After seven years and two children together, I broke up with my boyfriend. I had never really loved him and felt that I had stayed with him because I was weak and on some level I knew that getting away wouldn’t be easy.
He harassed me and stalked me after I broke up with him, but I tried to carry on with my life as normal. Hoping that he would get bored and give up soon.
One Saturday night I went out with my friends to celebrate our birthdays (three of us were all born in the same week). I saw my ex-boyfriend in the bar that I was in, and he pushed past me almost knocking me over. My friend told me to ignore him so I did, and he left.
In the early hours of January 27th, 2013, my brother who was babysitting my sons sent me a message to say that one of my sons wasn’t feeling well and wanted me, so I left the bar and began to walk home. On the way I realized I had a lot more to drink than I meant too, and I started to feel very drunk, I even tripped over on my way home.
When I got home, there seemed to be no one home so I went upstairs and my ex-boyfriend was standing in my children’s bedroom. I found out later that he had come to my house and told my brother that I had sent him to look after the boys. My brother knew nothing of the stalking and harassment that he was doing and let him in before going home himself.
I remember telling my ex-boyfriend to come out of the children’s room so they could sleep, I wanted to get him away from the children. I remember talking with him and even arguing a little in the living room. I remember having a drink and it tasted really strong. Then it all goes black.
I remember small moments of the rape. I know that he raped me several times, I can remember being face down on my bed with him holding me down by my neck and I couldn’t move. Then I remember being on my back, and I couldn’t move. I just turned my head away and squeezed my eyes shut.
The next morning when I woke up, he was still there, in my bed. I screamed at him to get out and called my friend and my brother to come help me. My friend took my bed sheets and clothes and washed them, while I showered and scrubbed at myself. Unwittingly, destroying any evidence.
I was bruised all around my neck and the rest of my body. I have never told anyone but I even had bruising on my vagina.
My brother went to the police and gave a statement. An officer came to my house and I told him what I remembered, which at that time wasn’t much. The officer told me that because I didn’t know really how it started, that I shouldn’t seek to press charges because “you don’t want to ruin his life”. And I agreed. I AGREED?! I was so weak.
A part of me died that night. I was dead inside. I couldn’t work and I could barely take care of my children. I was completely distraught.
After time, I began to heal. But the harassment and stalking continued and during the summer, my ex-boyfriend attacked me, punching me, kicking me, even spitting on me, while I was holding my children.
I pressed charges of assault but he was released with just a caution. I snapped. I got myself a solicitor and went through a six month court battle that secured me several court orders barring my ex access to me and my children.
My sons and I moved town and I changed job. We live in a beautiful house now, and I feel safe again. I have never gotten justice for my rape, but I have gotten my children away from him, and that will do for me.
For all my sisters… We don’t just survive, we go on to LIVE.