• Ken Pullen

Platform 1 at Peterborough Station

Three years ago, I split up from my partner and was looking after my 2 children. One was 2 and the other 3, both were my world and I loved them with everything I was.

Before the split and the debts, things were hard but everything got paid, the kids were fed and life was ok, not as I always thought my life would be, but it was ok. Then one Sunday afternoon, I found myself in A&E after being severely beaten up and at one point they didn’t think I would pull through. My partner had got drunk and decided to use me a punching bag because I didn’t get him a cup of coffee when he got home. Both the children saw what happened, and this had a lasting effect on them.

He was arrested, but that afternoon changed our lives dramatically. It took me at least 6 to 12 months to get back to being well physically, but mentally I was shattered and in pieces. Soon I got behind on the rent, and bills and had bailiffs hounding me from 7 am in the morning till 9 pm at night, both verbally and knocking at my door. I didn't eat, sleep, go out or even talk to my family anymore. I had one friend that would come round sometimes if I needed to go to the hospital and watch the children for me. They both used to wake up in the night and scream because they thought daddy was coming back to hurt both me and them. My depression got worse and I began to have suicidal thoughts every day.

Then one day after having been verbally bullied over the phone and at the door by bailiffs, I could not take it anymore. Both the children were sleeping and I asked a friend to come to watch them while I went to the doctors, which was a lie. I went into their room kissed them and put an envelope under their pillow telling them how much I loved them and how sorry I was for what I was going to do. I travelled to town on the bus and went onto the platform at Peterborough station and stood to wait for the next fast train to come through, intending to step out in front of it. The children would be better without a failed Mother.

Over the loudspeaker, they announced that a fast train was coming and to stand back. I was about to step forward when my phone rang. It was my friend who was watching the children. I ignored it and started moving forward when it rang again. I thought I would answer it because another train would be through soon.

As I answered it all I could hear was my daughter crying and saying she wanted me and just crying. My friend said she had woke up and started calling me and she could not calm her down. Then next thing she said broke my heart - she told me how much she loved me and wanted me to come home and huggle her, she couldn’t say cuddle!

I ran out of the station and got in a taxi and went home and didn’t stop cuddling them and telling them how much I loved them both for hours.

As my friend was leaving she handed me the letter that had been under the pillow, hugged me and gave me a number of The Open Door Trust. She had worked with them and knew that they could help as they partnered with a national charity. I rang the Trust and spoke to Ken. He gave me the number for new clients to book an appointment with Christians Against Poverty and explained what was happening and they said they would book an appointment with Ken and that things would be ok. I was unsure but felt something change in that I now had help.

Fast forward till now. I am debt free and life is so different. I never thought anyone would be able to help me out of the dark place I was in. I was never judged and was never pushed to do anything I was not happy with. Ken and CAP have saved my family. I am still far from being in a right place mentally, but every day I now get up and can look myself in the mirror and not want to end it all.

I have two amazing children and a life that is moving forward and I know that it is all because of them, I don’t know where we would be now. This year we are having our first ever family holiday, and it's all paid for through me saving.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart Ken for the times you heard me cry, the times you heard my frustration and above all the times I just rang and didn’t say anything, but you just listened and waited for me to say something.

Thank you to everyone who helps with the centre and those who give money wise to keep it going. You do save people and family's lives. If this centre did not exist families like ours would be torn apart by the stress and pressure debt puts you under. Families where a parent can only see one way out to save their family. Please support the work they do.

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