Leyla’s story"I’m very afraid of my father.“

I’m very afraid of my father. He controls everything and sometimes locks us in the house.

My mother has been living here for fifteen years now, but still doesn’t speak very good German.

My father won’t let her take a language course and doesn’t allow her to visit neighbours on her own.

He controls everything and sometimes locks us in the house.

They argue a lot. Sometimes he also hits her.

My little brother thinks that’s OK.

But he’s a spoiled prince and can do what he wants.

My father has been saying a lot recently that he’s already picked a husband for me and that I’ll meet him when we go on holiday.

But I’m still so young.

I don’t want to marry a stranger and I don’t want to leave Germany.

I can hardly speak the language, and perhaps I’ll be locked up there as well.

I don’t know what to do. Sometimes I just feel like running away.

And then I think that I shouldn’t just abandon my family.

I’m very afraid of my father.

He says he’d find me wherever I was.

I want to study and become a doctor. But I have trouble concentrating at school.

I stare out of the window and daydream.

An older cousin of mine has left home.

There was a huge argument with my uncle.

She gave me the number of an advice centre where I can call anonymously.

I phoned it secretly and told them all about my situation.

The woman said that my father isn’t allowed to do that. If I want she could protect me from him.

I’ll phone the woman again. Perhaps we can meet without my father or brother knowing about it.

The woman also said that she knew where I could find help on the Internet.