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Stories From Survivors

The following accounts have been shared by a group of young people with SafeLives; all have experienced domestic abuse and have been supported by the Young People Violence Advisor (Ypva) Service in South Tyneside.

They have shared their individual stories to raise awareness of domestic abuse in the hope that victims and services will be inspired to make change. For an audio†version of these accounts, visit the SafeLives Soundcloud profile.

*Names have been changed to protect identities

Read the stories: Jenny, Jill, Holly, Carrie, Billie-Jo, Nisha, Chantelle, Katie


Jenny

Everything couldnít have been more perfect, like a normal close family. I was the youngest sibling, I had an older sister and brother, my mam and her partner. My mamís partner was controlling with my mam and he used to throw her around and chuck cups and objects at her. I hated him.

When I was 11 my mam tragically passed away due to cardio-myopathy. She had a heart transplant 6 and a half years before this that helped prolong her life but she knew her time was due to leave us. When my mam was gone, he instantly took control and tried to tell me and my sister what to do, such as cleaning the house, ironing and washing the dishes. My sister acted as my mam for a while but she couldnít take it anymore.† He got into a relationship not even 4 weeks after my mam passed away. She was a druggy just like him.

My sister left home and she went into foster care and I was left with my brother. My brother and I were close but he always used to just hide away in his bedroom so I couldnít really talk to him. I eventually started running away from home and I would be with my sister. My last attempt running away I was with my sister at her foster carers home - I was there for 2 nights and then I got a placement just down the road from her. I was happy to be near my sister.

This is when I met him.† Me and him had never spoke but my sister had a fancy for him and I used to think he was ugly. Anyhow time moved on, I was happy and content at my placement and still saw my sister every day. Me and him† were just like normal, acting like brother and sister. As time grew, me and I started getting closer and I felt like I could open up to him. He was like my protector if you like. My sister had her new boyfriend so we did still see a lot of each other but we started having our separate days too. I remember being at school on a dinner and I asked my good friend a very strange question. I said ďdo you think itís normal to have feelings for someone who you live with in the same home?Ē Obviously she couldnít understand my situation but she told me ďjust go and find out and see if your feelings are realĒ. When I went home that night I messaged him†and I told him how I felt and he replied - he said he liked me too.

I was happy with how the outcome was and we had a secret relationship. I was 14 when I got with him†and he was 17 heading on 18. Things were great and nervous because we sneaked around for a while. One day we got caught together and my foster carer knew exactly what was going on. He†got kicked out and he went to supported accommodation and I moved into another foster placement the following year due to my foster carer, having lung cancer. Me and him were then open about our relationship. Everything was perfect. I got settled at my new foster carerís and I loved my new family.† He moved into his own flat so we had our own space too.

About four months after he moved, things just changed. I never noticed at the time. I used to act like his mother for ages and the arguing was constant. He was always out and in debt with drug dealers or locked up - it was quite crazy. He just changed. I blamed myself for a long time thinking it was my fault. Things only got worse. I fell pregnant at 16 years, as soon as I left school. He was happy at first, but it didnít take long until he was saying it wasnít his and calling me names and just generally ďgriefingĒ me every day.

I moved into my own flat in supported accommodation due to my age, and I didnít have a lot of support with baby. I pretended everything was ok. One day when I had baby, he never helped with anything but gave me grief and always putting me down. I physically and emotionally couldnít take it anymore so I cried to the staff, telling them everything that had been going on for years. He always told lies and used to pretend he was going to kill himself so I would run back to him.

Time went on and I got out of the relationship and I met the YPVA Service and I wouldnít be where I am today without them. I have an excellent bond with the staff and I got support with court orders and much more! I canít thank them enoughÖ.

After 1 and a half years in supported accommodation, I got to go and move into my very own home with my baby. I couldnít be happier. I no long have any contact with him and I am focussing on my career for me and my baby.

