A Nigerian writer, Joy Chinenye Azubike has shared one heartbreaking story that will leave many people in tears. The woman who was hosted on “TRIPLES WITH S-BUCHI” by Solomon Buchi Bartholomew opened her heart to share her story with the world.
She revealed details of abuse, beating and forced marriage. Azubike narrated how fear of the unknown forced her to stay with her tormentor and r*pist.
She wrote: “I am Azubuike Jhoy Chinenye. A single mother of three from a nuclear family of five children. I am child number three. I was raised in strict home of a military father and my mother a business woman and a teacher. I am also A business woman. A speaker. A teacher and a writer. I guess that’s all for now.
Oh yes. Really tough but thank God for His grace.
I met him when I was 17. Started off as friends. I was asleep in my hostel in a private university when my phone rang, I answered and it was a wrong number. He called two days later and said he hasn’t been himself since he gave me that wrong call. I never gave him much time but we ended up as good friends and kicked off as boyfriend and girlfriend as you people call it.
So, we never met. We kept dating via phone calls and messages. He finally came to visit me in school and I never liked what I saw physically but he was a man full of vision. Such an hard working man. A growing man with dreams. I had to ignore his physical appearance and just love him for who is he and not what he had.
We vacated that semester in school for Christmas vacation and my birthday was December 14, we vacated 12th. He offered to celebrate my birthday in Port Harcourt which I agreed to after all he is my boyfriend. I got to PH, he picked me up from the park and treated me like a princess. He introduced me to his friends and his younger sister. I felt loved and accepted but didn’t know another lane of destiny was awaiting ahead.
Day 12 passed and day 13 at night, we had our dinner, watched movies, discussed a lot about careers and other stuff. I just had my bath, wore my bum short and still had my towel tied to my chest and he tickled me first, he started acting funny and I cautioned him.
He repeatedly misbehaved and he kept saying be mature and stop being childish. Then I knew I was in trouble. I managed to put on my top and told him if he continued then I will leave his house. He apologised and promised to behave. I sat on the bed and he pushed me down on the bed, his face changed. I started begging him not to do what I am thinking. He said I should calm down. I started thinking, God is this how I will die, is this what my parents sent me to school to do? What have I done? Joy who sent you? All these thoughts in my head and I was struggling with him. I later told him to calm down that I have something to tell him.
I told him the truth, that I was a virgin and I am just 17years. I said tomorrow being my birthday will make me 18. He shouted that I was a liar. Which lady will be a virgin in this jet age. You don’t even look your age. I managed to convince him that when next I visit he can have his way but he shouldn’t do this. Unknown to me I was talking on deaf ears. We kept struggling. We kept fighting. He tore my shorts. And I managed to stand up, we kept running round his centre table like animals. I was crying and begging. I called God a million times. I screamed. I shouted hundred times. Sorry was my case because his DVD player was on loud volume and the generator was also on.
He eventually got me. He threw me over and ripped my shorts apart, dragged it down and as he got to my feet, I kicked him on the face and managed to escape. Got out but his gate was locked. I kept screaming but my voice was just returning to my throat. No one could hear me. After all he told them he was celebrating my birthday. He kept laughing and said can you see you’re outside naked? In tears, I begged him to stop this. I reminded him of our love. I told him how much of a Christian we are. He calmed down, he hugged me and apologised. He asked me to come in, I refused that I am comfortable outside. He sat outside with me at least for 30mins and insisted we go in.
I was foolish. I believed him. I was just too stupid and trusted him. We got in, slept off and he woke me up. This time, all I could see were his red eyes and manhood facing me. He had his way, I screamed till my voice disappeared. He was done. Blood everywhere. He started crying. He started shaking. He started apologising. “I never knew you were telling the truth.” Those were his words.
Oh well, he drove me to the airport in the morning. I flew to Lagos to meet with my family who prepared birthday things. I was happy to see them and dying inside. I couldn’t tell anyone what just happened. My mother suspected. My elder sister also suspected something was wrong but I kept lying that turbulence in the air affected me. I would have told my mum but I know my father. He will kill me. He is so strict and harsh. I didn’t want drama. I didn’t want plenty talk. Did I send you to school to have boyfriend? Did I pay school fees for you to follow a man? All these typical Nigerian parents talk, I wasn’t ready for it. I kept it to myself. I was raped by a man I loved. Better die with it than talk.
I resumed school in January and started lectures , still facing trauma. Can’t sleep. Always crying. Then my room mates knew me to be a lively funny person but I wasn’t anymore. I kept to myself, hardly spoke to anyone and January passed. Anyway, he kept calling and sent series of messages apologising but I blocked him off.
