Friday, January 29, 2010

OF HOUSEHELPS & SEXUAL ABUSE

Today's installment is not only the first of the new year, but it is also the first that left me in a blind rage. The issue of sexual abuse is one that blogville has confidently discussed over the years and it has been done in a way that I think has been positive. However, not enough has been said in our community about the rape of househelps by their employers. It is a serious issue that likely requires constant discourse so as to eventually help many understand that IT IS WRONG.

Please read today's TTTEC installment. I have included my response to the writer but you will have to click on the 'Read More' link to see it. I apologize for the long post but would appreciate knowing your thoughts and what advice you have for this young lady who wants to do the right thing but is caught between a rock and a hard place.

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I'm a 19 year old student at Covenant University. I'm the first of four children, I have two sisters and a brother, the last born. My siblings and I are well brought up and prior to last weekend, I would say my parents were decent, hardworking people who had a happy and stable marriage. 

Last weekend I came home unexpectedly from school. My younger ones were away in boarding school and my mum had travelled to our hometown so it was just my dad and the housemaid at home. I didn't think much of it, until later that night. I woke up cos of the heat and I wanted to go and get some water from the fridge. As I walked to the living room, I passed by the maid's room and heard strange noises. The door was ajar so I decided to peep inside. 

I saw my dad on top of the housemaid, with his trousers down. He was telling her to be quiet otherwise he would beat her in the morning. I ran away in shock. This housemaid cannot be more than 13 years old and I cannot believe my dad was raping her right there in our house. I ran back to my room and could not sleep. All kinds of thoughts were running in my mind. What should I do? Should I tell my mum? Or another elder in the family? Should I confront my dad? I am even disgusted to face him right now. If my father can abuse such a young girl in our house, what else is he capable of? Please help me.

Thank you,

Edun
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MY RESPONSE:
First off, thank you for considering the Easier Crew to share this unfortunate situation with. No matter what happens, you must not take any action without thorough consideration of the factors involved and the potential outcomes.

The key is to help that young girl, as she is only 13. I would recommend that she be approached discreetly to find out how many times she has been raped. You might also have to consult with one more person, because that girl might need some psychological/emotional counseling (someone to talk to) and assistance to go to school. At 13, she should be in school and getting assaulted by your father, so after counseling, the next step is to get her into school for a thorough education or at least a trade. If you do not want your mother or others to know, ensure that your father provides the necessary funding (yes, pure bribery) and access to guarantee adequate education for the girl at the risk of embarrassment and scandal.

This is but one possible action. As difficult as this situation is, you have options. Ultimately, YOU need to know what you want to happen. Do you want to get the househelp out of this sexual bondage and degradation? Do you want to confront your father? Do you want your mother to know? Or, a combination of all 3? At this point, the choice is yours to make as you know best about your family dynamics and the players involved. I desperately hope you will not select to do absolutely nothing because this little girl needs you to get her out of this abusive setup.

Again, thank you for sharing this with me and I am sure that the Easier Crew will offer much more comprehensive advice and opinions. I just hope that it will come in time to be of help to that young girl and to give you an opportunity to put your mind at ease that you have done the right thing.

Be strong.
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Please leave your comments and do not forget to participate in Swagevent #2

Monday, January 25, 2010

"I'M A TIGER"

"I'm a tiger." The little boy yelled with glee as he ran circles around his fatigued mother.

"I'm a tiger, mama!" He screamed again.

She looked up from studying the various boxes of pasta on the supermarket shelf and glanced at her excited son through the corner of her eyes. Images of a disgraced Tiger Woods and his uncountable mistresses flashed in her head.

"Was it 10 or 12? Gosh, how many mistresses were there?" She struggled to remember through a fog of mental cobwebs that severely limited her recollection.

"Mama, I said I'm a tiger!" Her little boy shouted, this time holding onto her legs and imploring her to focus on his pressing issue.

"Oh, yes, darling. You are a tiger!" She responded in a tone that did not match how tired she truly was.

Not wanting to miss an educational opportunity, she started to teach her son how to spell 'Tiger'.

"Let's spell Tiger, Papa," she said as she moved her shopping cart down the aisle after tossing in a box of multigrain penne pasta.

"Okay!" Her son responded, clapping his hands together in excitement.

"T"

"Teeeeee"

"I"

"Eyeeeeee"

"G"

"Geeeeee"

"E"

"Eeeeeee"

"And, R."

This time, her son opted to roar like a tiger, instead.

"Arrrrr...roarrrrr" he said with far too much gusto and mysteriously, from behind her.

She thought to herself, "Now that's odd, why is this little munchkin standing behind me. I wonder what he is..."

But, she could not complete the thought, for at that very moment, a sharp, hot flame pulsed through her entire body, starting at her right butt cheek and radiating upward to her brain.

The world stopped completely and the loud music of the supermarket dimmed considerably. Colors from all the vibrant boxes and items seeking her attention faded immediately. All common sense, decorum and good home training evaporated.

"OWWWWWW!!!" She yelped repeatedly, jumping up and down in pain, with both hands clutched on the abused right, butt cheek.