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Jill

It was May 2012 when I first met him, I was 14 and he was 16. I had spoken to him for a little while before meeting him. He had sent me a friend request on Facebook and I accepted. We got talking to each other and not long after we got talking, we arranged to meet up.

He didnít look like the kind of person who I would be interested in, but the first day that I met him, he seemed different to what I thought he was going to be like, he was so lovely and we had a laugh and just clicked. Anyways, that day was over and I went home but continued to talk to him and meet him .

After a few months of being together we ended up with each otherís Facebook passwords but at that time I thought this was a normal thing to do. Not long after, he began to go on my Facebook quite often until it turned into him being on it every day.

We often bickered with each other about past relationships and I think he used to make me jealous a lot of the time by talking about his ex-girlfriends to me and used to tell me about his sexual relationships with people, which I didnít care about but he wanted to tell me anyways.

There was one day when he told me it was over because I had apparently been speaking to one of his friends, which I hadnít. Anyways we had sorted things out that night, but a week or so later he had finished with me for good, telling me it wasnít my fault which I obviously felt like it was. We ended up getting back together and things were fine for a while, or what I thought was fine, but he still constantly checked my Facebook. All of the above happened in the first 6 months of our relationship.

In February 2013 I was late on my period but I didnít think anything of it at that point. He kept going on at me to take a pregnancy test and I didnít want to but it finally got the point where I felt like I needed to. I went to savers on my way to school one morning and just bought a cheap test from there. I went to school and took it just as my first lesson was starting. When I seen the 2 lines come up on the test, I had never felt so scared in my entire life.

I went to his that night and told him and showed him the test. He seemed happy. I went home that night and told my mam, who just sat in tears. I was her 15 year old daughter, still at school who come home and told her she was pregnant.

The day of my scan I received a horrible message from him telling me that he wasnít coming and that it was all my fault because I didnít give him the money for this fare. I just sat there and cried and thought to myself how could he possibly do this to me, how could he miss seeing our child for the very first time. I felt like it was all my fault for not giving him the money to come to the hospital. He wasnít very supportive at all throughout my pregnancy, he never gave me any money to get anything for our child, I had to rely on my mam for everything which I shouldnít have had to. He would have rather spent every penny he got on the drugs which he took.

When our daughter was born, he still didnít support me. He stayed at mine with us for a few days then told me he was going to see his dad as he hadnít seen him for a while, but he never came back and he told me that it was because he was too ďoff his faceĒ to come back and see us.

There was one time when my daughter got to about 4/5 months old, when they start to pull hair like any normal child does. She grabbed my hair and I said ďouchĒ, joking with her and he slapped her in the head and told her not to do that because it was naughty and that she should learn not to do things like that. Another time, I wanted to go to the shop and X didnít want me to; I was getting my daughter strapped into her pram and he come storming through and pinned me up against the wall. I hadnít got the chance to strap my daughter in properly and she ended up falling out of her pram, to which X decided it was all my fault and that I had hurt her and that I was a horrible mam for doing that to her.

He used to think that I fancied one of the lads who worked at the shop next to his, so every time I went I constantly got accused of things, even if I was only 5 minutes. My life was constantly like this. He used to have people watching my every move. I would get messages when I was out shopping saying that he knows where I am and what Iím doing and things. I began to realise that he was making my life an absolute nightmare. He used to make me think that I hadnít been paid as much money as what I should have, because he would go to the cash point and take money out and then come back and tell me that there was only a certain amount that had been put into my bank. We used to finish quite a lot but I felt like I couldnít be without him.

It got to the point where I knew that this wasnít right. I used to have to go without food for days just to make sure that my daughter got fed as he wouldnít give me any money for food. He used to lock me in his bedroom so I couldnít go anywhere. He would lock me in his house and take my daughter from me.

