Natalie's Story - Trigger Warning
As a little girl I was sexually molested by my friends father (as were a lot of other kids in my neighbourhood) and sexuality abused for years by my own father. At 6 years old I told a teacher who then contacted my mother who then contacted the police. My dad got taken away and after a few months he was charged and a trial was going ahead however as a scared and confused little girl I remember feeling sad. I remember seeing my mother crying alone in her bedroom and feeling like it was all my fault. I didn’t want my mother to be sad and I wanted things to go back to normal.. so I told everyone I lied. The charges were dropped, my dad came back and things went back to normal.
The abuse continued until I was old enough to say no. But by then the damage was already done. I was a happy, outgoing child but when I entered my teenage years I was sad, lost and broken. I turned to drugs and alcohol to help me cope. I was depressed but I couldn’t tell anyone why. They would think I was lying again. I had to live with the man who abused me So I had to pretend I was ok when really, I felt like I wanted to die. I tried on 3 separate occasions. I self harmed to the point I had to be rushed to hospital to have stitches. I knew I had to do something, so I told my mother everything. How I didn’t lie and I don’t know if she fully believed me but she left my father anyway.
A few years later my half brother told me and my mother that my father had abused him too but we decided not to say anything. Eventually as I grew older I learned to cope better. A lot of the abuse I managed to block out and erase entirely from my memory. I met my boyfriend when I was 18 who was a huge support to me. We started a family and bought a house. In October last year my brother came to me and asked if I’d come to the police with him and tell them about the abuse as he was suffering and felt like it was the right time to speak out. I agreed and we gave our statements and an investigation began. We are still waiting on an update. We don’t know if he will be charged or not. There’s still a long road a head but I know I’ll get through this, I’ve spent years fighting and I ain’t ever giving up. I’ve got a voice now and I’m using it.