Chioma Agwuegbo
Posted March 17, 2012 from Nigeria

Yesterday, a friend put up this story on a BB group I belong to, and it sparked a discussion that spanned more than three hours. What were we discussing? Violence against women, causative factors, what to do if you’re a victim, etc.

It was a very ‘real’ conversation, and several times I had to blink back tears hearing some things ladies have gone through in their relationships, marriages, etc. The most horrible stories from unions that ordinarily should be symbolic of heaven on earth, and sadly sometimes appear to be so on the outside, even in the presence of extraordinary abuse. Only the woman knows how much extra foundation she has to layer on every day to hide her black eye, the millions of ‘falls’ she has to explain away, and the sheer horror thoughts of her spouse bring.

Before the conversation, last year I read of the young banker who was killed by her husband, and I remember how shocked I was. How does ‘for better, for worse……till death do us part’ end with a husband brutally murdering his wife? Someone he chased, toasted, cajoled, and convinced he was ‘the one’ she could enjoy the rest of her life with? How does that even happen?

I’ll say it again to the men, there is NO reason under heaven to hit a woman, NO reason at all. I’m sorry but I don’t care what the woman did, it is just not acceptable. Every time I hear (especially from the ladies themselves) that some women ask for it, I cringe. So we should go about beating people we can because they ‘ask for it’? In one part of my mind I think that the same men who batter their wives either always got beat up by their mates when they were younger (definitely not an excuse) and will still get beat up if they ever got in a brawl with someone of the same sex. So why use your woman as a punching bag? According to my daddy, if you really need to flex your muscles, drive to a Motor Park, and take your pick! I’m sure you’ll be satisfied with the fight you’ll get for months.

I grew up with that mentality o; as in it was so engraved in my mind that I have ended relationships because the son of God raised his voice at me one too many times. ‘Why’, you might ask. Are you saying you can’t argue/disagree with your special someone? Of course you can; you’re not conjoined twins so you will definitely disagree every now and then. That’s alright; it’s even dubbed as healthy by relationship experts. I am however, a firm believer in the ‘na dance dey follow clap’ proverb. Meaning that if he yells at you today, yells tomorrow, and yells the day after it’s only a matter of time before he raises his hand. And in my head, that person hasn’t been born yet; matter of fact his parents haven’t even met.

Most disgusting are the men who will beat their wives, get turned on by it (has to rank #1 in the ‘sickest-things-ever’ list in my opinion), and then proceed to rape the women. Why? You think you own her? Where are you from? You want to remind her you paid her bride price? How evil can you get? I think there’s a special place in hell reserved for these people, bite me but I think even the devil will shudder a bit when he meets them.

To the ladies; from the discussion yesterday I learnt (and reaffirmed something I’ve always believed in), we are the only ones who can save ourselves from battery, and I’ll explain. There are two levels to it, the first being his behaviour towards you now. Is he already yelling, threatening to ‘teach you a lesson’? Even in jest? Don’t take it lightly o! In this day and time, some jokes are just too expensive to ‘take home and try’, especially since unlike clothes, we’re not big on returning these ones if you don’t like them. It is said that women have the strongest instincts ever, please trust yours.

On to the second level; please, do not feel ashamed if you find you’re with a monster; human beings are poor judges of character because it’s only humans we experiment with. Just know that a man (or woman) will only drown if she remains in the river they fell into. Please o, Fela’s ‘suffering and smiling’ doesn’t apply here; if he hits you once, he WILL hit you again. And again, till you unconsciously create a time-table for it in your head. Know this: if you do nothing; if he kills you today, he can give his life to Christ tomorrow; and because God is merciful and forgiving ‘his sins will not be remembered’ and ‘old things will pass away’. And you'll remain dead.

Happy International Women’s Day everyone.

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Survey suggests 1 in 10 men think it's OK to hit a woman ( Election 2012: The Year of the Woman ( I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar, by Michael Davis - Straight No Chaser #260 | @MDWorld ( V-Day: Until the Violence Stops ( Q&A: Gloria Steinem on ending rape in war | Women Under Siege Project (

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