A man who was starved, stabbed and scalded with boiling water by his ex-girlfriend has said he 'would have died' if police had not intervened.
Alex Skeel, 22, from Bedfordshire, suffered horrific injuries at the hands of childhood sweetheart Jordan Worth, and bravely recalled his story on a BBC documentary this week which made headlines around the world.
The father-of-two appeared on GMB on Thursday where he spoke about his terrifying ordeal and discussed some of the little-known warning signs of domestic abuse.
Speaking just days after his appearance on BBC Three's Abused By My Girlfriend, Alex explained his decision to go public and the overwhelming response to his story.
I know that there's a lot of people suffering how I did,' he said. 'I didn’t want one more person to suffer even a per cent of how I felt.
'The reaction that everyone’s got has proven it was the right decision to go public. Hopefully it will make people comfortable enough to come forward.'
Alex Skeel, pictured on GMB this morning, suffered horrific injuries at the hands of childhood sweetheart Jordan Worth, and bravely recalled his story on a BBC documentary this week
Alex Skeel pictured with former girlfriend Jordan Worth, who pleaded guilty to controlling or coercive behaviour in an intimate relationship and was jailed for more than seven years
Alex shows off the horrific burn marks (left) and cuts on his legs (right) after he was violently assaulted by his girlfriend between 2016 and 2017. She was jailed last year
When asked why he 'put up with' Worth's violent and controlling behaviour, Alex, a football coach, said he did so for the sake of his young children's safety.
He said he went into 'survival mode' and lived in constant hope that things were 'going to be better tomorrow'.
'It's protecting yourself at all times,' Alex said, comparing himself to 'a boxer in the ring' and revealing he 'would have died' if police hadn't swooped in in June 2017.
'I was hit on the head 1,000 times,' he added. 'What if one of them gave me brain damage? What if a stab on my wrist had have hit an artery?
'I was waiting to die. I kept hoping the next day would be one less hit on the head, one less stab, less boiling water. It would be better than the last day if that didn’t happen.
'My situation was that little things happened at the start [of the relationship]. She disappeared on two holidays. No one knew why. Both times she was laughing in the reception area. It escalated and escalated.'
Appearing on GMB today, Alex Skeel said he went into 'survival mode' during his ordeal and lived in constant hope that things were 'going to be better tomorrow'
Joining Alex on the sofa, Mark Brooks of the Mankind Initiative (right) said: '[Domestic abuse] is far more common than we think. One man in every six will suffer domestic abuse'
Joining Alex on the sofa, Mark Brooks of the Mankind Initiative added: '[Domestic abuse] is far more common than we think. One man in every six will suffer domestic abuse.
'Men make up one in three of all victims. What Alex has done has a shone a light on the issue.'
A recent study by ONS found that men make up more than a third of the 1.9million victims of domestic abuse in England and Wales each year.
It was June 2017 when officers from Bedfordshire Police found Alex, from Stewartby, cowering on the stairs after receiving a call from concerned neighbours who had heard him screaming following his latest attack.
Worth regularly attacked him with 'weapons' including a hammer, a screwdriver, bread knives and a broken hairbrush in a nine-month campaign of domestic abuse that left him 'ten days away from death' according to medics.
This week Alex revealed the extent of his horrific injuries for the first time in a BBC documentary that charts how he was violently assaulted, stabbed, starved and burnt by the mother of his two children, who was jailed in April 2018.
Bodycam footage from a police visit on 3 June 2017 shows officers entering Alex and Jordan's property, and finding the bathroom spattered in blood following a violent attack
Officers found a large serrated bread knife in the couple's home (pictured) which had been used to stab Alex. The 21-year-old was found with wounds on his arms and wrists
Abuse: Alex was treated in hospital after officers discovered he had been violently attacked with injuries including a deep scar on his wrist inflicted with a bread knife (pictured)
Alex required stitches in his hand after he was attacked with a knife (pictured) but despite needing surgery, his girlfriend 'walked him out of hospital', the father-of-two recalled
Alex lost almost 4 stone after being deprived food but stayed with Worth, an aspiring teacher, because he was 'in love with' her and feared losing custody of his children, he says.
