HARARE - The story of former Miss Zimbabwe Brita Masalethulini made sad reading last week.
What really touched me about the whole drama where her ex Taurai Mnangagwa decided to expose dirty linen in public was how the media was quick to judge the former beauty queen.
I personally feel that Brita was being punished for saying no to a man she was no longer interested in. The teenage behaviour displayed by Mnangagwa leaves a sour taste in my mouth.
People should learn to move on nicely after a relationship has gone sour. In my view Brita’s only crime was that of seeking the protection of the law which as a Zimbabwean citizen she has every right to from a man who was physically abusing her.
I feel very let down by how people were not concerned about the abuse Brita had obviously gone through to the extent that she had to swallow her pride and approach the courts for protection.
I really applaud Brita for standing up to an abuser and putting an end to the abuse through the courts.
This whole drama about Brita opened a can of worms on how women tend to absorb a lot of abuse in bad relationships.
Many a times, women put up with things in a relationship that men would never put up with. I do not know the reason why this is so because the Bible makes me to understand that God in His infinite wisdom made both men and women equal.
But sadly, women are always the weaker partner in a relationship and have to put up with all the abuse in the world.
African society does not do us any favours too because when a young girl is given away in marriage, they are always advised to do everything they can to preserve their marriages even at their own expense.
This notion may be taken for submission which the Bible clearly spells out but I sometimes feel that our men tend to take advantage of a woman’s submissiveness and repay the Christian gesture with abuse.
Take Brita’s story for instance, she was submissive to the father of her child but he repaid the gesture by having affairs with many other women.
But then again, reading through the media reports about the whole drama, one can see that there is more to this story than what has been reported.
I think that Brita was being modest and tried to protect the father of her child by not exposing him for what he really is but Mnangagwa on one hand decided to take the gloves off.
The sad incident also got me thinking that sometimes as women we get into relationships which we feel are ideal but turn out differently.
One of my friends was in one such relationship and it even lasted for a good 10 years.
In retrospection, she says that what she thought was mutual love was an illusion because she was only in love with being with that particular man.
She said she had been in denial of the fact that he did not really love her and had been in her own fantasy for 10 good years.
Many women tend to make excuses for their men when they fail to live up to expectations. These women are usually in a relationship with themselves and their fantasy.
This week I would like to urge all sisters living in this make-belief world to wake up, smell the coffee and move on.
I believe with all of my heart that there is some great guy out there just waiting for a good woman like you.
Stop procrastinating; stop leading yourself on, stop setting your self up for heart ache.
It is high time women started believing in themselves and their self-worth. I am sickened to my stomach every day when I read reports on how women who fall into these traps are abused left right and centre.
Last week I was hurt by comments on how Brita was said to have had 3 children by 3 different men.
I concluded that in most cases, it is easy to judge one if you do not know their story. My philosophy has always been to try walking a mile in a person’s shoes before judging them.
But at the end of the day, I am proud of Brita for standing up to a man who is obviously well connected and saying enough is enough.
This is the attitude we need to take as women and society at large needs to look at both sides of the coin before jumping into conclusions.
So my fellow women, here is my two cents worth of advice.
Say no to abuse, do not be afraid to approach the courts to get the protection which is your right as a citizen. I know that it may have nasty repercussion as you may be judged but do it any way.
This is the only way we can as a country get rid of the cancer of physical abuse.
Most importantly do not allow yourself to be anyone’s doormat because you were fearfully and wonderfully made in God’s own image.