“He would find a way to get rid of everyone, his kids and my cousins so that could have me to himself,” she says.
“This became the new normal for me. I expected it to happen every weekend until I was numb,” she says.
That time, Rose had no one to confide in.
“I was scared that I would get into trouble or have the blame put on me. So I kept quiet,” she says.
For years Rose kept this secret to herself, until one day she decided to open up to the family.
“Honestly, I only opened up about it now as an adult. I got older and heard other people’s stories which encouraged me to open up,” she says.
“Back then, I just found a way to get out the situation,” she says.
This affected Rose’s life, her relationships, and interactions with people.
“I developed anger issues. Back home in Sterkspruit I was used as an example in the community. Every time people spoke about rape, they would mention my name. I I was shamed because I didn’t know how to handle the humiliation. But I knew I had to deal with it and accept it,” she says.
“I accepted the matter. Luckily I did not become an addict of alcohol or drugs like many people who have been sexually abused,” she says.
“I used my pain to help others heal,” she says.
“I refuse to be a victim of my circumstances,” she says.
“Having a daughter at an early age gave me the strength to seek help and help others,” she says.
“I live to help others,” she adds.