By appearances, the Montagues look like any ordinary English family. The parents, Mark and Annie, adore spending every free moment they can with their twin 11-year-old sons. They take family walks along the beach and try to get outside and enjoy the good weather whenever it comes their way. But the truth behind the seemingly serene external picture of their family life is far more complicated and shaded in darkness than any outside observer would think – but the parents are refusing to let the twin boys’ diagnosis of autism split their family apart.
On the family’s property, Mark and Annie have built a ramshackle abode that seems to be ready to topple down in the next ferocious wind. It is locked up with padlocks and seems to be a strange wooden house that contains little more than a table, a couch, and some chairs. On the walls, “relaxing” paintings are screwed into the wall. But this ramshackle dwelling serves a purpose that few people would ever be able to guess.
This is the place where Mark and Annie have decided to lock away their autistic twin sons instead of sending them to live in an institution. But don’t judge them quite yet. Listen to their story…
According to the video description, the place where the parents from Graveney, Kent, keep their severely autistic sons locked away sounds more like a prison than a home.
“Inside, doors are bolted shut, and telephones are hidden in locked wooden boxes meters from the ground and barring a table, few chairs and a sofa there is no furniture. No carpets line the floors, and a lone painting is tightly screwed in place. This has been a way of life for the Montagues since their twins, Samuel and Jacob, 11, were diagnosed with severe autism when they were just two-years-old.”
Ever since the boys were diagnosed with autism as young children, they were different from all other children in the town. They hardly reacted to the presence of their parents and didn’t shower them with affection most toddlers do. This left the family distraught and in dire need to figure out a way to keep their sons home with them instead of sending them off to a mental health institution where they’d be locked away in padded rooms for the rest of their lives. And if the institution wasn’t quite like that, the parents at least did not want to be separated from their beloved children if there was some way for them to keep them home.
Although the boys have escaped the compound over the years, the parents have decided to keep investing in higher fences to keep their “escape artist” sons home. Although experts told the parents that their sons’ behavior would never improve, the parents have decided to keep them at home.
It has been a challenge, but the parents felt it was the best way to keep their family together.
The video of this family’s story has been viewed millions of times. What do you think about the way they’ve treated the son?
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