(This piece has been submitted anonymously)
A story that is sadly far too common among us but is not spoken about in concern of embarrassment, shame, doubt, judgment or fear” Below is a story written by a brave women who is ready to share her story to help others.
My parents separated when I was young (primary school age) my mother met a new partner and before we knew it, my mum, brother and myself were living with him in his house. I got along well with him from the beginning, but my brother on the other hand hated him and they were always arguing.
Not long after, my mother and her partner were getting married. Everyone seems happy for them. I mean heck, if you looked on my face back then, I am pretty sure you would assume I was over the moon and happy for my mum too.
But if only you had a magnifying glass that could cut through the skin and to see the real truth behind my smile, the sadness I felt, how alone I felt and how helpless and manipulated I really was.
He raped me for around 5 years even though to me, it felt like a lifetime.
My whole teenage years were a living hell. I was manipulated by a monster and I lived in constant fear. Imagine trying to sleep at night knowing the patterns of this monster. Alcohol and music usually lead to him creeping in my bedroom and assaulting me whilst my mother slept in another room.
The only person who knew about this nightmare that I was living in was my brother, and he was sworn to secrecy. I was near the age of sixteen when my brother told my mother what had been happening to me. The next morning all I can remember is being asked by my mother “what do you want to do?” and my response was always ” I just want you to be happy mum”. All I ever wanted was for her to be happy.
After my brother told my mum, a few family members found out what had been happening to me, and although they tried to help me through it, I pushed them all away.
I didn’t want to see a psychologist, what was that going to do I thought to myself. Hell, it was still happening, it wasn’t going to take it away. My mum told my family to stay out of it and that she was handling it.
Meanwhile, we all still lived together. It was never spoken about again. Everything was brushed under the rug and life moved on like what was happening to me was never really happening.
I tried to move on, to be happy, to be free of my childhood trauma, but I never really dealt with my trauma, how could I when I was living with this monster up until I moved out at the age of twenty-one. I never realised how much my past effected me until I met my AMAZING HUSBAND.
My husband has been my number one supporter in life and the one person who has made me the person I am today. I almost lost this wonderful man, and the day that I almost lost him, was the day that I realised how much my childhood had effected me.
This was the day that I decided that what happened to me needed to be dealt with. I needed to face my past head on and learn to accept and manage what happened to me. I didn’t know how yet, but I knew that I had to do something. I now know that bottling such a traumatic events in was self destructive, This was not something to be brushed under the rug like my family did, it was something that I had to deal with and free myself from.
I needed closure and I deserved closure !
After all those years, I finally confronted my abuser. He admitted to everything he had done to me. Not only did he admit it to me, but he admitted what he had done to my mother and my husband as well. I told him that I didn’t want him in my life and I wanted nothing more to do with him.
I then went to the police station and made a formal report.
What a horrible, dark and cold place it is to sit in a room that is so unwelcoming that it makes you feel even more upset than you already were feeling before walking in there.
Making a statement about what happened to me so long ago was hard, but I knew it needed to be dealt with for the safety of others.
I came forward to not only to heal myself, but also because I feared for other young girls who could potentially cross paths in this monsters life. Coming forward was one of the hardest things I have ever done.
Once my statement was made the legal battle began.
It took around three years before he was found guilty and sentenced to jail. My mother had passed away before it went to court, so I also had to deal with her passing away on top of this emotional roller coaster that I was already going through .
Whilst I am hormonal, emotional and pregnant with my first child, this monster made me go through absolute hell with years of adjournments and trying to delay the court hearings.
This battle wasn’t about sending someone to Jail for me, it was about him admitting what he had done. It was about keeping others safe from him, and it was about closure and acknowledging what had happened to me.
I finally did see a psychologist, I was seeing them weekly just to deal with everyday life.
This battle was hard, I am not going to say it was easy because that would be a lie.
I still have my bad and good days just like everyone else, but I am now free. I have acknowledged my past and I am open to accepting help on those bad days. And if I have learned anything through this experience, its that speaking up and finding closure is important in order to properly move forward.
If I could say one thing to my younger self, it would be
“believe in yourself, others will believe you, they will be there and they will support you.”
To anyone reading this, if you know someone or if you are or have been in a similar situation
speak up because it is only our voices that can make a difference.
speak up because NO ONE should have to deal with something like this on their own.
speak up because you deserve closure.
speak up because you will get the love and support you so truly deserve.
Our minds are amazing tools and you’re much stronger than you think!
To all survivors of sexual, mental and psychical abuse, I send much love and strength to you. I want you to know that you are not alone and you will get through this.
– xoxo – from a stolen child who found her truth