Mrs Griffiths was getting both annoyed and worried.
Annoyed because, as far as she could see, her eleven year-old son Joseph spent far too much time masturbating, and worried what effect this could have on his two young sisters, nine year-old Mary and the youngest Susan who was seven, and, more importantly, God didn’t approve, so she was also worried about her son’s salvation.
Joe’s pyjama bottoms would be stained with the evidence that every night he’d erupted more times than his mother could imagine. He’d found the pleasure of playing with himself when he was nine but it was only recently that the act occupied his thoughts all the time. However, it was at night when the pleasure was increased and the thoughts of Amy Wright and her friend Daphne, along with his best friend Syed ran through his head. He thought it was just a natural part of growing up and had no guilt at all about what he did or where his nightly activities took him or the mess deposited in his PJs.
Joe’s mum was a guilt-ridden, lapsed Catholic, who remembered stories the priest and nuns revealed regarding the evils of such an act so was desperate that her child should not suffer such grievous consequences. She panicked over the thought that somehow, Joe’s night-time inclinations would corrupt or in some way defile her sweet, innocent young daughters - she was desperate for an answer to her fears. She was worried even more with the imminent arrival of the school summer holidays that with so much time on his hands… he would be spending it all on such a risky and depraved act.
She sought advice from her priest, Father John.
Over the past few months she had reacquainted herself with her faith and had begun to visit the church more and more often looking for her own salvation. She had taken her two daughters, who went willingly, but Joe was like his father, he didn’t have time for “all that religious stuff”. All her old fears and superstitions came flooding back as she knelt in prayer and asked for God’s good grace and guidance.
Father John was an old priest in a young priest’s body. He was a firebrand, clinging to the old doctrines and beliefs of hundreds of years of Catholic teaching and thought that modern thinking was the way to ruin. A firm belief in God, Jesus, Mary and the Holy Roman Catholic Church, together with regular readings of the Bible, were all that was needed for a wonderful, peaceful and deferential world. A religion failed if it didn’t garner respect, induce fear and damn all things it regarded as progressive/evil - to this priest there was no difference between the two. Father John’s code was simple: do not tolerate evil in any of its many guises - for the salvation of all its living things, use any and every means to banish it from this mortal world. Yes, for a thirty year-old man Father John was pretty hard-core in his devotion to the church’s ancient doctrines.
As her son wouldn’t go to confession, or even enter the church, Mrs Griffiths confided her worries to Father John who initially suggested that perhaps, before the boy retired to bed, his mother should insist he wear something more appropriate than just his loose PJs. To prevent the easy access to his ‘sin’ the Father suggested perhaps to cover the offending article more substantially, thus helping him avoid this evil act and the resulting hell-fire he would most certainly face.
Joe was oblivious to the dealings that were going on back home. He planned a fantastic summer break with his mates; camping, soccer tournaments, swimming, skateboarding… all the out-doorsy things that a healthy, eleven year-old should be doing, especially in the forthcoming promised hot spell.
However, two weeks before school broke up he was surprised to find that his mother had laid a rubber sheet over his mattress and insisted that he wear pull-ups to sleep in. Confused and surprised by such action he wanted to know the reason why.
She held up as evidence his overly stained pyjama bottoms and gungy underpants as proof that he needed help in controlling his emissions – nocturnal and otherwise. She lambasted him for bringing his filthy, self-pleasuring ways into her God-fearing home and that he was damned if he didn’t immediately stop. He had felt no guilt until his mother had pointed out the incriminatory evidence and with all the gusto that she could remember of the priests invective on the evils of self-gratification, scared the young lad reluctantly into wearing the proscribed item.
Echoing the priest’s sentiments she declared that his actions were wicked, against God and that he needed as much of the Good Lord’s protection as he could muster if he wasn’t going to burn in hell. The Lord (Father John) had shown her the way regarding the usefulness of pull-ups for protection so that would be the solution. She worried that not only was he heading to perdition but that his bed was tinged with evil and she was sure that something even more heinous would occur whilst he slept if he didn’t stop.
