A Survivor's Story
I never knew what abuse was until I was in my early 20's when I started working for a charity and realised that what I had experienced as a child was in fact abuse. Back in those days Abuse was not heard of, sex was not talked about not like these days.
My parents divorced when I was 3. My mum remarries (or so I thought but in reality just living together). I had a happy childhood until my Gran passed away when I was 10 nearly 11 (Gran shared a room with me). My stepfather was very consoling to the fact. What I did not realise was his touching led to more acts and eventual rape at the age of 11. It happened on a regular basis each week. On return from school was the worse part as he and I would be alone - he worked shifts and mum was away all day not returning until 6pm. He gave me money to keep quiet and threatened to send me away if I ever told, never to see my mum again.
He progressively got worse, the fights and arguments between mum and him always ended up with things being thrown or him leaving to go to the pub then he would come home drunk. I can still smell him these days when I am near someone who has had lots to drink. The shame and guilt never really leave you but it does get better. It did stop at age 14 mainly due I think because I became "a woman"! I must have scared him I suppose. No more rapes; just on occasions other things but not as frequent.
By the age of 16 mum left him and it was the best day ever - even though I was not told until the night before the move. My older brother was always in the thick of it and knew everything about it - to this day I have not been able to talk to her about it. It is a part of her life she refuses to talk about - I got on with my life, received counselling and come out the other end. I still on occasions get flashbacks to that time but it has got easier as I've grown older.
PLEASE NOTE: NAPAC makes every effort to remove all identifying information. Names of perpetrators are only used where there has been a conviction in a court of law. NAPAC is not responsible for the accuracy of the stories.