My Sounding board
The place that I call home
My personal Shrink
The place that I unwind, unburden
Where I can take off my Super woman suit.
Where I don’t have to be Miss Perfect or Miss Rational
Ice princess doesn’t live here, No
The Place that I call home
Home where I feel safe
Home where I find solace
Home where I seek clarity
Home where I find me
Home where there aren’t no grey
Just plain white and good old Sturdy Black
This is home where the poet can unwind and the comic can laugh.
Abuse in Nigeria is something that is not new to us but we sure have been silent about it in the past.
Only recently have we come to talk about it and openly condemn it.
It was almost a normal thing to see a man raise his hand on his woman hitherto.
I’m not saying it was something Nigerians encouraged but it sure wasn’t such a big deal in the old days.
Good enough recently it has been openly criticized and condemned, funny even by the same men who used to beat their wives to a pulp in the past.
When we hear of a woman abused we often think and sometimes even say out loud” why does she still stay? It easy to sit on the other side and say:
“Why does she let him abuse her?”
“Nobody should take that kind of treatment.”
True, nobody should.
The question is why does the victim stay? I’m not an expert at this but I’ll try to tell you why.
Physical abuse by a spouse doesn’t start in one day.
It doesn’t even start with physical. The abusive man (who I’m going to call TAM ) breaks down the victim (the abused woman, TAW) psychologically, emotionally , mentally. All these probably translate to the same thing but the bottom line is he conquers her spirit.
TAM is an intelligent man, not some dull good for nothing like we would like to think. No. he has a calculating mind. What I do not know is if he has it all planned out from the start or he just goes with the flow
TAM is as romantic as they come. He truly loves from his heart, trust me he does. He loves fiercely and that’s the feeling that kind of tilts to the other side which is bad.
TAW in the beginning sees only this man that loves her like no other. TAM usually goes overboard with the love thing. He goes to the extreme trying to express and show his love.
TAM loves his woman in a way no one else can and that’s the first thing TAW knows and senses from the start (love like no other)
Then he goes on to show how much sacrifices he can make for her, doing things that will make her feel forever indebted to him. (These things are not necessarily material).
TAM is also a very generous man. He is free giving and spares no expense to please his woman. He might buy things in doubles and triples just to show how much he cares.
We all know TAM is insecure and TAW is almost always a very beautiful female. This fact makes TAM even the more insecure. . He cannot believe she is truly his. He sort of feels she is too pretty to stay with him. He just cannot wrap his head around it. Every time he looks at her it feels like a dream and he does everything to hold on to it at all cost. That is where trouble starts
He imagines the whole world wants his woman and does everything to keep her, stifling her in the process.
So TAM sets out to put his intelligent mind to work. He doesn’t start to abuse the physical rather he starts with the psychological abuse. TAM tells TAW she is his world. He can die for her, he cannot live without her. No one else can love her the way he does and you can bet he means every word.
TAW is a compassionate woman. And at first feels like a super woman. The one that was sent to save TAM, protect him from himself. She sets about trying to make him feel secure. Let him know she is going to stick with him forever.
Next comes the emotional abuse.TAM is a crier. He reveals the vulnerable soft side that just pulls at the mind of TAW and she is hooked. It is just like finding an abandoned baby by the road side. You cannot just walk away. This is what TAW sees and suddenly wants to heal, wants to protect the insecure man in him.
She sets about doing everything to make him feel secure. Avoiding people and situations that will tilt the balance she is trying desperately to maintain.
At this point, TAW starts cutting off people from her life, friends, family social gatherings, name it, in a bid to make him feel secure. She finds out soon enough that this is like trying to hold water in a basket: Fruitless.
The more she tries, the more insecure he gets.
So this goes on until the physical abuse starts. At this stage, TAW has been brainwashed. She is down emotionally, psychologically, socially, name it. She cannot get a grip of what is wrong or right and starts to believe some of TAM actions are normal and he does them because he loves her.
She is cut off from family and friends and her spirit is broken. She is helpless, mentally handicapped.
At this point She will need more than a simple “You should leave him” to get out of this relationship.
She will need to reach inside of the broken woman she has become to pull out the woman she used to be.
The journey is a long and slow one.
So please think about this before you judge an abused woman.