Quick Exit

Experiences Shared

Alistair

All names and identifying details have been changed.

Participants have given us permission to share their experiences.

Alistair grew up in the countryside and describes his childhood as ‘idyllic’ but marred by a single incident of abuse.

He describes how he was unable to tell anyone what had happened and how it troubled him for many years, before he spoke to the Truth Project.

Alistair relates how one day in the late 1960s while he was at primary school, the children were called in, one by one, to attend a medical. When Alistair was alone in the examination room with the doctor, the doctor did some routine checks and then began to touch him ‘inappropriately’. Alistair says this went on for several minutes before he was allowed to return to class.

Alistair describes how this one incident changed his life – from then on, he ‘never felt like a normal child’. He wanted to tell his parents what had happened but was worried they would blame him for allowing it to happen.

He says that for many years he ‘carried around the confusion’ of what had happened to him. As a teenager he became more introverted and struggled to trust other people. He refused to take showers at secondary school after sport unless they were in a closed area.

He remembers an occasion when the class all received the slipper for misbehaving, and how angry he felt that he had been abused all over again. He says he met the teacher years later and confronted him for punishing him for something he hadn’t done.

Alistair describes how often, when he saw things on the news, it reminded him of the abuse. When the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse was set up, he says he realised it was an opportunity to finally tell someone what had been done to him. For the first time, he told his mother sparse details of the abuse.

Alistair believes that institutions should not allow adults, even professionals, to be alone with children.

He now has a family of his own, and says he is determined to make sure that his children are protected, safe and happy. He wants his children to have the childhood that was taken from him.

 

 

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