Scared by his mother’s forceful condemnation and knowing that if he didn’t comply his entire summer plans would end up with being grounded, Joe unwillingly did as he was told. He felt trapped but his mother watched and made sure he put on the pull-ups before he went to bed. She inferred that there would be trouble if he took them off and that God was watching and would see if he transgressed and didn’t keep to his promise of no self-gratification.
The strangest thing transpired on that first night whilst reluctantly wearing his holy divined protection, to his absolute horror, something worse did happen.
His mother had indeed put the fear of God into her son and sweet dreams of his friends were now a scary mixture of screaming burning figures and tormenting demons. He was mortified when his mother came in to wake him for school to find he was soaked through. Her accusing look and declaration that God sees everything and punishes those who flout his laws was enough to frighten and temporarily make him believe that the Lord had punished him for masturbating. The mess he’d made was copious, the pull-ups not able to contain all he pissed, consequently his bedding and everything in the room appeared drenched in the smell of urine. Mercifully, it was only thanks to his mother’s foresight in putting down a rubber over-sheet that his mattress was not completely ruined.
She intended saving her son as she had done the mattress.
However, her weeping son was so intimidated by what had happened he had no response to his mother’s demands that from now on he would wear a nappy and plastic pants to bed to protect all concerned. She was adamant that she needed to shield his innocent little sisters from his perverted, moist desires and that the extra padding would at least mean they could sleep safe. No amount of protestation was allowed and he was completely cowed by his mother saying that she would get Father John to talk to him if he needed ‘guidance’. The threat was the last thing he wanted, he was scared of the priest, the power he wielded over his mother and desperate not to have anything to do with the man.
So, for two weeks leading to the summer break, every morning, before he was allowed to go to school, his nappy was checked for any residue of his secretive and unholy ways. Surprisingly, she didn’t seem perturbed if his nappy was wet as long as it wasn’t slick with his boy juice. He was made to stand naked whilst his mother, tentatively searched for proof of her son’s disgusting habits before he was allowed to go to the bathroom. Joe was told that if she found anything he would be punished and that he’d be made to wear his nappy all the time and that included to school.
He just couldn’t help the fact that, especially at night, his hand always gravitated to his crotch. However, now the thick glossy bulge and crinkle as he moved was a reminder of his promise to his mother, he couldn’t get a grip or play with himself anyway. It was hard - literally and figuratively - to relieve himself with all the padding. However, he didn’t want to cause his mother any further upset so, whilst he could, he refrained from his nightly vocation.
He made up for it at school, whilst a bunch of kids pissed and shit in cubicles all around, he spent a great deal of time in the toilet pulling himself off. The distractions didn’t seem to make much difference especially as he was thinking of Amy and Syed and the thoughts of them helped him gain quick release. His seed caught in the school’s toilet paper and flushed away.
Joe’s mother, Bernadette Corrigan had married Stanley Joseph Griffiths because he’d gotten her pregnant. This seventeen year-old good, meek catholic girl was guilty of sin and just couldn’t face her priest. Her guilt spread because, thanks to her atheist husband, she wasn’t bringing up their children in the faith. When the local priest recently passed away and the young, vibrant Father John had taken over she saw her chance of reconnecting, perhaps even being forgiven. Above everything else she wanted to find her faith again, to love and be loved by the Holy Roman Catholic church and promised to do whatever it took to regain admission. She knew that once she fulfilled her obligations to God, she would be absolved of her sin and all would be well.
She surreptitiously started attending mass and began to take her daughters along with her. They seemed to like the singing and religious setting and weren’t of an age where they could make up their own minds. Joe was different, he’d been dragged to one mass and was bored, would rather have been out with his mates playing soccer and laughed inwardly at every damnation and pious piece of the bible the new priest uttered.
No matter how much his mother pleaded with him he didn’t go again.
His dad had told his wife to let the boy be before he went to the off-shore oil rig that was his place of work. Six weeks on and two weeks off was his normal working configuration so he was rarely at home but his well-paid job kept his family at a relatively good standard of living. However, it also meant that he wasn’t always around when something major happened.
