In 2015 I was asked on a date by a man I met at my local gym he was a lot younger than me and I was flattered, his name was Tom.

We started dating but I knew straight away that something wasn’t right. He would question my every move and phone me every hour to ask who I was with.

Even though I knew this behaviour wasn’t right I let it continue as I wanted the relationship to work and thought Tom may relax once he knew I wouldn’t cheat on him. I didn’t want my son to be upset if I ended the relationship because his biological father was abusive and no longer in his life. I didn’t want to fail him again.

Seven weeks into our relationship he came to my house one evening, we were watching television when suddenly my phone popped up a message, it was from my ex- boyfriend asking how I was. Tom went ballistic and started screaming at me, calling me a slag and a bitch. He suddenly grabbed me phone and bit it in half I was terrified.

My young son was in the room so I tried to calm Tom down, this made him worse it was like he was possessed. I was terrified as Tom grabbed hold of me and bit my whole body, punching and kicking me until I passed out. Throughout my ordeal my son was clinging to my leg petrified we would be killed.

Tom threatened to rape my daughter and kill my 83 yr old mother and I believed him.

The attack stopped when Tom announced he was going to feed his dogs and I’d better be there when he came back. The minute he walked out of the door my adrenaline kicked in, I grabbed my son and ran to my daughters house 10 minutes away. My daughter phoned the police who quickly arrested Tom.

My physical injuries include 2 slipped discs and a bulging disc for which I am still having treatment. My psychological injuries will never heal and the side effects are night terrors, being afraid to leave the house, constantly worrying about my daughter, mother and son.

My son now sleeps in my bed as he has been visibly affected by the images that he saw that day and in effect this has resulted in me feeling overwhelmingly guilty that my son is suffering.

I have been stripped of my self-confidence and self-worth from the hours of torture that I was made to endure. Sleep deprivation is having a great impact on my on daily living as I am persistently tired and suffer with depression.

He was sentenced to 16 months in prison and served only 5 months. Tom was released from prison in September 2017 and I am always on edge not knowing if he is stalking me.

There is an indefinite restraining order in place but this is a piece of paper that will only protect me if Tom abides by the law.

BWA have been my rock and without their support my life would have been 100 times worse than it is now. As well as emotional support my worker has applied for criminal injuries compensation and supported me to overcome my anxiety and fear of going out.