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Keith Houchen

Wrestling #MeToo #SpeakingOut

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1 hour ago, BomberPat said:

Yep. It'll be bypassing half of it, disavowing half of it as "just wrestling", but painting Joey Ryan specifically as the devil.

More importantly, fuck the old cunt for monetising this in the first place.

"The dick flip guy" as he likes to call him, presumably Steven P New has told him to give them all "clever" nicknames or don't address them directly by name so they can't sue him for defamation, when he'd be best telling him to shut up about anything that isn't the history of wrestling. 

Edited by jazzygeofferz

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i have been reading this over the past few days......typing in my story, then deleting it because i don't want a load of people on a forum to call me a pussy or laugh at what happened because honestly not only did what i went through break my confidence but it also broke my love for the business for the longest time.

 

I was 13 when i started training in manchester, i lied about my age and later on i found out they knew i was lying they knew my real age the whole time. 
I was labelled a mark because i wanted to learn everything i could and being round those guys i saw on twc the night before was amazing for me, i was subject to having fully grown men que up laughing while they would pick me up and drop me on my head again and again and again. 
I thought i was gaining there respect and this is what you did when you wanted to become a wrestler, pay your dues ect but then i realised one day it was just me that was getting this treatment...... I would have fully grown men pick me up and spike me on my head and laugh the whole time doing it......

Then there was the time someone came up with the hillarious idea of picking me up for a tombstone but instead of hitting it shout tomb-BONE and rub there dicks in my face before dropping me on my head. 

i was sexually abused at the age of 4 and never had a good male role model in my life and these wrestlers that i was seriously looking up to were treating me this way but it was my dream to be there in that ring so i subjected myself to it again and again

then my final day of training happened there was a guy training there called jack he was from liverpool and my final day of training i had him hit me with a move landing me on my head and knocking me out and no one came to my aid..........then we were on the mats listening to dave i think it was speaking and Jack lit up a cigarette and put it out on my back......i ran out of the session burst into tears and never came back. 

what upset me the most about it all was i was so dedicated and yeah i was young and probably abit markish but my heart was in the right place. not 1 person stood up that final day and said anything to jack.....he wasn't kicked out or reprimanded at all.

 

i used to have sanjay bagga ring me up while he was in his gym at home just to talk to me about my training and alex shane (alex took me under his wing and sanjay hated him) but he would say weird things to me but i never said anything because i didn't want to piss off a promoter who could go round and tell everyone not too book me.

 

i don't know what else to say apart from i know how bad this industry can be and the people in it.

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Its awesome to see guys here post their own difficult stories about the British wrestling scene. There is a curtain around it that needs to ripped down. Kfogg and AVM thank you for telling your stories.   

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20 minutes ago, Kfogg1991 said:

i have been reading this over the past few days......typing in my story, then deleting it because i don't want a load of people on a forum to call me a pussy or laugh at what happened because honestly not only did what i went through break my confidence but it also broke my love for the business for the longest time.

 

I was 13 when i started training in manchester, i lied about my age and later on i found out they knew i was lying they knew my real age the whole time. 
I was labelled a mark because i wanted to learn everything i could and being round those guys i saw on twc the night before was amazing for me, i was subject to having fully grown men que up laughing while they would pick me up and drop me on my head again and again and again. 
I thought i was gaining there respect and this is what you did when you wanted to become a wrestler, pay your dues ect but then i realised one day it was just me that was getting this treatment...... I would have fully grown men pick me up and spike me on my head and laugh the whole time doing it......

Then there was the time someone came up with the hillarious idea of picking me up for a tombstone but instead of hitting it shout tomb-BONE and rub there dicks in my face before dropping me on my head. 

i was sexually abused at the age of 4 and never had a good male role model in my life and these wrestlers that i was seriously looking up to were treating me this way but it was my dream to be there in that ring so i subjected myself to it again and again

then my final day of training happened there was a guy training there called jack he was from liverpool and my final day of training i had him hit me with a move landing me on my head and knocking me out and no one came to my aid..........then we were on the mats listening to dave i think it was speaking and Jack lit up a cigarette and put it out on my back......i ran out of the session burst into tears and never came back. 

what upset me the most about it all was i was so dedicated and yeah i was young and probably abit markish but my heart was in the right place. not 1 person stood up that final day and said anything to jack.....he wasn't kicked out or reprimanded at all.