Joe was a chip off the old block and, like his father, loved sport, was very easy going but didn’t suffer fools and pomposity. When his father was home they spent a great deal of time together and Joe loved and looked up to his father. The family went camping, his dad’s favourite way to relax, and whilst Joe enjoyed it, his mother and little sisters just endured it. He hated it when his father went away but realised that it was his job and so it was something that just had to be put up with. It was always a huge deal when he came home because the family laughed a lot and did more things than when they were just with their mother.
On the last day of school Joe arrived home from a five-a-side game of soccer to find Father John and his mother in deep conversation. The Father was all smiles as Joe walked through the door and got up to shake his hand and explain that his mother had volunteered him to help out with a group of kids from church.
“Ah Joseph, your mother has said that she would be happy for you to help out the Cub Scouts camping trip. I’m afraid I am one volunteer down and she very kindly suggested…”
“I don’t think so.” Joe stood there with his arms folded, all four foot eleven inch of him, in his dirty soccer kit of shirt and shorts. “I have made my own arrangements for…”
His mother now interrupted - embarrassed at her son interrupting Father John.
“Joe, it will be good for you. You’ll be helping the Father… and young people who…”
She almost apologised for making the suggestion but was enthusiastic that it would benefit his moral turpitude.
“I don’t care. Why the hell would I want to go on a Cub Scout camping trip?”
With a look of loathing on his face the last piece of the sentence was directed at the priest.
“I’m not even a Catholic?”
“Come, come young man.”
Ignoring the dig the priest tried to be jovial, accommodating, enthusiastic and positive.
“The Lord has time and love for every one of his flock whether they know it or not. Your mother… and the Lord… have given you this opportunity…”
“Well the Lord can go fuck himself because I’m not…”
The speed at which the young priest reacted was stunning, so much so that Joe had no idea what was happening until it was too late. He grabbed Joe by the arm and yanked him over his knee. With one hand securely holding him in place he set about spanking the boy with a great deal of vigour. Joe’s screams were of protest and shock as his bare legs kicked out and he squirmed uselessly in an attempt to escape.
His thin nylon shorts were no protection to the firm hand that was raining blows on his upturned bottom - the man was brutal and determined in his discipline. Mrs Griffiths just stood there as the priest continued his spanking until her son could hold back the tears no longer and screamed for it to stop. She didn’t intervene knowing that the priest’s action was justified and what her disobedient son was sorely in need of. The punishment continued long after the fight had left Joe and he’d stopped trying to avoid each pain inducing slap.
“I will not have the Lord’s name taken in vain,” The firm hand continued to descend. “Nor will I have such a vile and disgusting word spoken in front of your mother and innocent sisters.”
The hand slowed but still delivered hefty smacks to his throbbing bottom. His father had never spanked him yet this priest thought nothing about laying into him, if he hadn’t been in so much pain and crying he may well have protested such an injustice… but who would he protest to? His mother seemed to have sanctioned the attack.
There was another problem now as well because as the firm hand delivered each painful whack, his full bladder had leaked and he’d well and truly pissed himself. The priest’s trouser leg was soaked as the sobbing youth was dragged from his vulnerable position; the front of his white shorts ran yellow with the evidence of just what had occurred. The look of disgrace on his mother’s face said it all and the red blush of shame filled his other cheeks as he scrambled, tearfully off to his bedroom.
He could hear the conversation continue downstairs and knew he was in trouble. Swearing was a huge no-no in the house, especially in front of his sisters. Even not very offensive words like ‘hell’ and ‘damn’ were frowned upon so the f-word carried with it great weight and as such, the punishment would match its seriousness. He knew that had he used the word towards a teacher at school then he could have been suspended but, soothing his very sore bottom, he wasn’t sure if it applied to a priest. However, his mother thought it did.
After a while he heard the priest leave and the footsteps of his mother climbing the stairs. He was still hurting from the severe spanking but dreaded that his mother might have brought the hairbrush with which, in the past, she’d threatened to use as punishment. He was in no position to defy her? Look where it had already got him; a fiercely red bottom, embarrassment that his young sisters had witnessed his humiliation and that he’d pissed himself. With his mother on the warpath he wasn’t sure if it could get any worse. It did.
