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The Beginning of Me… How I Became a Survivor

by Katie Hodgkins

Written by Em Foster for her blog, Proud Lincoln Mama.

So here is a little bit about me and my life…

FB_IMG_1493025936020Me as a child

I am a very honest person so I’ll start by telling you I didn’t have a great childhood. I ended up being let down by social services and then dragged through the care system at a very young age finding my forever family when I was 9. I was a very lost, damaged child due to the abuse I suffered at the hands of my birth mother.

IMG_20170424_102605Section out of my care files

I remember having therapy sessions where one was with my birth mother. I think I was 10 at the time, even though I had found my forever family, I still craved and wanted my birth mum to love me. In this particular session I remember her telling me that she never loved me or wanted me, I kind of knew that anyways, I was a mistake, I was a bet baby (basically a group of men had a bet on who could sleep with my birth mum first), My birth dad had a girlfriend and he didn’t want to know. So my birth mum got stuck with me. The amount of neglect and abuse I suffered… I knew she hated me, I tried so hard to make her love me but deep down I new I would never be good enough. Hearing her say them hurtful things in that therapy session would be the last and final time she said anything to me from that moment I decided I would cut her out my life for good, and that was the best thing I ever did!

FB_IMG_1493025926720A poem I wrote when I was 8

Growing up with my forever family was great, they had 2 girls of their own, one the same age as me and one a few years younger. We were sisters, a happy family. I had the childhood I craved and needed. I relapsed back in to a little girl in my early teens, playing with Barbie and Polly Pockets with my younger sister. By my late teens I quickly grew up and did the whole drinking in the park with my sister that was the same age, telling our mum that we was at a friends house having a sleepover, then arriving home drunk, haha!

received_1451442934926868Me on the right, then my 2 foster sisters.

I got badly bullied at school as I was fostered, so that made me different. They would always taunt me with ‘your only in care because nobody wants or loves you.’ ‘Not even your real mum wanted you’ I left school early because of this. I had a rocky few years after my 16th birthday, My birth sister came in to my life, so I decided to move back to my home town with her. Silly mistake I made. The years after that living in my hometown was bad, me and my birth sister didn’t get on, resulting in me taking on life on my own. I lived in different b n bs, got involved with the wrong people, had a 2 year relationship when I was 17 which was abusive, after that ended I got involved in drugs and crime. I ended up at court for anti social behavior and was looking at a custodial sentence.

I very luckily got let off as someone had tampered with the evidence, someone was looking down on me that day. My forever family was at court with me, my mum pleaded with the judge to give me another chance and I can not believe I got that second chance. I grabbed it with both hands and finally moved back to Lincoln with the help of my forever family at the age of 21.

I still had a rocky few years, toxic relationships, drama, fighting, chaos, 2 miscarriages with a previous partner which caused post traumatic stress, they was both unexpected pregnancies the first was the worst, I said i was having an abortion as I was mess then i wasn’t fit to bring a child in to the world, I went for a scan where the midwife told me she sadly couldn’t find a heartbeat, this destroyed me more than anyone knew.

I put on a front and basically went off the rails. When the baby left my body I was in so much pain having contractions,, I went to hospital where it came out in the toilet, I was mortified. A year later I had a early miscarriage where it came out in the bath. I broke down ringing the hospital doing pregnancy tests, why is this happening I again bottled it up, went off the rails and it wasn’t til a year later it all came back to me I cried for hours, let it all out had counselling and dealt with it.

As sad as it was everything happens for a reason.

When I was 25 years old, I was attacked by my ex partner and his friend, they trapped me in a house where I was beaten badly, resulting in being in hospital for a few days. I had cracked ribs, broken nose, my face was unrecognizable. It was a long wait til their trial with further harassment but we got there in the end not long after they both got sentenced to prison. I got severely depressed and anxious. When it happened I believe they was going to kill me, one of them was jumping on my head, I ran at one point but was dragged back to the house by my hair. The second time I ran I tried to get in to a passing car where I was disregarded and kicked out, then third time lucky I managed to escape and bang down a neighbours door for help. The lady was lovely she let me in even though the 2 men were banging on her door, kicking off outside trying to get to me. I was later rushed to hospital.