 

i used to have sanjay bagga ring me up while he was in his gym at home just to talk to me about my training and alex shane (alex took me under his wing and sanjay hated him) but he would say weird things to me but i never said anything because i didn't want to piss off a promoter who could go round and tell everyone not too book me.

 

i don't know what else to say apart from i know how bad this industry can be and the people in it.

What shitty things to do. Just know they arent all like that. I trained at a great school, treated people with respect and built my confidence 1000%. I just wasn't all that good but they kept trying w me! 

Glad you told your story though. We need to hear it. 

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Just now, Michael_3165 said:

What shitty things to do. Just know they arent all like that. I trained at a great school, treated people with respect and built my confidence 1000%. I just wasn't all that good but they kept trying w me! 

Glad you told your story though. We need to hear it. 

I know there are awesome schools out there, i genuinely believed that futureshock was one of the best at the time because of the affiliation with the fwa.

Im now on morphine for the pain in my neck i will never not be on painkillers for the rest of my life due to what happened.

 

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This has all been a very sad and depressing long weekend. 

In regards to regulating the business a number of independent promotions in the UK work to an already tight budget and have some of the talent double up to do other duties. 

If you are a promotion that runs a town hall once a month draws 350-400 fans each month at a £12-15 ticket price you have all the various overhead to cover. You have venue, talent fees, event marketing, travel and accommodation. If the promotion doesn't own its own ring then ring hire, production that's not included with the venue hire. There will be other costs that I will have possibly missed. 

Most promotions will struggle to add the cost of professional people in such as on hand medical personnel for all events. 

The wrestlers and anyone backstage might not be willing to pay for any disclosure checks. You could have a scenario where talent are looking for promoters to foot the bill for PVG checks but then the promoter may turn around and say you don't get this yourself you don't get work. Independent wrestling is run on a shoestring budget at times and people will cut costs at every chance to make themselves more profitable. I just hope the industry gets together and is on the same page and there is some sort of regulation and people get themselves disclosure checks.  

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3 minutes ago, Hoptimus said:

The wrestlers and anyone backstage might not be willing to pay for any disclosure checks.

You'd hope that we're at the point where having a DBS certificate will be mandatory for all wrestlers and crew from now on. No DBS, no booking.

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4 minutes ago, Hoptimus said:

This has all been a very sad and depressing long weekend. 

In regards to regulating the business a number of independent promotions in the UK work to an already tight budget and have some of the talent double up to do other duties. 

If you are a promotion that runs a town hall once a month draws 350-400 fans each month at a £12-15 ticket price you have all the various overhead to cover. You have venue, talent fees, event marketing, travel and accommodation. If the promotion doesn't own its own ring then ring hire, production that's not included with the venue hire. There will be other costs that I will have possibly missed. 

Most promotions will struggle to add the cost of professional people in such as on hand medical personnel for all events. 

The wrestlers and anyone backstage might not be willing to pay for any disclosure checks. You could have a scenario where talent are looking for promoters to foot the bill for PVG checks but then the promoter may turn around and say you don't get this yourself you don't get work. Independent wrestling is run on a shoestring budget at times and people will cut costs at every chance to make themselves more profitable. I just hope the industry gets together and is on the same page and there is some sort of regulation and people get themselves disclosure checks.  

If you don’t have have the funds and means to provide a safe working place, than you should not be in the wrestling business. It’s not rocket science.

 

 

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5 minutes ago, LWOLeN said:

If you don’t have have the funds and means to provide a safe working place, than you should not be in the wrestling business. It’s not rocket science.

 

 

100% agreed. It's time wrestling was held to the same standards as any other business. If a promotion can't afford to operate safely and legally, it closes. Simple.

Edited by CavemanLynn

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2 minutes ago, LWOLeN said:

If you don’t have have the funds and means to provide a safe working place, than you should not be in the wrestling business. It’s not rocket science.

 

 

Any two bob promoter can put on a show or set up a training school, how many promoters now try and run without adequate insurance for one ? Football had the FA and they did fuck all about the likes of Bennell for years so wrestling hasn't a chance of being regulated.

The only thing that should happen is that there are proper laws and criminal charges brought upon any abusers , if you don't nothing will change 

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4 hours ago, neil said:

No one other than Moo can do it. But it's very easy to sign up for a new account. If you don't want to do that because you value your post count that much, then I don't know what to tell you.

Unless this forum is unique amongst  bulletin boards, the permissions to change user names could be given by Moo to other admins or mods.  

I’ve never really understood why one absentee landlord keeps all the higher admin powers to themselves.  I appreciate this is out of your hands Neil but it’s just another instance of this odd setup holding things back.

