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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Emma Wilson

Mel B shares battle with ‘abuse trauma’ after suffering years of domestic violence

Mel B has bravely shared her battle with ‘abuse trauma’ after suffering years of domestic violence.

The former Spice Girl, 46, said she was the victim of years of psychological and emotional abuse at the hands of her ex-husband Stephen Belafonte, and wants to help support other women who are in violent and toxic relationships.

Mel has joined forces with The Sun’s #NoMeansNo campaign in an effort to raise awareness on sexual consent, and along with her 22-year-old daughter Phoenix, they want to share their own stories to help other victims.

She was prompted to act after hearing reports that domestic abuse has increased by 60 per cent since the Covid-19 pandemic began in March 2020.

The mum-of-three said she was in an “emotionally and physically abusive marriage” for 10 years, and she can barely remember what happened to her because of post-abuse trauma, which can “last a lifetime”.

Mel B bravely shared her story of domestic abuse (Ken McKay/ITV/REX/Shutterstock)

“But nearly five years on I still wake up in the early hours with terrifying fragments of sounds and images flitting into my brain,” Mel said, admitting that some nights she wakes up “drenched in shame, sweat and fear”.

She wanted to speak out to help other women “who are raped and abused within relationships feel powerless and invisible”, amid reports domestic abuse has increased by 60 per cent since the Covid-19 pandemic began in March 2020.

Mel said ex Stephen had convinced her nobody would believe her claims of abuse, but after building her career on the foundations of ‘Girl Power’ with the Spice Girls, she felt she had to “break cover because I knew that what happened to me was happening to millions of others”.

She was left devastated when she found out her daughter Phoenix, who she shares with ex Jimmy Gulzar, had witnessed some of the abuse she faced.

And while writing her book Brutally Honest, which was released in 2018, Mel realised there were many women in her position after thousands reached out to her after reading her book.

Mel was distraught when she realised daughter Phoenix witnessed the abuse (Channel 4)

She admitted she had turned to drink and drugs in the depths of her depression while in the abusive relationship “to blot out torment, shame and guilt” and as a form of “self-medication”.

Mel said she “put on a front” for years to mask the violence she was facing at home, and wants to help other women who are in the same “ugly situation”.

“We need to talk about it, deal with it and do everything in our power to see justice done,” she stated.

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