Who I Am

I’m Tim Verity, a journalist, writer and survivor of Childhood Sexual Abuse (CSA). Welcome. 

I launched this site as a way of connecting with fellow survivors, to offer support and to ensure that our voices are heard.

Through my experiences I hope to add to the growing debate on the subject, as well as to engage with and advocate for other people affected by CSA.

Keep scrolling down the page to read my story, or visit the About section for the basic facts.

And be sure to visit my Posts section for my latest thoughts, links to published articles and details of ongoing work to support fellow survivors.

 

Telling My Story

Shortly before my sixteenth birthday, I came to the crashing realisation that I had been sexually abused during my childhood.

I’m not exactly sure when it started, but I know that by the age of seven or eight an adult male relative had groomed me.

He used sugar mice, made by his mother, to entice me to perform sexual acts and to keep quiet about the assaults he would carry out during time spent playing in his bedroom.

The effect of this revelation was to fracture my fragile developing mind and trap me in a cycle of destructive behaviour that would continue to haunt me for years to come.

I spent over half of my lifetime picking the shards of psychic debris from my wounded self. For fifteen years I lived as a prisoner to thoughts and feelings I couldn’t control.

It took the birth of my nephew, and the realisation that by staying silent I could be putting other children risk, to summon up the courage to come forward.

My Search For Justice

Early in the summer of 2014 I was interviewed by police, who launched an investigation into the historic abuse I suffered at the start of the 1990s.

The Crown Prosecution Service felt they had enough evidence to take the case to court and proceedings began in October 2015.

After two years of waiting, agonising and reliving memories long since avoided or repressed, in November 2016 my testimony helped to secure the conviction of the man who abused me.

In late January 2017, he was finally sentenced to four years in prison and placed on the sexual offenders register for life.

The process of going through the courts is one of the hardest I’ve ever had to endure. It is also the single most powerful experience I have ever had.

The moment after I  stood up in court and given my testimony I felt the burden I had been carrying for all those years being lifted from my shoulders.

Nothing will ever take away what happened to me, the damage done to my life, my mental health and my relationships, but I am one of the lucky ones.

I know not everyone who undertakes this journey will be able to get the result they so desperately want and need.

Having gained some measure of justice, I now want to use the energy I wasted for so long on self-loathing and negativity to help others try and find their own peace.

My Writing

I am a news journalist by training, with seven years experience working in the media. If my writing at times comes across as matter-of-fact, or even slightly detached, this may be why.

It may also stem from a survival mechanism. I have told and retold my story so often over the years that it’s become mythologised, a narrative construct describing events that happened to some guy called Tim.

I’ve always found the idea of unbiased coverage problematic. As journalists we’re trained in the ‘objective’ reporting of events rather than the subjective exploration of self, but truth is often more complicated than a news story can convey. 

We all bring our own experiences, thoughts, feelings and beliefs to whatever we do in life, so why should writing be any different? 

Accuracy is certainly something to be lauded, and impartiality might be a more realistic goal, but is objectivity actually achievable or even desirable?

A more honest approach, for my writing at least, is to admit my biases from the start and let readers draw their own conclusions.

So, with that in mind , I hope to use my writing to explore ideas around CSA and to tell my story, as well as those of other survivors.