Thursday, February 26, 2009

Violence in the family

How do you deal with an issue of domestic violence in your household?
Of course the first knee jerk reaction people have is Leave him. And anyway it is the most sensible thing to do is leave him/her. I have been following this Chrihanna debacle. I think it's clear that Chris Brown did actually attack Rihanna mercilessly at that. There are many arguments that followed including she gave him herpes or he was reading a text from a jump off and he started hitting her blah blah. That is not the issue. Violence is never an option. Ever. Ever.
So what happens when you meet a guy who batters you on a daily basis or as he wishes, do you leave, do you stay. It is always easy to assume you will just wake up and leave but folks i am about to dissapoint you. Love is not a fickle thing. Did you hear Rihanna wants to see her beater desperately...
I will use my example. I am the first born. When i discovered my dad was violent, i was in Standard Three, i was a mere 8 year old. I won't go to the excruciating details because they are just about too painful. But on that day i was present and it was in his car. I do not remember what it was about. My sis was 6 then and my brother just months old. So what should my mom done
She was not working at the time because those days women quit their jobs oftenly to look after their kids. I am not saying that all women who quit their jobs end up in violent marriages, but i would exercise caution while quitting my job to take care of a family. There are some men who actually respect women and their decision to quit their jobs. And no amount of dating would ever pre-empt the fact that your man is probably a violent one.
*Derailer alert*
I was in the mat the other day, so the driver due to traffic decides to take another route instead of the normal one. What ensued really disturbed me. I can't handle violence. The men decided they were going to beat the tout. One certain man went for that guy's neck, literally. I was too sad for the situation. If that man whose face haunts me asked me for friendship, i would not offer him such a luxury.
My point, watch out for small signals. One day my friend's boyfriend beat up a waiter, i think those are clear signals. If someone can beat an insignificant person in his life like a waiter, woe unto you, what will he do to you once you are married. Especially where the issue is really petty..
Anyway my main issue is what do you do when violence abounds in your family?
For one i am sure my mom would never have offered a better life for us alone.
Every kid deserves two parents where it is possible
We would probably have blamed her for leaving our dad
The minute two people are joined together in marriage, there are several issues that play apart from the two. Do you just abandon your family, where do you start, how will you start, the depression that could ensue.
And yet the psychological scars of living in a violent household are deep scathing. You never notice it because you think it's fine. The first signs you get is the inability to form healthy relationships because you build a wall of defence. People would always ask me why i was always on the defensive. The thing is i had never noticed i was on the defensive.
I decided to deal with issue publicly because i knew a lot of people probably have been victims of domestic violence. The other thing you might always do is always blaming others for your problems. If a relationship does not work, could it have something to do with you? You are always quick to point out the faults in that other person and yet it could have been you all the time. The opposite of this is now the people who believe everything is their fault. You find yourself obsessing over details at night because you probably think it is your fault something didn't work.
I could not let you into my life to an extent that you felt comfortable with me. I always thought that if someone knew what it is i had gone through, they would not appreciate the strong person i pose to be. I am learning slowly to accept that it is ok to show emotions, to be who i am, to let people love you. There is a time i didn't believe that it was possible for someone to just love me, JUST. I rarely would tell people i loved them, even when i did. Someone once begged me to tell them. I just couldn't. Yet i know there are people always ready to say I love you even when they don't mean it.
Anyway back to the issues; what is the best way to deal with violence. Pray that your man will change, Leave him, Love him and tell everyone that the black eye was caused by you falling down the stairs.
On a personal level, i would leave and have you arrested. And that is not a bluff. But how do you explain to the kids that you just did their dad in. By the way most horrible husbands are good fathers (not always). I can tell you for sure, i probably would not leave with my mum, i never did eventually. Do you discuss things with your kids and ask them to choose where they would be most comfortable..
I have too much questions in my head which i cannot answer.


  1. Off topic, but did you know your blog is worth US$9,032.64?

  2. Food for thought.

    I never grew up in a violent home and my dad has never beaten me and just for that., I have always said, if my father, the one who contributed to my DNA never felt the need to beat me- no man ever should.
    I think, no correction- I know that if I married a guy who started beating on me- I would be out there in a half heart beat. I do not take things lying down- never have, never will.
    If my boyfriend broke a table, threw a phone, sijui broke plates in anger........... I am so done in that department. Kwanza if he beats someone else, aka a waiter- I probably would report said boyfriend to the police.THERE IS JUST NO NEED.

  3. @rafiki, checked

    @3TOC, i saw feel your comment. The problem with violence is it can only get worse. If someone cannot solve a simple issue with a waiter, what about weighty issues.

  4. I grew up with a violent father. Thank God he was an absentee working in town and only coming home once in a while. But when he came oh! The house would turn ice cold. Whispers in the morning - Baba yuko alikuja jana usiku.

    One kid presents a bad report form and he would beat up the whole lot! The earliest memory I have of my father is peeing on myself clutching onto mum's clothes as I watched him beat up my older sisters. I was about 5 yrs I guess I don't know.

    I was too young so I never suffered none of the beatings. But I hated the guy. I'm sorry. He later really mellowed with old age and disease before passing away late 07.

    Thankfully I do not have any hang ups. None of his tirades carried forward into my present life. My mum was a real strong one and although she did not make any effort to rally us against our dad, we just naturally love her and drew strength from her. She raised some tough cookies.

    Women these days have much more choice though. A decision to leave an abusive relationship can really be influenced by money. If you're being beat and you can afford a flat on your own it's easier for you to move than a woman who is not working or has a poor job.

    But I'm with 3T. One sign of violence and I sprint out of that life. Sprint, not walk or run.

  5. Well, I would leave my man if he beat up anyone (and I'm serious about this).

    Reason being, my dad started beating mum when she was carrying me. They say you don't remember these things but even as a toddler, loud noises would scare me senseless, and to this date, when my neighbours quarrel I can't sleep. Right ahead to growing up when I had to spend nights outside with her, wipe her blood with my towel, trek in the night to my grandparents house escaping from him, etc etc
    Why didn't she leave? she believed it was best for us, and left when we were grown.
    I say, she shoulda left the first time he hit her. It only gets worse, and the scarring to the kids is too much.
    Nothing is as painful and watching a slap land across your mum's face, or the red swollen face while she's serving him breakfast.

    Sorry, I had forgotten I wasn't on my blog.
    To be honest, I think I'd die if a man hit me, and I'd leave him if I saw him beat up anyone, regardless. Unless he's defending me from thieves and even then,it would be hard to look at him the same way. I can't stand watching violent scenes, even in movies.
    BTW, even one who shouts at me, I'll leave.