My name is Sunny Angel, I made the media front page 20 years ago. Headlines read ‘Girl influenced by Older Man’. I was stalked and groomed by my Predator at 17 he was 40. He forced me to commit crimes I wasn’t old enough to, I was charged in Court and he walked free. Media called it ‘influenced’ and NOT grooming. Asian girls can be groomed too it was just harder to seek help. If only grooming was taken seriously so many victims wouldn’t have suffered needlessly. I was failed by everyone. The authorities didn’t want to get involved with the ‘culture’ and my family didn’t want the ‘shame’. Every door was slammed closed on my face. I had nowhere to go but the homeless shelter to end my life. My turning point was when death rejected me. I am a Survivor of many things, grooming, rape, forced arranged marriage, honour abuse violence and being a young widow at 25. I chose to write the book WINGS and speak out now because I felt I was ready to share my experiences and I wanted to show others it’s ok to speak out and that they are not alone. We can change our mindsets by self love and self acceptance, we don’t need other people’s opinions to victim shame us. Pen to paper was my therapy – writing my book WINGS was self healing it helped unlock my silence. Self empowerment allows us to view from another perspective, we are not defined by our path. We have a better future ahead than the past we leave behind. The best days of our lives are still to come – if you allow them. What hasn’t killed me has made me stronger and I have the scars as souvenirs and turned them into art, I’m not going to hide them anymore. I am covered in over a thousand scars. In 1997 I had over 60 open wounds on my back when I escaped the abuser. 20 years on many of those scars from cigarette burns, whips, glass cuts still remained. My daughter aged 5 asked me what they were, I told her the truth and that they are a part of me. I can not erase the past but I can change my future. We can no longer hide behind the umbrella of Honour/Izatt – abuse is real and it has to end, that’s why I chose to speak out. So many girls are suffering in silence – I wanted to encourage and give hope to others. I hope you enjoy the book.
In May 2017, I watched the BBC program ‘Three Girls’ and the Grooming triggered me. I contacted Nazir Afzal via Twitter to share my story – He read my book and gave me a Five Star review
"This is a must read memoir of someone who has been victimised by many including those who claimed to love her. It will warm hearts as Sunny's strength and resilience shines through challenge after challenge. It's also essential for practitioners so that they can begin to understand what victims endure when they get things wrong "
Nazir Afzal OBE - Former Chief Prosecutor and Chief Executive of the Association of Police & Crime Commissioners
I also contacted Mandy Sanghera whom I have been following on Twitter – Mandy also gave me a Five Star Review
“What an great book by an brave woman who has experienced so much abuse and trauma issues like, rape , grooming things Asians. Never want to talk about . I was blown away by the no end emotional abuse experienced by Sunita . Yet she never let anyone destroy her soul or self worth. It's moving book from start to finish. The book will give you an inside to honour violence and how it has an impact on ones mental health. Many people will relate to this as it shows that many young people are conditioned by society to never speak out because of honour. What really got me was how Sunita has held onto her sense of humour and remained positive I totally loved Sunita spirit.”
Mandy Sanghera International Human Rights Activist
"At work, I used to sign for the parcels that came to reception. There was an Asian delivery man who would take my signature and always gaze at me, unembarrassed, with a piercing stare. This was slightly creepy, although, he was quite good-looking, with a goatee beard, but I didn’t pay too much attention at the time.”
“Around this time, I began to sense that I was being watched. When I was driving, a car would flash me for no reason. Talking to a friend in the street, I would feel someone staring at me. But, when I looked around, no one stood out.”
“If you don’t do as I tell you, I will throw acid on your mum’s face. I’ll stab your dad. I’ll kill your brothers. If you don’t do what I tell you, this is what’s going to happen. These are the consequences’.
Wings – Sunny Angel