Nicola* - Aged 19

I met my ex-girlfriend whilst still at school, we spent four years at the same school but then when we left we faded away. Three years later we met again.

We started a relationship together and we moved in together after a few weeks. We had a lot in common and got along really well. I really fell for her.  Looking back now I realise we got too serious too quick.

Things began to change between us quite dramatically; it began with not being able to see my family or friends. I was made to feel guilty for going to visit my little sister who was only five at the time.  I think she thought I should have been spending all my time with her.

For a while things began to get a bit better but then she started to accuse me for no reason of cheating on her. This led to lots of petty arguments, at the time they felt like a massive deal.

My ex began to smoke weed and take other drugs and the arguments and accusations got worse and the violence began. It started off with her self-harming and she used this to persuade me to stay in the relationship, I wanted to leave but I didn't want her to hurt herself.

One day I had decided I wanted to leave the relationship and had booked a taxi. When she realised that I was leaving she locked me in the house so I couldn't get out. She went on to trash the house and got a knife out to threaten me with. On this occasion I fought back but my arms got slashed and I got punched but I did manage to restrain her but I didn't  get the chance to leave the house for another three days. She went out so I packed all my things got a taxi and left to stay with a friend for a couple of days.

I hadn't told anyone what had been going on. Even though I had left the house the abuse continued, she rang telling me she had cheated with two people and blamed me for it, saying it was my fault because I had cheated on her before, but I hadn't.

We met up to try and talk things out but it ended up in a fight. It was at this point she had a panic attack I took her to the hospital and it was there I realised she had faked it. I told her it was over. I went home and changed my phone number and deleted her off Facebook.

I hoped that was it and it was over but she continued to harass me. She created fake Facebook accounts so she could send me messages and managed to get my new phone number from other people. She sent my friends messages trying to cause trouble by telling them lies. This continued for 3 weeks constantly. I changed my number three times and have blocked seven different Facebook accounts. I have had to tell all my friends to ignore her and not to give out my new phone number.

It feels like even though were not together, and won't be in the future, that she still continues to control my life.

I have spoken to my local police community support officer who has given me a lot of advice and has been very supportive.  This has reassured me and I am no longer scared anymore.

I am really glad that I spoke to someone about everything I have been experiencing.

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* Names have been changed to protect the individuals involved

16-19 year olds are most vulnerable to experiencing domestic violence.