A boy who was subjected to years of neglect and cruelty by his mother has said he felt his life was not worth living when he was 7 years old.
In January, she was found guilty of regularly beating and abandoning seven of her children in the west of Ireland between 2006 and 2011.
Since being taken into care one of the boys, who is now 15, has said he misses watching his brothers and sisters opening their presents on Christmas morning.
His younger brother, aged 13, said he was used as a “punching bag” while living with his mother.
A psychological report found one of her daughters still has feelings of betrayal and abandonment and is hopeless about her future.
Some of the children described having suicidal thoughts as a result of the neglect and physical abuse suffered during the years they spent living in various addresses in the west of Ireland.
Their mother was convicted of 29 offences in January. The father of two of her children pleaded guilty to five.
He took the stand to express his remorse. The court heard he used to tell the children to pretend he was beating them to appease their mother.
Sentences will be handed down on Friday.