I won’t let my abusive dad win any more – Alex Scott


BBC broadcaster Alex Scott says the domestic abuse she experienced during her childhood is “still so raw”. …

WATCH: Alex Scott on the abuse she says she endured at the hands of her father

BBC broadcaster Alex Scott says the domestic abuse she experienced during her childhood is “still so raw” but she wishes she had spoken about it sooner.

Scott has released her memoir in which she describes her father’s violent behaviour towards her and her mother.

Her father, Tony, denied her claims on Monday in a Daily Mail interview.external-link

Responding on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour, Scott said: “I almost feel angry at myself that I’m allowing him to hurt me again by those claims of lying.”

In an emotional interview, the former England footballer said she had decided to write about her father’s behaviour because she wanted to help “free my mum”.

The 37-year-old said: “That story from him coming out yesterday takes her back to a place… hearing the pain and the terror again in her voice last night – that’s why I don’t know what I can do. But I’m not going to allow him to win no more.

“This book, the reason was to get some peace. And I suppose when you are in peace it gives you a new position of power and that’s maybe why he’s trying to (respond) right now.”

In her autobiography, How (Not) to Be Strong, Scott writes about hearing her father be violent towards her mother while she and her brother were in bed in their flat in east London. She wrote: “All I could do was lie there and pray my mum would be alive in the morning.”

Speaking to Radio 4’s Emma Barnett, she said: “(My mum) doesn’t know that her two kids are in the room hearing everything.

“She’s trying to be strong in a totally different way, we’re trying to be strong for her but can’t help her. The visuals are still so there. I couldn’t do anything.

“It’s all still so raw. I can visualise it like it was yesterday.

“Even when my dad left that environment, we never communicated or you don’t speak about it, it’s like you try to move on with your life and leave that to the side but it never leaves you. That pain and the struggles still continue.”

‘I’m sorry I didn’t use my voice sooner’

In her father’s interview, he denied having been violent towards his family, but did acknowledge that he was a strict parent.

He said: “Perhaps she is judging me by today’s standards, I don’t know. Parents were a lot tougher back then. But I was never violent, that’s just not me. I never beat Alex or anyone else in the family or did anything like that.”

In response, Scott added: “I actually don’t care what happened to me. If you are saying being beaten with a belt is just being strict – I can take that, I really don’t care about me.

“What I do care is about my mum and the fear and terror that she had to live in and the fact I was never able to help her in that, but what I can do is help her now by speaking the truth. And everything I wrote in that book, I stand by it. It is the truth.”

Scott has pledged that all the proceeds of her book will go to help women affected by domestic abuse.

She added: “I feel sorry right now that I’ve not used my voice sooner to help my mum or any other woman that is in this position.

“But what he has done – he lit a new fire in me yesterday. What I will do is do all I can to help women in this position so they don’t have the feelings that my mum has carried her whole life – or that I have.”

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Information and support on domestic abuse

If you’re affected by any of the issues in this article you can find details of organisations who can help via the BBC Action Line.

If you feel you are in immediate danger, call the police on 999. If you can’t speak, press 55 when prompted to let them know you need urgent help.

Online webchats and text services are also available.

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