Domestic Violence, bullying and psychological abuse – or “Sweep it under the carpet” Part 2
In the early part of 1997, my son and I moved back in with my mother. My divorce came through in 1998 and for some reason I felt unwell again. I asked my psychiatrist if I could have a short stay. He said yes. I had a new mobile phone. I only stayed in for 10 days. My mum found it hard coping with getting my son to school and at the same time going to the part-time job she had.
I started attending a support group for bipolar around 1998/99. This was helpful and I met some nice people.
In 1998 my brother left Uni.
My life was rolling along quite smoothly. I took my son to school and picked him up. I read him stories at night before he went to sleep. I took him to the cinema and often he had some friends come along. When he was younger we often went to the park. He got lots of party invitations from his friends. He in turn had parties that his friends were invited to. He had a slide in the back-garden. He had a go-cart, a bike. He had toys and books. He had disney videos. Later he liked Star Wars. I got the Star Wars lego for him. I spent time with him. When he was older I was happy for his friends to come round and play. I fed them at times. Later they had sleep-overs. He was loyal to his friends and still is. He is well liked.
Around 2001, 2002 my younger brother came back home to live with mother. I was still living at home with my son also and I think by then I had put my name on a housing list. I think around 2004 – I didn’t keep a diary at the time, there was another incident of domestic violence that affected me. My younger brother punched me on the nose. I was only asking him why he was upset. I had come downstairs for a drink of water in the middle of the night. I had been asleep for hours. My nose was pouring with blood. I got angry and told him I was going to show mum. My mother was not bothered about it too much. She said she didn’t see the incident therefore she wasn’t going to do or say anything.
I went to my mental health team for an appointment. I cannot remember what I said. I then visited a solicitor who was round the corner from them. I think I had already made an appointment. Eventually a letter was sent out to my brother. He went to see a solicitor paid for by my mother and with my mother. Finally he approached me in a distraught way. He said he was sorry and asked me not to take it any further. My mother probably could not afford the fees in any case.
After things happened at home with my brother I didn’t know who to turn to anymore. I visited a domestic violence charity. I was very nervous and shaky. Then I contacted Barnado’s. I went in for an appointment with them. I told them what had been happening most recently and I said i was worried what effect this was having on my son, who was still at school. They said they would look into it. Later they contacted me again. They said that no action needed to be taken because my son seemed to be doing fine at school.
From the time my younger brother came back to live with us, life was never the same. I was still waiting for accomodation from the housing list. In 2006, I was still fed up at living with my Mother and my brother.
Once again I was afraid of domestic violence and things getting heated at home. A lady from the mental health team came out to see me at my request. I said I needed the help of a psychiatric social worker to help me to get a new home. Just for a short while. I needed some support. I didn’t have a c.p.n. I was refused any help and that was that. I wanted to leave home but I just wanted a little help with that at first. I talked to a special part of the police that deals with domestic violence. I cannot remember what they said. They seemed sympathetic.
All this was building up to me leaving home for the first time since 1996.