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NIAMH

My ex-boyfriend Dave used to put me down in front of my family and friends all the time, and the way he would just give me that look sometimes, the look that said you’re in for it.  He was always yelling at me, calling me all kinds of names. I couldn’t take it any more so I told him I didn’t want to be with him, that I needed to be by myself at the moment. He started accusing me of cheating on him, of having my eye on someone else.  He called me a ‘slut’ and said he had only been with me because I was easy. 

I thought because of all the things he said that I would never hear from him again.  And I didn’t for a few weeks. Then the texts started, first in the middle of the night and then all day long, text after text, calling me names, then telling me how sorry he was and that he loved me and wanted to get back with me.  I wanted nothing to do with him, he flipped too many times. I changed my mobile phone number so he couldn’t text me any more. I felt so good when I changed it I thought I’m taking back control here.

It all stopped for a few weeks and I was so relieved – I thought it was over.  Then I got a message on Facebook from two of my college friends accusing me of calling them ‘sluts’, and of blaming them for what happened between me and Dave. I didn’t know where it came from. I tried to talk to them, but they refused to speak to me. I was sick in my stomach and began to dread going back to college in September. I just couldn’t make sense of what had happened.

Then the worse thing ever happened.  I logged into my Facebook account one day to find my profile picture had been replaced by a nude one. I didn’t even know when the photo had been taken.  It looked like I was asleep. There were lots of comments posted from all my friends. It was horrible, I didn’t know what to do, I was so embarrassed and so scared. Then I saw a post from Dave, it just said ‘slut’. I knew then it was him, he must have been able to access my Facebook account. I just logged out and didn’t know what to do, what would people think, I couldn’t go back to college, everyone had seen this.

My friend Sarah called and said she also reckoned it was Dave that had done this.  She said she knew I wouldn’t do something like that. She told me she had read an article about this happening and that it had given a number you could call for information. I called Women’s Aid and they told me it wasn’t my fault, they also said they had heard of this happening to other women. 

I felt so relieved that it wasn’t just me. They told me I could block him form my Facebook, but if it was my profile picture that had been changed that it meant that he probably knew my passwords, so I changed them. I’m still really hurt and embarrassed about what happened, but at least my most of my friends understand, and I don’t have to worry about him getting into my emails or Facebook again.   

* Name and details has been changed to ensure confidentiality.