Catherine’s story

True stories


Catherine’s story

When you have been hit you think, ‘My God, this is cold-blooded, controlling, calculating stuff’. You think, ‘How can I be in this situation?’ But you want to make it work. You love this person and you think it must be your fault – and he tells you it is. He’s attractive and successful, people think he’s wonderful, he’s earning lots of money. You think, ‘It must be me. How come I do this to him?’

When I finally told him to leave he was furious. I’d never seen him so angry. He pushed me back on to the sofa and hit me again and again and again. Then he grabbed me by the hair – it was long in those days – and dragged me upstairs to our bedroom. He disappeared and when he came back he had a knife. I’ve never been more scared than I was at that moment.

Thankfully the neighbours had heard me screaming and called the police. Henry stormed out but that wasn’t the end of it. For the next few months he stalked me. Twice he followed me back to the house, forced his way in and raped me. He also threatened to kill me.

The turning point came for me when I contacted Refuge. I admitted to someone for the first time that I was in trouble. It was that admission that was enormously helpful and gave me somewhere to start. From then on I knew I would cope.


All names and identifying details have been changed to protect individuals involved.