"I got out of my bra and knickers quicker
than Houdini, and slid into the bath. I exhaled with relief
at this masterstroke. After all, the water gave my breasts
some buoyancy, sending them bobbing to the surface with all
the lift of a teenagers."
Call Me Elizabeth - pg 101.
Wife, Mother, Escort - Biography
Dawn Annandale spent her childhood in what outwardly was a smart,
happy family living in the best street in town, but it was not a
happy childhood. Dawn's father never hit her mother so far as she
was aware, but verbally he could be cruel and cutting in a way that
would be viewed as emotionally abusive today. When Dawn was in her
early teens, her father, returning from a six month trip abroad,
started to sexually abuse her and this would continue until his
death from suicide six years later.
During all the time of this abuse, and with no one to share her
secret, Dawn took comfort in a small music box, and looked for any
excuse to stay away from home. Her one hope for herself was that
she would soon grow up so that she could move beyond her father's
reach. She swore that if one day she had children, they would not
suffer as she had. In many ways, this pledge became the driving
force for what was to happen to her later in life.
She left home as soon as she was able, married very early and before
long had two babies. Dawn didn't take much interest in her husband's
business, but as interest rates rocketed his business folded, and
he abandoned Dawn, leaving her holding two babies and penniless.
She handed the keys of her house to the bank and set to work to
bring up her two children as best she could. Dawn met Paul through
her work. He was six foot, handsome with dark hair and Dawn thought
that at last she had met someone who was right for her and for her
children. She very soon fell in love.
Married to Paul and four children later things were on a downward
path. Dawn had honoured her pledge: the children were at private
school, they all wore clean new uniforms and took advantage of all
the extra-curricular activities. Dawn was working, but Paul, it
emerged, had very little ambition and the cycle of debt that had
destroyed her first marriage was on her again. Bills were shoved
unopened in the kitchen drawer and Dawn got by bouncing cheques
and using credit cards. One day, bailiffs appeared on her doorstep.
She was about to lose the house and everything she had fought so
hard to gain.
In sheer desperation she answered an advertisement for 'escort'
and was asked at interview 'You do know you have to fuck them?'
Over a period of three years, under the name Elizabeth, servicing
as many as six clients in some nights Dawn paid off the family's
debts, put the children through private school and started to save
some money. During all of this time, she was living a double life,
a perfect mother, bastion of the PTA and with a husband who believed
she was working nights as a secretary.
'Call me Elizabeth' is Dawn's incredible account of her experiences.
It addresses a host of issues in moving personal detail and touches
on child abuse and incest, debt and debauchery. Most of all, it
deals with an extraordinary woman's determination to do right by
her children and the steps she is forced to take to realise her
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