Milo Edward's story

Milo attended a private primary school in regional New South Wales during the 1980s. The school provided a ‘fantastic’ education but discipline was harsh. Bullying, sexual, psychological and physical violence were prevalent, perpetrated by both staff and students.

When he was around seven years old Milo was sexually abused by several of his classmates – three holding him down while another was forced to perform oral sex on him.

Milo also told the Commissioner about several teachers who had sexually abused his friends at the school, and how they would confide in him about this abuse.

Another of his friends would invite Milo to a cubby house and ask him to have sex, saying that he would rather do this kind of thing with a mate than the teachers.

Milo didn’t feel like he could tell his parents or siblings about any of the abuse.

‘I was too embarrassed. The only people I could have confided in were the rest of my classmates. You knew something was wrong but you couldn’t talk about it.’

When Milo was in his mid-teens, his mother found out about the abuse he had experienced. He was then removed from the college he was attending, as it was aligned with the primary school where the abuse took place. He completed his secondary education at a government school.

Milo was a quiet and shy teenager, qualities he attributes to the abuse. ‘I was always scared. And I actually got bullied quite a fair bit, because I wasn’t my boisterous self.’ Even after changing schools he was picked on, and took a great deal of time off because of this bullying. ‘I was an easy target. Any macho part about myself I did have, just got beaten out of me. So I had no self-esteem ... I’m getting my mojo back now, but it’s taken quite a few years.’

Before contacting the Royal Commission, Milo had not disclosed the abuse to anyone but his mother, who is now deceased. ‘I still haven’t told my missus’. For a while he kept in touch with some of his primary school friends, but they are no longer in contact.

Milo has struggled with alcoholism throughout his life, which has caused him to lose his driving licence, and led to his recent engagement with a drug and alcohol counsellor.

Still he is not getting support for the childhood trauma he experienced, even though this relates to his drinking. ‘This girl who I’m engaging with, she’s too busy trying to monitor me and I don’t need monitoring. I need someone I can actually confide in and get everything off my chest. As soon as I finish there, I’ve got to go and have a beer.’


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