Friday 22 September 2017

Níamh Ní Dhomhnaill : He controlled me, mocked me and abused me in the place we... regarded as a home

As her former partner walks free despite admitting raping her in her sleep, Níamh Ní Dhomhnaill says she can't believe he escaped any significant consequences

Convicted rapist Magnus Meyer Hustveit: ‘He controlled me, mocked me and abused me in the place we – I shudder now to refer to it – regarded as a home.’
Convicted rapist Magnus Meyer Hustveit: ‘He controlled me, mocked me and abused me in the place we – I shudder now to refer to it – regarded as a home.’

I never thought that I would be raped. It seems like an utterly naïve thing to say, but it is the truth.

 I thought that I was too smart, and that I would outrun, outsmart any potential attacker. I kept my eyes glued when walking home late at night, something I frequently did, despite friends and my parents advice not to. I used to love the freedom of walking home after a night out, or an evening debrief over tea in town with friends about some latest minor scandal. I was always aware that rape happened but, perhaps like many reading this, I just didn't think it could happen to me.

On reflection now, it is probably a fairer assertion that I did not want to believe it could happen to me. All too aware of stranger danger, I succumbed to the most dangerous of complacencies within a relationship: that I was safe with this person who, on the surface campaigned ferociously for women's rights and LGBT issues, to name two of many.

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