I Stories

Over the years GL has demonstrated a commitment to gender justice and equality by efforts to create opportunities and provide spaces for survivors of all forms of gender violence to speak out, participate in various conversations and document their experiences through I-Stories.

Xenophobia means no protection

My wife, daughter and I live in a room, sharing a house with other people. We are foreigners, who left our country to find a better life in South Africa. The problem I have is that one of these people sharing my home is a stubborn man who abuses my wife almost everyday, verbally and physically. He is also a foreigner, but not from the same country as mine.

Healing body and soul

Healing body and soul

I am a mother of 4 children. I was staying together with them and my husband. My husband was jealous, and as for me I did not have any suspicions about him. He was cruel and I did not realise that at the time. He used to beat me up for nothing but I was not aware, I sometimes wondered if I was born to suffer.

Honouring my mother and sister

Honouring my mother and sister

I was born 27 years ago in a little village called Gatumba, 15 km from Bujumbura in Burundi. I am a product of a teenage mother forced to marry the man who impregnated her and later had three more children with him. I grew up in a very violent home. Gender based and sexual violence was daily bread in my life. My father assaulted my mother every day in front of the entire family and no one said anything. Sometimes he would force my mother to have sex in front of me. This puzzled me because it didn’t seem normal, nor did my mother like it.

Losing everything and finding myself

Freeing myself from a psychopathic lover (I call him a psychopath because of his behaviour and actions, only he wasn’t one as he was fully aware of his dehumanising actions) came at a great cost to me; having lost my house, part of my ear, my self-worth and my dignity. It is still not easy for me to cope with that situation, but I am trying very hard to face my giant. In the name of love, I again found myself trapped with a psychopath, but because of God, who is the source of my life and destiny, he gave me another chance to prove to the world that he alone “can turn my scars into starsÀ; “my pains into other people’s gainsÀ and “bad into good.À

The Truth about me

Since that night, I have never gone back to that club. That club was called Panther. It is no longer there, but it was our favourite place. It was hot! It was one of the best places to go, dance, drink, and party. It was where we got plenty of customers.