but we never went to school hungry.
My dad did not accept handouts from anyone, certainly not from the government.
He could have chosen an easier way, but he chose what he felt was right.
So we all pitched in and I guess we made it, when I was 8, the debts were paid and things were really looking up.
My parents decided we kids deserved a break that summer, so they got us in a summer camp like thing, which really looked cool on paper, was supposed to be fun and actually was fun.
My sisters would go to a pony camp, my brothers would go to a sport camp (soccer) but I wanted to go sailing, we all could choose where we wanted to go.
Frank, my youngest brother, would go with a special group, for disabled kids. He really liked that, and my parents would have some time to themselves. I guess they needed a break too.
So for the first time I was alone without my brothers, a bit scary, I can tell you that.
I turned out I had all the reasons in the world to be scared, and thank God by brothers were not there, they would only have got hurt too, like a 9, 11and 12 year old could have done anything.
I was put with a couple of teenagers, in a cabin like little place that housed 4, there were about 30 kids there, age ranging from me (youngest) to about 18, the older were also to look after the little ones, about 10 of us in all.
I am not sure how to put this down, so I will try to be as exact as possible.
The second night there, they were talking about girls, about sex. Something I really didn't know anything about, so I was curious. One of them told me he would show me.
I didn't want that, I said he should leave me alone.
He grabbed me, ripped my pants off and forced himself on me.
I cried and shouted, but he shoved his underwear in my mouth and the 2 other boys held me down, one held a knife pointed at me, saying he would kill me if I ever told anyone.
They took turns, that night, the next.
I did not do much sailing, they told the staff I was sick,
I was by then, caught a cold.
They let me stay, because I didn't want to go home, I knew this was wrong, and one of the boys said my dad would hate me, all parents hated boys like me.
It was a Christian camp, you see, we all knew things between boys were not ok, and I wasn't into sex, but I knew this was not ok with God.
When that camp was over, I just couldn't tell my parents, so I put on a happy face, and told them I had been sick but it had been so much fun. It really hurt lying to them, I think that was the first time ever I did that.
Next year, my parents decided that since I enjoyed myself so much, they would send me there again, I knew how hard it was for my dad to pay for this, and I couldn't refuse.
Now, the boys would probably be too old anyway I though, it will be fun.
They were there.
This time I didn't fight them.
Later that year, I met a kid at school, a boy I fell in love with, I did not know why, I knew it was wrong for me to look and think about another boy like that, but I couldn't help it.
It turned out he had some feeling like that himself, and we soon became best friends.
I suppose we did what boys do at that age, exploring at bit, it was fun, really.
But he knew this man, a nice man he would go to after school, he wanted me to come too.
And I did. This guy allowed us to do stuff, we could only dream of at home, watch TV, he would let us drink beer even, I smoked a cigarette once, the first. Didn't like that very much.
Soon we would go there every day, and he was always happy to see us, he was cool, in our eyes.
He would talk to us, he knew we did “things” and he told us it was ok, now, our parents were definitely not ok with that, we knew that much.
He showed us pictures of boys, doing things like we did, and pictures of men with boys. He told us that was ok too. We trusted him, he seemed to understand us. He took away the bad feeling and confusion. He said it was ok not to be interested in girls.
And we were absolutely not into girls! Only now I know that's pretty normal for boys that age.
He asked us if we would like to do things with him, like get out of our clothes and fool around, he wanted to take pictures of us, together.
We were ok with that, he was so kind, how could we refuse?
He did things to us, we did to him.
A few weeks later he asked us to do what some pictures showed, he said he would be really careful. He was careful, and for a while, it was ok. But it was not ok.
He wasn't interested in us, he didn't love us. He was just preparing us.
One day when we got there, he had a visitor. A guy, well, old. Older than my dad.
He told us to go to his bedroom and get undressed. We didn't want that. But he said he had pictures of us, and he showed them. He said he would send them to our parents if we did not do as he wanted.
What could we do?
Later that day, when that guy was done with us, our “friend” told us he would expect us there every day, he would give us money, told us it was a job. And he would send the pictures if we did not show up.
This went on until I was 17, then he did not need me there anymore. Or my friend – we were no friends anymore by that time.
He told me to go to a part of an industrial zone and go with guys, he would tell them we were there.
The next year I joined the Army, and was out of it for a while.
My parents knew by now I wasn't into girls, and this bothered them a lot.
When I went to college, I had no support from them, so to pay my way I turned to my “friend” and he fixed me up with a “job”.
This went on until some 4 years ago, now its all history.
I am a teacher now, married and I have 4 kids, I married because my parents wanted me to, a decision I am still not at ease with, but I can't undo.
I love my kids more than anything, and I love my wife, but not in the way I loved a person some of you know,
Gunnar. We lived together for 3 years.
Now, I feel I have to come to terms with the things I experienced and did, perhaps this helps.
For now, this is all I want to say, I left out something which I now cannot put into words, perhaps later, please be patient
Never jump without both ripcords