February came and it dawned on me that I haven’t used my pad. I became worried. I asked my friend Nanya Okoma what could be wrong? She said sometimes we miss our periods. It is called escape month. I believed her. She couldn’t mention pregnancy because she knew me too well. I started having bigger breast, just like that, my bra won’t fit in. I was worried. Just like that I wake up late for lectures. I just didn’t like that feeling. Next thing I noticed I started cautioning my room mates to stop spraying some certain body spray. In my confused state, I unblocked him and told him what was happening. I started crying and begging him to tell me if he used me for rituals. He calmed me down and said, Joy you’re pregnant. I am coming to school to pick you just get an exit.
I laid on my bed and if I say I was confused, that was an understatement. I cried until tears were no more. I cursed and cursed him until curses finished. I blamed myself endlessly. I begged the ground to happen and swallow me but it refused. We went to the hospital and ran tests and yes, I was pregnant at 18. This is me in a dilemma. What is all these? Why me? God why me? Even if I made a mistake to have a boyfriend why give me this punishment? Joy who asked you to answer that wrong number? Why? Wrong number has led you into wrong mess. Joy! I kept crying. This is me with my rapist. I couldn’t trust anyone now but him. Joy, what do we do? He said. He wiped my tears. He blamed himself. He even cried. He kept begging. He kept saying how much he loved me. He hugged me a million times. Then he said, can we abort it?
I was shocked. This man, you just did one and you’re mentioning this? Do you want to kill me? I can’t do that. I have heard stories about abortion. I can not. He said no problem that he’s by my side. The doctor came and said he will fix me on drip because I had malaria. I trusted them because his friends and younger sister were there. I was on drip and slept off. I managed to wake up and saw the drip yellow colour. I asked the nurse who was attending to another patient, that why was my drip yellow. She called the doctor and his response, I thought you wanted to abort the baby? I knew this was another plan. I asked him to discharge me and I went to school that night.
I decided to call my pastor and tell him my problem. He was highly disappointed. He ended up telling my father and my father days later told my mother and the whole family went into shock. My mother didn’t leave her room for two weeks because of the devastating news. I was a good girl. An obedient child. Intelligent girl who was studying law in her 300L. I had a bright future but I got pregnant. My father called and in his words, my daughter how are you? Daddy am fine. How is your study going? I am doing great. OK, information reaching us says that you are pregnant and I called to tell you, please don’t climb the bunk bed that is high, don’t lift buckets, don’t engage in that your school exercise to avoid miscarriage. Eat well and be strong. But while doing that, do not come any inch close to my house until you bring the young chap responsible for that baby. Hope am clear? In tears, I said yes daddy.
This is me alone in my misery. I had no option than to call the same rapist and potential murderer. He was my only option. He stood by me. He accepted to go see my father. He assured me that he will be there for me since I have refused abortion. He went to Lagos, met with my dad, my father loved him immediately because he was a sea sailor just like my dad who was a Naval officer with a shipping company. So they clicked fast. My mother also liked him because she saw those things I saw in him.
Long story short, I thought my dad accepted him because I was pregnant, little did I know he was given list for marriage. I was in school when my elder sister brought a bag which contained asoebi materials and wedding card. That was it! My own traditional wedding card. I had no say. I couldn’t talk. My father was the final say. Did I blame him? No. He was only protecting the image of the family and I brought this upon myself. April 18 at the age of 18 I was married to my rapist, my wrong number and my destiny changed for worse.
Well marriage came. I wasn’t ready but I had to live each day as it came. Now drama started.
I was to visit my mother Inlaw who I have never met. I must meet her before the marriage holds. I left school to go see her and got to her house, I met a scattered, dirty and smelling home. He held my hands, I asked him is this where your parents live? He said yes. I was shocked but couldn’t condemn after all I have experienced poverty with my parents. I sat there waiting for 45 minutes before she came out. He immediately left me there and said he will pick up once am done. I greeted her on my knees and she said, ehen so you’re the Joy? I said yes ma. She said she’s going to church for service and we would talk when she’s back. I was surprised. Because when we were dating, I told him I am a Christian who worships with Winners Chapel and he said ha, he worships there too and his mother is women’s leader. But this is me faced with a woman dressed like a Deeper Life. I asked her, but I thought you go to church on Wednesdays? She said, no I worship with Deeper Life Bible Church. I was mad. Very mad. Did this man just lie to me? I am not only marrying my rapist but a liar as well?
