Supervet Noel Fitzpatrick says he was sexually abused from the age of 5 to 10 by farm labourer
Superfat Professor Noel Fitzpatrick has revealed he was sexually assaulted by a male worker on his family farm.
In his upcoming memoir “Beyond Supervet,” the TV vet says in a chapter titled “Openness” that the alleged perpetrator was occasionally his nanny when his parents went out.
He says the abuse started when he was just five years old and continued until he was 10.
Mr Fitzpatrick said: The times how the farmhand’s tobacco-stained hands positioned his head to do unspeakable things.
And when Fitzpatrick found the courage to trust a local priest and tell him what was going on, the then eight-year-old was “told he was going to hell.”
‘[He said] that God would punish me and send me to hell, and that I was a bad person to bring these words into God’s house,” the book says.
“His farewell instruction was to say penitential prayers and never speak of them again,” Fitzpatrick said in his book, which will be published Oct. 27.
Supervet professor Noel Fitzpatrick has revealed he was sexually abused as a child by a male worker on his family’s farm.
The vet told The Times that the alleged abuse took place in the fields, on a tractor, at the family home and in a dilapidated cottage.
Elsewhere in the book, the TV vet reveals how he was brutally bullied, teased and beaten at school.
He writes, “In high school, I couldn’t read or write at the level of my peers. The other guys knew about things like math and girls, but both were a mystery to me. As a result, I became obsessed with studying to the exclusion of everything else.
“Perhaps inevitably I was bullied mercilessly every day, beaten up physically and mentally. My only friend was Pirate, who was chained to the wall in a cowshed on our farm in Ballyfin in County Laois in the Republic of Ireland. To everyone he was just the farm dog, but to me he was my dearest companion.’
He reveals how he worked as a waiter, gardener and male model in college in Ireland and in America, adding: ‘I studied every hour I could, and my love life slowly blossomed – I didn’t have a girlfriend until I was in my twenties.’
He writes about his money problems: ‘I ran out of money and changed banks three times. I felt I could achieve my dream if I worked hard enough, with an honest goal. I was eventually able to set up my current practice by converting a collection of old farm buildings in Surrey into Fitzpatrick Referrals.
“Everything was always on the line, and I was often stressed to the point of despair, but I kept going.
“The prize of my dreams was significant in both financial and personal costs. I was married to the dogs and cats of “strangers” rather than a woman (as one friend put it accurately). Not that my clients seem like strangers to me, and neither do the animals, they’re like family.”
Fitzpatrick also talks about the loss of both his parents.
His beloved mother, Rita, died in February at the age of 92 and his father – a farmer – passed away in 2008.
In the book he says about his father: ‘He only saw me operate once. In the late 1990s, he watched me fuse a dog’s broken wrist, a pancarpal arthrodesis.
‘I didn’t have any good tools at the time—only a wood drill on a long electric cable to remove cartilage from bone, and a hand drill with a bit to make holes in the bone for screws, both covered with sterile cloth drapes. I performed this operation in a wooden gardener’s hut.
“I always hoped that one day Dad would say he was proud of me. He never did. I could tell he was a little impressed – and no doubt he would talk about it to anyone who would listen when he returned to Ballyfin. But to me he never said the words, ‘Well done’. I don’t blame him. He was a man of his generation and upbringing.
“His reticence may be one of the reasons why I feel inadequate every day of my life. I am plagued by low self-esteem. Yet I know that I have made many thousands of friends in my life – the greatest blessing of being ‘The Supervet.’
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- Beyond Supervet: How Animals Make Us The Best We Can Be by Professor Noel Fitzpatrick, published by Trapeze on October 27, £22. © Noel Fitzpatrick 2022. Visit mailshop.co.uk/books or call 020 3176 2937 to order a copy for £19.80 (offer valid until 22/10/22; UK shipping free on orders over £20). Super Bold: Noel Fitzpatrick on All4.