my battle with abuse and mental health problems
I grew up in a house with an alcoholic father and a mum that would work 2 jobs to provide and probably escape, the atmosphere and the domestic abuse. I am the eldest and have a younger sister and brother. At the age of 11 I was sexually abused by a work colleague of my mums. I told my mum and dad the next day and they figured it would be better if I could just try to forget what had happened and he would continue to 'babysit' for us. Eventually on leaving home, I walked into a heavily relationship at just turned 17 which coincidentally turned into an abusive relationship that lasted 15 years. In that time, I became mum to 3 boys who were my reason to keep going. When I eventually left age 30, life got worse. My eldest left to go with his dad and I was devasted. His dad used him as a pawn to keep control over me. Wee bit further on and I had a nervous breakdown. I have been diagnosed with depression since the age of 16 and throughout my life have suffered severe anxiety as well. Today I am well, I have all 3 boys with me, we have our struggles as could be imagined having lived through a lifetime of watching mum be treated like shit and that is their 'normal'. However, I volunteer for a charity who educate survivors about abusers, I unbelievably (to me) have a job at women's aid working and supporting women to take back their lives and I am studying for a HNC in social services.....there is life after abuse!!!
Written by Adele Anderson