MP reveals shocking history of sexual abuse in speech to parliament
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MP reveals shocking history of sexual abuse in speech to parliament

Queensland Member of Parliament Melissa McMahon has given a shocking account of the sexual abuse she endured as a child as she prepares to take time off from parliament.

MP reveals shocking history of sexual abuse in speech to parliament

The Labor member for Macalister said in a speech on Thursday that she had hit rock bottom last year as suppressed memories of the abuse surfaced.

Ms. McMahon says she was frequently raped and abused from age five after being left in the care of teenagers.

“Most afternoons, I would shop around the neighborhood for other teens and often traded in for a can of soda,” she said.

“I can’t tell you how many perpetrators were involved. I couldn’t even quantify how long it took.”

The worst abuse happened when she was nine years old, according to Ms. McMahon, who says she was allowed to be abused by a known child molester.

Camera IconQueensland member for Macalister Melissa McMahon says she has been repeatedly raped and abused since she was five. NCA NewsWire / Dan Peled Credit: News Corp Australia

“I joined the company and was overseen by the last person on Earth who should ever be given such a position – a child molester recently released for a particularly horrific child sex crime,” she said.

Ms. McMahon described it as “pure evil in the face”.

“Again, my hours after school became personal hell,” she said.

“I can’t quite put into words the things that happened to me or what I had to do. Some of those things are better locked up.”

The former army major and policewoman is requesting leave from parliament to deal with her mental health.

Coinciding with the end of her marriage, Ms. McMahon revealed that police and paramedics were called to her home after her children found her unresponsive.

“The low point for me is like walking out of the PA hospital barefoot with what’s left of my prescription medication,” she said.

“It gives the answers I knew I had to give to avoid being admitted to a psychiatric ward.

“Because of the excruciating stress this put on my family that night, I’m sorry – for my son, who had to call for help; I’m also very sorry I put you in that position.”

Camera icon The stress of hiding her inner turmoil caused her to burst last year, she says. NCA NewsWire / Dan Peled Credit: News Corp Australia

The mental anguish of hiding her emotional turmoil was one of the things that led Ms. McMahon to her breakdown.

“For me, the exhaustion reached its limit, and last year, my facade burst,” she said.

“Things, feelings, and memories that I had painstakingly tucked away and locked in a box deep inside kept threatening to surface.

“The panic and fear that came with that were, in many cases, quite debilitating. I felt like my skin was inside you, raw and exposed.”

Ms. McMahon said by speaking out and “shining a light” on her uncomfortable issues, she hoped it would help others do the same.

“I will recover loudly so that others do not die quietly,” she said.

Those on both sides of the political divide congratulated Ms. McMahon on her bravery, and many shed tears during the speech.