It Was The Trumpets
It was the trumpets. Always the trumpets. That melancholic, drawn out theme tune, heralding the highlight of her week. Coronation Street was her only form of escapism.
If he was out, we’d watch it with her. If he was in, we’d hide in our shared bedrooms, pretending to read, or feigning interest in something that wouldn’t arouse his temper. Not seen and not heard was always the best policy. Sometimes even that wasn’t safe.
Thirty odd years later, my partner is channel zapping and it catches me out again. That same brass dirge, this time in HD. The sound snares in my throat. A lump lodges against my trachea like a second Adam’s apple, choking me slightly. Killing me softly.
I see her surrendered to that maroon velvety sofa with the dangly tassels around the hem, the ones the dog hadn’t chewed off. She’s clutching a tea; not too much milk, second use of the tea-bag. She’d always give him first wring, obeying his orders for a ‘nice brown one.’ How I wish I could have shat in it.
I picture her there now. No doubt the sofa’s changed, though it’s so long since I’ve been there I wouldn’t know what it looks like. For a second I feel like picking up the phone. Dialling the number I once called home. Speaking to the woman I once called Mum, before she lost the capital M. I resist, knowing it’ll be him who answers. No point trying the mobile either, she keeps it switched off when he’s around, in case he catches her speaking to one of her children. Her own offspring; now more like strangers than babies she once gave birth to.
Abuse damages in whatever form it takes and here at Many Small Voices we hope to gather the stories of those who have survived abuse into one resource to help and support those who are still victims. We also hope to support survivors through recovery once the abuse has stopped because the scars are still there and will remain forever. Support after abuse is just as important.
We are not experts, just people who are passionate that domestic abuse, in whatever form it takes, must be stopped.
If you think you or someone you know needs help please take a look in our links page to find a list of organisations that strive to help support victims of abuse.
We are looking for your stories of abuse to feature on our blog and make many small voices one LOUD voice. We will protect your anonymity at all times should you wish to remain anonymous, so please contact us for more details.