I wanted to write about how verbal abuse ruined my childhood and how it still affects my life so many years later. I am adding my story anonymously here on Emma’s blog because this the first time I have spoken out about this and it’s still very raw.
Writing this has been quite difficult for me as I have shut a lot of my childhood out, hidden those dark memories.
For as long as I can remember my parents never had a normal relationship like my friend’s parents did. My dad drunk a lot and spent a lot of time taking us to different bookies and pubs, which my friends thought was great, but it wasn’t great for us.
He would grab us food from a takeaway we were passing and then spend the rest of the afternoon between men in the pub and gamblers. We’d go home late and mum would be upset, as that wasn’t what she wanted for us, understandably.
When we kids were in bed the arguments would start and I could hear all the hurtful and nasty things he screamed and shouted at my mum and then the sound of things banging off walls.
As a child this was frightening and I often lay in bed with the duvet pulled up over my head and I pressed my fingers hard into my ears to block out as much noise as I could.
It wasn’t until we were older that we finally realised it was our mum who we had heard banging off the walls, as our father threw her around the room.
She did her best to keep it hidden from us, she has told me my dad had been violent from the moment my sister was conceived and she’s 24 now.
My parents finally separated when I was twelve and my sister was nine.
For nine years my mum had put up with domestic violence and she could take no more.
She had to work 2 jobs to fund his addictions, because if he didn’t have enough money for himself we would have to go without or he would sell our things.
I can’t really remember too much of the day-to-day life but 2 incidents will stay with me forever.
The day my dad was arrested
I must have been around the age of twelve or thirteen as it wasn’t long after they separated, we lived in a block of flats with 3 bedrooms, my little sister and I shared a room and my dad’s daughter from a previous marriage was staying in the other room.
It was very late and we were woken up by screaming, the verbal abuse was horrific, words I would never say to another human being, we ran to my mum’s bedroom to see my dad raping her.
My sister managed to pull him off.
We didn’t have a phone; we had to run to the nearest pay phone to call the police and my big brother for help.
Dad had lost it; he had badly hurt my mum.
When we got back to the house my dad was climbing over the railings of our 7th-floor balcony threatening to jump because we were disloyal and he hated us all, especially my little sister.
We managed to pull him back over the railings after a lot of coaxing and I was so relieved when my brother turned up. Dad went back into the flat and continued with the verbal abuse and he battered my mum for turning his kids against him.
The police arrived and he was taken away, it’s still very raw to talk about to this day.
The second time my dad had managed to convince my mum to let us stay with him for the night, she relented and allowed us to stay. The following morning we woke up to find he was drunk.
He was bouncing off walls and falling into parked cars when he walked us home, we arrived at the flat and mum, of course, was so angry and upset. She told us to go out and play so we spent the day with friends and as we set off home my big sister ran towards us, telling us we had to go to our grandmother’s immediately.
On our way there she explained that my dad had pushed his way into the flat after we had left and he had beaten and raped mum, she was very ill and in the hospital.
Dad was sent to prison for this but was released early
After taking me and my sister out in his car and crashing it into a wall because yet again he had been drinking, he disappeared without a trace, luckily we escaped with minor injuries but he was now a wanted man.
Even after he had taken off he still hounded mum, he would ring her constantly giving her verbal abuse over the phone and making threats towards her, I have no idea how she dealt with it all.
We very rarely talk about it all as a family because it still hurts .
My brother and sisters were all victims of his abuse too, although I got off lightly compared to them.
I no longer have contact with him, he used to ring me when he was drunk and I would have to listen to verbal abuse being thrown at me down the phone.
I decided it was in my best interests to cut all ties with him.
He was told before my brother was born that if he carried on drinking he would be dead within 10 years. My brother is now 32 but I don’t think my dad will ever change, he will drink himself into an early grave.
Family members have told me that my dad has serious health problems and yes at times I do feel guilty that I don’t speak to him and it hurts to think that he will die alone, without his children by his side.
But that man deserves nothing more than what he’s got, for the 9 years of hell he put us all through.
The abuse scars remain
Every day I dread getting that phone call and I honestly don’t know how I will feel.
I’m scared to turn out like him.
He still haunts my dreams, I suffer from terrible nightmares.
This man has affected my relationships with my children as I struggle to show them affection, always afraid of what I say, is all forms of discipline and shouting verbal abuse?
I always think if I do something “wrong” my husband will attack me.
If I’m not in the mood for sex will he will rape me?
I live my life in fear because of that man.
I have my own family now, 2 children who I adore and a good man and I will not allow the nightmares to become my reality, I have to remind myself daily that I am a survivor of child abuse.
I know deep down that I have broken the cycle of abuse and my children will have a happy and safe childhood, free from verbal abuse and beatings.
This is an anonymous blog post. You can share your own experience to help others. All blog posts submitted via the blog anonymously email form will be added to the blog anonymously for you, just like this blog post has been.
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