Dealing with abuse – Zoe’s story

Zoe was married to her ex-husband for 20 years. For 17 of those he abused her, mentally, physically and sexually. Zoe’s ex-husband would always lock the doors so she could not escape until one night he left the house keys unattended. Zoe took the opportunity to escape with her daughter, wearing only their nightclothes. She could not get to her son so was forced to leave him behind.

Zoe moved to the Barnsley area and was placed under police protection. She was too scared to visit her old home, in case she ran into her ex-husband or his family. She isolated herself for many years and would leave the house only rarely.

She began attending Mind in September 2014. Initially Zoe’s attendance was very sporadic but now she rarely misses a group session. Since Zoe started attending groups regularly she has been making fantastic progress. She started by attending the women’s group followed by social sessions and our women’s confidence building course. She has been setting herself little goals to achieve on a regular basis.

Her main goal was to find the the confidence to visit the cemetery where her father is buried in her previous home town. She had not visited there since leaving her ex-husband a number of years ago but achieved this with the support of R B Mind. She also wanted to start going out in the evenings and has joined her local mixed darts team; something she could never  have done just a year ago.

Zoe has also been brave enough to speak to the local radio station, Dearne FM,  to promote Rotherham & Barnsley Mind and our services. She was so proud and elated at being able to speak about her experience that she treated herself to a day out at the races –  another thing she said she would never have thought possible last year.

Real names have not been used to protect the confidentiality of our clients. Photo posed by models.

To find out more about our services please contact the Rotherham office on 01709 919929 or Barnsley on 01226 211188.

 

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