Home Essays Home Of Sweet Nightmares by Victor Oladejo.

Home Of Sweet Nightmares by Victor Oladejo.

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Domestic violence is a problem that has been woven into the fabrics of the Nigerian society. It’s ever present shadow has engulfed the lives of families and relationships irrespective of social status , financial status, religion or tribe.

Women are mostly the pry of domestic abuse in their relationships with their intimate partner as the source of the violence. Domestic violence is one of the contributing factors of the rising rate of sucides, homicides, divorces admist other consequences domestic violence in Nigeria today. With the current state of the perenial reign of domestic violence , the rising questions is: why is domestic violence gathering momentum despite the various activism towards it’s eradication ? what makes it appear as ‘normal’ to the victims?. The answer is not far fetched : the culture of the people has elements that serves as breding grounds for domestic violence , either directly or indirectly. The question that needs to be answered now before we proceed is : why is the culture an established ground for domestic violence?

𝙏𝙝𝙚 𝙧𝙤𝙡𝙚 𝙤𝙛 𝙘𝙪𝙡𝙩𝙪𝙧𝙚 𝙞𝙣 𝙙𝙤𝙢𝙚𝙨𝙩𝙞𝙘 𝙑𝙞𝙤𝙡𝙚𝙣𝙘𝙚

According to Merriam Webster Dictionary, Culture is the integrated pattern of human knowledge, belief, and behaviour that depends upon the capacity for learning and transmitting knowledge to succeeding generations.

With the above definition, we can understand that the culture is the frame every society leans upon.

In relation to Nigeria which happens to be a country with different tribes and rich in cultures , the role of culture in the intimate relationships is very significant. The Nigerian society celebrates male dominance right from the scheme of things in our cultural society. The family setting and societal position place men as the head and controller of everything with women playing roles that is limited to ‘ salt and pepper’ , ‘ rocking of babies’. It is an established system that the man should guide and manage the various activity of his house. He is responsible for laying down of laws for everyone in the house (which no dares to challenge) and the ‘ taming’ of erring behaviour from everyone in the household which includes the wife. With this type of society that is instutionalized and modelled after this culture with men as dominators with all powers over their families , we have a class of women who have accepted male dominance and men who are with the understanding of themselves as dominators.

At this stage, we would move into what i call : Homes of SweetNightmares. In this part i would be discussing the various domestic violence in Nigeria.

𝙃𝙤𝙢𝙚 𝙤𝙛 𝙨𝙬𝙚𝙚𝙩𝙣𝙞𝙜𝙝𝙩𝙢𝙖𝙧𝙚𝙨

𝑺𝒕𝒓𝒂𝒏𝒈𝒆, 𝒊 𝒕𝒉𝒐𝒖𝒈𝒉𝒕 , 𝒉𝒐𝒘 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒄𝒂𝒏 𝒃𝒆 𝒍𝒆𝒂𝒗𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒚𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒅𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒎𝒔 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒏𝒊𝒈𝒉𝒕𝒎𝒂𝒓𝒆𝒔 𝒂𝒕 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒗𝒆𝒓𝒚 𝒔𝒂𝒎𝒆 𝒕𝒊𝒎𝒆 — 𝑹𝒂𝒎𝒔𝒐𝒏 𝑹𝒊𝒈𝒈𝒔.

The expectations of every spouse in a marrage , aside from procreation and intimate pleasures is : love, care and understanding among every member of the family. However when such expectations hits the rocks and the needed marital joy is present but held in a tightgrip by domestic violence, it is seen as a sweetnightmare.

The Nigerian society is filled with women facing different ‘sweetnightmares’ which includes physical violence,sexual violence, verbal violence, ecomomic and spiritual violence. It is neccessary to note and explain each at a glance, since they can’t be explained fully.

𝘗𝘩𝘺𝘴𝘪𝘤𝘢𝘭 𝘷𝘪𝘰𝘭𝘦𝘯𝘤𝘦 is any attacks which includes hitting, slapping , pinching, use of weapons (such as bottles, sticks ), and murder, committed against the intimate partner.

