“Nobody noticed”: 9-year-old lived alone for 2 years, fed himself, and kept good grades

In southwestern France, a 9-year-old boy was abandoned by his mother and survived alone in their apartment for two years. Despite lacking electricity and heat, he continued attending school, where neither teachers nor classmates noticed his plight. Neighbors occasionally gave him food, unaware of his dire situation. He survived on canned food, cake, and tomatoes from a neighbor’s balcony, using multiple comforters to stay warm at night.

His mother lived just 5 km away but rarely visited or cared for him. The boy’s father was entirely absent. Months later, neighbors realized he was alone and contacted authorities. The mayor admitted it was hard to detect the boy’s situation due to his normal appearance and good academic performance. A neighbor reported the mother’s verbal abuse towards her son.

In court, phone records proved the mother’s absence, and neighbors confirmed the boy lived alone. The mother was sentenced to 18 months in prison and six months of electronic monitoring. The boy, now in foster care, expressed he wants no further contact with her. This story highlights his incredible resilience and determination to survive and continue his education.