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  /  Freddie Cocker

Freddie Cocker

I was sexually abused when I was around 7-8 years old by a school bully.

It lasted no more than 5 seconds and for just under 20 years, I never thought about it again. It became a repressed memory that I buried deep down into my psyche.

I was bullied in primary and secondary school for 9 years so that was my main priority, to survive.

When I was 25 years old, after I started sharing my story through my mental health platform VENT, I was asked to do an interview for a mental health media outlet and for a reason I still can’t explain, the memories of the event came rushing back.

From that moment, I started to realise a host of scars I had developed were as a result of the abuse.

Sexual abuse is one of the most misunderstood and stigmatised traumas there is for men.

It infects every part of our life, makes us question our sexuality (regardless of whether we’re gay or straight), affects our attachment style, friendships, relationships and our worldview.

It can emasculate you and make you feel sub-human, a freak and unworthy of feeling love and being loved.

However, with the right support and professional help, it can and does get better. That’s the most important message I’d want people reading my story to take away.

You may go through unbelievable pain but there is light at the end of that tunnel.

If or when you are ready to take that step, it is always okay to vent.

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