There was a time that† he decided to go through my phone messages from years back and he didnít take to them very kindly. He told me to come in his bedroom where he decided to pin me down and begin to hit me. I thought he was going to kill me! His dad must have heard my screams and come running in and pulled him off me, but I didnít get no comfort from his dad, all he said was ďcome on son, sheís not worth the lock up chargeĒ. I was horrified. I still forgave him after this until I finally had to give up on our relationship.

I still allowed him to see my daughter, which wasnít a constant thing as he just picked and chose when he wanted her. One day I picked her up from his house and she fell asleep in my arms because he had made her so drowsy from the cannabis that he had been smoking round her.

Iíd seen my health visitor the next day and she told me not to take her back and got in touch with social services, who said that my daughter was not allowed back to that address. He went off it with me for a while and I used to get abusive messages all of the time but I just blocked him on everything and he finally gave up. Heís now seen our child once in the space of 2 and a half year and I donít really think he cares.

When my daughter was stopped from seeing him was when I got in touch with Claire and Hollie. At first I was so nervous to do the course as I didnít know what to expect but they were so lovely. Hollie was my main worker, I used to meet her every Wednesday and we would do some work in her car. She taught me about healthy relationships, and how Xís mind was working while he was doing these things to me. I explained to her that when he used to physically hurt me, it never used to bother me, it was the mental torture he put me through which hurt me more than anything. Although there wonít ever be any excuse for what he done to me, I got some sort of sense as to what was going on in his head to why he used to do it. Hollie and Claire both made me see what went wrong and I canít thank them enough for the work which they done with me because I now know the signs to look out for in case this should happen again. My head was messed up when I was finally free from him and Hollie and Claire helped to fix me. Theyíve inspired me to train to do what they do or something along them lines.

I am studying hard at college to get where I want to be, I have my own home and 2 beautiful children to be proud of so Iím glad I got away when I did because I would hate to think where I would be if I didnít. I think it is so important that anyone in the same situation or similar should speak to a service like this before itís too late and I hope my story can inspire others to speak out!

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Holly

Where I am nowÖ

Looking back so much has changed since I worked with Claire, (from aged 17 to now aged 20.) I remember the first day I met Claire, I was reluctant because I had already attended Ďoptionsí. I didnít think this was helpful to me at all, it was all older women. Most of them had been referred there from social workers and had children so I felt like my problems werenít as bad as theirs. I also couldnít speak much and didnít want everyone knowing in the group. However, when I got offered one to one with Claire it was the best thing Iíd done. This was so important for me, everything was confidential and I went from having no help from anyone to being fully supported.

When I look back at when I first met Claire and to where I am at now I am quite proud of the way things have changed and so grateful for all her help. The first memory is mine and Claireís first visit together, we got a milkshake and talked through things slowly, I didnít feel pushed and over the next couple of weeks we done a lot of work, not just relationship advice etc but Claire helped me with family situations, housing, work, college, c.v. and more.

When I first met Claire I knew my relationship wasnít great, but all I could see was in my eyes my boyfriend was perfect for me and I still loved him. I didnít think anything would change that at the time. Looking back now although Iím still with the same boyfriend 4 years later Iím completely different; I donít think I ever wouldíve been if Iíd refused the work with Claire just like I almost done. Back then I had no-one, no interest in anything apart from him, my whole life felt as though it was put on hold for him. Although I didnít want it to be this way I didnít know what else I could do until I talked .Talking to Claire and knowing somebody is there for you and who understands makes you feel so much better, but most of all makes you see sense.

I never thought I would be able to be the way I was with my boyfriend the way it had been at the start and thatís one of the many reasons I knew I couldnít stay with him. The only option I thought I had was to leave. I gained confidence and opened my eyes to what was really going on, as soon as that happened, everything changed for the better. Slowly things he was doing and saying after being with Claire or doing with her, I would go home and notice everything more than I had been. I started to question him and started to change by putting up barriers up.

