I watched a movie yesterday night “dry” by Stephanie Linus….it rocked my world… I was in tears at the end of the movie, it tells a story of a little girl “halima” who was married off to a rich old man at the age of 13, she ended up having fistula and even lost her life due to ignorance and neglect.
My mum is a survivor of early child marriage and believe me when I tell you she has been through a lot, she and her sisters were married off at the age of 12, the lowest been 10. Imagine someone as old as your father coming to check you out at the age of 8 to marry you…. It must have been horrific, what does a child of 12 know about marriage? At that age she should be playing around with her friends and enjoying her childhood.
This custom dates back in time, I find it so barbaric, why would a man old enough to be my father want to marry me, it’s so horrible.
Once you take away a child’s childhood it’s gone, it can’t be come back, it’s lost forever, apart from it being wrong it is traumatic….. Girls are meant to be brought up in a conducive environment and to be loved and nurtured not to be seen my as a means of income and material gain for the family, she deserves to choose when she wants to marry, who she wants to marry, it’s her life and her choices……
I read this article on Facebook this morning and it really touched me, I hope it does the same for you too.
My dear Jil, rape is a very traumatic experience. It is so traumatic it can terrify a marriage years down the line. Women have been known to die from rape. It’s because it’s beyond physical. It’s a violation of the sacred. Rape is so vicious it can shred the fabric of a soul, alter the balance of life energy. It kills something inside. Rape is not just one more incident in society. At the retail level it is the scarring of someone’s life. Our society ought to take rape much more seriously than we do. There’s a cultural shrugging of shoulders about rape. It’s locker room talk in boys’ circle, as if it’s some weekend discussion about Chelsea and Arsenal. Some young men in fact revel in the fact of rape. Which is really sad. Witness how some boys boast about raping a girl. Our tolerance of such banter and disposition is the cultural equivalence of conditioning boys for rape. There are boys boasting about rape in secondary school, boasting they assaulted girls during school socials. And for some boys it’s a sorority ritual. Which makes you begin to ponder the fundamentals of our society. And now we have livestreaming of rape. If only the law allows castration. Then there are those sickos who rape kids – eight, nine-year olds. Some even babies. Surely such people are deranged. A nine-year old can’t know how to interpret rape. She’ll malfunction.
The sad thing is that the rape is usually by a close relative. Familial trust is thus destroyed at such an early age. Fear of the familial is bred. We have a major problem in society. I’m so sorry you had to go through such trauma. It’s such a horrible experience. Your friend raping you has to be high up there on the scale of trauma. It’s extreme violation of innocent trust. And to think when he finished he said he hoped you enjoyed it. That’s cruel. He’s done his damage and moved on. We have to deal with that damage. I don’t want you turning into a bitter human. We have to do something about the damage. Those things you wrote are just manifestations. Of course it’s easy for someone who hasn’t experienced rape to say, get over it. But when your soul is violated and trust is brutally ravaged it can’t be easy to move on. Those who imagine rape is just physical have no understanding of the makeup of a woman, or even of a human. The sad thing is that society is so perverse the rape victim is blamed. Under no circumstance can rape be justified. Those who do have a psychological problem.
There are many people we deem human but who in fact belong to the zoo. There are animals in shirt and tie. Those who choose to function by animal code simply are. I’m so sorry about what happened. But I want you to take the step of seeing a therapist – a psychologist or psychiatrist. I know society stigmatises seeing a therapist, psychiatrist or psychologist. But that’s strange. Given the society we live in. There are doctors of the physical body and there are doctors of the soul. The psychologist addresses the soul. Arrange to see a psychologist so you work through the trauma with professional help. Rape is horrible. Don’t assume the trauma will just go away. These things have a way of lurking and showing up somewhere down the line. Many marriages have been destroyed by such unresolved issues. And since what rape fundamentally does is destroy proximate trust you’ve got to seek help so it doesn’t destroy your marriage.
Rape also destroys trust in the preventive armour of society. Makes us become suspicious of Samaritan gestures. Which can make us prone to turning away good men. They stand accused on the bestial behavior of an imp. I believe you will marry a good man – a kind, selfless, considerate and loving man. You don’t want to punish such a man because of this incident. He knows nothing about it and God sent him to you. You won’t know why you’re malfunctioning, you won’t be aware. There’ll be that anger, the pain from the otherwise that wasn’t. It’s why you need to go see a therapist now, to work through the horrible experience. There’s need for professional counsel. Even the criminal prosecution and conviction of this gentleman will not give you total resolution. In some way it’s external. And the burden of proof in rape cases can be so high. The standard often turns things into he said, she said. Some will even query your judgment for being in his room at that hour. Though how that justifies rape is still a wonder.
Some men have obviously imbibed that curious word-opposite lexicon. They say when a woman says no, it means yes. That lexicon is of course limited to assault on women. No means yes never applies to other aspects of their lives. They never apply “no means yes” in their executive function, or dealing with their family. Only when they choose to rape women. And so when it pleases man he finds an excuse for evil, invents a language for evil as justification of evil. Don’t let this man do permanent damage to your life. Don’t give him the pleasure. But we definitely need to reexamine our values as society. Those things you mentioned are a reflection of cultural mores. I read the other day about how a parent had to move her teenage daughter to another school after she had been raped. Turns out she was being taunted by fellow students. You have 11-15 year olds taunting a rape victim! Sad, truly sad. Even some of the parents of rape victims don’t understand. They end up punishing their daughter. But YOU can’t give up on your life. And you can’t allow this animal to ruin the rest of your life and your future marriage. It’s tough I know, but find the courage to see a therapist. Ask your GP for referral. As for the young man, life has its own calculator. And it runs a balance sheet. He won’t get away with it. And life will let him know when it evens the score. Life will jolt his memory. The cock is going to crow three times. You’ll need the support of your family. Don’t push them away. You need them at this time. Your friends too. You have nothing to be ashamed of. The rapist is the one who should be ashamed.
Growing up as an African child i looked forward to attending owambe’s …..why? Because it was an opportunity to eat something else cooked by another person entirely, you see delicacies like the popular jollof rice, fried rice, amala e.t.c.
While growing up as an African child, if I go anywhere with my mother or anyone and someone offers me food I’d look first at my mothers face for the “OK” signal to eat or not…don’t ask me how I know what sign is yes or no sign….but you will know as a child that was raised with face and sign language at home….
Now as a young adult I don’t go out with my mom much but if I do, its up to me now to decide whether or not I’ll eat the food….but back then the reason why our parents did that was because they felt we would become spoilt or we will have ojukokoro (ant eyes…….or worst still get bewitched).
I won’t say they are wrong or right…I’ll leave it to you
Who is your life support or what?
Life support doesn’t necessarily have to be a machine that helps you breathe… It could a person or something you depend on for your everyday living…..something you can’t do without, for some its their cellphone, the internet, television, money or even a person.
Ask a devoted Christian and your answer is Jesus……ask someone like me and your answer is “my besties”….
My friends are my support system, whenever it seems like everything is going wrong I run to them, I learnt to turn to them right from when I was young…..they have been there always… We fight together, we eat together, they feel like blood to me…
But I realized that as much as they are there and all there can’t ever be a life support and friend like the life giver himself!
Who is your support system? I don’t expect religious answers let’s be honest with each other.
Have been putting this off for a while now, I finally got the courage to do it from Mr. Ope….thanks
Am not your ordinary everyday girl and the expressionist web is a platform for us to interact and share ideas…. I don’t see things in black and white like an average person, my world is crazy colorful ( red,blue,yellow etc….) we all see things differently, from different angles and perspectives so I would welcome every ones takes and views on things….
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