Violence againts sister and daughter

Myriam Vololonarivo
Posted July 21, 2016 from Madagascar
I visited the vulnerable communities about floods, also the beneficiaries of our Disaster Risk Reduction project in urban area

I think violence doesn't concern only husband and wive. It also concern brother who beats his sister.

My name is Myriam, I have long been stigmatized and misunderstood by my siblings. Born into a family where possible sanctions were physical violence. Then, the Malagasy education also consists in the importance for the elderly. Since I'm the youngest, I had no right to speak or to share my views on the decisions. Otherwise, my brothers or my father beats me. When I was 10, I thought that this kind of education was productive. But growing up, I rebelled. At thirteen, I started to dare to talk about what engages me to take responsibility. I received in return, electric wires, slaps and nicknames like "stranger," "fool," "the damned". They call me like this until now despite my several business and my commitments in various associations. Today I am 28 years old. I manage two charities for young people and women. I help young people seeking employment to gain confidence, develop their sense of entrepreneurship. I travel to different countries and advocate for young Malagasy who are often misunderstood like me, discriminated against and poorly judged. I meet different kinds of people, all ages and social class confused. I am the spokesman of Malagasy youth in achieving the objectives of sustainable development, thanks to my association. Then, I work in an international NGO working for Disaster Risk Reduction. My actions are cited more than once in the national and international media. I inspire young people like me to serve the country, Madagascar. This year I created the school of women and single mothers who have had to abandon their studies. I help them get their first university degree, through my own ways. Finally, I have a wife fulfilling life alongside a brilliant and understanding man. Despite these commitments, I always carry with me the scars of my past. There is barely a year, I prepared my wedding. On table, my oldest brother gave me a look and said "you will not succeed your marriage, I give you 5 years and you will be damned." Why is this threat? He asked me about my dessert and I have refused him! Another anecdote, yesterday I complimented a friend who graduated with high scores. As there is a language code between us, I did it. But my other brother did not understand and reply to everyone "You sound like a cave woman! We are in the twentieth century, the time is advanced and there is no place for the late men. You're not even important; you have nothing accomplished in your life then shut up! ". If you knew what kind of critics are heavy! So imagine how I feel every time I confronted my brothers! For them, I am the girl who should be silent, which is damn if I'm not what they tell me to do.

This is my real me, everyone is free to accept me or not. Everyday, I fight against inequality and all other kind of discrimination and judgments because I don’t want anyone suffers the same cavalry which I endorses. I am friend with everyone, whoever is poor or rich, jwhatever their functions or statuts in society. I am able to discuss to minister as with a street seller.

In this photo, I was at one of the poorest community at Antananarivo, the capital of Madagascar. The people who lives there doesn't have no more than 1 USD per day to survive, they eat once a day, but it doesn"t mean that they are less important than us, no! They are human, we are all the same and they can teach us more that we could share for them! But, for who doesn't understand this way of thinking is "foolish" or "derogative".

This story was submitted in response to Share On Any Topic.

Comments 5

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Drew Dakessian
Jul 21, 2016
Jul 21, 2016

Dear Myriam,

My name is Drew. I am the World Pulse editorial intern. I read this journal post and I wanted to reach out to you because although I see that you submitted this post as a response to our World Pulse Story Awards prompt Share Your Story On Any Topic, I think it would also be a great submission to not one but two of our other open calls for submissions, This Is Who I Really Am and The Opposite of Violence. The deadline for This Is Who I Really Am is today, 21 JULY AT 11:59 PST, and The Opposite of Violence closes on 28 JULY AT 11:59 PST

Please feel free to send me a private message or reply to this comment if you have any questions.

Good luck, and no matter what, keep writing!

Drew Dakessian
Jul 21, 2016
Jul 21, 2016

Dear Myriam,

My name is Drew. I am the World Pulse editorial intern. I read this journal post and I wanted to reach out to you because although I see that you submitted this post as a response to our World Pulse Story Awards prompt Share Your Story On Any Topic, I think it would also be a great submission to not one but two of our other open calls for submissions, This Is Who I Really Am and The Opposite of Violence. The deadline for This Is Who I Really Am is today, 21 JULY AT 11:59 PST, and The Opposite of Violence closes on 28 JULY AT 11:59 PST

Please feel free to send me a private message or reply to this comment if you have any questions.

Good luck, and no matter what, keep writing!

Myriam Vololonarivo
Jul 21, 2016
Jul 21, 2016

Dear Drew,

Thank you for your suggestion, I thought that I missed the deadline for "This is Who I Really am" yesterday so I submitted my post in the Share Your Story in Any Topic.

Althought, I will submitted it on The Opposite of Violence as you suggested me. Thank you for your encouragement,

All the best,

Myriam

Olaoluwa Abagun
Jul 27, 2016
Jul 27, 2016

Dear Myriam,

Thank you for sharing your story. It is so empowering to know that you are speaking loud and clear against discrimination which you have faced and come up from.

I think you are a dynamic part of your generation of Malagasy women and youth. Keep speaking :)

Myriam Vololonarivo
Aug 08, 2016
Aug 08, 2016

Dear Ola,

Thank you very much for you encouraging feed-back. I think it is time now to speak loud and to be heard. The little girl who accepted to be misunderstood or has grown up. Althought, speaking loud is never enough, we have to take actions and never give up our action everyday.

All the best,

Myriam