Sexual abuse case

Why did you want to meet the man who caused you so much harm?

I wanted to meet him because for so long I had felt like he still had some control
over me. I needed to get that back so I could really get on with my life. I could have
coped if I hadn’t got to meet him, but I would have felt like the book was still open.
At first I didn’t have anything to ask him, I only wanted to be able to look him in the
eyes and that was all but the night before I came up with 3 pages of questions I had
for him

How were you prepared for the meeting?

Diane and Nadia were amazing. We met quite a few times before to discuss my
feelings about it, if I had decided whether to ask him anything. We skyped, emailed
and had phone calls. Anything I needed they were there, I honestly could not have
gone through that without them.

What was it like to meet him in prison?

Terrifying, my legs stopped working before we were going into the room. But luckily
his offender officer didn’t realize and opened the door, of course I was not going to
show him I was scared and somehow got in the room. That was the worst bit, once I
was in there and saw how he looks now I was fine. He is so frail and weak, I can’t
believe I let a man like him scare me for so long.
Some of my questions were not answered to my satisfaction on his side, but when
you’re meeting someone like that you don’t expect the truth. I wasn’t disappointed
though because I didn’t have any expectations with that.

What did you feel about the meeting at the time?

I felt like a queen. I felt so strong, so in control. Even now 5 months later I get a buzz
when I think about it because I just remember how amazing it was to be able to tell
him that I am the winner and he’s still stuck in there for what he did to me. It was
frustrating that he still didn’t take full responsibility for his actions, but eventually I
hope I got through to him that it’s no one else’s fault but his own that he’s still there.

How are you now – how far did you get what you wanted from the meeting?

I still get a buzz, whenever I feel sad or weak about anything now I just think of that
and remember how strong and powerful I actually am. I got what I wanted; now I
don’t think about how that man hurt me when I was a child and feel sorry for myself.
Now I think about looking him in the eye and getting control back over my life and
just showing him that he did not win and he did not break me.

Where would you be now if you had not be able to do RJ?

If I hadn’t been able to do RJ my life wouldn’t have changed from the way it was, I
didn’t realize until after the meeting that I always had this strange numb feeling but
now it’s gone. I’d still be doing what I’m doing now, but I wouldn’t be doing it so well
and I wouldn’t feel so good about everything. Nothing fazes me anymore,
presentations at university? No problem!