A Story by Ben for International Youth Day 2018

I love camping and I am in Comprehensive school now with younger sisters. One loves the gym and the other is horse mad! My mum is happy, funny and loves flowers and bees.

I want to tell you that it is so much better now.

One day it will be for you too. Just keep being brave and keep talking to people who you trust.

I am so happy now but it wasn’t always that way.

When we were little my sisters and I told mum that dad scared us and we didn’t want to see him because we were so scared. Other people also heard us, but I thought nobody was listening because it didn’t change for ages.

I wanted my dad to change and stop the scary behaviour, I didn’t want to go with him because he was far too scary for me.  And the cat. I’d seen him kick the cat down the stairs.

I don’t know why he did that because the cat hadn’t done anything wrong.

He scared me trying to get into our new house after we ran away. He broke things and was angry with my mum and quite often he was angry with us.

I was there when he hurt mum – why didn’t anybody else see what had happened? We hadn’t done anything to him.

I didn’t like him swearing and hurting my mum and sisters. I don’t like how he spoke about her all the time when were with him. He made us repeat “mummy is evil.”

I don’t know why he broke and burnt our toys.

Why did he do those things?

He told us he was going to take us and get mummy back when we were little so we could be one family. I was scared in school that he would take me.  One day he did.

It was scary when the police officer came, but I told the police officer what had happened and then I liked them.

We had to keep going back to dads, mum couldn’t stop it. I believed nobody had power, but they do in the end.

Keep telling them, keep being brave!

My sister is small, but very fierce. I think she has the power.

I say to you, if you are going through the same thing be brave and share with grownups.

Tell people what is happening so it can be better, like with us now.

One day it won’t be scary anymore.

If anybody has been affected by this article or by domestic abuse or sexual violence in Wales, you can contact the Live Fear Free Helpline on 0808 80 10 800 for 24/7, confidential information and support. Or visit the Live Fear Free website here.