Lydia Forson is heartbroken over the plight of many African women in marriages
Ghanaian actress, Lydia Forson needs no introduction. She is also a writer, and producer. In 2010, she won the African Movie Academy Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role.
Recently, she put up a post about a documentary she was watching on BBC and how sad she felt about what many women in Africa go through in their marriages.
The documentary shared stories of women who decided to leave their abusers, how they are being helped by an association of female lawyers to get divorce and the battle they face.
Because some of these women are afraid of what would befall them if they keep pressing for divorce, many of them return to their abusive husbands without getting the justice they deserve.
This is Lydia’s Post on Facebook:
”I’m watching this documentary on BBC and I’m completely heartbroken.
Several women, in a remote part of Africa are being helped to divorce their abusive husbands by an association of female lawyers.
For 17 years they’d never had a conviction for spousal abuse in the community, because any time a case was reported the women would go back to their husbands because of pressure and threats from the society.
Two Muslim woman, however, decided enough was enough and this time when their husbands beat them they took the case to court and didn’t withdraw it. They were verbally assaulted and coerced to go back to their husbands but never did.
The men were sentenced and this gave the others courage to report their own cases.
But it’s not the story of these women that broke my heart.
It’s the men.
They didn’t seem remorseful, not in the least bit.
And it’s because they genuinely didn’t have a clue.
One even got so angry at the judge( who’s female by the way) and attempted to talk back at her. He looked ready to beat her up and asked why she was embarrassing him.
These men believed their wives were their property, and didn’t understand why they had to be put in jail for “disciplining them”.
Another man said his wife was just too mouthy and needed to be shut up.
Then there was a paedophile, who raped a little girl and insisted she tempted him because of how she looked.
When sentenced, he asked the judge why because the girl’s family was already willing to let things go. He went on to say he was an orphan and didn’t deserve this treatment.
I watched how, even some of the lawyers representing these men told the judge she was destroying homes with her sentencing, and the women belonged at home with their husbands. Imagine?
Another woman went to the family court to file for divorce, and after narrating her story, her husband insisted he wasn’t ready to leave her.
The men sitting at the desk and aware of the cameras, thought it was funny to tell her they could decide to make her go back to him and she wouldn’t have a say.
Perhaps these men really don’t know any better, especially when all their lives they’ve been brought disrespect women.
They couldn’t even comprehend that beating a woman was wrong and that was extremely sad and scary.”
African women need to take the bulls by the horn and demand to be respected by their men. Being in a marriage is not an opportunity to be abused, violated and dehumanized.
No marriage is worth that much sacrifice. If it’s not making you better as a woman, you need to leave. You deserve more as a woman. Marriage is a union of equal partners and not a master servant relationship.