“My mum said I was brainwashed – that my dad had invented it all. To this day, she says nothing ever happened. But I know it did. I’m still living with the feelings and fears from those days now, in my 20s.
“I find it difficult to trust people and I have flashbacks, especially if I see something on TV which triggers a memory. I find everyday things, like walking down a street, difficult as I worry that making eye contact with someone will cause them to be physically violent towards me.
“For a long time, I accepted what was going on at home as normal. But no child should have to live in fear or on edge in their own home – that’s the place they should feel safest.
“I think there’s a risk that children don’t know there’s help out there for them. Even when they see ads for Childline, they may not realise it’s for them. They see the abuse as normal and so don’t connect the adverts or advice to their own situation.
“I wish I’d had support from NSPCC services as a child to help me rebuild my life sooner”.
Read Pete’s story: https://www.nspcc.org.uk/what-we-do/childrens-stories-about-abuse/petes-story/
Names and identifying features have been changed to protect identity. Photographs have been posed by models.