Before I started meeting with Claire I remember wanting to do this but never couldíve. I grew stronger, felt stronger and eventually after every time I seen Claire and I gained a lot more confidence in myself, because of this I was able to stop a lot of things happening at the time and was standing up for myself, not letting things escalate so far. Over the next couple of month I felt like a much stronger person. There was times it felt so hard doing this and pushing him away (into line) after I had allowed it by a way and not stood up for myself for so long. However it was all worth it. All the work I had done with Claire I couldnít go back and forget all of that, I knew that knowledge now and thatís what gave me enough strength to believe it and do something about it.

Now, I am a carer; I have just finished my support and teaching learning apprenticeship. Iím doing my driving lessons and have a lovely 2-bedroom flat. When I first met Claire I didnít work, didnít go to college/training and I had just left supported accommodation, I had nothing really. Iím a lot happier in myself now and in the relationship, some people would say to me Ďleave him, you can do better, he will never changeí but slowly I can say it has, something I thought never would happen to, and I think thatís why it was always so hard to leave because I knew it would be for good. It was so hard to do it, but worth it and I couldnít thank Claire enough for the help and support that she has given me.

Just like the age I was 16, young, left home, no money, not many interests, not many friends around and in a violent relationship people donít know who to turn to I think if everyone was in a position to have a one to one then they should. The difference it made to me is massive, I would still be on rock bottom now, hurt or a lot worse.

Iím happy now and I thank everyone who supported me during the times I went through, I couldíve been seriously hurt and lived a life of the same thing going on, meeting that first time with Claire has changed me forever.

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Carrie

I was 17 when I met him at a house party.† He was older than me, 24.† I was full of drink and he was adamant I had to stay at his.† We started to meet each other and within a couple of weeks he was very controlling, aggressive and demeaning.† As a result, I felt very low and very restricted in who I could talk to.† I knew it was wrong because when I was younger†Iíd seen different violence with my mam being controlled and beaten up off her boyfriend, but at that time I was confused, the Social Worker said it wasnít safe for me to live with my mam and I went to live in a Childrenís Home.†

I continued meeting him and my friends could see I was not happy, she told me to delete his number, I tried but he threatened to go to the door where we were and take the door down.† He said I was with other lads.† He told me to get to his and I went because I was scared, but also because I was scared he would tell my mam I was seeing him.† He said my mam would put me back into care for being with him. This went on for a couple of months, during which time the abuse was getting worse.†

One day I returned home full of bruises on my face.† My mam asked if Iíd been in a fight and I broke down and told her everything. My mam took action; she deleted him off my Facebook and Instagram.† Whilst the harassment did stop for a while, I struggled to go out on my own.† I really regretted the choices I had made that night when I stayed at his; I should have just gone home.† Looking back, I was very low and still restricted on where I could go even after getting out of the relationship.†

It wasnít long before I started getting threats off his mates and my mam convinced me to ring the Police. I was scared as I thought the abuse would get worse. The Police told me he was very†dangerous, and that they would protect me, but I was still scared.† The Police fitted a panic alarm and a letter box jammer in my home and I felt a little bit safer.† The Police also told me that I should talk to Social Services, but because I had been in care before, I was scared and said no.† The Police said they understood, they told me another service could help and referred me to the YPVA Service.†

Claire came out to talk to me and I felt a bit of relief that I would have someone to talk to; I didnít want to talk to my mam because I didnít want to stress her out.† I feel since doing the work with the YPVA Service that I have a bit closure, itís like I have a weight off my shoulders.†† I feel like I talk about the abuse more and most importantly I feel safe and confident.† I suppose although I knew the signs from seeing my mam go through abuse, the signs were different for me and more importantly I didnít think it would happen to me.† Now though I feel like the healthy relationship programme has helped me a lot more to understand the difference between a healthy and unhealthy relationship and I would tell anyone to get out while you can, there is always help and there is always a better future.