I was just in a deep mess and unfortunately there’s no one to tell. No one. Who will even believe me? Who will save me? Just who? I cried and refused to smile thought out the wedding. I was just in my world of pains.
She returned from church and gave me rules. In her words.
Since my son is going to marry you, you have to worship where he worships which is deeper life.
You can’t wear trousers. You can’t fix all these weavons. You can’t do all these paintings am seeing. I was like, but your son told me his family is Winners and you’re women’s leader. She said God forbid! Not her. That she can never worship in a church that encourages sin. I wanted to cry but I didn’t see tears. We ended our talk and he picked me. I couldn’t talk. I didn’t know where to start with him. I was just there sitted quiet till we got home.
Reality is, she never liked me and I never liked her. You that feeling you get when your spirit doesn’t accept someone? That was it.
During the wedding, she started drama. My family rented about 12 canopies, live band, buffet service, palm trees weaved on the canopies, calabash designed on the canopies, palm wine gourds used as decorators everywhere. She refused to sit down that this is a worldly and fetish marriage. Well, we left her alone.
We got to the point of dowry, she started shouting that her son has never tasted alcohol and he will never taste it. That one became a drama that almost didn’t end until the elders refused and made conclusions. Next stage we were to dance our way into the field to sit as a couple and I started crying. But he kept encouraging me and begging me to stop making people think he forced me. I just stood there and said, what does this look like? Am I not being forced? Just leave me and let’s keep dancing in pretence. We did everything and it was time to dance our couple dance and I cried more and more. My mother came and kept wiping my tears. She knew I wasn’t happy but what can she do? My father danced happily that day. Everyone congratulating us.
My asoebi girls came to pack the spray money, surprisingly the MC stopped them and beckoned to his left only for me to see his family with poly bags picking my money. My girls wanted to fight them out but my mother stopped and told them to leave them to pick. If that is what they want, let them pick. I was mad. So mad that I didn’t follow them that night to pH. I stayed in my father’s village until 2days later I returned to pH.
Another drama started. He started shouting at me, why will your people pick the money? Why was my mother not given a chair to sit? Why were they not served food. His younger sister was there. I was surprised and said, your mother refused to sit, and in my place, its the bride that takes the spray money. He said not so with his place, I was tired, I told him, shebi you’ve taken the money why are you talking about it? Eat it na. He said was that why food wasn’t served? I said, I just returned from Anambra state and no welcome from you, just questions upon questions. He said Joy, let me tell you, I don’t joke with my family, I love and respect my mother and you should do same! If you want peace in this home then love my family. I just nodded and said no problem. I brought out the CD of the marriage and played it. While watching , we saw his mother seated under the canopy she condemned busy tearing her chicken laps into her mouth. I said, I thought she didn’t eat? He couldn’t talk. I quietly went to sleep.
The following day he went to work. I was discussing with his sister and I asked her something that bothered me. I said, laura, when the elders asked for the dowry and father of the groom, two men came out before the other came out. I know the other one as your father but why did the other come out to stand as witness? She laughed and said hahan, that’s your FIL. I said how? Explain? She said , my MIL got married to him at an early age and she left him after bearing three kids. Which is my husband(at least I have to use this word) , his elder sister and his younger sister who later died. I was dumbfounded. She said my FIL was a chronic cheat and womaniser and never cared for his family but kept bringing in children he had with other women for my mom to take care of. She got fed up and left. She married my dad 10 years later. I was speechless. I screamed. She said what is it? I said your brother has killed me. He never told me this. He said he comes from a nuclear family. He never mentioned this to me. If not because of the tiny drama at the dowry ground, I wouldn’t have known. I said , joy you’ve entered one chance. Lies upon lies. OK so this your mother was once married? Ehen. Ok Oooo.
He came home and chased his sister home after I confronted him.
I resumed school and unfortunately a rule came out, that pregnant women will not be accepted anymore. That they were tired of seeing babies in the gutter. I was forced to defer my admission until I put to bed. I returned to pH when he told me how he lost his job. Life became difficult for us. We started suffering. To feed was a problem. Then I suggested he use his car to run taxi and I became his conductor. I will use the money from our hustle to arrange food and fuel his car. We couldn’t even afford baby items. We managed and kept believing God for a miracle. Our house was just a room with kitchen and toilet, I couldn’t pass the bathroom door without scrubbing the door. I couldn’t endure the pains since I was heavy, I resulted to bathing outside very early.
