She touched the heart of the nation two years ago when she auditioned for The X Factor, sharing her emotional backstory about her family life. And now Shanell Dargan has shared an even more personal one.
"I hope this gives other young women, black, white, the courage to speak up and stand up, and not be embarrassed by domestic violence. They need to understand that it does happen and it happens to a lot of people, people don’t realise how much it does happen. I just hope this gives them the courage to leave a bad situation and get out alive. I’m one of the lucky ones," she told NITV News.
This isn’t the first time this has happened.
Shanell told NITV News of her first encounter of domestic violence at a young age.
“I never told anyone about it ... the exact same thing happened to me. This has been going on for a while with my ex-partner and this was the last straw. I just thought that I need to help people going through the exact same thing. Today, there are so many women who have been murdered because of [domestic violence] and I didn’t want to be one of those, and that’s why I spoke up,” she says.
Her Facebook post describes the alleged assault that took place over the weekend.
She claims the assault was that bad that she lost consciousness and had to seek medical advice.
Since she posted her story it has received over 20,000 likes and more than 2,000 shares. And despite some negative backlash, Shanell remains positive about coming out publicly on such a taboo subject.
“I’ve had so many messages from girls who are going through the exact same thing. I don’t even know them and they’ve reached out and saying how much I’ve helped them. I’m just going to focus on the positive [messages] rather than the negative ones. I could help someone, I could help them not getting bashed, and help them survive,” she says.
As a youth worker Shanell believes it is even more imperative she shares her story.
“A lot of the kids I work with go through the exact same thing, so that’s another thing why I needed to take a stand and show that I can be good role model, and tell them it’s not okay."
Police investigations are currently underway.
If you or anyone you know is suffering from domestic or family violence, please call 1800 RESPECT (737 732).