Pace has kept me going
My daughter began to suffer with anxiety and depression over lockdown, during which she started a new school. She was isolated and sad. She has a disability and is neuro-divergent. We had various safety settings on her phone and occasionally checked what she was doing there. We count ourselves as tech savvy, but the people who target children are clever and know how to get around things.
Very quickly, our daughter was a victim of online sexual exploitation, coerced into self-harm and manipulation. We weren’t supported by the police and there was very little support in place altogether.
Over eight months later, my daughter will soon be starting therapy, but for me there was nothing. The impact this had on my family was huge. I left my job. I gave up my hobbies. I felt so down and depressed.
I blamed myself for not noticing what was going on. I still feel devastated and heartbroken. For our daughter’s sake not many people know, so we had no one to talk to.
One of the only things that has kept me going is the support from my Pace worker.
Just having someone I can talk to openly about everything has made the world of difference. Knowing I’m not alone. Just having someone that I can speak freely to has kept me going over the past few months. Pace is an amazing and much-needed charity for so many families. I can’t thank them enough.