Hidden faces

Hidden Faces

women with back turned

When someone who has experienced domestic abuse escapes their situation, they often live in fear – too scared to even show their face in public. But that doesn’t mean they don’t have a voice. Six brave women share their experiences


‘It’s like a huge game of hide and seek – only it’s not a game.’ Julie*


‘If I see a man who resembles my ex-partner while I’m out, I freeze at first, feel sick to my stomach and feel all colour drain from my face. I go into a panic attack and try to find somewhere to hide until I can get my breath back. Once I am a little calmer, I get home as quickly as I can and lock all the doors and windows. It can take two or three days before I can leave the house again. I rarely go very far. I’m terrified of him finding us, so I’ve mapped out some different escape routes in the area in my head so if he appears somewhere I can get away before he can get to me.’ Lauren*


‘I don’t think I will ever be able to feel completely safe or let my guard down.’ Claire*


‘When I heard my ex was looking for me through different agencies, I decided it would be best to change my name to hide the trail. It was a really strange feeling when it was all official – I felt sad, like I was grieving for the old me. On the other hand, it gave me the opportunity to start again and rebuild my life under another name. I felt a sense of relief because I would be invisible for a while at least.’ Elaine*


‘The fear of being found by my abuser is still very real. Even after two years and moving hundreds of miles away, I feel like it’s only a matter of time before he finds us.’ Pamela*


‘When I finally got away he threatened to kill me, got me fired from my job and tried to take my son. He recently found me and I had to flee again. I live in fear.’ Janice*


*Names have been changed


We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it. Ok, continue
There is always a
To quickly remove this page, use the
button in the top right of the screen, click this to take you to another website
keys, its quicker than scrolling up to the close window button