The Aftermath of Domestic Violence on Children

Sometimes last year in November as we had our usual intimate moments on a Sunday morning, my son pressed my hand a little firmer and told me “Mummy that night of the fight, kama singeenda kuita mama xxxx, (Mummy the night of the fight, if I wouldn’t have gone to call mum xxxx)you’d still be married to daddy si ndio? (Right?) “.. It was unsettling, we were all quiet for a moment, then I said;

“It is not your fault that am no longer married to daddy, you did your best at that time because you’re full of love, concern and you were also scared, but I made a choice to leave the marriage because mummy and daddy can’t stay in the same house, fights are dangerous…” I don’t even know if I spoke the right words, but speak I did.

We went quiet again, then the sister says, “mummy the only problem is you don’t want to forgive and stay with daddy..” It was quite chilling. She spoke some more explaining her point, I listened intently. She expected a response and I didn’t have, since it was a conversation I bluttered “Am scared of staying in the same space with daddy but I have forgiven” …..A lot more from my girl, my son drank in the words, his words are gold. Hapendi kupayuka kama sisi😊

I call Sunday mornings our intimate mornings because that’s the time we do face the reality of separation- Its a time they depart to have a feel of a father. A separation caused by domestic abuse.

That’s the time my little ones see things as they are and call them by name and even try to give  a name to the transition that will again be confusing in the evening because they’ll come back home. It’s murky, I don’t have a liking for it. Yes I don’t like what they call co-parenting, I love real co-parenting.

The choices we make!

My son rarely speaks about incidences of abuse that occurred in our home but when he speaks it’s chilling, when he does speak when am cutting onions I can cut all of them, because you know, his words are deep. But I have allowed my home to be a safe space for conversations. For this particular night he blames himself because he witnessed it and even took actions of knocking a neighbour’s door at night seeking help.

Because shame has a language of … you’re done…, he believes he made people to be aware of his family’s filth hence mummy couldn’t stay! To him, parents fighting was already ok as long as no one knows! But his fears for the worst made him to alert neighbours! He’s torn apart because he had slowly started buying the idea of covering family filth and dysfunctions but again he was already exposed to the need to protect his mummy but again cover his daddy.

It’s a whole mix for a child.

Growing up taking blames for his family’s irresponsibilities. Domestic abuse is filthy and when the kids are exposed to it it’s damaging.

But what more can we say of these things when it’s already done? There’s hope for kids who’ve been abused by proxy. They too can heal as the parents heal, and it’s an intentional journey. I wouldn’t want it for anyone, it would a huge save from generational trauma if a parent just flees from an abusive space.

Don’t you give us those excuses of you’re staying for your kids clichè. The generation you’re forcing to stay in that filthy environment is drinking in poison in gulps you won’t like it. For now as you keep staying for them you won’t see nothing ill as they grow, you’re busy hoping the marriage idea in your head works and you change that abuser.

I can’t tell you that I like the reflections of what my

kids gathered in my marriage. I deal with aftermath of abuse on my kids everyday. Those standing at the fence will say, …children forget too fast and you’re just sensitive. Your know what to do, courage loves a willing heart.

You have the language you want your generation to speak. The onlookers don’t care about your generation. I was just calm this morning, be far from me oh yee anger. But it must be holy anger I think 😊.

Please don’t stay in abusive marriage for your kids but leave it for them, for their generation. Break the cycle, because you can.

I have met men in their 30s and 40s so unbalanced and torn between personalities because of the abuse they witnessed in their homes. A man is extreme in both hysterias and you can’t understand, they’re extremely loving and extremely abusive!

Don’t tell people you’re holding on for your kids.

You just love the idea of marriage.

The last funny and silly conversation we had, my son Mich asked me to get married now because am getting old😅😅😅😅 . But how am I even getting

old yawa eeeh!

~ Emily Omondi

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