Aged 18 I lived in a hostel. I had issues at home from being in an abusive environment so the only choice I had was to live in a homeless shelter for young people. A couple of months after moving in, I had a party with a few friends over before going out on a girl’s night out. One friend got so drunk that she couldn’t even make it out of the front door of the building that I lived in. She lived about half an hour away from me and had no way of getting home. No taxi would take her home because she was that drunk. She kept saying to me, “call him call him.” Him being her friend who’s number she kept waving in my face. She didn’t have credit on her mobile so I used mine. We met him after taking about 20 minutes to walk her to the place where we said we would meet. We passed her over to him and he took her home. We didn’t hear from her for a couple of days which was unusual but he had text me to say that she got home safe and her mu m took her to bed. Little did I know she was raped by him in bushes nearby.
Three days later he text me asking to lend a DVD for his daughter to watch and asked if I had any Disney films like Finding Nemo. We spoke for a couple of days before he came around to collect the DVD. I thought he was just being friendly, little did I know what was going to happen a week later.
When he come around for the DVD our building had rules we had to let the staff who worked in our hostel know the names of our visitors when the enter and leave the building. He came upstairs to get the DVD and had a coffee. When you walk them through my flat door there are shelves. I put my phone there and went and sat by the window on the windowsill after I passed him the DVD. I asked how my female friend was after he walked her home. He said she was fine. I lit up a cigarette and offered him one. We got talking and I asked him about his daughter and if there was any other films that he wanted to lend. My phone in the corner kept vibrating. I thought I was a little strange for it to be going off so much.
I stood up to get my phone and HE blocked me from getting my phone. He held me against the wall and started kissing me. Cutting out all the details of what actually happened the next minute his body was over mine. A big man who was twice my build I couldn’t get home off me. I couldn’t scream I couldn’t shout for help my whole body had frozen. I cried whilst he beat me up and left me to get dressed. I had to walk him downstairs and sign him out. He leaned in and whispered ‘Boone will ever believe you’ on cctv this looked like we kissed. WE NEVER!
Three weeks I sat in the corner of my flat bedroom. I couldn’t move, I couldn’t sleep or didn’t see anyone. We had monthly flat checks were staff checked out flat for damage. My social worker saw me sat rocking in the corner crying. Faint bruises in between my legs and a scarred memory. I was encouraged to call the police. I had to go for internal tests and swabs and give them my clothes what I was wearing. My phone was confiscated. I was a week away from making my court video so I did not have to stand in court. The criminal investigation department questioned me. They had found inappropriate texts from my phone. Illegal texts for drugs. This was not sent from me. I didn’t touch drugs. I didn’t have a leg to stand on. Police said it was either, I take the rape accusation further and get charged with supplying or selling drugs or drop the charges against HIM and get on with my life. I guess I chose the wrong option. He is walking free. A dad of 3. A family man. Getting on with his life like nothing has happened. 7 counselors, 4 support workers, 3 drug and alcohol support staff and 2 suicide attempts later and he still gets away with what he has done. Yes I turned to class a drugs to keep me awake of a night so I didn’t have to think about what happened to me. It took me 3 years after it happened to become clean and drug free. After using drugs daily I can say I am clean from drugs and alcohol.
I’ve never been near another man. I am not a lesbian. I was bi from 14 years old, but now I cannot go near a man.
I can’t move on from this. It haunts me ever night doesn’t matter how many counseling sessions I have. Doesn’t matter how well life goes for me. I have nightmares, panic attacks and I now suffer with depression and I cannot even face going to work most mornings. 5 years later and he is still winning. I blamed myself until a couple of months ago. What if I screamed, what if I just taken the DVD downstairs, what if I called the police earlier, what if I told them about the drug messages being sent from a neighbor. What if…
To this day, I cannot go near the area where I was raped. I cannot have people walking behind me, cannot have people covering my mouth or holding my wrists or covering my eyes. Not even if we are messing about. This man is still winning and I have not learnt how to cope. Reading some of people’s stories on here help me. I know I am not alone.
I can say though that I survived and I am a survived. I just need to learn how to cope and deal with it. I was 18 years old at the time. I am now 23. Hopefully I will get over this and be able to settle down into a relationship and not get scared when I get close to someone. I’ve kept this to myself for 5 whole years until today. Brave miss world on Netflix gave me the strength I needed to share my story so thank you.
— Amy, age 23