"Bomboy, why did you just do that? Haba, ki lo de? Abi ikan shey e ni?" and she descended into her father's tongue Yoruba, which she typically reserves for when disciplining her kids.

tiger woods scream thumb Tiger Woods Parodies: Compilation of spoofs about Woodshttp://www.babble.com/CS/blogs/strollerderby/tiger.jpg





Rather than be afraid, the little boy laughed giddily, and was soon joined in the hysterical chorus by his older brother who had watched the entire incident with amazement but opted to not warn his distracted and shopping mother of what was to come.

"But, Mama! I'm a tiger!!!!" he reminded her. "Roar! I bite your bumbum!"

She grabbed the little boy and deftly strapped him into the little car attached to the front of the shopping cart and ordered her other son in as well. Both boys complained mercilessly, but once she asked them if they wanted a spanking, they hushed.

As she returned to her position behind the cart, limping ever so slightly from the throbbing pain, she took a few moments to rub her sore backside. She desperately wished she was at home or somewhere private where she could shove her hands into her pants and rub the victimized butt cheek appropriately.

"Tiger ko. Tiger ni."

Once again, those images of Tiger Woods and all his mistresses ran through her minds eye like a slideshow. All thought of pain evaporated immediately as she said a silent, yet fervent prayer, "God, please, not like Tiger Woods. Olorun Maje."

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Please do not forget to check out the latest swagevent - A clothing giveaway from WeWe Clothing for kids and adults! Have a blessed week!

Friday, January 22, 2010

#SSDSWAG ALERT: FASHION GIVEAWAY

It is still swagseason here at solomonsydelle.com and Swagevent #2 comes courtesy of none other - WEWE CLOTHING!
"Wewe, pronounced (weh-weh) means “little ones” in West African Yoruba culture. Inspired by the Nigerian home of her youth, WeWe designer Folake Huntoon has attempted to create a range of ethnic clothing for her own children that will fill a void she has found in the marketplace. Much of the materials that go into WeWe collections are imported from Nigeria, which complements Huntoon’s own West Africa-informed design sensibilities."
- from the This Next blog
Designs from WeWe Clothing has been seen on many of Hollywood's chic, A listers and their children. From Kate Hudson, Hale Berry and her daughter, Nahla, Nicole Richie and her children, Jessica Alba, Gwyneth Paltrow and many more! The clothing line and its owner, Folake Huntoon, are internationally recognized. Folake was even followed around by MNET's Studio 54 cameras not too long ago.
Wewe Clothing
Folake is a genuine friend of the Easier site and she is kindly offering the Easier Crew 2 prizes - one winner gets an item for a special child in their life and another, a fabulous item from the adult line (female or male).

stylepantrywewe9http://stylepantry.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/06/stylepantrywewe6.jpgGenis in the Tolani (Citrus) tunic by weweclothing.
Folake is a fab mother and entrepreneur, so there's no way I couldn't love her!!! And, um, I'm not ashamed to say, I wouldn't mind having one of her future designs named after yours truly *wink*

So here's how to get some #SSDSWAG (some of the long time Easier Crew members are already a few steps ahead of the game, frankly):
  1. Subscribe to the RSS feed for the blog,  It Was So Much Easier When I Only Had One... (button is in the right sidebar of the page)
  2. Join the I <3 The Easier Crew Group on Facebook. Simply click on the link.
  3. Send out a tweet on Twitter indicating you want to win WeWe Clothing by tweeting #SSDSWAG, mentioning 'WeWe Clothing' and indicating if you want the children's item or the adult item. (Not having a twitter account will not disqualify you but now would be a great time to get one =P)
  4. Finally, include a linkback (http://solomonsydelle.com) to this blog at your blog that also mentions Folake Huntoon and WeWe Clothing.
And that's it!!!! I encourage as many tweets as possible as that will increase chances of winning. Two of you will be randomly selected to win some lovely Hollywood fashion! This swagevent ends on January 31st (midnight US Eastern time) and a winner will be announced on Monday February 1st.

Thanks Folake for participating in Swagseason!

Can't wait to see who wins!

Monday, January 18, 2010

MY DAUGHTER HAS AN ADMIRER?

For those of you who know, The Enforcer or TE as my daughter is affectionately known at this humble blog is only 5 years old. She will be 6 in March and just started going to school last August. She's doing well at school, thankfully and to say I am excited about her progress would be an understatement.

