BABA: YES COME IN
MARYAM: HOW ARE YOU DOING BABA
BABA: I AM FINE MY DAUGHTHER (LOOKING AT HIS DAUGHTHER)ARE YOU SICK ?
MARYAM: NO, BABA. BUT GARBA IS HITTING ME BABA.HE SLAPS ME EVERY OPPORTUINITY HIS GETS.I AM NOT HAPPY.
Spousal intimate abuse remains a heart breaking and heart wrenching issue in our society today. It remains to claim millions of lives with a widely infringement of a victims fundamental human rights to serious mental and psychological impact leaving a victim emotionally drained .With a persistent clarion call by feminist, Spousal abuse comes in different form. It’s the kind of abuse partners use to maintain power and control over their partner. Spousal intimate abuse affects 36%of women and 29% of men. Worldwide, at least 4 to 49% of women who have partners have experienced physical violence in their relationship. Its prevalence varies greatly in ethnicity, race, and income. I believe women experience more physical and bodily harm than men in general. This is the kind of abuse that happens between intimate partners who are living together or are not living together but do have sexual relationship.
The upbringing of women in traditional and cultural, to a very large extent historically, religion have down trodden a woman to be sanctioned and marginalized as an entitlement to a man. We have societies that reflects a woman to be at the foot of a family honor and whose sexuality is abound by all. Often times women who find themselves in abusive relationship or marriage rarely leaves .on the average it takes at least six to seven attempts for a woman to leave her abuser. To the woman losing her identity, her family, most of all her financial security makes all the more restrain and retain her in such abusive relationship or marriage. The decision to leave becomes one of the critical moment in her life .A stressful yet a dangerous time. At that moment ,it becomes a moment of doubt ,only she alone knows her sufferings yet, a breakage from it becomes a moment of doubt .Believe it or not most women in abusive relationships or marriages often go back to their abuser ,because he has inwardly broken them mentally, and psychologically. He has dimmed her light dark and awakens in her a broken spirit who sees no value in herself.
Perpetrators go to a very large extent to prevent their victims from leaving. A study found with men who have killed their wives or partners comes down to when a moment of threats of separations or actual separations was their precipitating moment of their singular or deadly acts upon their partners.
In Nigeria, staying in abusive marriage is a like a clarion call which must be answered. Despite its prominent calls to end violence, Nigeria still remains a country with a high level of intimate partner abuse. Marriages and weddings are seen as scared and women are urged to stay on in a otherwise unhealthy relationships or marriages. Such is the case of a medical Doctor who was threatened by her husband who shoves and drags her every moment she wants to drive off to work. And in most instances, have threatened to stab her with broken bottles. In a health Survey ,which found out that at least 43% of Nigeria women believe that assault and abuse by their men is justifiable .It is believed that many women here in Nigeria stay in abusive marriages for the fact that she does not want to be termed as promiscuous and the mind blowing efforts to be called ‘Mrs’. In most Situations women have little or no support from immediate family. Who may in the long advise her to remain and return to her abusive husband. In most instances, she is vehemently called to desist from bringing shame to her family and their family name.in a nutshell, honouring the family name. The bedrock of such abuse comes to an abrupt end when the abusive takes a drastic decision towards the women .In a case like that of the doctor ,the husband took the kids away from her ,awakening her sense of reasoning to retaliate. Most victims wait till a defining moment to take a drastic decision hoping against hope for the husband to stop his violent act. Professor Amos Dligunaya of the Faculty of Linguistic and African Languages, University of Abuja, stated that “I will start by taking this few points one after the other, Orientation and perception because family is the smallest unit in the society, also the bedrock of children. Most times the behaviour children display comes from the parents (inborn tendency). Parents have a way of getting or dominating the girl child mentality, some parents are foolish and sometimes selfish for instance you see where a girl child is sold off to a man just because of his wealth, in most cases this parents may not tell the foundation, sources of this gentlemen income or wealth, the only thing the care about is to elevate themselves from poverty not minding what lies ahead for the innocent daughters and in the end all the tell their daughters is “that they will never die, marriage is for better for worse”, you are not the first to go through such challenges with time things will fall into place, truth be told a man who lacks discipline, morals can never tell himself truth”.
Maryam Husain MaiBasira studied at the London Academic Business School Stratford, United kingdom and a Gender and Human with The Federation of International Gender and Advocate and Fellow human Rights (FIGHR) New York, and currently running a Master’s Degree in Gender Studies at the University of Abuja.