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Billie-Jo

I was 14 when I first met him and he was two years older than me. I met him through one of my family members who was the same age as me, but her friend was older and seeing his†friend. After that day he added me on Facebook, and after talking for about a week, we started seeing each other. At the beginning he was nice and let me do things I wanted to do although a lot of my time was spent with him. I used to go out with him and his friends rather than my friends, which drove my friends away as I spent more time with him than with them.

As the relationship developed and we spent every day together, I think he became reliant on me being there. This made him become controlling and he didnít let me go out with my friends or to parties, I wasnít allowed to wear make-up and he told me to cover up. He also made a joint Facebook account for us and I had to deactivate my own Facebook account. This was so he could check who was messaging me. I wasnít allowed to use social media that he deemed was ďinappropriateĒ for me to use.

I was hardly in the house so I didnít spend time with my family as much as I did before. That made me and my mam become distant as I didnít tell my mam as much as I did before. The more time I spent with him, the more controlling he became, and the more he thought he could stop me doing things. He felt he was in control of everything. After a while of spending every day with him if I did or said the wrong thing I could tell he was annoyed. I wasnít allowed to talk to boys and he constantly thought I was cheating on him if I had a conversation with another boy.

One day he didnít want me to go home but I did and he followed me to the bus stop, as he would never let me walk to the bus†stop on my own. He asked me why I wanted to go home, and I said I just did, and he went to strangle me. I backed off and he then realised what he was doing but when I asked him to leave he refused. I had went home and he had messaged me saying he was sorry, that he would never do it again and wanted to carry on as normal. I said ok as he promised he didnít mean to do it and said he would never do it again. I also pulled him up on his controlling behaviour and he said he would change this too. But when I got back with him it never did.

A couple of months after this, his friends and one of his friends girlfriends came over to his house for a drink for his birthday. They had got cocaine and they were sniffing coke and getting drunk. His and his friend went to go and get more drink and another deal. On the way back his friend told him that I had cheated on him, and rather than just asking me, he kept this to himself resulting in him becoming more and more angry. When I asked him what was wrong he said ďyou have been fucking cheating on meĒ. I denied it as I hadnít cheated on him but he became more and more agitated and backed me up against the door. He then put his hands around my throat and told me I better not be cheating on him. His mum and auntie were on the other side of the door telling him to let go of me and told him to open the door. Once he did I walked out and went home. I ended things with him obviously. After a week of talking to him over Facebook about the situation he apologised and promised he wouldnít do it again so I got back with him. But I realised that staying with him was a mistake and I ended things with him for good.

Although I ended things with him he constantly text me, followed me, rang me and my friends to check up on me and he wouldnít leave me alone. Until one day I had an argument with him at school on my friendís phone and it got reported to head of behaviour in school. Due to their safeguarding responsibilities, the school had to contact the police. I panicked when the police were there and sort of just told them everything. I got sent home from school that day and when police got back in touch with me they told me they had contacted the YPVA Service for me to meet up with Claire. I didnít want to at first because I thought I didnít need help and I could do it on my own. But after a few sessions I saw it was being beneficial for me and my future.

Claire is the boss of the YPVA Service and gives the young people workers. My allocated worker is Hollie and the more I worked with her the more our relationship developed and I was able to trust her. So telling her things was easy and she would always try and help and give me advice. It was nice being able to feel confident enough to†trust her enough to tell her things that I wouldnít tell anyone else.

The police served a PIN (Police Information Notice) on him which stops him from contacting me and from coming anywhere near me until I am 18 years old. The PIN has been helpful as I can go out and not have to worry about bumping into him and taking verbal abuse off him.

