Mudzimba with Mai Chisamba: Taking a fresh look at domestic violence

Taking a fresh look at domestic violence

Thank you for your column I enjoy it so much I hope you will pick my letter. Mine is a very short and straight-forward question, Mai Chisamba, what is domestic violence? I think many people don’t understand this.

Please if I am not asking for too much, can you give the response in Shona? My wife is so dull (dofo), but anonyepera kuziva.

RESPONSE

Thank you so much for reading my column. Domestic violence, mukuziva kwangu, imhirizhonga.

Ndisati ndapa miyenzaniso yakati kuti rega ndikubvunze kuti iwe kana usiri dofo, mukadzi dofo wakamutsvagirwa nani? Iro izwi rawashandisa rinotori remhirizhonga. Kurwa, kutukana, kushungurudzana, kusvotesana, kudhererana, kunyimana bonde, mari kana chekudya, kushorana (kun’yombana), kutsamwirana, kufungirana ne kufumurana.

Zvose zvingaitwe kurwadzisa kana kufuwisa mumwe munhu, idomestic violence.

In short this is what I can say but this list can be stretched. Lastly never look down upon your spouse because it does not make you any better.

 

My children’s names were imposed

MAI Chisamba I hope I find you well. I am a 27-year-old woman and married to my childhood sweetheart. My husband is drifting away from what we promised each other way before we got married.

When we were dating we talked about the number of children we would have and even their names. Taimbodaidzana nemazita evana vedu tisati tavazvara. God blessed us with four kids, two boys and two girls.

Each time we had a baby my husband’s family would say amai (mother-in-law) ndivo vanopa mwana zita and my husband would comply. Mai Chisamba, I think this is utter rubbish, why should this be imposed on me and my husband? I told my parents and they said ita zvekwawakaroorwa. All the four kids have names I don’t like; my eldest daughter is named after amai, the other one after tete. My sons the other is named after vatezvara and the other after his brother.

I let this happen because I was young, ndakura handichada. I want those names removed and replaced by those we talked about during courtship. I know it will cost money but I would rather lose money and be happy pane kuswero daidza mazita andisingade.

This is tearing us apart with my once loving husband all because he is ashamed to tell his parents and people about my decision. Mai Chisamba, hausi hudzvanyiriri here uhu? Is it not our right, for me and my spouse to name our kids?

Ko ivo havagute here kudoma mazita, ivo vakapa vana vavo vega nhasi vakunamira the same names pavana vangu? Please help. I cry over this every now and then, I am just fed up. I try as much as possible to call my kids using their nicknames just to avoid zvizita izvi.

RESPONSE

I am very well, thank you; I hope you are fine too. What an outburst! What has triggered this? What has made you so angry? In Shona they have an adage which says “Musadye huroyi nekunyara”; this is exactly what you did.

You planned this with your spouse before you got married, you should have told your husband’s family what your wish was. Yes it’s the spouses’ right to name their children or to request someone to do this on their behalf, but it should always come from the rightful parents.

Again I can say hudzvinyiriri if this was done against your wish. It’s very sad that instead of enjoying your marriage and kids you cry because you can’t stand their names. You have even opted to use nicknames instead of their real names, what a shame. Are you not making a storm out of a tea cup? What is in a name that makes you so sad?

I think changing the names of the children outright will put your husband in a very awkward place. I suggest both of you seek professional counselling before you embark on this.

I am not saying don’t exercise your right but I want you to know that compromises are common in marriages. In some cases people carry their husband’s name pamwe kana kutonogara kumusha kwemurume, etc.

My personal opinion is you should know that family is family, these are the people we can’t do without for the rest of our lives, pane rimwe zuva rinokosha hama — dzitorei semushonga usingamwiwe mazuva ose asi rimwe zuva unodiwa. Why don’t you give those names you have always wanted as middle names, yes it will cost some money but you will be happy. In this case you will call the name of your preference, if your kids are of school-going age you advise the school as well.

In my view I think this is a better compromise because the old names will not be scrapped off completely but I still say, hero jira kufuka kana kuwarira.

Vabereki kana moita zvekumba kwevana tangai mabvunza kuti vaviri vari kuwirirana here. Good luck and keep me posted.

 

Life, one big mystery

Mai Chisamba I hope I find you well. I am a big fan of your Sunday Mail column. I follow it with interest. I don’t know if you are aware that the family set-up is in tatters.

There are factions in the family, factions in the church and if the truth be told there are factions just everywhere. Is it possible for one to be independent of all these? If the answer is yes, how many people are not happy because of the existence of this but life has to go on?

My worry is if the majority of people are living a lie, then what is life worth? The hug you get may be fake and so is the smile, my fear is maybe even the love given to spouses may be fake too.

The other thing is vanhu vanosanduka for reasons best known to them, toita zvipi? I love life but to me it’s one big mystery, izvi zvakutoda imi Mai Chisamba. Please help.

Response

My big fan thank you so much for reading my column and having so much faith in me, I am very humbled. First let me say in as much as I try to answer your questions I am only human and can only do so much.

In most cases I give my personal opinion coupled with some research, but these are not conclusive answers because these issues can be debatable, it’s not like gospel truth. I try my level best to answer in a way that will give positive results by end of day.

I agree that the family, the church and maybe the world at large could be offside but I have a strong conviction that if each one of us stands by what they should do we would get everything back on track. Life is not about other people it’s about you, (hupenyu idunga munhu).

You mentioned factions in different institutions, that is a terrible weakness from people who cannot stand their ground vanoda gurumwandira rekuti tiriko, they don’t even think twice chero tiina vana ngana navana ngana.

Most people end up compromised because they try so hard to change other people; if they fail they join the tese queue and do things they don’t like, vachiti tingadini. The best is to work on yourself. If need be change yourself, don’t target the next person because you can never be sure kuti zviri kuitwa muchokwadi here kana kuti kwete.

Mwari vega ndivo vanoona zvakavandika, ndivo vanokwanisa kusandura vanhu and you can’t pretend before him.

Life is about trust because so many things are done on our behalf, think of the trust we put on our doctors, on our spouses and families, on our drivers and pilots and even the food we buy from different outlets, these are just a few examples. Last but not least, kunaka kweupenyu hwese kunaka kwako sedungamunhu. We can do it if we want.

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  • Amai Mandigona

    Excellent response . It also helped me .