Do not live a lie ‘managing’ your abuse or abuser, speak out!

Chika greeted her colleagues with a respectful but not overly friendly smile. Her colleagues admired her poise and beauty. Some admired her cold demeanour, while some thought she was snobbish. Why won’t they? She had it all: a good job as a bank manager, a wealthy husband, and even after three beautiful children, she was still drop-dead gorgeous.

But life was not all the way it looked on the outside. She was very conscious while greeting her colleagues. She thought they could see right through her heavy makeup that covered bruises and scars on her face. Her designer clothes covered stories of batteries she had suffered on her body, tracing them to years back. She moved smartly to her office so she could immerse herself in work and forget her troubles.

Chika had married early, and she felt she was the luckiest girl to have hooked up with Lagos’s most eligible bachelor. Her beauty had caught Lanre’s eyes at a party. She will never forget that day. Her joy couldn’t be hidden, even the envy of her friends was obvious. She was the belle of the ball. Chika was young and inexperienced so when the abuse started, a slap here or there when she wouldn’t “behave”, she wasn’t alarmed. She felt it was love because his excuse was that he was jealous. She found it quite cute, especially when he showered her with gifts. But after their wedding, he didn’t have to give excuses; he owned her. It was all forms of abuse; emotional, verbal, and physical, and she couldn’t tell anyone

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If Lanre had a bad day, she definitely had to have one too or end the day badly. Everyone thought her life was perfect, so she refused to attend functions, only attending important family events and leaving early. How was she to explain the sham of her marriage? She was embarrassed and ashamed. So the gist was that she was too high-class to attend their parties.

Surprisingly, Chika came from an enlightened home; her parents were professors. She and her siblings, an older sister and a younger brother, were brought up with love and taught to stand strong for their beliefs. She had been known when younger to voice her opinions, but she had long

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