I managed until I suggested to travel to Lagos. I said, let’s lie to my parents that am coming for holiday since they have money, they can take care of me. He agreed. But behind his back I opened up to my mother and told her the truth. She sent money for flight tickets and I was in Lagos. Under one week, baby things were bought. I started taking good supplements and she started prayers with me every night for his job and my safe delivery.
I was asleep again when a number called me. She kept shouting at me over the phone and I hung up. She called again, saying, Joy leave my husband alone. If you know you don’t want to die leave my husband alone. If you dare me I will make sure you vomit that baby through your nose. I couldn’t even say a word she hung up.
I called my husband and told him. He said its his ex and I shouldn’t mind her. I told him to settle his scores because I don’t need such calls. He apologised.
August 28th labour started. The whole family went into panic except my mother. She rubbed my waist. I was in labour until 29th mid day, I delivered a baby girl named Mirabel. She looked so much like her father , weighed 4.6kg. I slept off to rest and woke up hours later to hear that she was dead. This time I asked God to just kill me. Take my life. What was I living for? I was raped. I refused to abort you. Because of you I got married. I left school because of you. I endured pains, I endured suffering. I endured hunger. I endured insults just for your sake and what happens? You die. What is now the essence of everything? I held her warm self and kept talking to her. I begged her to just sneeze. Just wake up. Let me use you to console this stupid life I am into. (Sorry I am crying now while typing). I begged her but she was gone. I watched her turn green. I watched her go cold. I watched her leave me. I held her until my father took her from me in tears and went to bury her. I came in heavily pregnant and left empty.
I returned to pH and everyone mourned. My MIL said, why won’t she die. Why she no go die when you carry Rivers Pikin go Lagos go born. Pikin no chop isam, no chop ngolo, why she no go die. You use belle tie my son down now Pipkin don die. I was shocked to my bones. I quietly stood up and left. This woman was 46years then and I wondered why she reasons with hate.
That was it. I lost my first child also at the age of 18.
I went back to school and was asked to start afresh from 200l. What nonsense? How? I am to resume 400l but they didn’t listen. My parents encouraged me to write Jamb again.
We moved to Bonny Island so that I could heal from the loss. I started reading for my jamb exams. He was good. He stood by me. He encouraged me. We were living in peace. No issues. He was caring and lovely. He would do anything I wanted. The man I loved when I was 17 came to reality until one day, I wasn’t sleeping this time, I was watching Africa Magic when I heard a knock. I came out, met two young men. Yes can I help you? Are you Mrs Green? Yes I am. OK. We are here to warn you. If you do not leave this marriage, we will use Army to bundle you out. I said, what does that mean? I started shouting, his cousin’s wife who was living in same compound different flat, came out and said, Emma what are you doing here? I told her what he said, she shouted at him to get out. Who you be? I know say your sister send you come here. Abeg leave this young girl to enjoy her home. Una don kill her baby, leave her. He left. I picked my phone and called my dear husband. He was at Oron. I forgot to say, he finally got a job. He asked me to leave the house and stay with his cousin which I obeyed. He returned two days later and his cousin sat him down and forced him to go to the girls home and warn them that your family is at risk. He obliged. They went and left me behind. Hours later I was picked up and joined them. It was a family meeting between myself, my dear husband, his cousin and the whole family of his ex. I sat down. They apologised and sympathised with me. That was how my dear husband was exposed. He was a pastor with Deeper life and she was a chorister. They dated and kept dating until the church suspended her parents on grounds of formication from his daughter which they denied then. Now he refused marrying her because according to him, all his friends has slept with her and she has done 7 abortions. He broke up with her and met me and took me serious. I was just sitted in shame and drama. He finally warned them that should anything happen to me they would be held responsible. I was shocked. God what sort of marriage is this? Different drama and lies every day. What is all these? We returned home and he kept saying sorry. His conscience was pricking him. I forgave him and continued my wifely duties. I cook, I go to the public water board where I fetch water and carry on my head. Wash our clothes. The money I saved from feeding allowance, I used it to buy big GP water tank because I can’t continue fetching water on the head.
So, during festive seasons, his cousin opened up and said alot to me. That was how I knew his cousin also knew him to be a liar and a proud person. Guess what? I found out that while I was in Lagos, my Darling jobless husband was sleeping with his ex on my matrimonial bed. Jesus! I confronted him and he didn’t deny it. Rather he started shouting at me telling me why did I discuss with his cousin? Well, I was young and naive, I couldn’t hide things from him. I said to him, don’t end up like your father who has different children for different women. I can’t take that. He ran mad. I knew those words hurt him. He picked the boiling ring and hit me with it. He warned me never to compare him with his dad.