child abuse survivor

‘He bribed me to kiss him like lovers do. He had to ‘teach me.’ He did things fathers should never do to their daughters.’: Child abuse survivor encourages others, ‘Be free. You deserve it.’

“My father would permit himself to watch me as I took showers. My father had to ‘teach me’ so when I started dating, I would be ‘prepared.’ I froze in disbelief. The fear of sending my father back to jail was far worse than speaking up of the wrongdoings. Who else would support my family and me? I wanted to scream, ‘I HAVE HAD ENOUGH!’ I can’t emphasize enough YOU are not alone. I was stronger than I thought. You are now in a safe place.”

‘He can’t save you.’ I was 5, lying on the floor with the covers pulled tight, my father holding a gun to my mother’s head.’: Woman overcomes abusive childhood, relationship, ‘I’m fighting to break the cycle’

“He cheated when I was 8 months pregnant. Somehow, it was my fault. ‘I’d never cheat and the baby isn’t even mine,’ he told me, even though I hadn’t been with anyone else. The next time he cheated, it was with my best friend. ‘Did you know Mary was opening a diner?’ It all made sense now! He had been having an affair and they were opening a cafe together! I knew I needed to file for divorce, but how?”

‘I was an ‘accident.’ My birth mom ‘tried to get rid of me,’ but couldn’t. She didn’t even want to name me.’: Orphan named by stranger in hospital room finally adopted at 26, ‘I longed to belong’

“To this day, I’m still not sure which random stranger named me in that hospital room. I was sent to a hospital for a full screening. They documented all the marks on my body with hours of questioning. I trembled in fear. In a dark hallway, a nurse – who took her job because her husband was also a survivor of child abuse – spoke these words to me. I can still hear her strong yet gentle voice. ‘Annie, the cycle ends with you.’ I finally know now, my parents aren’t going anywhere.”

‘The neighbors called social services. My stepfather forced me to sleep in the parking lot during freezing temperatures because I’d ‘made too much noise.’: Child abuse survivor says ‘I’m re-claming my power’

“My bully wasn’t a kid on the playground, but inside my home. I remember waking up to cold water being thrown on my bed. While other girls my age chased butterflies and dreams, I hid in closets from my living nightmares. I knew I had to reclaim my power.”

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