Bodycam footage from a police visit on 3 June 2017 shows officers entering the couple's home, finding the bathroom spattered in blood and Alex, who was bleeding from the wrists, bandaged using a football sock.
Sgt. Ed Finn, who was on the scene, recalls: '[Jordan] let us in and we went upstairs. At the top of the stairs Alex was sat with a towel wrapped around his arm and just blood everywhere. There was a large serrated kitchen knife... then I noticed other injuries on Alex.'
Initially, Alex blamed himself for his injuries in a bid to protect his partner and Jordan was not arrested until a subsequent police visit several weeks later.
In April 2018 Jordan Worth became the first female in the UK to be convicted of controlling or coercive behaviour and was jailed for more than seven years, and Alex now hopes to encourage more men to speak out about domestic violence.
Alex at the police station in June 2017, after police swooped in and arrested his long-term girlfriend. The court heard how Jordan Worth attacked him with screwdrivers and hammers
Alex being interviewed in June 2017. During his interview, when asked by an officer how he felt about moving forward, he replied: 'I just don't want to get hurt anymore'
Alex returned home to his family (pictured recovering in bed) and, in September 2017, Jordan was charged with 17 counts including GBH and controlling coercive behaviour
The father-of-two was alarmingly thin and in poor health by the time of Jordan's arrest, after his untreated burns became infected and he developed hydrocephalus, a build-up of fluid on the brain, caused by major head trauma.
Alex relives his horrific ordeal in Abused by my Girlfriend which reveals in harrowing detail how he went from a carefree teenager to being hit, stabbed and burnt with boiling water on a regular basis.
Shocking images in the documentary show Alex's bruised and bloodied legs, scarred wrists and skin hanging off his arm where he was scalded with water from a kettle.
Alex was a football-mad 16-year-old when he first met Jordan at a college concert in June 2012 and soon became besotted with her.
'She was very caring, confident, loving,' he says of the aspiring teacher. 'She just showed a real interest in me.'
Despite friends describing Jordan as 'delightful' and her boyfriend as 'quite smitten', Alex's mother Ged says it wasn't long before her behaviour took a dark turn.
'The longer they were together, and as the relationship grew, the mind games started playing,' she recalled.
Alex and Jordan as teenagers. Despite Alex's friends describing Jordan as 'delightful' and her boyfriend as 'quite smitten', Alex's mother says it wasn't long before she 'started to change'
Alex tried to break things off, but Jordan came back with the bombshell revelation that she was pregnant and returned to his life a year later with baby Thomas J ('TJ'), pictured
'[Jordan would] say, I don't really like the colour grey, I don't think you should wear the colour grey,' Alex added.
'[She'd say] I don't like your hair like that, you should have your hair like this. I don't like the shoes you're wearing. But I never took it as a negative. It was more like, I won't wear it again - it won't impress her.'
On one occasion, Alex's family treated her to a night at the theatre in London, only for her to disappear from the hotel in the middle of the night, sparking a frantic search, before reappearing in the hotel lobby an hour later, 'just laughing'.
Another time, she ruined Alex's 18th birthday party by 'screaming abuse' at a female family friend who she had grown jealous of.
But despite her erratic behaviour, Alex brushed off his family and friends' growing concerns, admitting: 'I was a bit clouded by what happened because at the time I loved her.'
Alex eventually tried to break things off, but Jordan came back with the bombshell revelation that she was pregnant and returned to his life a year later with baby Thomas J ('TJ') who was born in May 2014.
Alex's heartbroken family rallied round him after police intervened and arrested Jordan (he is pictured here recovering at his family home in Bedfordshire)
It wasn't long before the young couple were back together and, despite Alex's hopes that she had changed, the cracks soon reappeared.
Alex's best friend explains: '[Jordan] just got back into his head to the point where you couldn't do anything to stop it.'
Before long, Jordan forced Alex to choose between her and his family, which resulted in the young couple moving into their own home in Stewartby, Bedfordshire in July 2016.
Just 19 at the time, Alex didn't speak to his parents for two years - even when the couple welcomed their second child, a little girl called Iris, in May 2017.