Iím close to finishing with the YPVA Service and recommend it to any young person who is struggling with abusive relationships as it is beneficial and helpful for you. I feel more confident to get into new relationships as I can use the work with the YPVA Service to see if the relationship I am in is healthy or unhealthy. I have now rebuilt friendships that I had before, and gained new ones as the YPVA Service has supported me in increasing my confidence. I donít think I would be where I am today if Hollie, Jamila, Claire and Melissa hadnít have helped me.†

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Nisha

I was 13 years old living at home with my family. I was suffering verbal (getting called names) and physical abuse from my parents and older brother. The physical assaults were mostly from my oldest brother who felt I should respect him and my parents and do everything they wanted me to do, even if I didnít want to do it.† They used to make me wear my hijab and try and control everything I did. I would sometimes be locked in the house so I could not go out to see my friends after school as my parents felt it would look bad and shame my family if a young Muslim girl was out on the streets alone or just with friends.†

I didnít understand as my other friends were allowed to go out with their friends and wear what they liked to wear.† It went on for a while until I had to the courage to call the police from my house phone. My brother had hit me that day because I refused to wear my hijab and my parents supported him to do this, as they thought I was being disrespectful to them and my culture.† I was taken into care for my own safety and placed with a foster carer.

Claire then contacted me from the YPVA Service and I have been supported by them since. I have completed lots of work including making safety plans, learning about healthy and safe relationships, including cultural issues such as honour based violence and forced marriage, as well as legal orders and how the police can help me. The police did lots to help me and worked with Claire to help me better.

We also talked about how to stay safe online, protecting my phone and stuff. Claire also helped me with school, my CV and my plans for employment when I leave school. And she supported me to meet other services, such as social workers, Connexions workers, cadets etc so I felt supported as I would not have gone on my own.

If Iíd stayed at home and not reported it, and not got help, I feel I would have less confidence, no future, most likely to stay at home and cook and clean, (my culture), maybe have married too young.

Staying out of the home means I have more confidence, know my rights as a person/human, and police/court help for the assaults/abuse. I know about protection orders to help keep me safe and have lots more knowledge for the future, Iíve made personal improvements and have more career opportunities.†

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Chantelle

My name is Chantelle Hall, I am 18 years old. When I was 15 I got into a relationship that would change my life. The first few months were perfect, we went out places, we met each others family, we were still young so we just had a good time. One day I was on the phone to a male friend, and my partner decided that it wasn't okay for me to do that. That was the first time he hit me. After that it kind of just becomes a blur.

He started checking my texts, my calls, my emails, the comments and likes on my social media. Sometimes he even took my phone away from me. If I was out with friends, he'd call me every ten minutes expecting a detailed list of the people I was with, where we were and what we doing Ė†on many occasions that wasnt enough and I'd have to send a picture as proof. He started to control my every move, and eventually I had no control over my life anymore. At sixteen I lost the choice in wether or not we had sex, it became a need for him rather than a want and even when I didn't want to, he found a way to get it.

He isolated me from a lot of my friends and sometimes even my family. Anything I said or did that he didn't like would result in a kick, or a punch, or a chunk of my hair being pulled out. He repeatedly cheated on me and if I ever tried to leave him, he'd threaten to kill himself or harm himself in some way. I was completely trapped. But I loved him, and I didn't want anyone to think he was a bad person Ė†because to him it was my fault anyway, and he reminded me of that everyday, until I eventually believed it too. I became very depressed, and started self harming. I lost interest in school, in my music, in everything.†

Just after New Years, I decided enough was enough and found the courage to walk away. It was in January 2016 that I caught him with another girl, and when I asked him why he told me that I wasn't enough anymore, and that I should just kill myself. My friend was with me and she took my phone and blocked his number, deleted him from everything and told me that now was my chance to regain my freedom, and that I should run and never look back. So I did just that.†

I moved away from the area and got myself a fresh start. I got my friends back, my family back and I'm working on building my self confidence. I started writing as a way of processing what was happening to me, and now it's just a part of my daily routine. I found that maybe taking some of these negative thoughts and turning them into something positive could encourage a lot of other victims of domestic violence to stand up and fight back.†

