Hmmmm, I have been wondering what to make of the recent beatings by men by their spouses. Everyone is talking about this and I still do not know what to make of it but I can also offer my two cents worth:
1. Violence against your spouse, male or female is wrong.
2. So is any form of psychological torture.
3. Beating your husband will not make him a man.
4. Drinking yourself silly at your families’ expense is plain stupid! You are not the first man or last man to be jobless, be stressed out or unable to provide. And the money you are drinking yourself blind and impotent with can be used to buy your family some food.
5. Instead of handing out red cards and blaming the constitution on a few mamas’ crazy actions, try and figure out what drove them to such violence… on this I second Rev. Judy Mbugua on the present irrelevance of the ‘riika’ , whose members were accountable to each other if things went wrong on the family front.
On the same sad note, I was speaking with a group of men, all in late thirties and forties yesterday. I work as an F.E trainer and this was one of my Friday groups. After the training, the conversation veered into marital finances. I was shocked and ashamed at what some women are doing to their husbands. One of the the guys said the reason he does not save as much as he does is because he spends so much on unwanted expenses such as having breakfast in a hotel every day as his wife cannot be bothered to get up and make breakfast for him, even if he came home with milk and eggs?! Another man told the group how he shops in bulk to reduce daily expenses but it is never enough for his wife who still demands 500 bob per day for food even though the kids are in boarding and its just the two of them and yes, he does not have breakfast at home too. The sad thing is that if he says he has no money, she actually goes on to sell some of the packets of flour he had bought to last them the month, or go borrow from the local shopkeeper and btw, this mama has her own business!
There was a lot more that was said but a few things stood out for me. Few married couples discuss finances in detail especially long term goals. There is no accountability to each other but most of all no respect for the man as a provider. When I got married I committed to my husband through the good and bad. I know there will be BIG challenges ahead, but I have to support him the whole way and respect his role. If he leaves the house at 5.30 am and comes back at 10.00 pm, the least I can do as his wife is send him out with a good breakfast, pack him some lunch,welcome him home with a hot, filling meal and listen and share with him his challenges. Not criticise him and 15 years down the line ask him why we live in a rented flat instead of our own home, and I spent all the money we could have used to buy some land somewhere and build a home!
I know these men are not perfect but why I would do that to my husband and father of my kids is baffling.