Updated: Mar 26, 2020
Hello and welcome everyone who wanders here! My name is Casey. I am 20 years old at the time of writing this. You may have guessed that I am in fact a care experienced person... Some people are still getting used to this term, so do not worry if you are not familiar with it! It generally means that you have been in care or are currently in care. For me this meant living with a foster family, though there are many different kinds of placement.
I was super lucky with my care experience, I only ever lived with two different families and they were in separate periods of care. The first time I went into care was very short but the second time I was long term. This meant I was to stay in care until the age of 18, never to return back home. I still have contact with my second foster family to this day. They are more my family than anyone else.
I was taken into care because of abuse and neglect. My parents had long split up so my father bore no parental responsibility to me. I was living with my mother, older sister and my little brother at the time of moving out. I was the only one to be taken away. To those with little experience of the care system, this may seem odd. Surprisingly, it is more common than you may believe!
Unfortunately, due to the trauma I endured, I now have impaired judgement when it comes to relationships - romantic and platonic. As a result, I have suffered through multiple abusive relationships. I have also been through sexual assault. Some of these people were ex-partners and some were 'friends'. I understand this is the most difficult thing I will ever discuss so there will always be clear trigger warnings on any posts about sexual assault.
There is someone I look forward to introducing you to someday. Her name is Debbie. I loved her very much. She was the first person to recognise what was really going on at home and the closest person I have ever had to a mum. Unfortunately, Debbie lost her battle to cancer just a few weeks after my 13th birthday. I will forever hold her close in my heart and she will never fail to give me strength.
But not all is bad! I am now defying the odds (and those bloody statistics...) and am doing well in life. I am happy and I am thriving. Using my experiences for good, I am now an advocate for care experienced people and mental health. I now have national roles championing the rights of the UK's children in care!
So now you have a rough background of me! I am excited to share my story. There will be a lot of stuff on here that I will be admitting publicly for the first time. This is going to be an interesting venture for me and I hope that it helps to educate people and reassure those who have been (or are going through) similar.
It has taken a lot of courage to create this blog. I know some family members will not be happy. Too long have I been silenced by my own shame and anxieties. It is not my fault what happened to me. This is MY story and I am here to own it!
If you or someone you know is currently in an abusive environment call 999 in emergency or contact your local authority for non-emergencies.