While I have always been interested in helping others and making a difference, my dedication to working with vulnerable women could be traced back to one poignant moment that happened not too long ago.
When I heard this story, it broke me – it made me cry for days because this is just one of many women in desperate need of support and protection.
I was talking to her about why she always seemed tired and sick and whether she had access to proper medical care. She started off with “Miss, you know it’s just that since I got married I haven’t been sleeping very much.” (I braced myself to hear some sort of ‘newlywed-honeymoon-phase story) However what she told me was just something out of a horror story.
She went on to tell me that indeed sex was the reason she was tired all the time – her husband would come home drunk and demand that they have sex. But sex to him was different. Sex to him was grabbing any object that he could lay his hands on and using that to penetrate his 19 year old wife. Sex meant brooms,bottles, tools,sticks…literally anything. Sex also meant inviting his friends (bunch of 30+ year old men) over to their house and let them “play” with his wife while he watched. Most nights I just close my eyes and pray they will pass out soon.
This is her life. Everyday.
Why didn’t she ask her parents for help? Because when she was younger she was raped by her father’s friend and when she told her mother about this, her mother’s response was ‘it must be your fault.’
Why doesn’t she run away? But where would she go though? Who would she turn to? What would they do to protect her?
This is her life. It shouldn’t be, but it is.