25 Locks

Delivering my first ever PSHE relationship workshop. Oct 2018

25 LOCKS

I dreamed of writing a blog many years ago when the internet was becoming popular for my generation in the early 2000s. I had a story to tell but I did not know how to share it in the right way. I would share my past experiences with family, friends, work colleagues and with anyone who would listen. Some people would be left in shock, some people would be disgusted, others angry and some not knowing how to respond.

I had kept many secrets for countless years, there were some words I just couldn’t bring myself to say, until one day the words came out.  From that day, back in late October 2003, I haven’t stopped talking about abuse in teenage relationships and I will never stop talking about it because it happened to me and it left my daughter and I badly traumatised.

One day I spoke up. From that day forward, I refused to stay silent about this topic. Initially I had only keep my secrets in secret poetry I would write to myself as I was further isolated myself within my own world of a domestic abuse cycle. I decided to start writing again in recent years as a form of therapy.  Some poems have been very difficult to write, however have assisted me to untangle all of the hidden memories I had stored away because they were too traumatic to relive.

The first poem I am sharing is called ‘25 Locks’ and gives an insight into the world I was living in. People often expect a females to walk away from an abusive situation easily when it is not so simple.

I hope that this poem gives an insight into the isolated world of living in a domestic abusive relationship, however please be aware it contains sensitive themes, therefore ensure you have help or someone to talk to if it triggers anything for you. Further information about services can be found on the Home page.

I wrote this poem from the memory of my 22nd birthday back in 2002.


25 Locks

I’m in a box with 25 locks

locked in for each one of my sins.  

“Don’t talk to her! Don’t talk to him!

Stay in the house while I go to the gym. 

Cook the dinner, you’re a sinner, so get on your hands and knees,

Get on your hands and knees and you better start to f-ing clean. 

Clean the kitchen, Clean the bathroom and the living room too.

It better be done on time or you know what will happen to you. 

I’ll put you in the box with 25 locks, a lock for all your sins. 

I’ll put you in a box with 25 locks and put the key in the f-ing bin.” 

I’m Locked in my box for all of my sins, so I begin to clean, 

I clean the kitchen, I clean the bathroom and I start cleaning the living room too. 

As I danced to the music I moved the settee and tried to get in the party mood. 

I had the Hoover on, danced to my favourite song then turned around and bumped into you. 

My body went cold, myface looked old as I stood there facing you. 

I stepped back in mybox with my 25 locks and I handed you the key.

I said, “don’t worry baby, I was thinking maybe I won’t go out for my birthday this year.

It’s getting you mad which is making me sad, it’s not worth the ag, forget it I’ll stay in I’ll just smoke a fag.  

What do you want for dinner, I don’t wanna be a sinner, I just want to be a good girl for you.”  

You stood up and youstared

I wondered where,

or what your next move would be.  

You grabbed me in my face and told me I was lying,

I felt like crying,

I felt like dying.  

You leaned into my face, you were boiling with rage, you roared,

I felt your hot breath on my neck on this day.

You slapped me hard in the face,

screamed at the bitch you f-ing hate,

“YOU SLAG, YOU RAT, YOU UGLY LITTLE SLUT!  

Look at what you’re making me do!”

You grabbed me by my hair, you swung me around I landed on the ground behind the chair. 

“You’re a f-ing prick, I’m not having this!” I said as I seen blood on my fingers from my face. 

“I’m not a sinner, I’m a f-ing WINNER, so now I’m going out tonight!!” 

You went dark black at speeds quicker than a flip of a hat,

next thing I know I was laying on my back. 

“I will KILL you, you BITCH, you’re an evil fucking WITCH look what your making me do! 

I feel like slitting your throat, putting you on a boat and dropping your body in the canal.” 

I looked into your black eyes and I started to cry and started to apologise and beg for my life.

Who is this man I lay down with, to make a baby so special and so bright?

This black ugly cloud this black ugly monster was here to interrupt our lives’. 

“Please, I’m sorry baby, it’s all my fault maybe?

I’ll make it right if you just tell me what to do? 

I’ll get in my box with my 25 locks and stay locked in for each one of my sins.

Back in my box with 25 locks and you can put the key in the bin.”

I’m in a box with 25 locks, locked in foreach one of MY sins.


© Naomi Donald 20/11/2016

That was my life when I was only 22 and unfortunately, this is still happening today and more worryingly, it is on the rise.

NSPCC, 2018

1 IN 5 CHILDREN HAVE BEEN PHYSICALLY ABUSED BY THEIR PARTNERS.

People often ask me why I stayed in the relationship for so long despite the abuse being so bad. Studies show only 6% of girls in teenage relationships with someone who is the same age as them reported severe physical violence, whereas 16% of girls who were in relationships with older males had made reports (SafeLives, no date). I was in a relationship with someone who was the same age as me. That was not my only barrier as he was also part of a notorious Birmingham gang however, I will talk more about this on another blog.

I found it extreamly difficult to share my secrets about the sexual violence that was taking place in my relationship. A study of thirteen to seventeen-year olds produced by the NSPCC found a quarter of females had experienced some physical violence and 31% experienced sexual violence. Additionally, 18% of males had experienced physical violence and 16% had experienced a form of sexual abuse from a partner (NSPCC, 2018). These statistics only tell us about assaults that have been reported. How many more are still holding that secret like I was. Safe spaces are imperative for our young people to explore these topics and understand it is ok to share and ask for help.

I am hoping my blogs will bring more awareness to this issue and educate young people and adults alike around this taboo topic. No one should ever feel like they cannot ask for help because they feel embarrassed or ashamed of what has been done to them. I hope that by sharing some of my real life experiences, others will know it is ok to talk about it.

As this is my first blog, I will close it here. I look forward to sharing more of my personal experiences along with studies and data to bring forth this issue of domestic abuse in teenage relationships in a bid to assist both victim and perpetrators to seek help.

In my next blog, I will release a poem called ‘From the other side’. I will not give too much away but the next blog will explore a little more about perpetrators.

Thank you for taking time to read my first blog about domestic abuse in teenage relationships. I would really appreciate some feedback if you have time to leave me a comment in the comment section.

Thank you

Naomi Donald

Please see Home Page for further help and advice from organisations that may be able to help.

4 thoughts on “25 Locks

  1. Michelle

    Naomi…I think you are an inspiration to women, young and not-so-young, and sharing you story is a brilliant way to turn your experiences into something positive. I’m sure that anyone who has/is experiencing similar issues will be able to relate to ’25 Locks’ and hopefully it will help to reduce some of the taboo surrounding domestic abuse and encourage others to seek help.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you For taking time to read my blog Michelle 😊

      Like

  2. Cimonè

    Where do I start Naomi the fact that you have the courage to stand and let the world know your most vulnerable and tragic experience, I am in total admiration I believe you fought and stand for this exact reason your past has clearly had an impact but you have chosen the impact it hasn’t totaly dictated or ruined your life and relationships. Naomi I commend your courage, bravery and your truth! Thank you for sharing and I will continue supporting a true inspiration!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for reading Cimonè and your continued support 😊

      Like

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