‘MY MOTHER AND I FLED ONTO THE STREET’
A GIRL of 17 told the JC that she had to flee her house with her mother to escape her abusive father.
The girl, whose name we are withholding, spent months living on friends’ floors before moving into the JWA refuge.
She put her father’s rage down to his depression, adding: “He would throw things around the house and tear my mum’s clothes up in front of us. We were very scared of him.”
In October last year, when her two sisters, now aged 19 and 20, went to university, she had a minor disagreement with her father which had longlasting consequences.
“I handed him a set of keys and asked him to say please. He became extremely angry and put his arm up to hit me. He really wanted to hurt me,” she said.
She used her martial-arts training to escape his grip and ran out of the house. Her father then phoned one of her sisters and said that he wanted to “break my bones”.
Their father was questioned by police for six hours, but returned to the house without being charged.
“My mum and I were terrified so we ran in different directions so he couldn’t find us,” she said.
Her mother went to stay with her eldest daughter at university, and she had to stay in London, sleeping on friends’ floors. She and her mother were then housed in a JWA refuge.
They survived with little money and few possessions, as most of their belongings were still in the family home.
Eight months ago, her father committed suicide and they moved back. But her father had ruined the home and most of their possessions.
“He even peed in my mum’s suitcase. The house was a wreck.”
Although she admitted to being “very depressed” after her father’s death, the girl said she has now found her confidence again.
“Some days I still get very upset. And I do miss my dad – the dad I had before he became ill.”
She added that she is now concentrating on her schoolwork and on raising awareness of domestic violence. “No one should have to go through what we went through.”
Child victims of domestic abuse face longterm damage ( photo posed by model)