Things went from bad to worse when Jordan forced her boyfriend to change his phone number and threw away his PlayStation console to cut him off further from his loved ones.
She even set up a Facebook account in Alex's name where she would send abusive messages to his friends in a bid to isolate him further.
Alex didn't speak to his parents for two years - even when he welcomed his second child, a little girl called Iris, in May 2017 (pictured together following Jordan's arrest)
Years later, when police questioned Jordan, she would blame it on Alex, saying: 'He made it very clear he never wanted to see his family.
'He said he hated his family and he doesn't want to talk to his family. He wants nothing to do with his family.'
In time, Jordan became so controlling she took Alex's wallet away, forcing him to quit the job he loved and instead accompany her to classes at the University of Hertfordshire where she could keep a watchful eye on him.
Alex claims things deteriorated to the point where his girlfriend would attack or assault him 'every day', and on one occasion she made him swallow an entire packet of sleeping pills.
During one attack, Jordan severed the tendons in his right hand with a bread knife, on another occasion she attacked him with a broken hairbrush, breaking his tooth in the process.
'I had no money, I didn't drive, so in the end I just ripped the tooth out,' Alex says, recalling how being struck with screwdrivers, hammers and knives became part of everyday life.
Alex is reunited with his grandfather after being isolated from his family for two years - during which time his girlfriend Jordan Worth told him that his beloved granddad was 'dead'
What is coercive control?
Bullies who emotionally abuse partners can face up to five years in prison.
Under laws which came into force in 2015, anyone who inflicts psychological cruelty on their other halves can be prosecuted – even if there is no direct physical harm.
For the first time, domestic abusers who stop short of lashing out at their victims can now be targeted with a new offence where there is evidence of ‘coercive and controlling behaviour’.
This could include preventing a partner from seeing family or friends, keeping them short of money, controlling their social media accounts, spying on their communications or determining aspects of their everyday life, such as when they eat, sleep or even go to the toilet.
Prosecutors are determined to tackle the problem of perpetrators who trap their victims in a ‘living hell’ with repeated threats, humiliation and intimidation.
Research has shown that 30 per cent of women – about five million – and 16 per cent of men, or 2.5million, experience domestic abuse during their lives.
'I'd be asleep and she'd smack me in the head and I'd look in the mirror and I'd just be bleeding,' he says. 'I wasn't eating properly, she didn't let me. She made him sleep on the floor instead of the bed.
'I could feel that my body was starting to shut down. I didn't want [my son] to get hurt, so I was fighting to keep going because I didn't know what would happen if I was to leave.'
A kettle full of boiling water became Jordan's weapon of choice, leaving her boyfriend screaming in pain as the skin hung off his arms and back.
'She would wait up all night with a kettle of boiling water and if it went cold she would just wait and reboil it,' he recalls.
A few days after one such attack, Jordan slashed her boyfriend's hand with a breadknife and police were called, not for the first time, by their worried neighbours who heard Alex shouting, 'Leave me alone, stop hurting me'.
Sgt. Ed Finn of Bedfordshire Police was on the scene and remembers how, despite there being 'blood everywhere', the couple both insisted that Alex's numerous injuries were self-inflicted.
The court heard Worth and her partner had met at college in 2012 when they were both 16 (the couple are pictured together before the relationship turned violent)
Worth with baby TJ. Despite Alex's friends describing Jordan as 'delightful' and her boyfriend as 'quite smitten', Alex's mother says it wasn't long before her behaviour 'started to change'
Officers took Alex to hospital to fix his badly burnt arm, but Jordan came in and 'walked him out of the hospital' despite the attempts of the surgeon - who could sense something was wrong - to make him stay.
'It's strange, because it was the right time and the right place but I didn't say anything,' Alex recalls. 'I kept saying I did it to myself. I was scared of what she was going to do.'
But a few days later, when Sgt. Finn got a call from the couple's address, he seized the opportunity to take action.
He recalls: 'As soon as I saw him in the light of day, the state of him in terms of countless injuries all over his body the fact that he had these horrible dirty clothes on... he was pale, thin. I thought [...] he was being abused.'