Bernadette Griffiths may have been a small woman but when she was roused and determined there was very little that could control her. She made her son strip out of his piss-stained soccer outfit and once naked bend over the edge of his bed before delivering six more swats with the hairbrush to his already inflamed posterior. The screams, sorrys and pleading fell on deaf but zealous ears as she served several more reminders of his action to his very sore bottom.
“I’ve a good mind to call your father and tell him what a despicable and disrespectful person you’ve become.”
She spoke in a tone that meant she intended to be taken seriously. She knew he idolised his father and her husband idolised his son, what would be the consequences of him knowing what had happened?
“You have embarrassed the family, upset your sisters and brought shame on yourself by using foul words and selfish actions… behaving like a spoilt little brat… not to mention abusing an upstanding member of this community.”
The words of his mother just rushed out but as Joe was still bent over the bed, his naked bum trembling under her denunciation he was unable to do anything but try and stifle his tears by crying into his pillow.
It was the first time he’d ever had to suffer a spanking and he didn’t like it at all. The priest had hurt him and now his mother had delivered a punishment she’d only ever threatened before. His bum stung and his mind spun not knowing what to make of it all. There was one thing for certain, he was in big trouble and from her actions he could tell she wasn’t going to be placated by a simple apology to her, his sisters or the priest.
“What would your father think…” she continued calling into question her son’s relationship with his father, “swearing at a priest AND being back in nappies acting like a big baby?”
She knew that Joe would want to keep that part of his current situation secret but the threat was there. If his father should know his sporty son was now a big baby and back wearing a nappy because he had no control over his body and constantly messed himself, he’d be mortified. Joe groaned at the thought that such a revelation would have. He didn’t know that his father would probably have approved of him swearing at the priest because, for his own reasons, he hated the deluded, and in his opinion, perverted lot of them. All Joe now felt was total guilt, fear, sorrow and abject humiliation.
She sent her quivering and bawling son off to the bathroom to clean up but insisted that he hurry and get back to her in five minutes. He didn’t much feel like getting up but the implied threat made him gingerly walk to the shower as fast as his sore bottom allowed. His bum glowed and he tried to avoid touching it but it was unavoidable when he had to towel himself dry. Once back in the bedroom his mother was still there with the hairbrush and he guessed he was in for more punishment.
He was correct.
She delivered another half dozen well-aimed thwacks to his already crimson butt, then, to Joe’s surprise, fastened him into a nappy. It was only 6.30 and way too soon for bed but once he was secured and a pair of thick cream-coloured plastic pants pulled over it, his mother indicated that bed was where he should be heading. No explanation, no meal, no TV, no phone, no nothing… she was determined that her son was going to change his ways and make himself one of God’s Christian soldiers.
A feeling of religious zeal was taking over his mother and he was too young and too alone to fight it. He cringed as his thick fabric padding hardly dulled the rustle of the plastic guard that now held him tightly. His bum throbbed, his eyes ached from so much crying, he felt completely dejected and what’s more, the one thing that could have helped him relax and get over everything, was no longer an option.
As his mother silenced any protests; she told him if he so much as moved from the bed at any point in the night he would get an even worse spanking than he’d already received. That was enough to scare him immediately into submission but what he didn’t know was that the following morning he would be on the bus with a bunch of cub scouts and heading for a two-week stay at a campsite in the Lakes.
Although the nappy was for protection Mrs Griffiths couldn’t help but think how cute her son now looked. He’d been growing up and adopting certain independent ways that she didn’t particularly like but now, as he cried himself to sleep wearing nothing but a nappy and plastic pants, she realised that he was still her sweet little baby boy and wanted him back. Perhaps by keeping him under rigid discipline she could regain control over him, the nappies seemed a good way of reinforcing that vision.
Joe could see the sun still shining behind the curtains and hear kids playing in the road but he was shattered, had no fight left and worried just what he could do to put things right. Oddly enough exhaustion overtook his thoughts and he fell asleep almost immediately.
