- By RNZ
This story discusses graphic details of sexual and physical abuse
''After all the wrong done to me in my youth it has left me with scars that are not visible to the naked eye.''
The parting words of Loretta Ryder given to the Royal Commission into Abuse in Care on Friday.
Ryder, 53, suffered severe physical abuse from her mother and sexual abuse from her father.
The abuse started from the age of 8.
When her parents split up she had to take over her mother's role.
''In every aspect of a mother, a wife or whatever the f**** he called it, meaning that he sexually abused me first by just touching, doing that sort of shit to me.
''I knew, even as a kid that that shouldn't be happening to me.''
She told her mother what her father was doing but she didn't believe her.
''She beat me to a pulp from head to toe," Ryder said.
''She said to me if I tell anybody that she would kill me and I had to say that I fell out of a tree playing.''
At one stage her school principal saw bruising all over her body and she ended up at a police station.
She stuck to the tree story because of her mother's threat until a police officer, a woman, could see her fear and then her story came out.
''I just thought, no one cares, why have I even f**** told anybody. No one is listening. I'm going to die.
''She (mother) walks in acting like everything is going to be alright. I just looked at the cop and cried. I got home and got another hiding.''
Her mother sent her up north to relatives so her wounds would heal before coming back to school.
Her parents moved back in together and the physical and sexual abuse continued for the next couple of years.
''This is how it is so f***** up is that I tell my mother what happens, she beats me, she sends me away and when I get back she's telling my father what to do to me.
At intermediate school she plucked up the courage to talk with the school counsellor.
''So once again I thought, maybe, maybe this time someone will listen.''
She was then taken to a care home for a couple of days and police came to talk to her, and so did a social worker and Ryder's mother.
''No way did I f****** want to see my mother. I hated her with every breath.
''I am scared as, I am looking at the social worker with the reaction on my face to help me without even speaking."
Her mother pretended everything was alright, she said.
''And then the dumb f****** social worker walks out and leaves me the f*** in there with my old lady. Not only did I want to f****** want to kill her, I wanted to kill the f****** social worker.
''If I spoke up my life would end but not only that my younger sisters would endure what I endured with my father. Was I going to speak after that, I don't f****** think so.''
Ryder said she tried to commit suicide on a number of occasions but thought about her younger sisters and did not want to hurt them.
She started running away and eventually ended up in Bollard Girls' Home.
Her father was allowed to visit her there.
''When my day came he wore his (church) collar and came in the flashiest car he had at home. Not only were the girls wowed by his appearance and the car and all his flash rings and it was the manner he spoke to the staff.
''So the visiting was approved.''
The visits were not supervised even though she asked that they would be.
''I didn't know how to convince people in this place that these things were still happening to me in the f****** home.
''He had full intercourse with me while my younger brothers and sisters were in the room with their backs to me drawing in their colouring books and I had to be as quiet as... and I wanted to end my life.
''I went to tell the staff and I put my hands down there and I said to them 'what the f*** is this'. I'm telling the f****** truth and I got dragged down to the secure unit and they kept telling me I was lying.
''How can you say that about your father, a man of the cloth.''
She was then sent to the Weymouth Home in Auckland.
Ryder said it was like the other homes, violent and racist.
She said the rules were differently applied for the Māori and Pasifika girls than the Pākehā ones who seem to have been favoured.
Ryder's father was later prosecuted for what he did to her and to other girls.
He was convicted on five charges of incest, five of indecent assault and one charge of trying to dissuade a witness, Ryder herself.
He died in prison.
Where to get help:
• Lifeline: 0800 543 354 (available 24/7)
• Suicide Crisis Helpline: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)
• Youthline: 0800 376 633
• Kidsline: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7)
• Whatsup: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm)
• Depression helpline: 0800 111 757 (available 24/7)
• Rainbow Youth: (09) 376 4155
• Samaritans 0800 726 666
• If it is an emergency and you feel like you or someone else is at risk, call 111.
SEXUAL HARM - DO YOU NEED HELP?
If it's an emergency and you feel that you or someone else is at risk, call 111.
If you've ever experienced sexual assault or abuse and need to talk to someone contact Safe to Talk confidentially:
• Call 0800 044 334
• Text 4334
• Email email@example.com
• For more info or to web chat visit www.safetotalk.nz
Alternatively contact your local police station - click here for a list.
If you have been abused, remember it's not your fault.