But, the other day, my baby came home and proceeded to confide in me about something that happened at school. You see, one of her classmates gave her his number. Apparently, he told her that if she ever wants to come over, she should simply give him a call. Now, I thought nothing of this while she told me about this phone number she got, but one thing was for sure, my little girl was super excited! Every few minutes she would mention the boy's name and make reference to his number. As I am constantly busy, I would simply tell her, "Not now, dear" and remind her to get abck to whatever she was doing be it eating, doing homework or reading. I figured the boy had a harmless crush on TE and that was that. Better to teach her now not to get too excited over boys liking her so she learns to become discriminating when it comes to  those of the other sex, shebi?
Valentines Ideas
My husband, on the other hand, was not so cool about the whole 'little boy gave my daughter his number' thing. Unlike me, who just thought it was an invitation for a play date, my husband had  other thoughts on the matter. His protective daddy gene kicked in, my people. He was grilling me about how some boy gave our daughter his number, and when I laughed at his overreaction, I was soundly chastised and warned not to encourage such things, lol!!! Haba, these kids are not even 6, they sit at the same table in their kindergarten class, they likely play together at school and wanted to extend their play time past school hours. Now, my husband is acting like some boy is trying to take his little girl away from him or something!! LWKMD! It's just too funny, because my husband is pretty laid back about a lot of things - remember the where to hide money in the house incident? Exactly! I would never in a million years have thought this would worry him because its the sort of thing I would be worried about, not him. But this, has rattled him somehow, lol! I feel sorry for any boys that try to ever make a move on my huband's daughter. Kai! It would be funny if the same boy, or another gave my daughter a gift this Valentine's day....hahahaha... there will be serious trouble in this house! =0

Hoping all is well with you all and I want to wish my congrats to FFF who is now a mommy!!!! Congrats are equally in order for all the other newly minted blogger mommies around us!!!! I must also use this opportunity to apologize to faithful readers and friends for my inconsistency at blogging and other things the last few weeks. There has just been a lot going on, but, that being said, I am back on track, the swagevent will be announced this Friday and blogging is totally back to normal. Now off to catch up on all the things I had to put aside to deal with other issues over the last 3 weeks. Lots of emails, lots of commitments I had to put off and much, much more. *sigh* I'm getting a little anxious thinking of everything I need to do. More importantly, please say a prayer and/or give a little something towards the Haitian relief efforts if you can. There are Nigerian groups making it easier for Nigerians at home and abroad to contribute in some way or another. We've all been blessed in one way or another, the least we can do is lend a helping hand, small or otherwise, when it is needed. Stay well, and see you on Friday!!

Monday, January 11, 2010

HELLO? (PICS HEAVY)

Um... Is anyone out there?

*Dusts cobwebs off blog*

It's only been about a week. So, where is everybody?

Well, una happy new year oh! I'm hoping that this year has started well for you all. Save for the news about Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, who I just want to flog mercilessly by the way, 2010 is shaping up okay for us over here.

I spent about 2 weeks in Dominica in December. It was a nice time. Surrounded with family, eating fresh foods - and I do mean fresh - drinking freshly made juices, frolicking at the beach (and not getting my hair wet, thank you Lord!) and seeing serene sights. It was a blessing and I am thankful for God's travel mercies because, getting out to Dominica this time was more eventful than it needed to be, but again, I'm thankful.

Here are a few pics from the trip -

Sunset at Mero beach

Bomboy running along the beach

Face carved into the rock in Carib Territory (where the original inhabitants of the island live)

I got to watch a lady make Cassava bread. It was interesting to see. The cassava was salted and then roasted in a huge pan. Apparently, it is usually sweetened, baked and served with coconut. Husband and TK loved it. Me? Well, all I wanted at that time was to soak some Ijebu garri with sugar and ice cubes. Alas, there was no Ijebu garri in Dominica, so I had to wait until I got back to the good old US of A. Anyway, here are picks from the Cassava bakery -



I got to spend some time at my favorite restaurant on the island - Guiyave.
 
I love this restaurant! The last time I was in Dominica, I had the main chef give me her recipes! I pestered her until she did. My version didn't come out as well and she told me its because I need to have absolutely fresh herbs. So, once again, I am going to start an herb garden - I currently have lavender and basil growing, but need oregano, thyme, and some other things like lemon grass and I think I'll be good. I'm a food person, so my reference points tend to revolve around good food and the places I can get it and it seems my inlaws thought that was funny. Well, what they found funny was the fact that I am not a big rum drinker, which is technically sacrilege in Dominica. Anyway, they made me some local drink called a 'Step Up' - local Soca Rum and Ginger Wine. They thought it would knock me out. I kept trying to explain that I used to spend a lot of time in Ajegunle at the Navy Barracks and my Aunty's neighbor used to make ogogoro (local gin) in her kitchen and yes, all of us silly little kids used to shack, lol!!!! Burnt up some brain cells for sure because ogogoro is like almost 90% alcohol (can anyone help me here? Tobenna?). Basically, I have some tolerance, not much, but just enough, lol!

Anyway, let me stop here. I have some serious gist for you guys about TE and some boy that seems to have a crush on her. Then there are the boys and you know it is always one thing or another with them. But, that's for next week. This Friday, we return to TTTEC and the installment is quite frankly, disturbing. I gave my opinion to the reader and now, its your turn so tune in on Friday. Next Monday, I will be announcing the latest swagevent for the Easier Crew. If you have a niece, nephew or child that likes fashionable clothes, this one is for you. And, if you are a fashionable gal/guy, you want to check in because, its not just the kids that get something super trendy! Alright people, its a new year, so God bless you all and thank you so much for your kindness!

Friday, January 1, 2010

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

It's 2010 and I'm excited, are you?

Happy New Year to you!!! May 2010 be a blessed year full of success and unbelievably positive surprises for you and yours.

Again, HAPPY NEW YEAR!