Where ever Father John had worked he had gained a huge following. His was tall, young, good-looking (he had the body and aura of a rugby-playing superstar) and spoke with the authority of a man who believed in the power of every word he uttered. The church hierarchy loved having this enthusiastic holy firebrand and was even more delighted with the effect he had on parishioners. The churches were full when he preached, the children’s Sunday Schools were packed to overflowing and he’d turned around the finances of his local church in just a few months. Father John wasn’t a fool; he knew what he was doing and was aware of his charisma but channelled it into the areas where he thought it was needed. Bishops had suggested he take a more high profile district but he liked to be at grassroots, where he thought he could do more good and, in his opinion, where the word of God was needed most. He gave up what little free time he had to promote and run youth groups, mother’s meeting, scouts and guides organisations where there simply wasn’t anything for the locals. This was why he was behind the wheel of a thirty-seat bus, picking up the boys from St Cuthbert cub scouts group.
Joe had slept badly. He worried constantly about his current situation and was scared that his mother was correct and he was damned for swearing at a man of God. He was afraid that his father would reject him once he knew he was back in a nappy and he hoped that at all costs his mother hadn’t told him yet. He hadn’t dared move from his bed and for thirteen hours he’d lay there in his warm rubberised pit, sweating uncomfortably but frightened of doing anything, even venturing to the toilet. He’d wet himself and was painfully aware that at any moment he’d also shit himself if someone didn’t come and say he could get up.
At 7.30 his mother entered his room carrying the nasty and painful hairbrush. She ordered him to get up. He was about to tell her he was wet but she just waved the brush threateningly and that alone made him to stay silent. She could tell he was wet, the nappy had expanded and his plastic pants looked a bit bloated but she was expecting that after last night’s scolding and punishment. However, now she expected nothing except that her son would obey all she was about to say and agree to her decisions.
Joe stood nervous, ashamed and wet as his mother began to undo his plastic pants.
“I spoke to your father,” she lied, “and he agrees with me about what we should do about your terrible behaviour.”
Joe wanted to speak but that look on his mother’s face meant she wasn’t asking for comments.
She released his soaked nappy and even without close inspection it could clearly be seen that Joe had spunked up into them.
A grimace came onto his mother’s face. “Well it appears that a night time nappy isn’t enough to stop you committing sin and pleasuring yourself.”
“But mum, I didn’t… I haven’t… I…”
His mother just held the evidence up to his face. The glistening streaks giving lie to his protestations of innocence, whilst the smell of his own urine was overpowering.
“OK young man, you’ve had enough warnings,” she pointed to the bathroom. “Go to the toilet, take a shower and be back here in five minutes.”
Joe was lost for words but saw the brush wavering in his mother’s hand and thought better than to start an argument. He quickly ran to the bathroom, his fading purple bottom a symbol of what he had endured the day before.
He rushed his shit and the shower was cold. He grabbed the towel and ran back to his waiting mother as he still dried himself as quickly as possible. Stacked on his bed were a pile of nappies, powder and a tub of Vaseline. His mother indicated that he should lie back over the bed, with his feet on the floor whilst she took charge. Thankfully the temperature of the shower had ensured that his penis shrank to its minimum. She rubbed Vaseline thickly around his groin, sprinkled loads of powder over the area and then had him lift up his bottom to place a folded fabric nappy under him. Joe screwed up his eyes, desperate to block out what was about to happen. This shouldn’t be happening to an eleven year-old, who’s the captain of his soccer team and won first prize in the inter-schools swimming gala. She fitted a couple of soaker pads before pulling it between his legs and pinning the generous protection tightly into place.
Joe was on the verge of tears. He hated this but remembered she had warned that if there were further night-time ‘accidents’ he’d be put in nappies permanently. Tears formed in his eyes at the ignominy of what was happening. How could she do this to him? The unfortunate thing was he had a nagging voice at the back of his head that said it was all his own fault; he swore, he liked to masturbate, he had been warned. He wondered what his father said when he found out.
