How did I feel after my godfather raped me? Honestly I didn’t feel anything, I just went numb. It’s like after it happened it went to a pokey little lock-up some where in the abyss of my memory banks and was locked away for years afterwards. It was as though my mind and my soul had a conference and decided that it was just too much for me to handle on top of everything else. It would of course attempt to rear It’s grotesque head for years to come, and raise questions that I didn’t want to begin to contemplate, I would just swat them away like they were mosquitos and swallow the memory back down.
The day after it happened I was taken into foster care. The long and short of it is, my nest friend told our form tutor at school about my step father, he was questioned by police, they took his word over mine and so did my mother because he’d spent years making me out to be liar. The police had me down on record as being a runaway and evidently didn’t or chose not to spot the correlation between the two. My godfather stuck around for awhile afterwards, presumably to make sure I kept my trap shut, then one day he rang and told me to “fuck off” and never contact him again. And that was that. I was alone with out anyone. I moved to Wales a few months later to live with my dad. Smoking weed and listening to music became my solace. I got into metal when I befriended some pot smoking college guys when I was living in care (my foster parents didn’t know I smoked it of course and I am massively sorry if you’re reading this haha) Here are a couple of tracks by bands that were pretty much the sound track to my mid to late teens. I couldn’t bring myself to post anything from Korns ‘Issues’ album as It’s too triggering.
Machine Head-The Burning Red
In 2009′ I got itchy feet and moved further South to Exeter. I had two weeks to find a place, and pack my shit and to arrive there by the first of September to start my new job. I made my life there, I miss it, but I’ll save that tale for another post, a happy post, because apparently when I talk about it my face lights up, because even though I struggled emotionally and badly at times too just like now…I smiled more.
In 2012′ I had to move back to Wales because my anxiety disorder had gotten so bad that I was practically agoraphobic. My life just crumbled. I went through Cognetive Behavioural Therapy. And months later I got a part-time bar gig working in a quaint country pub, thanks to one of my friends. I decided to head North to go and see my sister, Sister 3. Everytime I go up there on the train, I have to go past my mother’s house, the farm where it all happened. It’s always a total head fuck, you know when you see something gruesome on the news and you just can’t not look. Sister 3 and I took a walk into town to go for lunch at the pub where she used to work. It’s called something else now, and low and behold who was sitting outside but none other than my godfather. We just walked past and didn’t say anything. Sister 3 knew that I’d lost my V-Plates to him (she thinks he is a despicable human being) but she didn’t know that he raped me. I’d conveniently left that part out because even though he and I hadn’t spoken in thirteen years, I was still refusing to acknowledge or accept what he’d done so I was still protecting him.
When I returned to Wales, I wrote him a letter, because this is how screwed up my head was. I still loved him like a dad, still missed him in spite of what he’d done. If you’re thinking It’s warped then fair play to you, trust me on this one I agree but read this article before making a decision as to whether or not you feel I need my head examined…again. I’m going to be querying this with my doctor.Stockholm syndrome. I chucked my email address on the bottom of the letter and sent it on to his parents house for him. A week or so later I received an email from him, asking me if I was trying to give him a heart attack. Which obviously I found odd because I was still so under his spell. He skirted around the subject further but I stepped over it rather than getting into it with him. Again when the memory came rushing to the surface and the accompanying barrage if questions, I shoved them all back down and distracted myself with other things. We added each other on Facebook but had very little contact with each other.
