A British woman has come forward with a shocking story: she was sexually abused by her father for years, and eventually gave birth to his baby.
Helen Rees (not her real name) appeared on British talk show This Morning to tell her story. It all started when her mother left her family, leaving her and her older sister and brother alone with their “frightening” father, a man who battled mental health issues.
“I saw him as a very dark figure, very frightening,” Helen said, according to Daily Mail. “I could hear him talking to himself a lot, he was crazy, he thought the house was bugged.”
He treated his children like animals, not letting them have bedding and only allowed them to eat bread and potatoes while he ate “fancy food.” The abuse quickly escalated from psychological to physical.
“There was a lot of physical abuse, he would hit us with poker, a belt, or with a branch on the back of our legs,” Helen remembered. “My sister and I dressed like old women in long skirts to hide the bruises. Sometimes he would force our brother to beat us.”
Helen revealed she was only 5 years-old when the abuse turned sexual as her father began coming to her room at night.
“He was the boss, I didn’t know any different,” she said. “He warned me ‘if you lose me, you’ll be locked up in an institution and the key will be thrown away.'”
She endured the abuse until she was 14, when she learned she was pregnant.
“He told me I couldn’t get pregnant because he was my father. I believed that, it was such a shock,” she said when she found out she was expecting. “I didn’t know what was going on. He shouted at me and said ‘why didn’t you take precautions?'”
Helen’s father tried to arrange for an abortion, but by the time she learned about her pregnancy, it was too late for that. Eventually, she gave birth to her daughter Sarah, who she describes as her “pride and joy.” Unfortunately, because she was just 14, Helen was forced to return to her father with their baby. It was only when she saw him behaving strangely with the child that she knew she had to get them out.
“I went out and came back to see him with the baby, her nappy was open, he was rubbing his hands together and he looked guilty, ‘what are you doing?’ I shouted at him. I knew then I had to get out of there, I thought ‘could this really happen to a little baby?'”
Helen reported her father to authorities, but he was dubbed legally unfit to stand trial. Afterwards, she tried her best to move on and give her daughter a normal life. She planned to never tell Sarah about the incest, but as a teenager the girl learned the truth when she found paperwork about her father/grandfather.
“For a period, she hated me,” Helen said. “She shut down and stopped dealing with her emotions.”
Now, Helen says her relationship with her daughter is slowly improving. She says Sarah is now happy and is traveling the world. Helen says she feels it is important to tell her story in the hopes that other incest survivors will speak out as well.
“Tell someone, get it out there,” she urged. “Don’t live with abuse and remember it’s not your fault.”