Every other day, we wake up to some sad news of domestic violence, where a man kills his wife or fatally wounds her. We saw the chap in Makueni who beat the daylights out of a young woman. The judge gave him some 12 years to learn how to manage his anger in jail. Serves him right.
Then in Eldoret, a man so badly battered his wife over Sh500, converting her beautiful face into something out of a cat wreckage. What is at play here is what is called Man rage. Man rage is an explosion of unmanaged anger and women and children are always on the receiving end of it.
Granted, wives often drive men nuts. Many can be irresponsible with money. Some wives have a loose tongue and sometimes don’t know the time and place to bring up some issues. And sometimes they serve cold cabbage and cold ugali, and you want to kill somebody. And of course some wives can be flirty and careless. But nothing justifies raising your hand to a woman or a child. Or to a fellow human being.
There is everything to be angry about: Stupid politicians, people who don’t pay debts and are poor at communicating. Stupid matatu touts. People who slurp their tea. People who stick chewing gum under restaurant tables. Men who pee on the roadside. But we suppress our disgust.
But with tough economic times, with diseases, and so much pressure, more and more men (and some women) are losing it. But whatever you do, never lay your hand on your wife (or husband).
Carol, for instance, can be infuriating. She normally has these little nasty comments she makes, full of snide. She has a way of shopping mindlessly for some really bad stuff that you can’t justify. And worst, her habit of running to her mother at the least provocation. But you try to moderate your anger. It is a sign of maturity if you can manage your anger.
Once you lose it, you become the smaller person. And there is nothing worse in the world than being the smaller man. Women and children are the weak, physically, compared to men. This, any person who attacks the weak and the vulnerable, loses it.
So, this is a request to men; respond with love, silence, firm words - not with violence. No matter how frustrated you are. No matter what she does, including cheating. The only drastic option you have is to walk away.
There are better way to express your anger or disgust. Violence is never one of them.