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On one normal January afternoon this year, Royce Ali was stabbed repeatedly in a frenzied attack by the woman he cared for and loved.

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After an afternoon spent with his son and daughter they had returned to his Denton home to find his partner, Andrea Madden, 29, furious that he had thrown away her slimming pills.

“I said they weren’t good for her and told her not to take them any more. She started swearing at me.”

The argument escalated and Andrea said she was leaving Royce.

“I took it with a pinch of salt and walked downstairs. Then she started being abusive about my son. I told her to get out and she grabbed the knife and started stabbing me.

“I didn’t realise I had been stabbed until I saw the injuries. I told her to call an ambulance but she ran upstairs and I could hear her telling the police I’d attacked her.

“I was cut open all over and my chest was pouring with blood. But I didn’t feel anything. It was the total shock of what she had done.”

At Maidstone Crown Court last week a jury took just 50 minutes to find Madden guilty of wounding with intent. She was jailed for seven years.

The incident was the culmination of a long catalogue of abuse by troubled Madden, who Royce “felt sorry for”.

Herself a victim of abusive partners in the past, she was also devastated by the loss of her children.

Custody was handed to their father after she threatened a neighbour with a knife.

For more than four years father-of-two Royce took Madden back in time and time again.

When she was sectioned after a dispute in the high street Royce visited her every day in hospital in London. When she found herself in prison for three months, Royce was there to call on.

Up until the trial, he remained sympathetic towards her. His family called him a “softie” and told him that she deserved jail. It was only in the courtroom that the 45-year-old realised how he had been manipulated by Madden who claimed she acted in self defence.

“From what she said in the court, she couldn’t have had feelings for me and that’s the thing that hurts the most. For her to do what she did and completely fabricate what happened that day...that was just soul destroying. But the court saw straight through what she was saying that it was all lies.

“I used to say to people, ‘she did love me, she did love me’, but afterwards I thought to myself, ‘did she?’ That’s the horrible thing about it. I’ve just got to try and move on now.”

He won’t ever visit her in prison, but Royce hopes she gets the help she needs. Speaking out now he hopes to show others, particularly men, that there’s a way out.

“A lot of men would think the woman’s going to be believed, but it doesn’t work that way. If a man can hit a woman and a woman can hit a man they can both do the same damage to each other.

“There’s stigma with men thinking it’s not manly but I think that’s silly. What happened to me could happened to someone else and go further.”

If you are a male victim of domestic abuse or for information visit www.mankind.org.uk

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