At the start of 2014′ I had it all. I lived in a nice house, in the village I’d lived in prior to the move down South. I was in the throws of a very promising career with actual prospects, decent pay and weekends off, working alongside my friend and housemate, who’d got my foot in the door for the change on vocation, as an IT test manager. I was actually pretty great at the job, someone was paying me to be an anally retentive pain in the arse! I also had a nice boyfriend too, he lived in Romford in Essex. We’d chat on the phone three times a week and we’d commute back and forth, alternating, on weekends. I used to love going to see him though, even when he would do over time on Saturday’s, we’d catch the train together, he’d go off to Canary Wharf and I’d jump on the Tube to Camden or Soho, then we’d meet up later and meander around Laaaandon taaaan. I love London. I often joke that It’s the longest love affair I’ve ever had, with the city that is. Anyway I broke it off with him, as there was no passion, no spark, that heat and crackle of electricity and I need that. We parted amicably of course and we’re still friendly. Life went on as normal then. My housemate/friend/work colleague followed his heart up North so an acquaintance moved in and we became close friends. Then I had a sort of nervous breakdown, because I was still dealing with my illness I just didn’t have a diagnosis at that point. My anxiety disorder was getting really bad again, as was my paranoia, I thought everyone at work was laughing at me, and then I thought they hated me and that they were constantly whispering about me behind my back (which wasn’t the case as (a)They aren’t arse holes and (b)They had way more important things to be thinking and chatting about like their own lives) I ended up leaving because things got so bad. A few days later I lost the plot altogether. I was adamant that the new neighbour was a spy sent down from up North to spy on me by my mother, that if I stayed where I was someone was going to come and get me, don’t ask me who as I haven’t the foggiest. So one evening I buggered off, I was not thinking anywhere close to clearly because I flew out of the house leaving all of the windows wide open, and caught a train to Bristol. A few days later when I was back at home the out of hours doctor was called, because how I was feeling had made me suicidal. I was assessed at the local psychiatric hospital the next day and then got taken on to the ward to keep me safe and to start me on medication. At the time I was giving my dad and uncle the silent treatment and I was lead in my hospital bed more scared than ever, I was too stubborn to reach out to them so I reached out to my Godfather instead for the comfort and reassurance I needed. Fair play to him he was pretty amazing, as he was a few months later when my dad died. He was also willimg to drive all the way down South and drive the rental van in February 2015′ when the friend that had promised to help me move, bailed. In the end my ex J stepped up to the plate and came to the rescue. Shortly after I’d moved into my new place my godfather wanted to make me his next of kin because he didn’t have anyone else. I thought that was nice of him.
At the start of June I headed up North to go and visit him, and to swing by sister 3’s. The few days leading up to it I’d had shit in one ear from Sister 3 and sister 1 and shit in the other ear from him about them. So I gave all three of them a bollocking and told them all that I was sick of listening to them bitch about each other, either they shut the hell up or I’d have nothing to do with any of them. After seeing my sister’s my godfather came and picked me up and we went to his place. I sat on the couch and texted a blunt reply to my sister’s in response to their “We want to know where you are, what his address is and when you are on your way home” message. Essentially I told them to bugger off and that I was grown woman of thirty years of age and rebuffed them for having previously referred to me as a “vulnerable adult” (because of my illness) I rolled my Godfather and I cigarettes, he made the coffee and sat down in the chair to my left. There was silence and then he opened a can of worms which was more like a can of cobras, completely out of the blue.
“I’m sorry I raped you” The words slapped me and then just hung there. Then he started rambling on about how he’d been worrying about the police turning up to arrest him, about how he’d been reading about people, big names like Saville and the rest of the scummy cunts in the press, getting done for it. My response was.
“I don’t want to talk about this” I got up and moved outside onto his decking and smoked, he continued apologising as though I hadn’t said anything. The whole not listening and not caring what I wanted or didn’t want was something he clearly had issues with.
There it was. Well and truly unleashed from the box where I’d been keeping it all of these years. I couldn’t hide from it or deny it anymore. I was quite happy living in denial-ville but noooooo he just had to unburden his soul to make himself feel better. He didn’t give a damn about my feelings. I do wonder if he even questioned why I’d never bought it up or why I always changed the subject if he did. I went back to feeling numb then and we carried on as normal. It’s when I got home that evening that things went to shit.
The next few days were spent thinking about what he’d done. Remembering what he’d done, everytime I closed my eyes, questioning whether he was a paedophile, why he hadn’t stopped when I’d said no repeatedly, why was I only dealing with it now, why did he do it, why me, why was he apologizing now, why had my mother let him anywhere near me when sister 2 had accused him of attempting to rape her all those years ago.
I was a train wreck. I was crying all of the time, I didn’t shower and barely ate. I couldn’t call home treatment because I couldn’t tell them what the problem was. I spoke to my Godfather and told him that I needed to speak to someone, a mental health nurse because it was fucking me up. He said that he was worried about what I’d tell them. A couple of days later we spoke on the phone again, talking about him having raped me, and the end of the conversation was me asking him if what he’d done to me made him what my step father was….and he said yes. I burst into tears and hung up. I didn’t want to acknowledge what he’d done or what it made him, what he was, is. I wished that it hadn’t happened and that if it was my fate to endure yet another atrocity that he hadn’t been the one to inflict it. He’d taken advantage of the fact that I was a vulnerable kid. Because that’s what I was you absolute shit cunt! A child, a little girl. How the fuck could you do that to me. To anyone! I became suicidal after I’d hung up the phone, it was all hitting me like a ton of bricks to the face.