As for starting a new account, I can imagine long long term users might not want to lose their history here, but if that’s the only option 🤷‍♂️

Edited by Loki

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37 minutes ago, Hoptimus said:

This has all been a very sad and depressing long weekend. 

In regards to regulating the business a number of independent promotions in the UK work to an already tight budget and have some of the talent double up to do other duties. 

If you are a promotion that runs a town hall once a month draws 350-400 fans each month at a £12-15 ticket price you have all the various overhead to cover. You have venue, talent fees, event marketing, travel and accommodation. If the promotion doesn't own its own ring then ring hire, production that's not included with the venue hire. There will be other costs that I will have possibly missed. 

Most promotions will struggle to add the cost of professional people in such as on hand medical personnel for all events. 

The wrestlers and anyone backstage might not be willing to pay for any disclosure checks. You could have a scenario where talent are looking for promoters to foot the bill for PVG checks but then the promoter may turn around and say you don't get this yourself you don't get work. Independent wrestling is run on a shoestring budget at times and people will cut costs at every chance to make themselves more profitable. I just hope the industry gets together and is on the same page and there is some sort of regulation and people get themselves disclosure checks.  

I think this is the danger - people won't pay. It really isn't a case of can't. A transferable DBS is £13 a year. If a company cannot afford that for all their employees, they either shouldn't be running or only employ those willing to pay for one themselves. If it is a case of they don't make much money - neither does youth football but any FA affiliated club is expected to give answers to the questions in my original post. 

The reality is, as parents you shouldn't ever consider allowing your child to go anywhere that can't answer those questions - it leaves your child open to the kind of horrific abuse described by KFogg above. That's not blaming parents - we put trust in people who appear authorative or who position themselves as experts in their field. The reality is though, without independent regulation, it becomes quite literally, a playground ripe for predatory behaviour. 

As fans, or indeed promoters, it's very noble to post worthy and woke comments on socials or forums, expressing disappointment or outrage. But if we pay money to these companies, who at best turn a blind eye to any kind of abuse, we are enabling it. 

Moving forward, as a wrestling fan of 30 years, but more importantly someone who has spent their career working with vulnerable children (the type who are often drawn to wrestling), I am unwilling to enable this behaviour anymore. 

It's a stretch, but could a voluntary code of safeguarding practise, assessed by an independent board of fans and ex industry people (Elisar, Len...) with experience in this area, be a way forward? 

It's an utter mess, with an engrained and utterly awful  culture of violent or sexual abuse, mysoginy and the manipulation of the vulnerable at its core. We can be part of the solution... As wrestling like this is utterly abhorrent. 

Edited by biggs
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3 hours ago, SuperBacon said:

The problem with all of these promotions changing their structure or appointing Welfare Officers is that they are all appointing people from inside the industry. That's fine to a certain degree as they will have an understanding of the business.

Couple of pages late to reply to this but I’d argue that’s the furthest thing from fine. Somebody with no “understanding of the business” is far more likely to disregard any defence of “that’s wrestling” or “it’s how the business works” or “paying dues” and call it out for the bullshit it is.

So sorry for your experiences @AVM and @Kfogg1991 and well done for telling your stories.

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This weekend has completely turned pro wrestling upside down. It proved that the promoters and wrestlers are the ‘actual’ marks in their fantasy universe and that we the fans are a lot smarter than we ever got credit for.

I can enjoy good wrestling, but nobody has to  indirectly get molested, abused and dropped on his head at age 14 to make a wrestling show possible for me. 

It seems that the most dangerous ‘hold’ in pro wrestling is not the illusion of a strangling move in the ring but the reality of all the abusive control and mind games exercised outside it.

This weekend shows that wrestling’s most bloodiest and ‘realest’ brawls do not occur in the ring but in its locker rooms, training sessions, car rides and hotels where greed, abuse and betrayal is routinely practiced with no scripted outcome. 

Needles to produce charisma.

Pills to reduce pain.

An eventual OD, suicide or heartattack as a finish.

Abuse and manipulation as just ‘paying your dues.

I’m so disappointed in independent wrestling as I know how fun it could be when done right.

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Yeah, the idea of it needing to be ran tinpot is for the benefit of people who want to take advantage of that way of doing business. Vince did it to get a tax break and so he doesn't have to treat anyone as an employee. The big leagues make it normal and that wafts down to everything beneath.

Edited by Cannibal Man

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