I’m Rosemary

Rosemarys Story

This is my story

My name’s Rosemary.

So I ran away from home when I was 11 years old and police put me into a children’s refuge, I was on the street from 11 until the police found me.. 

Something terrible happened at home and I couldn’t stay there.  And they didn’t want me anyway. So I ran away, so I just ran away. It’s very hard. I was not really safe at the refuge, because I came out on the racecourse 24/7 and was just drinking, and I still drink today. 

From eleven I was drinking, I never went back to the refuge, I just drank and drank and drank. And now I’m 59 and I’m still drinking. Nothing else to do, nothing else to do beside drinking.

 I went then to the night Shelter when I was sixteen/seventeen. I was here ages and ages ago, before you lot was even in here. Peter Finches night shelter just over there. I can remember the stabbing on the stairs, as you go down here, ages and ages ago that was. And I can remember a lady called Valerie here, used to work in the kitchen, she was an old lady and we had volunteers and everything here and that’s when I used to stay over there in the night shelter with Peter Finch and some night staff, and yeah and I’ve been coming here ever since. 

It had loads of volunteers in there doing meals every day and every night and you would get breakfast morning, dinner at dinner time and supper at night.  And I can remember they used to take out of my Giro, every fortnight £40, That was just to stay there, until I got paid again next time, next fortnight. 

If I didn’t have the night shelter, I’d be dead, I’d of been dead or committed suicide, and all my old friends used to stay there as well, now they’re gone, now they died.  And I can remember the stabbing on the stairs here, in the head, and that was over drugs. I can remember.

There were no end of staff here then, but we never done none of this, no groups or nothing. You know we’d just come down for dinner, you know, and socialise… until it opened again. Because you couldn’t go back during the day, you had to go back at 6.00 at night, till they opened again, but if you’d had a drink you couldn’t go in there. And this was just like a dop in, like it is now.

Then I became pregnant with my first daughter when I was 18, then she passed away at 11. When my daughter died I was in an abusive relationship cause the police found me at Leicester royal infirmary where he put me, he battered me because I wouldn’t buy him a drink. I went in another refuge. And then I come from Leicester back to Northampton and I was drinking again, drink drink..It’s very hard. 

That was 13 years ago, and then I self-harm because of my daughter. If I’m not here I just go up the cemetery and sit with her. It depends on how I feel. I’ve tried taking my own life, but yeah it never works .I can hear my daughter calling me, up the cemetery, which is really hard, which is why I drink. Because my daughter is calling me, mum come with me, you know what I mean, but I just don’t know what to do you know. 

Staff don’t know what I’ve been through here. Most certainly the people here care about me, all the staff, that’s all I care. I do like sorting donations. It’s something to take your mind off stuff. 

I don’t know if I’m strong, you know It all depends on what the day brings. On a bad day I will cut myself but on a good day, but if I have a good day, I can change easy you know. 

What’s the words. I’m just trying to think. I just glad I’ve got this place you know, otherwise I don’t know where I’d be, probably be dead or something, or drinking myself silly on the racecourse. Hope is a safe place to come to, and very nice people and I like sorting the donations out and… the most important thing is they come and talk to you, see like how you are,  you know, I enjoy coming down here and seeing you lovely people.  Rosemary.

*Rosemary’s words have been changed in places to omit graphic and personal information to be sensitive to our audience. 

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