I was able to trust and love again
Being sexually assaulted at the age of 10 left Phikisile a bitter child who cared little about her life and had multiple partners.
"I felt like the person who raped me robbed of my innocence and I didn't see a reason for me to respect and love myself any more. When I was 13 years old, I dated a man who was 40 years old because he gave me money while I had another boyfriend at school who abused me physically. I lived a reckless life of partying and refused to listen to anyone at home, "she said.
When she was doing grade 10, Phikisile lost interest in her studies, dropped out of school and ran away from home. "I moved in with my high school boyfriend who continued abusing me. I thought he was going to change when I was with him all the time. He controlled me and I lived by his rules. I was not happy, but I couldn't go back home because of how I left,” she said. She continued living with her abusive boyfriend until she received a message that her grandmother whom she lived with at home had passed away.
"I went home for my grandmother’s burial and I did not go back to my boyfriend’s place. He also did not come to look for me. I later found a good job and one day on my way home from work, I was invited to the Universal Church. I attended the services and that was when I realised that I was still bitter and angry with the person who had raped me when I was a child. I understood that I needed to allow the spirit of God to comfort and heal me," she said.
Her job however kept Phikisile away from church and she later resigned because she did not want to lose her newly found peace.
"I attended the Wednesday services and I was able to heal from the rape and abusive relationship I had been in. I started to love and respect myself as a young lady," she said.
She also attended the Therapy of Love services on Thursdays where she met Thomas, her husband.
"As I continued attending the services, I understood that men were not the same. I was then able to love Thomas without fear of being hurt. We dated for a month before we got married. Receiving God in my life gave me the joy I never had before," she said.