AFRICA: STORIES FROM HOME (DAY 5)
VALUE THE JEWEL I AM…
‘Why doesn’t she run away from this man? Does she think I believe her every time she tells me it was an accident? I hear him beat her up every night for sill things, who doesn’t burn the soup once in a while? How could this man be my father? How could he be so evil and be the man carrying the blood that is running through my veins? I don’t want to hate him but I do. I don’t want to imagine myself killing him but I do, everything in me wants him out of our lives. I still don’t understand why mother stays, she deserves so much better. How did she miss the red flags from get go? Why won’t she tell grandma? I am sure she will save her from this coward of a man.’
These are the thoughts I imagine a child growing in a home filled with abuse goes through. I imagine the lump of hate they grow for the abuser yet they don’t have any power to change a thing. When they ask questions they are told to leave adult business to be adult business. They even hear the abused say it is their fault they are getting abused, they defend the abuser. I can imagine the confusion that is planted in them, if ever in life they get in a relationship with an abuser they carry that with them ‘it’s my fault.’ Whether its infidelity which for me equals emotional abuse or domestic violence the scars are embedded on the children, I don’t know why African parents missed this effect.
What we didn’t know is that our grandmothers told our mothers to hang in there. The saying actually is, ‘THAT’S MARRIAGE, YOU HAVE TO BE STRONG.’ There was also, ‘DO IT FOR YOUR CHILDREN.’ First of all why must a woman stay strong in a place of hurt? I also imagine that this logic came from a place of saving the family name and not the woman. It’s as if it was better for scars to continue to layer and layer whilst keeping the family names intact. What is an intact family name to a damaged woman and children? A whole breed of monsters lived happily because they knew they could do as they please and lose nothing whilst the woman lost her sanity, dignity and self-esteem. Whilst the children seeped in all these energies and continued to grow up and just be toxic. So someone please tell me what good they were doing for their children? Raising a whole lineage of doom sparing a whole surname. What an actual wow!!
This happens to be the Africa we live in. The Africa I know. The Africa I wish to change.
VALUE THE JEWEL I AM!!