Right then and there is exactly how I feel when I get triggered and remember the rest of the hell that was my childhood. But you see what my godfather did was way worse because he fooled me into believing he gave a shit about me, because he was always so nice to me and hugged me a lot, and because I trusted him. The urge to top myself was becoming hard to resist and things were rapidly spiralling out of control. I have very little impulse control, I had to ring someone and talk it through. Home Treatment closed at 8pm then, so I called the ward. Thankfully it was my favourite ward nurse that answered. Nurse J, he is an amazing psych nurse and out it all came. He posed the question of “What would you tell me to do if this conversation was the other round and I’d just told you what you’d told me?” Of course I said that I would tell him to go and report it to the police.
At some point during the night, some time after the phone call to the psych ward or the next day I called 101 to see if the police would be able to get an email back that I’d deleted (the email conversation between my godfather and I that I mentioned above). I knew going on past experience that without concrete evidence it would be my word against his and he’d walk free. And the content of that email exchange would be just that. The call handler asked why and what the email contained and for the second time out it all rushed. I’d reported it, which was what I should’ve done years ago.
My godfather messaged me, I asked him if he’d always fancied me, even when I was little little, he ignored the question so I asked why he’d done it, why he’d wanted to have sex with me at such a young age, why he’d raped me. He said and this is a direct quote from the screenshot of the conversation.
“If memory serves you came on to me my love.”
I pointed out that I hadn’t and that I was a child regardless of what he said. He was an adult twenty years my senior and half way through I had wanted it to stop, not only did I get up and move to another room I said “NO” at least three times! I had a screenshot of that WhatsApp exchange and of other conversations we had via Skype and Facebook which I went on to show the police.
I waited weeks to do my video interview because a special officer was needed because of my mental illness and prior to doing it I found myself back on the psych ward because I just wasn’t coping with any of it, because every waking moment I was plagued by it. And I felt so unclean, like I wanted to, no, needed to scrub myself with bleach and wire wool. I kept having flashbacks and started having nightmares about him all of which I am still afflicted by now. My video interview was about 2 and a half to three hours long. I told them every single detail I could remember, every awkward question, I answered. I cried and took three fag breaks. I even got down on the floor at one point to demonstrate the exact position I’d been in when it started. I told them everything that had happened leading up to it, what happened afterwards and the chain of events that lead me to finally reporting it after all these years.
My case went up North to the police there, where it had happened. The police officer in charge of my case….she is lovely and total legend! I’ll call her DC Legend. You can tell she cares about the job she does and about people like me, the survivors. Whilst I was trying to deal with the aftermath of what i’d gone through, of what that monster had done to me, she’d invited him in for questioning. He denied it. Instead of doing the honourable thing and corroborating my story and admitting what he’d done, he denied it. So much for him having changed ey. DC Legend knew he’d done it. It was just a matter of proving it and having enough solid evidence to get it to court. My mental health deteriorated even more whilst all of this was going on, which to be honest I didn’t think it was possible given the wreck I already was and to top it all off my anxiety disorder also got worse and to the point it is at now. I emailed him, when I was at my lowest point asking him how could he do it and that I loved him like a dad and asking him why he hadn’t just told the truth when he’d been questioned, why was he determined to put me through more hell.
I spoke to people about it all, you know close friends, my uncle, staff at the psych hospital and my amazing support worker. My psychiatrist wanted to give me a CPN (community psychiatric nurse) but I declined. I told them all I felt conflicted about my feelings now having reported it. The rational side of my brain told me I’d done the right thing but the irrational side that was clearly suffering Stockholm syndrome felt guilty for reporting him like I’d done something wrong. I called the whole thing off at one point, I even filled out the withdrawal statement and sent it back to DC Legend who told me that if I changed my mind to get back in touch. A couple of days later I logged on to an old test account and saw the status he’d made about how he’d had such a tough life. Which sent me up the fucking wall. I loose my temper fast, just as fast as my other moods change. It is huge and it is ugly. It’s certainly the one thing I’d change about myself if I could. I lost my shit completely when I read his status. I mean are you fucking kidding me! After I calmed down I sat and had a long think about things and do you know what. I came to the conclusion that it was about time that at least one of my abusers was held accountable for the fucked up shit that they did to me. I mean sure I’ll probably go through the rest of my life being punished for what ever the hell it was I did in my previous one but enough was enough. I got back in touch with DC Legend and she reopened the case.
