Living in the Freedom World: Don

Personal Stories of Living in the Community by People Who Once Lived in Oklahoma's Institutions (1997)

Interviewer: What do you think it was like for kids?

Don Wilson: Well, to tell you the truth it had to be boring. Okay, this was cottage 21b, cottage 21a, cottage 11. And this one, the first one was little bitty kids, and the second one they was big, big girls, and the fifth one back there wasn't nothing but boys. Behaviors.

Interviewer: Okay, and so like when you lived here what was it like?

Don Wilson: Hardly any freedom, any rights, anything.

Interviewer: What did you like about school?

Don Wilson: I really liked the teacher. I had a crush on her. And she did not know it. I had this crush on her.

Interviewer: That's pretty cool. Has anybody ever called you "retarded"?

Don Wilson: Yah, people… oh yes, ma'am. Swear I might die on the cross from God I particularly don't think nobody ever, ever should be called "retarded". And that Christ the Savior's and sins as came, the word "retarded" comes from sin.

Interviewer: Hissom should have been closed up?

Don Wilson: Oh,shoot, I do. Tell you the truth, really, really should have been closed way before it was ever closed.

Interviewer: If you could change anything in your life now, what would it be?

Don Wilson: Well what it would be is I would change the amount of money I'm being paid right now. Change that to being paid $15,000 dollars a year every two weeks. Whoo…

Interviewer: That would be nice…

Don Wilson: Uh huh… I would have some serious, serious dough in my pocket.

Interviewer: What would you do with the money?

Don Wilson: Oh, I could find some stuff to do…