Just because he tells you he's asking because he cares, or that he only got mad because he loves you, it doesn't mean it's true. That isn't love, it's torture, and nobody deserves that.†

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Katie

I was 15 when I met him, he was two years older than me. At first I wasnít interested in him but the more I got to know him the closer and nicer he got.†It was like he was different from the other boys, he showed me that he knew how to treat a lady in the way no other boy would.†He seemed caring and nice and loving so I started to get feelings for him like he had for me.†At that point it took me nearly 4 months to know him, I felt the same and when I asked him he obviously said yes.†We were both happy and he started to show me what an actual relationship was like and, he showed me how stuff was meant to go in relationships.†He kept on proving to me that he was a nice boy to the point I didnít want to stay at home no more. I wanted to move out from my mams even though I was only 15 so I did, but my mam was not happy in the slightest.†This was when stuff was starting to go different between us but I couldnít see it as I was madly in love with him. I didnít think there was anything wrong by it as he told me my mam was wrong and that I wasnít too young to move out.† He also said that he would be there to look after me and I needed to start growing up and learning to look after myself, as one day I would have to leave my mams so I listened to him.†Soon enough me and my mam fell out over it.†

Living with him was good for the first month and then he started drinking constantly, like every day constantly having parties with loads of girls and hardly no boys, I knew one of the girls and soon enough he started going on differently, different personality, not like the nice person at the start.†He started calling me names when there was loads of people there, making me out to be the bad person and him being the victim so they would start joining in.†Then he apologised saying it was the drink talking, not him.†So obviously I forgave him every time but it kept on happening, then it started to get worse. I found out one night when I was asleep, and he was drunk again, that he had cheated on me.†When I asked him he said it wasnít him, it was the drink, and that he had stayed with her because he didnít want to wake me up. I†forgave him, then he started throwing me outside at midnight, calling me names like slag, slut and worthless.†When I got threw out I had no coat, no nothing but heíd never let me back in until he felt like it, even if I begged him.†So obviously every time he came to get me Iíd be freezing and say to him, why do you keep doing this to me.†He would say stuff like oh babe, baby you know I donít mean it, even though Iíd be in tears, freezing, angry and confused, asking myself why he was like this in front of his friends and always when he was drunk.†I hated it, but I still loved him and I didnít know what he was doing to me was wrong.

Then it got worse, he started getting aggressive and abusive, not just mentally but physically. He started hurting me, he hit me and forced me to lie to my family for money so he could buy drink and drugs.† If I didnít lie or get money heíd hit me, kick off with me and chuck me out of the house.† When I got paid he would take all of my money off me and say I control your money, not you.† Even though I knew it went on drink or clubbing I was too scared to say no so I always gave in, this went on for three years and I would not leave him because I was scared.†Every time I did leave heíd drag me back in or stalk me and so I was trapped until one day I had the courage to leave him. But even when I got rid of him I still kept on getting phone calls and stalked and threatened.†

Then it got to the point that he started saying he was going to kill himself and the blood would be on my hands to make me go back.†Every time I did heíd be sitting there with his drink and loads of pills in his hand, so I would take them off him and leave but he would always make me feel like the bad person, that it was my fault heís this way, that Iím a coward, a big slut and a nobody every time. Then one night I went back one last time to find he had a friend with him. They were both drunk like usual so I went to leave.†He said no, stay and have sex with me. They both kept on going on about it saying please come on, repeating it all the time until I gave in and done it because I was scared as they wouldnít let me out and what they would have they would have done if I hadnít.†

After I ran out and he started chucking stuff at me.†After getting his keys he ran out following me to the point I had to hide until he left.† I got home to tell my mam everything to the point she got me help with the YPVA Service that help young people and other young girls who have went through what I have went through and get you back on track. Now look at me, no more B*, heís got a Restraining Order.† Iím no longer scared of all of the time because of their help.† Now Iím getting better and recovering slowly.† Because of their help I understand what to look out for now Iím with their service.

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