I’d been a mess since that day a few months before when he’d apologized. As though saying sorry was going to make it all better, like it was going to cut it and that I’d be all forgiving and It’d be ok. But it hasn’t made everything ok. It became the catalyst to me finally dealing with it. Another life sentence on top of the one’s I was already serving (three, one from each of my abusers)
In January 2016′ I couldn’t cope anymore. I couldn’t live with what he’d done. What was left of my mind completely unravelled and I tried to reach out to someone for help and they encouraged me to it, my voices were cheering me on too when I started swallowing pills. I lived to tell the tale of course because here I am telling it, most days I wish I wasn’t though.
In March this year, I received a phone call from DC Legend, it was her day off but she wanted to tell me. The CPS had decided not to charge him. I was devastated and completely bereft. All hope of justice, my reason to keep fighting, lay like rubble at my feet. There was no point now. It just compounded the fact that people were allowed to treat me however the fuck they wanted and I just have to take it, because I’m nothing, my feelings don’t matter. I don’t get justice. My abusers get to walk around Scot free living their lovely lives whilst mine is ruined and in spite of trying really hard to make myself and my life better….it doesn’t stick or I crap all over it by self destructing. It seems like I’m not allowed to be happy.
There were a few reasons that he wasn’t being charged but all I’ll say is that what sister 1 did say and what sister 2 didn’t played a vital part in it all. Needless to say I haven’t spoken to either of them since around that time. And never will again. Fucker for holding grudges me, not over stupid stuff just things as monumental as fucking up my case. It’s been tough these last few months. Like I mentioned in a previous post I almost walked out of the house in just my dressing gown armed with my bus pass to go and throw myself in front of a train. Suffering with suicide ideation and feeling suicidal happens on such a regular basis to me that It’s become normal. I still have nightmares and flash backs, which although less frequent they linger sometimes. For example I’d had a nightmare about him and even in the dream I knew he’d raped me and that he was dangerous. All day I couldn’t shake it off, everytime I moved and my T-shirt moved, grazing my chest I felt like he had literally just hugged me, I also felt like I had his spit around my mouth and could literally smell it which is particularly odd as he hadn’t kissed me when he’d raped me. It was absolute hell all day and I ended up calling home treatment and they advised me to take some PRN (as and when required meds) I can’t use the white carex handsoap either, sounds small and insignificant but it triggers me. It took me days to figure out what had triggered me. Then I remembered that that was the soap i’d been using at the time when I’d gone to visit him. I don’t usually buy that one but I would get it if they didn’t have the one I normally use.
I’m going through counselling now. It’s proving very cathartic and insightful. My counsellor is cool and I feel comfortable baring my soul during our sessions and don’t feel like a complete knob if I cry haha. It’s quite liberating to openly talk about the monolithic secret that I’d been carrying around for almost 18 years now.
I started a petition on change.org (give it a click and a sign please if you agree with it) to try and get the government to abolish the 12 month time constraint on section 6 of the sexual offenses act:Sex with a child under the age of sixteen. Because as the law stands now if a child is over the age of thirteen but under the age of sixteen then the sexual assault needs to be reported within a twelve month time frame of it happening. Unfortunately because I, like so many other survivors left it so late in life to report it so he couldn’t be charged with that instead they were going to charge him with rape but apparently they couldn’t prove that I wasn’t consenting or that I had revoked my consent halfway through. Erm what part of I was barely just turned fifteen therefore a child and I said no repeatedly half way through did you not get CPS. It makes me so angry. You see from my point of view the law is designed to protect these evil creatures. No one with the exception of DC Legend seems to give a flying fuck about us, the survivors. It’s all, poor paedophile, here have a slap on the wrist and some “therapy”. So even when these ‘things’ do get charged their sentences are laughable! And what do we the survivors get? A life sentence and a barely tolerable existence. Do I sound bitter. Yeah I do. And on that note I am going to go and make a coffee. If any of you are effected by anything I talk about in my posts feel free to get in touch if you need someone to listen and I’ll be posting some links to sites that might help you too over the next few days.
Love Betty x