I was 24 years old when I met Micky, and we soon fell in love ……
My family did not like him they kept telling me that they did not trust him, that he was too controlling. Micky kept telling me that my family were jealous of our love and wanted to break us up. So I packed up and moved in with Micky, the man I loved and trusted.
Over the next year I felt tired all the time, I stopped speaking with my friends, I did not go out any more, it was all too difficult as Micky would get so angry if he did not know where I was at all times. One afternoon Micky was yelling at me, throwing furniture around, he just seemed ‘wild’. There was a knock on the door, it was the Police, apparently a neighbour had called them. They asked if I wanted to stay in the house or go elsewhere. I chose to go to my parent’s home.
I was so embarrassed, I wondered how our love had gone so wrong, I felt like a failure. I had left everything I owned behind – I felt so alone. Then I discovered I was pregnant. Micky was ringing all the time, telling me he loved me and had changed. I told him about the baby and he said we had to be together as a child needed two parents. My family were telling me that I had made the mistake once but was stupid if I made the same mistake twice, that I should get on with my life. That Micky was no good. Finally I decided that I would return to Micky as I believed that he had changed and all would be great again.
Once the baby was born all the abuse stated again. He told me I was a rotten mother, that I should leave the baby to cry so I could talk with him, but then told me I was dumb as I could not stop the baby crying, I did not know what was right and what was wrong. My family and friends would not speak with me. I was so alone.
The maternal health nurse came to my house for what she called a regular visit. She asked me some questions, she was so kind. She then talked with me about what violence in the family was, she talked about how it impacts on children’s emotional development. I was scared. She sat with me while she rang the Crossroads Family Violence Service. I moved into their family violence refuge accommodation.
I stayed there and went to a group where I learnt more about family violence and my rights. I applied for and was granted an intervention order, I had to do lots of paperwork and start to meet and work with other services as well. Sometimes I felt so alone, no family and friends no father for my baby.
After a couple of months I was offered a transitional housing property. It was all new to me. My family had started talking to me again. I could have them to visit. Now 3 years later I am in housing I can afford. I have been told I can live there indefinitely. I have finished studying and am looking for my first job. I go to playgroup with baby. I have lots of support in my local area.
Even though I do not meet with the family violence worker any longer I ring her every now and again to let her know what I have accomplished, they always make me feel proud of myself. Things are certainly looking good now.