Skip to main content Quick Exit

Experiences Shared

These are some of the experiences of child sexual abuse shared with the Truth Project by victims and survivors. All names and identifying details have been changed.

Download a PDF sample of accounts

Cassy feels the effects of abuse will never leave her but will follow her wherever she goes

read full account

Cassy endured sexual abuse and sadistic bullying by other pupils at her private boarding school.

She is still extremely traumatised by the terrible experiences she had as a young girl.

read full account

Shane lived in a children’s custodial institution and feels unable to trust certain kinds of people

read full account

Shane says he committed several crimes as a teenager and was sent to a children’s custodial institution. From the moment he arrived, he was physically abused by staff, beaten and kicked for little or no reason.

He slept in a dormitory with other young people. One night, a member of staff, Duncan, came in and sat on his bed. Duncan began talking in double entendres and making suggestive comments, which Shane says confused him. This was soon followed by sexual abuse.

read full account

Being left alone and feeling like an outsider made Johanna vulnerable to sexual abuse and exploitation

read full account

Johanna says she was a ‘misfit’ in school.

Keen to be liked, she got a boyfriend, who began raping her when she was 12. This was the beginning of eight years of sexual abuse, exploitation and violence.

read full account

Caroline says ‘Sometimes I get angry ... why didn’t I do anything?’

read full account

Caroline was sexually abused by a senior teacher at her junior school. 

She says she still feels troubled by the abuse and feelings that she should have tried to stop it. 

read full account

Valerie says ‘I realise now that I was a traumatised child but nobody asked me what was wrong’

read full account

Valerie’s parents had a troubled relationship, and her father sexually abused her.

She feels that signs she had been abused could have been picked up by social services and teachers.

read full account

Delia would like to see a campaign telling people ‘the police are there to help’

read full account

A trusted figure in the community saw that Delia was a vulnerable child and sexually abused her over eight years.

She had a positive experience with the police and the courts when she reported the abuse years later.

read full account

Eve-Marie says that because she was neglected she confused abuse with positive attention

read full account

Eve-Marie grew up in chaos and neglect, with no boundaries on where she went and who she saw.

This led to her being sexually abused by numerous men, frequently in ‘plain sight’ of the adults who should have taken responsibility for her.

read full account

Gianna is Deaf, and was punished if she tried to use sign language at her mainstream school

read full account

Gianna is Deaf and so is her mother. 

As a child, she couldn’t communicate easily and was not able to tell anyone that she was being sexually abused.

read full account

Adela says that people who have been through trauma may not have perfect recall

read full account

Adela feels that she was failed by people in authority who should have protected her from abuse. 

She would like everyone to understand that people who have been through trauma may not have perfect recall.

read full account

Ronan says it is important to him to be believed about what happened 50 years ago

read full account

Ronan says that from an early age, he was seen as a ‘problem child’ and was sent to live with relatives. 

When his older cousin sexually abused him, he was punished for complaining about it and told he was lying.

read full account

Sexual abuse during childhood had many damaging impacts for Julianna that she is striving to overcome

read full account

Julianna had a difficult early childhood. He struggled with learning difficulties and hyperactivity. As a very young boy he was taken to see a doctor regarding an eating disorder and behavioural problems.

Julianna loved his mother and felt very close to her, but his parents had difficulty dealing with him. When he was eight years old they offered him the chance to go to boarding school and he readily agreed.

read full account

Solange came to the Truth Project to report something that others might not feel is significant

read full account

The experience of being ‘groped’ by an adult man when she was 12 years old has stayed with Solange. 

Since her daughter reached the same age, she has felt increasingly troubled and angry about it.

read full account

Your privacy

There are very limited circumstances where we tell anyone your name without your consent, for example if a child is currently at risk and we need to tell the police.