LadyNaija just said:

Domestic abuse: Why do they stay when leaving should be the answer? (ii)

Domestic abuse is so rampant in Nigeria and while we all condemn it and advocate for the women to leave, we must remember that we also constitute the society that does not make it easy for victims of abuse to find their place.

This point brings me to the remaining reasons a lot of women stay in abusive relationships and marriages. I sure do hope that you didn’t miss the first part of the series. 

4. Fear of stigma and shame

I have let this reason stand on its own, unlike the other three that I discussed in one post because it is so huge. Even when we know that a woman is a victim of abuse, we still stigmatize her and make her feel ashamed, even though it is the abuser that should be ashamed.

An example of this is the fact that many mothers deter their sons from marrying divorcees because they believe they are ‘second-hand’, yet they claim that they are sympathetic to the abused’ plight. 

This hypocrisy of the Nigerian society makes most women stay in the marriage/ relationship when they should be running away. 

Similarly, a lot of women stay because they are too ashamed that they have been ‘weak’, to the point that a man abuses them. This is common amongst women who have flaunted how perfect their lives are or presented a picture of strength rather than reaching out for help.

I should also add that sometimes, some women have a convoluted idea of love. They believe that love weathers all so if they just stick around he would change, especially if the abuser has a habit of turning a new leaf once the abuse is over. 

Do you now see from these reasons that many women have legitimate reasons for staying? So get off your high horse and stop calling them weak or stupid. Instead, let’s create safe spaces in our society that accepts these women and recognizes them as the survivors they are!

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