The pain of economic and emotional trauma

The pain of economic and emotional trauma

Date: December 9, 2011
  • SHARE:

I was born about forty years ago, the first born of four sisters. Like any Tanzanian, I studied in government schools, from pre-school to high school, and later I joined a college. I was among the well-educated educated women of the time, so getting married to an educated man was no problem for me.

I got married about 16 years ago. To date, there is not a single day that I can recall when I was happy in life with my husband, never in my life.

I married the man by my own choice, after we met at college. We respected each other during that time, and I had no reason to make any further investigation about my husband to be. In those days, he pretended to be a good man who cared. I did not know that he was like a tiger covered by goat skin.

A year after marriage, our son was born, he was a good baby boy. That’s when life began to sour. My husband did not take any care for our small family; he never bought food for the house, never bought any goods for the small baby either.

Luckily, at that time I was employed at a government office, so I managed to use my maternity leave allowances to care for my new baby and myself.

I didn’t talk to him about the situation until about 4 years after our marriage. When I tried to speak with him he tried to defend himself, as usual, by being very arrogant and not listening to me. I further asked a help from his family with no improvement.

I continued to tolerate the situation because Christian marriage can never end/divorce. Later on, it became like normal life. After four more years, I gave birth to a second child.

As usual, I was responsible for my children. My husband then decided to find a job very far from the family. He went to stay out of Tanzania for three years, leaving behind our small family, with the last born only three months old. I never gave up; I stayed alone with my children for the three years.

Within those three years, I managed to secure a plot and built a house. My husband, after learning that his wife managed to build a permanent house, came back to his family.

As is African tradition, I welcomed my husband again, without understanding how he managed to stay out of the country for three years consecutively. We lived in harmony for only a month, then the same problems began as usual.

He never contributed for food, house bills like water and electricity, fees for his two children, buying of fuel like gas or charcoal. He also failed to assist paying for house helpers like house girl/house boy.

As a mother of two children, I decided to find a good job with high income in order to overcome the financial minor problems. I did this successfully. But I still miss feeling love from me husband. And it pains me that I have a husband who will not help or contribute to his family.

I am living with a man who is not responsible for anything. He can stay for weeks without any contribution for important items, yet he can come back home late night and ask for food. I believe that one day I can have an enjoyable life away from my husband.

I could not have imagined that in my life I would marry an arrogant man to be my husband. I grew up in a good and lovely house with a Mum and Dad.

My dear fellow women, especially those with boy children, I advise you to take time and talk to your boys on how to love and support their future wives. It will help them and their families have a happy life.

Gladness Hemedi Munuo writes from Tanzania. This story is part of the “I” Stories series produced by the Gender Links Opinion and Commentary Service for the Sixteen Days of Activism on Gender Violence

0 thoughts on “The pain of economic and emotional trauma”

Jabulile Mokale says:

Sister girl thanks for sharing your pain I’m happy though because you are one of the woman who can sustain themselves financially.You mentioned that Religion forbides Christains to Divorce yes this is true but remember GOD gave us wisedom it is up to you how you use the wisedom given.You have sons and research has proved that children who witness abuse often turn up to be abusers.As a parent it might seem ok that this is emotional and economic abuse that your going through but children are smart and can see that there is something troubling you and the fact that daddy doesn’t contribute is confusing for them .They might grow into believing that women should take care of the family whilst men being the head of family are present physically and that’s ok.Please love yourself enough to be able to say NO to any form of abuse no one deserves to live in pain.Peace

Comment on The pain of economic and emotional trauma

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *