Former Manchester United and French left-back Patrice Evra have opened up about the terrible sexual abuse he endured at the hands of his teacher at the age of thirteen.
Patrice Evra had open the lid on the sexual abuse he suffered during his childhood in his autobiography and has recently opened up about his experience to help other children in the same situation.
According to the former French international, he initially kept it a secret because he was ashamed to come out and share his experience.
A study by the US Department of Health and Human Services, one in five girls and one in twenty boys suffer sexual abuse every day. what is more damming is that there is evidence of child sexual abuse every nine minutes.
According to a report by the National Institute of Justice three out of four adolescents who suffered sexual abuse are mostly abused by the people they know.
What did Patrice Evra say?
In an interview with BBC Today’s Programme, the former Manchester United left-back said: “When I was 13 I was in a school too far from home, so I had to take a train, a three-hour trip. So my teacher suggested that I sleep in his house. He was living inside the school.
“In the beginning, it was like a dream, he was cooking for me, letting me play video games. But whenever I was going to bed it was a nightmare, that’s when he was trying to sexually abuse me. Every night it was fighting, and then one night he succeeded. I told my mum: “I don’t want to sleep anymore in that teacher’s house.” She asked me why and I didn’t say why.
“I lived with that until I was 24 years old when I was playing for Monaco, and the police called me and said: “This man has had a lot of complaints about other kids being sexually abused, did he do anything to yourself?” And I said no. I lied because first of all, you feel shame about yourself, you feel guilty, and also you’re scared about what people will think – I was already a famous person. I regret it because it’s not about me, it’s about the kids.
“That’s why in my autobiography I’ve been open about it, and thanks also to the woman of my life, Margaux, she helped get rid of that toxic masculinity and feel safe.
“I felt like I could trust her, I opened myself and I talked, and you released something. I decided to put it in my book. My book was already finished and I called the publisher and said: “I need to add something really important.”
“The most devastating moment was when I see my mum and telling her face to face, after I was 13 years old, at the age of 40: “I’ve been sexually abused.” Of course, she was devastated, and I told her: “I’m going to put that in my autobiography.” She said: “No, that is too personal,” and I said: “No, mum, it’s not for me, it’s for the children.”’
I hope the Patrice Evra testimony will encourage most sexual abuse victims to come out and seek professional advice.