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Thursday 23 February 2017

'I will never truly believe I am safe' – Domestic violence victim pens heart-breaking letter

The woman chose to remain anonymous.

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

The author stated she wished to remain anonymous
The author stated she wished to remain anonymous

A woman who claims she has been suffering at the hands of domestic abuse has penned a compelling letter describing her ordeal.

The letter, which was received by the Ryan Tubridy Show on RTÉ Radio 1, was read out loud by the presenter today.

In the letter, the author stated she wished to remain anonymous.

It was sent by transcript, as the woman feared her partner recognising her writing.

“I am typing these words to you, not writing them, as I am terrified that should my former partner ever see this letter, then he would recognise my writing and I will not take that risk, as remote and nearly impossible as it is.”

The show recently featured a domestic violence segment and producers believe this may have prompted her to get in touch.

Tubridy added the letter had been sitting on his desk for a few weeks, and that he read out some excerpts at the SAFE Ireland Summit on Monday at the Mansion House in Dublin.

SAFE Ireland is the agency working on eradicating domestic violence in Ireland.

The full letter read as follows:

“Dear Ryan and Team,

“I am typing these words to you, not writing them, as I am terrified that should my former partner ever see this letter, then he would recognise my writing and I will not take that risk, as remote and nearly impossible as it is.   I have even driven a significant number of miles to post this letter as I want to protect my location and remain anonymous.   

“Please, please try to understand how fearful I am about this, and please be careful and mindful of how you dispose of this letter.

“That is what domestic violence is.  A never ending fear of the consequences of your behaviour, as if your behaviour was the sole reason for the beatings that almost rendered you to dust. 

"It is a process that changes your judgement capacity, yourself belief and your resilience.  Leaving the man that beat you senseless is an incredibly painful metamorphosis.  The new world that you now live in is very, very difficult.  It is so intimidating, that at times you feel you have made the greatest mistake and that you should go back to him.  

"At least, when you were with him you knew how bad things could be, and that included hoping that you wouldn’t be killed in that house.  Living apart from him suspends you in a world of perpetually looking over your shoulder, praying that you are safe, and struggling to process the cavernous hole that has swallowed your spirit.

“I was strong, spirited, intelligent, confident, loving and assured woman.  I met a man. Everything changed.   Irreversibly.

“I ignored the warning signs which were there from very early in the relationship.   I got back up too quickly the first time he beat me to the ground.  I surrendered to him and annihilated my belief in my strength to choose to help myself.

“I have no words to describe the shredding of my world.

“I have absolutely no faith in the protection of our judicial system.  I know I left it too late to leave him.  There was so much damage to my central core belief system.  I will never be able to truly believe that I am safe, and I will always struggle to trust in people, their words and their actions.

“Please continue to provide opportunities for women to speak to you, and all your listeners. Somewhere, someone is listening and will be strengthened to make the necessary decision for her safety and her future.   It is amazing how strong you can become when you put the broken pieces back together, you have the same shadow but it’s now a deeper shade of black.

“Thank you sincerely again.”

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