Ask Sam letter


To Sam

My mum physically abuses me.

My mum's been hitting me since from when I was 4 years old. I'm 13 and I've been putting up with it for years now but it's just getting to much for me to cope with. I've tried to run away but just can't manage it. I've been thinking about calling social services but sometimes mum can be nice to me so I feel guilty.

She's constantly calling me a liar and saying every time I speak she gets so annoyed at me and so punishes me for  it. Sometimes I think she likes to see the terror and hurt on my face when she's pushing me round and whacking me.

I've never had bruises but she leaves long scratch marks on my stomach and once left a cut on my eye after throwing my metal watch at me. I've also got red marks on my skin after she slaps me with her leather soled slippers.

It's all getting worse and worse and I just feel so down and even think about self harming. Please can you give me some advice and help

Ask Sam


Hi, thanks for your message.

It sounds like things at home have not been okay for a long time – practically as long as you can remember. To grow up with your mum hurting you is something nobody should have to experience and I can hear that after nearly 10 years of abuse, you are ready to tell someone and make things change.

Feeling ready to get help is something that takes different amounts of time for different people – because everyone’s situation is different. Some people might be scared of talking about what happens because the person hurting them has said they will hurt them more if they say anything. For others it might be it feels like they are betraying their family by talking to someone else, which might get their abuser into trouble.

What’s important to remember is that whatever the reason is that makes it difficult to tell someone, the adult that’s hurting you will know what they are doing is wrong. By telling someone you should not feel that you are getting them into trouble – they should not be hurting you. It is not your fault.

It sounds as though you’re struggling to cope and have started to think of other ways to handle the difficult feelings that you have inside. Harming yourself is something we hear a lot about and perhaps you could talk to one of our counsellors about that feeling? We could also talk to you about what would happen if you did decide you were ready to tell someone about what’s happening – and we could explore who you feel you could tell and what you might say. Reading the physical abuse page on explore could help to give you the confidence to talk someone.

Talking to us is a great first step because we can almost always keep things between you and us as we are completely confidential. We’d love to hear from you either 1-2-1 chat or call 0800 1111, both are free and there are counsellors waiting to hear from you.

Take care.


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You can talk privately to a counsellor online or call 0800 1111 for free.

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