Unlike every other girl in my community, I wear rag in my pant everyday to protect myself from a smelling discharge that emanates from my vagina and pus. This started when I could not remember and it made me believed that I had a disease from birth.
Another reason why I believed that I was diseased from birth was that, unlike every other girl in my village, I was the only one who had to suffer the humiliation of opening up my vagina to every dick and harry, just to prove my mother’s point and to seek medical attention.
In the company of my mother, I visited all the herbalists and medical clinic in out Local Government in order to seek help of my strange and disgraceful disease. The worst part of it not that I was smelling, or had to use rag as pad every day, or the fact that everyone in the community is aware of the fact that I will never be able to bear my child, No, the worst part is that; I do not have a friend. No girl wanted to be my friend.
I was born in 1982, but I have the experience of an 1882 woman. I lived a very sad life because of my story. My story has burnt my soul, it has crushed my spirit, it has bowed my head, it has driven me away from my community and ultimately, it has made me to hate men and suspect every female family member.
The most painful part is that it has happened to me, my cousin and it is still happening today.
I saw my mother packing our loads, she refused to listen to my father, she decided to leave our village, but she had to return to the village, when she discovered that she left my father with a two months old pregnancy and she also would not be able to feed my sister, herself and myself, what can a woman do without a man?
I was not present went it happened but I suffered the humiliation, the abandonment and the lies, that I, a 2 year old girl seduced my father’s brother, in a time when sleeping with a child was a taboo.
The stares, the fleeing from me, the stench, the everyday pads, made me ask my mother, why all these? At an appointed time, my mother was able to divulge what happened to me. The funniest part was that the stench of fart was emanating from my anus, everyone perceived the odor but I was not.
My mother was a petty trader and she goes to the market every day. I was always left at the mercy of my father’s brother, my uncle. One fateful day, my mother returned from the market and perceived an odor, she began to search for the rat that caused such discomfort in the room, she could not find it.
Later, she realized that the dead rat, smelled from my vagina, and she tried to pull out the rat from my vagina. That was when she realized that the odor was oozing out from my vagina. I was the smelling rat. The odor, that had disrupted several class works, and had made me an enemy of my friends.
My mother screamed, she opened my pant, looked into me and discovered that I had a vagina opening that was the size of an adult woman. My mother screamed. She asked who had been there and I pointed at my uncle. The medical examination pointed it out, my uncle has sexual intercourse with me, everyday, whenever my mother went to her business stall in the village market.
I was on antibiotics for twenty years afterward.
I visited all herbalists known and unknown to my mother for 20 years. I had pus oozing out from my vagina and a stench that hundred clothes could not cover. I became the most pointed at girl in our community.
My mother fled when too much eyes wanted to tear her clothes.
My mother fled to protect the little dignity that remained.
My father supported his brother. The little generational honour must be protected.
It was agreed that I seduced my uncle. A two year old girl could seduce 42 year old man. My father gave his brother some money, he fled too.
My mother returned to her village and began to seek more herbalists to quench my stench and to stop the every flowing pus.
Very soon, my mother realized that she was pregnant, she had been persecuted for giving birth to only girls before, she had the only 2 year old girl who could seduce her uncle and she soon discovered that a woman cannot feed her children without the support of her husband. She returned to our village.
Growing up saved me. I fled the village, I came to Lagos and when the pus was tired of flowing. I stopped. The stench stopped too.
I met a man, married him, told him my story and all he did was to make jest me, a woman defiled, useless and abandoned by her community.
My tear has dried, I have a son, an unhappy marriage but do not preach to me, I will never forgive my uncle. I leave my uncle for God, his conscience, and I leave him for our ancestors.
I have a friend in Calabar now, she hated men because her father became her husband when her mother walked out of the marriage. Nobody knows, except me, we hid our secrets. There are so many secrets on earth. Child sexual abuse is the worst, because it is committed to the innocent ones, it is hidden by fear and threats, it is open to God Almighty.
As for my story, I will tell aunty Tosin, she will tell every woman, she will tell those who care for children and she will tell the world. I believe.
My uncle has begged for forgiveness. He wanted to return to our village, He could not, unless I forgive him, I wont and I cant. May God forgive me for not forgiving my uncle.