Hannah's Story of Teen Domestic Violence
With girls becoming involved in relationships younger and younger, teen abuse is on the rise. For 13 year old Hannah, this meant physical and sexual abuse, and threats to kill her. This is her story of teen domestic violence:
I was 13 years old and a bouncy happy teenage girl. I had lots of friends and enjoyed school. I had never really had a boyfriend and at the time never thought about it. That summer 2000 I met a boy name Jim. We became friends and soon became boyfriend and girlfriend. We never kissed but we would talk a lot and after a few months we were still together. When I was 14 we kissed for the first time and I became really attracted to him. He was a year older than me and to me this made me look up to him.
"... I want some people to hear my story and hopfully this will help people understand its a long road out but in the end there is light if you let it in ..."
When I became 15 this is when things became serious, I seemed to spend more time with him and less time with my friends. Slowly he began to tell me my friends were no good for me and that he loved me all I needed was him. I always remember the first time he hit me, it was at school at lunch I was sitting on the grass with some friends talking and he got jealous he kicked me full force in the back. As I was young I was only confused by what happened and I quickly forgot about it and I never told my mum.
Months passed and I realized he was all I had. He had left school now and as I had no friends this was uncomfortable for me in class. Already I was feeling like an outcast. When I was able to leave school I left as he had talked me into it he told me we could live together but I could not stay at school I would need to work. This was one big mistake as school was where I wanted to be. I left school and got a job in a factory. This did nothing for my confidence I felt worthless and as he worked with me I was never out of his sight. He began getting jealous at work and telling me not to look at other boys. I felt isolated and I couldn’t wear make up or have my hair nice. Soon my blonde long hair was gone and it was all cut off, I looked a mess but he always told me it was better. I soon moved in with him and my mum was devastated she could not cope as she knew things would get worse.
Eventually things did get worse I remember walking up the damp and dirty stairway to the flat where we lived I was carrying shopping and as I stepped in the door he kicked me from behind I fell to the ground thinking 'what have I done now’. I got up and lifted all the bags of shopping from the floor. He turned to me and said ' you fancy him don’t you!' I didn't have a clue what he was talking about. He told me I was looking at a guy while we were shopping. Just then he grabbed my jaw and then slapped me full force. I was crying and very hurt I had never been hit before and I had never been in a fight this was all new to me. Why was he so angry?
The torment got worse and worse. One time my mum walked in on it and I remember her telling me to come home and I always protected him and said no. Then at 16 I became pregnant and we were living at his parent’s house. I knew I couldn’t keep it as the child would not have a good life and I would not be able to give it the loving safe home it would deserve. So without telling my mother I decided to get an abortion. I was so scared and I wish now I had told my mum so I would have her by my side. Instead I had Jim and his mother there with me the whole time. It was a horrible experience and I was very sick.
After I got home I was even more depressed. I didn’t know what he was thinking about what I had done. He was quiet for weeks and then he told me we had got a new flat and could move in next week. I moved in with him and then all hell let loose. The abuse became a lot worse and he broke me down piece by piece. The beatings were regular and for any reason he could find. I had lost a lot of weight and was now down to size six. I would flinch at his every movement. When he would drink he would just hit me for the sake of it. I dreaded when his friends came over as I knew when they left I would get a beating for looking at them.
I remember one night when they all left I was in the living room. I could hear him talking to himself then he locked the door and came through. He began beating me on the floor with his big boots on which he always wore. I remember praying to God to help me, to save me from this pain. The worst of it was none of his family believed what was happening. I even got beat up with his sister at a party and everyone stood and watched I never dared to fight back or I would be dead.
The final straw was when I had the worst night of my life. It was 27th June 2003 and we were celebrating the Gala Day. After we watched the parade we came home. By this time Jim was very drunk. I was too afraid to come home with him so I sat outside until he sobered up a bit. An hour passed and he persuaded me to come in. As soon as I did he locked the door and began to call me a 'stupid little bitch'. I began crying. He dragged me through to the living room and sat me down and he began to tell me how he hated me and wished he could kill me. I was shaking uncontrollably - I knew it was going to be bad. I sat still, and then out of nowhere a hand came over and whacked me on the face. My nose burst open which made him more angry because of the blood everywhere. He went to the kitchen and returned with a large knife. My eyes widened and I ran towards the window. I was screaming for help but no one heard me. He grabbed my hair and told me to take off my jeans so I did. He then told me to get upstairs. As I walked upstairs he had the knife at my back. He pushed me into the room and I fell over. He sat on top of me and began slapping me and laughing. When I tried to scream he would cover my nose and mouth so I couldn’t breathe … I though I was going to die. Then he put me on the bed and cut my underwear off with the knife. He tried to rape me but it was not working so he then forced me to give him oral sex. He pulled me against the wall and was forcing himself into my mouth. The whole time my head banged repeatedly against the wall and I felt myself drift in and out of consciousness. After all that I went to the bed again and he sat on top of me. He was pulling my breasts and twisting them. I was trying not to scream. As he held the knife above me he said 'are you ready to die coz you're gonna' and he laughed. The thoughts going through my head were of my family and his words were drifting into silence. I really thought this was it. After hours of torture he finally went to sleep. I remember sneaking into the bathroom and crying and crying.
The next day I knew I had to leave. I never told my mother what happened and still to this day she doesn’t know the full story as it would hurt her too much. So I did leave him and I was so glad to be alive. I went to the lawyers and we got a restraining order against him. I knew this would not be enough and I couldn’t face going through court at that time - I was far too weak. So my mum sold our lovely big house and we have now moved to a secret location that even my father and friends don’t know.
I feel I have finally moved on and things are getting better but I feel I am still a victim and justice has still not been done as he lives in his home town and my life has been torn apart. I have a new life now with my sister and mum and I am now 19 years old. I thank God every day I'm alive and pray for Domestic Violence to be known and heard in every home so the abusers can be seen for what they really are.
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In Love and in Danger is one of the only books available on dating violence and abusive relationships that addresses young adults directly. Includes facts about dating violence, tips for how to tell if your relationship is abusive, information on why dating abuse happens, and what you can do if you are being abused by (or are abusing) someone you love.
To order in the US: In Love and In Danger: A Teen's Guide to Breaking Free of Abusive Relationships
To order in the UK: In Love and in Danger: A Teen's Guide to Breaking Free of Abusive Relationships
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