Jamie, not his real name, was sexually assaulted twice by three boys at his secondary school in North-East England, and was helped when he contacted the NSPCC.
“I was 15. Things were going OK but some boys in my year had started picking on people, bullying them and humiliating them in front of others. I tried to distance myself from these bullies but it wasn’t long before they turned on me, too.
“It was just words at first but things started to get more physical. It would happen everywhere, in lessons, at lunchtime. I would try and ignore it but it left me feeling angry and alone. I hated them for it.
“Like the bullying, the sexual assaults took place in front of others. It’s hard to look back on it now; the feelings of anger, shame and humiliation were so intense.
“After the first assault, I sat in the toilets for about an hour not knowing what to do, trying to control myself. When I came out they were there waiting for me and they assaulted me again.
“It was like once they had done it they could do it again, any time. I went to tell someone straight away. I knew then that things wouldn’t be the same again.
"I couldn’t go back to school after that. The thought of it made me feel so tense and wound up. I totally shut down. I didn’t see my friends, I would hardly speak or eat. Nothing felt good. I just spent time alone in my room.
“ I struggled to sleep at night and when I did I had really aggressive dreams and they really scared me. They were all about what I would do to the boys if I saw them again. I didn’t feel in control. I got flashbacks, too – it was like it was always going to be there inside my head, like I was some kind of prisoner.
“Looking back now, I’m so much happier. I have gone back to school and I am planning for the future. I know I was sceptical at first but talking really did help. It helped me find out who I was and that I wasn’t going to let what happened define me.
"I am far more confident with who I am now. My message to anyone who has experienced something similar is never give up, because life can get better.”