Physical violence in Nigeria can be traced to the cultures with elements of male dominance and celebrated masculine viewpoint in almost all issues and positions in the society. In relation to the family which have been turned into an oppressive institution by physical violence, we we shouldn’t see physical violence as an enigma because it is very clear that it results from the man’s understanding of his ‘role as the tamer ‘ of any erring behaviour from his wife.

Although physical violence inflicts physical pains on the women, it is however a thing sadness that some women accept to wear it as a crown which comes with their marrage and some women support and advise victims to ‘ submit’ to the ‘ will’ of her husband.

𝑆𝑒𝑥𝑢𝑎𝑙 𝑣𝑖𝑜𝑙𝑒𝑛𝑐𝑒.

Sexual violence refers to any violent sexual activity that is mearnt to control or demean the victim, like intimidating the victim into engaging in sexual activity which the partner does not want to participate

Though sexual violence is one of the most occurence in the Nigerian marital setting, however such grieviances can’t be put forward by the victim( the woman) to others to delibrate on because many view that, in as much the wife is married to her husband she has given the consent to sex with her husband for life. However with the high level of intimacy that is around the sexual activity in marrage, it should be joint agreement for such activity to occur.

𝐸𝑐𝑜𝑛𝑜𝑚𝑖𝑐 𝑣𝑖𝑜𝑙𝑒𝑛𝑐𝑒

Violence in the economical violence refers to the threatening or otherwise limiting the victim’s financial freedom. Violence in the economical life of the violated partner occurs when the husband decides to limit the number of properties the woman tries to own. In some cases the man tries divert the woman’s fortune to financing of his own ambitions. As a result of this, the woman tries to maintain her stand and in the process the only availablw means of stopping the woman from fulfilling her pursuit financial is by disagreeing with such pursuits. Many cases have been seen where the husband burns the property or sells them without the consent of the wife.

𝑆𝑝𝑖𝑟𝑖𝑡𝑢𝑎𝑙 𝑣𝑖𝑜𝑙𝑒𝑛𝑐𝑒

Spiritual violence occurs when the affected partner is forced to participate in religious activities which is against her will.

Since the culture plays a major role in the Nigerian society, the religion of the husband is expected to be practiced by the wife. In deciding or justifing spiritual violence, it should be brought into consciousness that the marrage is a union that is based on love whicj should provide the wife with her choice of religion. A perfect example can be seen in a situation whereby a muslim man marries a christain woman. In most cases the root of spiritual violence occurs because the woman doesn’t submit to what i call: ‘ your God will be my God’

𝙍𝙚𝙖𝙨𝙤𝙣𝙨 𝙛𝙤𝙧 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙥𝙚𝙧𝙚𝙣𝙣𝙞𝙖𝙡 𝙧𝙚𝙞𝙜𝙣 𝙤𝙛 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙨𝙬𝙚𝙚𝙩𝙣𝙞𝙜𝙝𝙩𝙢𝙖𝙧𝙚𝙨.

The first thing that comes as a stubling block when women are urged to seek justice by reporting cases of domestic violence is , No woman wants to send her husband to jail. They prefer the violence should be treated instead of the violator. Also , if the woman tries to drag her huaband to court , the various stages of investigations and proofs discourages the woman and if eventually she succeeds ,no woman wants to become a single mother and in most cases because of the various challenges that come with. In addition, the culture also plays a role, because becoming a single mother is regarded as a disgrace to the woman and her family.

𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐰𝐚𝐲 𝐨𝐮𝐭:

Women should be encourage to address any issues of domestic violence through the various procedures which includes reporting the cases to established government organisations. family members should discourage any form of violence they see in their marital lives by resolving issues rather than going by violence. Laws that would discourage domestic violence should be intoduced with purnishment to the violator. The society as a whole should frown at any case of domestic violence by reporting cases to the agencies in order to adress the issue before it leads to the various ugly outcomes that comes with it .

Oladejo Victor Olayemi is a budding artist and a secondary school
graduate. He lives in Ore, Odigbo, Ondo state and wrote in via victoroladejo95@gmail.com
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