My dad left when I was around five years old, closing the businesses both he and my mum owned. This left my mum to raise my two older brothers and I on her own. We had no money and often ordered “spare lunch” from school but we soon became embarrassed so just stopped going to school those days. Mum worked so hard to hold it together for us. Alongside the poverty I was a victim of ongoing abuse for many years. In fact I thought it was just normal and it wasn’t until high school when there was a lesson about abuse that I realised that what was happening to me wasn’t normal. This all led to me feeling so worthless and finding any way to deal with my emotions. I became really violent towards myself and others, including classmates, teachers and even my mum.