Often than not we’ve found ourselves propagating, embracing, worshipping, enabling and providing a healthy environment for abuse to thrive. Sometimes out of ignorance, sometimes because it’s what we’ve been conditioned to since time immemorial and sometimes we just don’t give a damn.
I was an enabler too, because I lacked knowledge. But when I clicked disable button and chose to separate myself from it, learn, speak and heal, a battle set in. One of my grandmothers would call it “lweny mar abasania” in my dialect; she’d include this in her prayers all the time. She was the first Pentecostal in our Anglican dominated home.
Onto the enablers
For the longest time, I was a YES person till Alabastron happened. I started stammering one NO here and another there.
Albeit scarce I said some more Nos.
August 2020, am sitted on a reconciliation table, still adamantly saying NO but I don’t know how to explain it, I could only tell them that I was scared of living under the same roof with that person. Then she says “Maybe Emily you can trying giving your husband some sex, it has a way of healing the worst of pains and even fears…..”
I was furious, then I felt insane, I tried showing them my left hand that still couldn’t lift anything heavy, it was still painful after the abuse the previous month, the swelling had subsided so no evidence.
Wrong prescription. Thriving in placebos.
Such kind are enablers of abuse they choose to see the marriage and not the person.
You see, the hands of a husband are for assuring, protecting, loving, providing warmth, affirming and such many good things. But once the same hands are used to inflict pain on the woman, they will not be trusted. The woman is forever on fright and flight mode, Lemmie tell you it’s hard. And even sex won’t heal the soul of abused woman.
“What did you do?” ” Kwani ulifanya nini ndio ukachapwa?” I can’t count the number of times I’ve been taken through the torture of answering this question. It makes the victim doubt their sanity, minimize their pain, uphold the abuser and it makes them feel or even believe they did something that deserved the abuse.
Using this statement is enabling abuse, justifying and using it as a rod of “discipline “.
There’s nothing as painful as retelling the reasons that led to abuse again and again more so before one chooses to heal. I would literally stop functioning in every area after retelling the story, I would get so sick. I would get shivers and nausea.
Then at some point I enquired from my inner self if I’d ask my child why they were abused by their spouses, God forbid. It sounded so horrible in my mind, I wouldn’t do it, I would be undressing them.
And then I knew that this statement “ulifanya nini….” is enabling abuse, giving abuse power whilst blaming the victim at the same time.
“In these marriages you see shining, people fight and still choose to stay, kwani you’re the first one kupigwa?”
This here is cruel, it has no empathy and it thrives in upholding the institution while neglecting, stampeding and rendering the victim’s sentiments as useless and not worth addressing. And again I wouldn’t want to use this statement on my neigbours child or even an acquaintance. I can’t explain how this statement made me feel when it was passed on me several times. Older people or do we say the experienced in marriage ask this alot.
This is enabling abuse.
The fear inflicted in a woman’s mind after a domestic abuse is detrimental. No amount of societal balm or religiosity can heal it.
“A wise woman builds her own house and a foolish one breaks it by her own hands”
Eeeh! Even the one who chocked life out me used this one on me. He told me several times to my face, it hurt till I cried even then he asked why I was crying yet it’s true I’ve brocken it with my hands.
This statement can drive a believer insane.
I know of a friend who after leaving her marriage and sought refuge in an old couple’s home, a poster with the above statement was erected strategically in their living room. She sought refuge elsewhere.
With this statement, one will go through series of self-condemnation like forever.
Christians have chosen to love things more than their brothers and sisters. Marriage is also one of the things that can be worshipped and loved ignorantly.
“Where will you be buried? “
“Your children won’t have identity”
“You don’t have the children’s best interest at heart by walking away”
“So and So can’t be abusive, it was just anger…”
These statements and more other hurtful words come from close family members.
Enablers of abuse either ignorantly or to protect their reputation.
Recently a woman I knew for the 8 years I was married sent me a video, the content was hurtful. It said that seeking independence is foolish because I can’t live without a man, even the replacements like musturbation , dildos and such can’t replace a man. Unhealthy minds. I restrained myself from responding.
It was meant to make me question my sanity and guilt trip me.
Leaving an abusive marriage have been misunderstood. The misunderstanding and isolation has led to most women choosing to go back unhealed to wait for their deaths at the hands of the perpetrators who are vengeful because the woman dared to leave.
It’s your choice if you want to be an enabler.
Rest in peace Tirop