I read this out in court so that the judge knew what I had been through and what Troy had put me through.
I stand here today as a 40 year old woman, 26 years ago when I was 14 years old, I lost myself, my innocence, my self-worth, my self-esteem, my trusting nature and my carefree self. On that day after I was sexually assaulted, I felt so dirty and worthless, that I just wanted to curl up and not face the world ever again. A few days after the crime, I did try to take my own life as I felt I didn’t deserve to be here and didn’t want to go on anymore.In my late teens I thought that I was only good for one night stands, I also started drinking to numb the pain. It took me a few years to realise that I was worth more than a one night stand.I don’t trust as easy as I used to and takes me awhile now to warm up to anyone I don’t know. I have trust issues with men and now only trust a few men in my life. It was hard after I was sexually assaulted as I wouldn’t let my dad and brother hug or get close to me.In my 30’s I was diagnosed with depression and put on antidepressants. It wasn’t till last year,2014, when Detectives Jessica Austin and Todd Clayton contacted me and I met with them to give them my statement, that I realised my depression started when I was sexually assaulted. After making my statement and having everything brought back up, I had to go on stronger antidepressants. My depression has been because of what happened to me, some days I won’t leave the house and other days I really have to push myself to leave the house. I have worked on and off but don’t hold a job too long because I just can’t cope. I haven’t worked now for a few years, so rely on my husband to work and bring in an income, which I should be contributing to but can’t. We live with my parents because we can’t afford to rent or buy our own place.The sexual assault robbed me of my confidence and my self-esteem. My dignity and my self-respect have been compromised as a result of the crime carried out against me. My faith in myself and my faith in the world has been diminished. My life is and never will be the same, I am not the same person, my teenage years were taken away from me, I was no longer a normal teenager and I can’t get those years back.I am thankful that I have a loving family that have been there for me every step of the way, and have helped me through it all. I am also thankful that I was able to trust a man enough to fall in love and marry him. He understands me and all I have been through, he is always there for me, cares and loves me, which I never thought possible. I never thought any man would love or want me, and I never thought I was capable of loving and trusting a man as much as I love and trust my husband.Though the impact of the sexual assault continues to affect me, years after, on a daily basis. Not a day goes by when what was done to me does not interfere with my life or limit the life I lead in some way. I still have nightmares, sleepless nights and flashbacks. I also have difficulty concentrating and memory problems on a daily basis. I have lost so much and many of those losses cut right to the core of who I am and can never be undone.