“What did… (sob) dad say about…?” and indicated the thick nappy that now held him securely.
Mrs Griffiths knew she had the upper hand and that her son was in no position or mental state to cause any problems to her so offered an olive branch.
“I didn’t tell him.”
Tears of relief ran down Joe’s cheeks and at that moment he was, despite everything else, grateful to his mother for keeping their secret and sparing him that embarrassment. He had no idea that no such conversation between his parents had taken place on any of these important topics.
“This is between you and me but…” she wouldn’t tolerate any nonsense from her son on this point, “to ensure you are aware of just how wicked your words and actions are… you will be wearing protection like this, all the time, for the foreseeable future.”
Joe winced at what was happening and desperately searched for a way to avoid this punishment. His father wasn’t due home for another month so he hoped that everything would be back to normal by then.
She pulled the thick heavy plastic pants over the fresh nappy and was pleased at the sight of the enormous tight and glossy bulge that replaced what she saw as her son’s sin-laden genitals… she was sure this would prevent any further degenerate indulgences.
“There, that’s better.”
She said with a certain amount of pride as her son shuffled awkwardly in the bulk and she grabbed a t-shirt and shorts from his drawer and sorted out a pair of trainers.
“Put these on and then you’re ready.”
Joe struggled to pull the shorts she’d chosen over the huge clump of fabric but didn’t dare voice his disapproval he was in far too much trouble to argue over clothes as well. He took comfort in the fact that it was his favourite t-shirt (bearing the logo of his favourite soccer team), so it wasn’t all bad. They went down stairs for breakfast. Joe slowly negotiating each step as he descended, the bulkiness something he wasn’t sure he could get used to. He didn’t mind wearing shorts, he spent most of his day wearing his soccer kit, but the shorts his mother had chosen were very short and revealing. Still, now wasn’t a good time to complain.
Joe noticed the backpack he used when they went camping was loaded, with his sleeping bag and a blanket tightly wound and strapped under the top flap, waiting at the front door. He didn’t quite grasp its significance until halfway through his cereal when there was a loud ‘beep-beep’ from the road outside.
His mother smiled, kissed him on the head and guided him to the door and opened it. The bus with Father John at the wheel was waiting with what looked like a company of cub scouts all watching him walk forlornly down his pathway. So here he was, out in public and wearing a huge nappy under his shorts. He was sure that everyone would be able to tell, and indeed, part of his mother’s plan was to embarrass her son and hopefully curtail some of the independent and immoral attitude he seemed on pursuing. With a final brush of his hair away from his forehead she kissed him goodbye but warned him to do exactly as the good Father told him. If she heard back that he’d been disrespectful in any way there would be the kind of trouble only the Bible could prophesy. With the threat left ringing in his head her final words only added further humiliation.
“Father John knows about the nappies and why you are to wear and use them from now on. He is in charge of checking and changing you when needed… you do nothing without his express permission. If I hear anything to the contrary I promise you’ll not be able to sit down for a week. Do I make myself clear?”
She made sure he was completely aware of her instructions before she patted his padded bottom and sent him on his way.
Joe was frustrated, distraught, upset and angry but it was all futile. As far as he knew both his parents had agreed to this punishment so the decision had been made and he could do nothing about it.
His fate was absolute and he had no one there to support him so he trundled, defeated, with his backpack to the bus. One of the priests’ other helpers, an older scout by the name of Terry appeared, all cheerful smiles and bonhomie, and offered to put it in the bus’s storage area for him. He nodded and almost hypnotically boarded the bus to the contented smile of the driver and the cheers of his excited passengers. His bulging shorts didn’t exactly hide the fact he was wearing protection and the sly pat on his padded bottom from the priest as he pointed to the empty seat directly behind him made him cringe. None of this was helped by the rustle of his protection as he flopped down into the empty space… it only added to the sorry indignity.
The noisy group set off to pick up the last few members of their party and then it was off to the Lakes. Ten minutes later and they’d picked up the last three members of the party, three elder scouts who were designated as Father John’s helpers. Joe began to wonder what exactly his part in all this was.
To be continued…