Raped age 6
When I was 6 a man who owned the shop next door to my house invited me into his house to show him that I could really read.
I don't remember a lot about what happened next except sitting on his lap and a knock on the door that turned out to be my sister telling me tea was ready and the man washing his hands. (No idea how she knew I was there as she was just 4) sometime later (have no idea about the timescales) my best friend told me the police were coming to see me cos I'd been naughty.
So I had to tell my mum, but I told her on the morning of my great granddads funeral. I used the words 'it was long and hard and it hurt'.
Her first reaction was disbelief and the words she used have stung me ever since 'are you sure, love, he'll go to jail' I know she regretted saying it straight away but at 6/7 it stopped me dead in my tracks and when the police turned up I refused to say a word to them.
The man was arrested and because of his victims ages he was allowed to plead guilty to sexual assault x 4. Fined total of £200. My parents found out the outcome from the local newspaper which implied that he did it cos his wife was pregnant!
When I was 11 an uncle who thankfully lived along way away decided he wanted to practice open mouthed kissed on me and he always held me tightly around the chest.
On its own this was not nice but if the first incident hadn't happened I think life would have carried on as normal but it didn't. I went completely off the rails.
I kept running away from home, shoplifting and severe depression which carried on undiagnosed until I was 27 and is still an issue now in my 40s.
I've forgiven those 'men' not for their sake but so that I can move on with my life and I have. I'm happily married (16 years) with 2 amazing kids.
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Thank you for sharing your experience with us. We believe you.
We know how hard it is, when we get those ingrained responses from people (such as your mum, in this case), where they don’t mean to cause harm but do so inadvertently.
They are often the hardest attitudes to challenge, because they want to be ‘certain’ – which as someone who has experienced abuse, you are. You need other people to be certain alongside you.
Sending you peaceful thoughts and congratulations to your kids on their choice of Mum 🙂