I was referred to counselling by my doctor. I found that counselling made things worse. I would bring things up about my childhood then after I left I would feel myself going in to a melt down, I struggled with high periods erratic hypo behaviour then would suffer with serious low moods to the point I harmed myself. The councillor was lovely I explained it wasn’t helping so she got me referred to the top psychiatric at our mental health team where I went for an assessment. I explained everything about my childhood traumas, growing up with my erratic impulsive behavior and my extreme low moods. One of my biggest issues was that I had so much hate for my birth mother for what she put me through, she is the reason why I was like I was, the reason I was getting involved with bad men, bad people, the reason why I hated myself so much, the reason why I was so lost. It made me a very angry person I just couldn’t get rid of this hate. The psychiatrist was great, I got diagnosed with bi polar disorder, emotional unstable pd and post traumatic stress disorder. The following few years I had changes in medication, dosages upped, regular meetings with my psychiatrist.

I was still learning life lessons, with me everything I do is always the hard way. I have been in a few abusive relationships, my next relationship  was after the attack he was emotionally abusive where in the end he did start getting violent. I was drinking heavily. I found that emotional abuse was much worse than the violent abuse, cuts and bruises heal, emotional abuse is long lasting. I had several severe break downs at that point, I was hospitalised twice for serious self harm and an over dose. I struggled to deal with what had happened to me, on top of the abuse I was receiving from my boyfriend at the time. Like I mentioned previously I believe some one is looking down on me.

I am a good hearted person I always help others out. I have a habit of feeling sorry for and wanting to help damaged people but what I’ve learnt from that is you cant help anyone who doesn’t want to help themselves you just end up getting dragged down with them. I had what I thought was a friend but she was emotionally abusive, so I had to cut my ties with her, then start picking my self up again. I’m quite good at that when I’ve had enough of people and there abuse, when I am done I will just cut ties and walk away I don’t go back to old grounds either.

I started to sort my self out when I was 26 years old. All I ever wanted, wished, and prayed for was a quiet peaceful life no drama no chaos. 2015 was a rocky start but in February I met a guy, a nice guy. I already new him as he lived near me. There was no connection before but now he gave me butterflies – we started texting and we was was soon dating. I’m a strong believer in fate, everything happens for a reason. I believe there was no connection before because it wasn’t the right time, he was a nice guy completely different to what I had ever been out with before so I believe it was fates way of saying lets wait till you’re ready.


His name is Paul. We are still together now, in a happy strong relationship, he loves me in a way no ones loved me before, he filled in all the gaps, made my heart whole again, he appreciates me, respects me and we both lead a quiet peaceful happy life. The following May we found out I was pregnant. I couldn’t believe it, we was both so happy.

Iwas scared at first, my thoughts racing… what if I wasn’t a good mum?


Being pregnant was an amazing experience as soon as I saw his little heart beating on that monitor I new I was going to give this baby the best life, the life I never had, the life I always dreamed of. I completely changed my diet, ate pregnancy superfoods, cut out sugary drinks, literally just drank water all the way through. I had to be weaned off my medication which I managed to do. I felt great, there was nothing stopping me, I was on top of the world. I loved my bump so so so much.


I was so proud when Oscar was born, he weighed eight and half pounds, he was born perfectly healthy. We was told by professionals very early on that they wanted to keep me in hospital for a few days after birth for monitoring because of my mental health, despite being told this they let us go home the following day.


I had 2 assessments with my psychiatrist once baby was born. On the last one he told me that he was discharging me for good, he said that he was extremely proud of me, that he couldn’t believe he was sitting in front of the same person he met all them years ago ! He said ‘ I honestly thought you would have to be medicated for life but, here you are doing so well and looking so happy.’ I couldnt believe it. I was so chuffed. I wasn’t relying on medication anymore and no more appointments were needed.

Wow, I had made it.

My son is my whole world. I Google everything what’s best for him, its all about my son, he was my saviour, my little miracle, he helped me control my bipolar rather than letting it control me, he makes me the happiest I have ever been. I have completely changed as a person. I am so calm and happy. My partner also helped me get to where I am today by supporting me, helping me recover from abuse, heal emotional scars, giving me courage, and loving me.

As for all that hate I had built up inside for my birth mum, I turned it all into love for my baby boy, in my head I have forgiven her, just so I can move on but i will never forget.

Its all about love for my little family now.


Written by Em Foster for her blog, Proud Lincoln Mama.


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