Jordan seemed 'very slight, well spoken, very polite, to all intents and purposes a very nice lady,' he recalls.
One day Jordan attacked Alex with a broken hairbrush, breaking his tooth in the process. With no money and no car, Alex 'ripped' the tooth off (pictured)
Police bodycam footage from the day police entered Jordan and Alex's home. The frail 21-year-old is seen giving Jordan a hug and kiss goodbye before he is taken to hospital (pictured)
Despite his protests, Sgt. Finn was able to persuade Alex to tell the reveal what was really going on - and finally arrest Jordan on suspicion of assault and grievous bodily harm (GBH).
He was taken to Bedford Hospital's acute clinical unit and then to Addenbrookes Hospital.
When they managed to get Alex to hospital, doctors said he was just 'ten days from death' in his physical state, by which point his burns had become infected.
Bodycam footage and police tapes from the day Jordan was arrested show the 21-year-old looking alarmingly frail, covered with bruises and dressed in bloodstained clothes, unable to make eye contact.
Shockingly, the frail 21-year-old is seen giving Jordan a hug and kiss goodbye before he is taken to hospital.
In his interview, when asked by an officer how he feels about moving forward, he replies: 'I just don't want to get hurt anymore.'
Alex now coaches a football team sponsored by a domestic abuse charity and talks to professionals to help them spot the signs of abuse
Alex returned home to his family where he was reunited with his children (pictured) and, in September 2017, Jordan was charged with 17 counts and jailed for more than seven years
Alex returned home to his family where he was reunited with his children and, in September 2017, Jordan was charged with 17 counts including wounding with intent, causing grievous bodily harm with intent, and controlling or coercive behaviour in an intimate relationship.
On 13 April 2018 Jordan was given two seven-year sentences for wounding with intent and GBH to be served concurrently at Luton Crown Court.
She was also handed a consecutive sentence of six months for controlling or coercive behaviour, becoming the first female in the UK to be convicted of this charge.
'When the police found me I was told I was ten days away from death,' says Alex. 'I was in love with Jordan and it took me a long time to have the courage to say she was abusing me.
Alex reflects on his journey in the new BBC Three documentary. On 13 April 2018 his ex-girlfriend was given two seven-year sentences for wounding with intent and GBH
Jordan set up a Facebook in Alex's name where she would send abusive messages to his family in a bid to isolate him, but he has since been reunited with his beloved grandfather (pictured)
'The day that she [went] to prison I felt so free. It was a massive relief. I remember just saying, I can actually look over my shoulder now for the first time in five years without worrying.
'Now that I'm free from the relationship, I'm beginning to understand abuse better. And I hope I can help others understand it too.'
Alex now coaches a football team sponsored by a domestic abuse charity and talks to professionals to help them spot the signs of abuse.
'The memories will never leave me,' he says, 'but I'm learning how to cope.
'I have so much support from my friends and family and I'm building a future for me and my kids.'
Abused By My Girlfriend is available on BBC iPlayer now
Abuse that saw Jordan Worth jailed for more than seven years
Aspiring teacher Jordan Worth had a degree from the University of Hertfordshire, had come from a loving and supportive family, and had raised money for children in Africa.
But during her trial in April 2018, Luton Crown Court heard she cruelly controlled every aspect of her partner's life.
The court heard Worth and her partner had met at college in 2012 when they were both 16.
Prosecutor Maryam Syed said a relationship began and later they moved in together but from an early stage she was exercising control over him deciding what he could wear.
Sgt. Ed Finn of Bedfordshire Police who arrested Jordan (pictured at her graduation) said that for 'all intents and purposes she seemed like a very nice lady'
But the prosecutor said worse was to come as she became violent towards the man, who the court heard suffered from hydrocephalus which is caused by a buildup of fluid inside the skull which made him vulnerable.
She used blunt objects to strike him, wounded him with a knife and didn't help him get to hospital for treatment.
For nine months he couldn't sleep in the same bed as her, the court was told.
Worth pleaded guilty to controlling or coercive behaviour in an intimate relationship, wounding with intent and causing grievous bodily harm with intent between April 2016 to June 2017.