Like Ben Mitchell in EastEnders, I know how it feels to be a victim of a homophobic attack

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The impact of the attack leaves him a shell of his regular self. And in the coming weeks and months, the show will explore in more depth the psychological impact of the attack on both Ben and his loved ones.

When I was followed and attacked that night, I decided to report it to the police. From memory, this was within a day or so of it happening.Personally, I have very little faith or trust in the Met to support or work with marginalised communities, however, I know that it’s important to record hate crimes so that we have a clearer picture of how common they are – and so that we can apply more pressure on the Government to tackle them.It felt like the officers involved were trying to dissuade me from taking the case any further, telling me it’s unlikely those involved would be found, and if they were then I might be making the friend whose house we’d been at even more vulnerable.

I’d already agreed with my friends that we didn’t want to take it further, but the officers who came to speak to me didn’t know that and so their ‘advice’ was about as encouraging as I expected it to be.The morning after the incident, I woke up still feeling panicked.

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