Nip it in the bud while you can

I woke up to a thread of people sharing their worst experiences. The question was about posting a photo taken when one was having the worst day of their life but still managed to pose and smile for the camera. The stories were immense and heart-wrenching. What broke my heart most was how many people talked of depression or recovery from a violent, toxic relationship.

One woman was beaten up by the boyfriend because the previous night she stopped him from driving them home since he was drunk. Another one was chased by her man down the hallway, she tripped into a glass frame and her leg split open from the knee downwards. She bled heavily, was on crutches for four months, during that time the man who is now an ex, did not even help fetch groceries. Stuck on a wheelchair she had to help herself. The whole experience made her suicidal.

 

There were serious cases of violence, disregard for a lover and utter selfishness. A lot of these start off as small things that we ignore and unknowingly ‘water’ to maturity. Take for example a married couple that has a maid, when the husband falls sick the wife nurses him, but when the wife is sick he does not help or touch anything, delegating it all to the maid. If such a scenario is repeated without the wife pointing it out it becomes the norm.

 

Upbringing is of great importance, a young boy who was raised in a home where he would sit as his sister sweats in the kitchen, or struggled with a jerry can of water, is highly unlikely to do house chores or help around the compound in his adulthood. A woman who was raised in a highly liberal family and was taught that life is all but cut-throat competition will always be at loggerheads with men who fear such aggressiveness in a woman.

 

As I scrolled through the messages it became apparent that a lot of men and women suffer mental instability and depression because of the environment and the people that surround them.

There was a spike in divorce applications in China when a lockdown was announced there. In Russia, authorities decided no weddings and divorces until June. I guess the move is in the hope that someone would change their mind. In some places in the UK, victims of domestic violence during the lockdown that were uncomfortable reporting it direct, were given a code to use. None of the characteristics that led to such cases and measures just happened. They had to start somewhere only were exacerbated by the forced proximity thanks to the pandemic.

A chunk of our personal traits stem from where and how we were raised, a child whose father knocked someone’s goat and never looked for the owner to show remorse, or even compensate them, will grow up knowing it is okay to walk away from situations without taking responsibility or being remorseful.

If a child insulted the house help and was never reprimanded by a parent, they will assume that is the ‘place’ of the maid, one can do anything to them and get away with it, which is wrong.

editor@newtimesrwanda.com

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