Biography: Oxana Malaya and Nursing Home Essay

Submitted By uriostegui278
Words: 1060
Pages: 5

Feral Children

What do we consider Feral Children as? Some consider feral children to be savages, running wild—untamed, animals .
What are Feral Children? Feral children have little or no experience from any type of human care, attention, love and most importantly and crucial, language. They are unaware of human social behavior and unexposed to language. A child living in isolation, at the very edge of survival, without interaction, language or love is not a child that is PURE and NATURAL; it is a child that is DAMAGED by an UNNATURAL life. Humans are just not designed to live like that. Most of these children had been neglected and abandoned by the parents. Some feral children may have been rejected by their parents because of some kind of intellectual or physical impairment. Most feral children may have experienced trauma and child abuse before they were abandoned or before they ran away. These children lack the basic social skills. Humans are NATURALLY social. In order to grow up normal, we need other people to care for us, to communicate with us, to keep us safe. Across cultures and through history the way these needs are met has varied, but the fundamental needs remain. For five years, Oxana Malaya was allegedly left outside by her parents where she crawled into a kennel with semi stray dogs behind her house. She survived as they did, by eating scraps and raw meat. Oxana is a feral child. Oxana would remain unnoticed and no one seemed to even notice that she was gone. She stayed in the dog kennel where she saw all meaningful life. She would see humans walk by but acted as the stray dogs would and she kept her distance. When Oxana was found, she was eight years old at the time. She was found on all fours barking. Most of her behavior is that of a dog’s behavior such as sniffing and barking. Since Oxana was abandoned at a very young age, she hadn’t acquired any language skills. She had been isolated for so long that the brain missed the window of opportunity to acquire language.
Eventually Oxana was transferred to the nursing home for mentally-disabled adults in Barbol. She underwent many years of specialized therapy to help address her social, emotional, educational, and language issues. They concluded many cognitive tests and Oxana has a mental capacity of a six-year old. She could also count but not add up and she could not read or spell. She still has learning difficulties but is not autistic as some other children who are brought up by animals said to be. She explains to others that her mother and father “completely forgot about me.” She also explains that they argued and shouted. Her mother would hit her and she would pee herself in terror. She still goes off into the woods by herself when she is upset.
Today, Oxana currently lives in a home for the mentally disabled. She surprises people with her ability to act much more like a human. Some say that the way she acts now, you couldn’t have considered her background and what she went through. She looks after cows and horses at the nursing home and seems happy with what she is doing.
Another remarkable story of a feral child is that of a girl by the name of Genie. Genie suffered severe abuse, social isolations and neglect. She was only 20 months old when she was locked alone in a room strapped to a child’s toilet and sometimes bound in a crib with her arms and legs immobilized. Throughout this time, Genie was never exposed to any speech which to she never acquired her first language. She had been alone in that room until the age of 13 years and seven months. The Los Angeles child welfare authorities located her on November 4th, 1970.

Genie was living with her father, grandmother and her father. When her mother and grandmother went in to the Welfare office in Temple