I read yet another story of a woman killed by an abusive husband in Nigeria, and I am saddened yet fuming. What kind of sick society do we have that places form above substance? A society that says stay married to an abuser no matter what?
GOD hates divorce! Really? Does GOD love men who batter their wives to a pulp? Does He approve of people being beaten to death while
the children watch traumatised? Does ‘until death do us part’ mean that your partner has the authority to kill you?!
Biko, I beg, if some man (or woman) is beating you – Run! Flee! Disappear! Vanish like a Ninja! Get out of there to save your life, your
dignity, your self-respect and your sanity! He will NOT change! Please. Hear. Word – He will NOT change! Batterers do NOT change. Not
without years of psychological counselling and self-introspection. And despite all that, most still continue battering their victims!
Ignore your pastor and Imam – that same religious leader will officiate at your funeral, give a moving eulogy about your short life, and call your batterer ‘a good husband’. Stop praying and fasting and wishing and hoping! Gather your broken ribs, shattered jaw, black eyes,twisted arm, bruised torso, yanked-out hair, broken- down self while you can still walk or crawl out of there, and get yourself out.
You are battered. You are bruised. You are crushed. Your dignity is gone. He has ground your self-worth under foot. You believe you are
useless, ugly, lazy, fat, stupid, worthless, etc etc – all the names he/she regularly calls you. The harsh words have battered you even worse than the hard fists.
Yes, you feel like you still love him. You desperately hope he will change. You cling to memories of the good days/weeks/months when he doesn’t turn you into his punching bag and think if only you can change, then he will stop battering you. He has told you the abuse is your fault and now you believe him
You are NOT useless. You are NOT worthless. You are NOT ugly. You are NOT stupid. You are NOT undesirable. You are beautiful, smart, valuable, and greatly loved by the ones who know your worth. Do not let another person’s warped opinions shape your self-image. Do not let their words hijack your brains and emotions.
Leave today. Not tomorrow. Not the day after.
You are worth it. Your life is worth it.
Bucky Hassan is a Nigerian Marriage and Relationship counsellor in the UK.
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