Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Nigerian Mother From Rape: My Son is the Sweetest Gift That Life Has Given Me! by Betty Esene

I was raped on my way to a professional exam.  After the incident, I kept telling myself that it didn’t happen and I had to move on.  I almost believed myself -- until I found out a month later that I was PREGNANT, then everything that happened came rushing back.  I hated myself, I hated what happened, and above all, I hated the baby.  My first thought was “ABORTION.” I was a young girl struggling to better my future and that of my family. ''The baby would ruin my hopes and aspirations for the future,'' I thought.  

I searched really hard for funds to sponsor my abortion, but couldn’t find any.  I even started taking some really dangerous drugs from when the pregnancy was 1 month to 7 months, but the baby just refused to die.  I thought of committing suicide a lot of times, but then my mum was seriously ill and I was of great help to her.

I kept my pregnancy a secret from my friends and family for 7 months.  I would usually hit my belly aggressively when alone and scream to the baby, “Just die or go away, but whatever  -- don’t come out through me!”  I was highly traumatized and depressed in silence and agony for 7 months before I told my family what happened.  I got support from my mum and a non-governmental organization (N.G.O) in my country – Nigeria -- and I had my baby.

It was a difficult labor, but the moment I held him in my arms I felt an inner peace.  Now I look at him and wonder how I could have ever rejected such a glorious blessing -- he is the most wonderful and sweetest gift that life has given me!  His smile gives a reason to be strong and move on with my life.  He understands my every mood and our bond is so strong! He is 5 months old now and I would rather be on the streets than give him up for adoption.  I don’t see him as a product of rape; rather, I see him as a child of Destiny.

People need to understand that God doesn’t send the rapist.  We all have our choice of behavior – free will, but rather God uses a painful situation to create something good – the baby.  I don’t judge a scared, young girl for wanting an abortion or for having an abortion because I almost did the same thing, but my point is considering the child as the victim's child and not the rapist’s, considering the child as a human with feelings and aspirations. 

Let’s face the truth:  the child shares no fault in what happened and has a right to live -- every child has a life to live, especially children born out of rape.  They have a great future and a maker – God -- who wasn’t stupid to have sent them down on earth.  They aren’t the rapist’s product, but the creative work of God.   He brought them for a purpose and to fulfill a destiny, just like my son!

BIO:  Betty E. is an event planner and make-up artist from Nigeria.  She’s also a member and blogger for Save The 1 – connecting with and encouraging other mothers who became pregnant by rape.