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A Child Called "It" by David Pelzer

A Child called It is a book about a child’s courage to survive through a time where he was being physically and emotionally abused by his mother. His mother told him exactly what to say to anyone who asked him about his injuries, and he did what she said just to delay another beating which was sure to happen soon anyways. He was known as the “the boy” and in exile from the rest of the family, made to sleep in the garage. His mother has broken his arm, starved him for days, put him in a gas chamber, etc. She even ended up stabbing him, which was supposedly a “accident”.
I think the theme of A Child Called It is in times of crisis we need the support of our companions. David’s nurse checked him daily and fed him and made sure his injuries healed. A quote about the relationship his mother is: “Well aren’t you special…get one thing straight you little son of a bitch. There is nothing you can do to impress me! Do you understand me? You are a nobody, an “It”! You are nonexistent! You are a bastard child! I hate you and I wish you were dead! Do you hear me? Dead!” While she was emotionally abusing him she was also physically abusing him.
David was forced to sleep in the basement on an old army cot. His mother made him wear the same clothes to bed and back to school the next day, as an effort to embarrass him. The kids at school made fun of him and called him names like "Pelzer-Smellzer" and "David the Food Thief", because David would be so hungry that he would steal things from the other kid's lunches in order to get something to eat, because his mother would not feed him. If David got the luxury to eat he would only be allowed scraps of food, like his brother's left over cereal, or things "even the dog refused to eat." I liked this book but it was also a very difficult story to read without breaking down into tears. This also made me change my perspective on my parents.

I used to get upset when my parents didn’t let me go to the movies, or they yelled at me because I stayed out past my curfew. But they only do those things because they love me, and David’s story made me realize that. Now I work really hard at appreciating my parents. David’s story effected me a lot.





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