Men must act against abuse

2009-11-28 11:03

LAST week on Sunday I really felt ashamed of being a man after

reading the articles written by Babalwa ­Shota and Lumka Oliphant respectively

about their experiences of emotional and physical abuse.

To you ladies, I would like to say bravo for sharing your traumatic

and painful memories with us.

As a psychologist I know it is not easy to just pack your bags and

leave. The public always tend to blame the victim for not leaving the abusive

relationship, but abusive men are usually manipulative and often send

conflicting messages of love and care to the victims, who then stay on in the


What is evident in your stories is that abuse against women,

irrespective of class or race, is a serious problem facing our country today.

According to the Medical Research Council, it is estimated that

five in 10 women are at risk of abuse in South Africa. Many of these ­abuses are

often perpetrated by men like you and me.

When I hear or read about such stories, I often angrily ask myself,

what is wrong with us men to emotionally and physically abuse our girlfriends or

wives? Is it really true that we feel threatened or emasculated by career women

such as ­Babalwa and Lumka?

I would like to encourage all men to join 16 Days of Activism

Against Women and Child Abuse. Real men do not use violence against women, and

this should be the message to our young boys and fellow male friends.

Malose Langa

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