Here are the rules. They’re designed for everyone’s protection, and were created to encourage contributions and prevent prurient reading (and lawsuits). I’m happy to amend/adjust the rules going forward if you feel they don’t suit you.
- Be direct
Address your letter to your attacker, to those who protected them or failed to protect you, or to those who failed you.
- Be careful, be anonymous
No surnames, no obviously identifiable information: we don’t want (or need) to know your name or your abuser’s. Not only does your privacy belong to you, but unless you’ve been through a court process this could cause problems going forward. This is about having your voice heard; justice happens elsewhere.
- Be as vague as you want about dates/locations
If you haven’t shared your experiences with family and friends, you might choose to make this as anonymous as you want (for example, talk about “the late 1980s” rather than a specific date; “A boy’s school in the Midlands” is detail enough).
- No details
I don’t want readers to get off on what you write and it risks taking the focus away from your experiences.
- Write about your experience, not the events
“This is how you affected my life” is more powerful than “this is what you did to me”.
- Be personal
Talk about how your life has been affected by your experiences, both at the time and since.
- Communicate safely
We won’t publish your name, but feel free to use a junk email address (Gmail and Hotmail are quick and easy) for contact with the site. I’ve done the same in the past.
- Be smart
If you’re currently going through a court process, talk to your solicitor before submitting anything.
- There is a review process
What you send us isn’t guaranteed to get onto the site immediately, and possibly not at all. We need to be careful that what is published meets the above criteria, both for your and our protection, and to encourage additional contributions. Please bear with us – we have jobs and lives beyond this site and might not respond immediately. That doesn’t mean your contact isn’t important.
- We will edit
If we feel it’s appropriate, we’ll edit or redact submissions. We will, however, be clear and transparent. If you disagree with an edit/redaction, feel free to ask us about it.
For obvious reasons, comments will be moderated.
- EVERYTHING you tell us will be held in complete confidence.
- We will not keep, distribute or publish your details to anyone.
- If you want us to delete your correspondence between us, ask us and it’ll be done.
If you are happy with these rules and reassurances, please continue to the submission page.