Category Archives: Coaching and Therapy

A World free of Violence is possible: Let’s commit to giving this a chance


 

I used to wonder as a child, why one parent beat me up so often and even ‘mercilessly’, while the other had discussions with me especially when I did something they or everyone was not so proud of. The only time this other parent gave me a total of 8 lashes, was when I broke the TV set (unintentionally of course – but then again…) back in 1985 when TVs especially in my country cameroon in West Africa, were still a big thing. Back then, TVs slept in your parents’ room or were locked up in an iron cage in the living room for fear of robbers. I used to wonder if this other parent who would use phrases such as ‘I will skin you alive’, thought of the adverse childhood experiences that trauma could and indeed has come to have in my life today. My relationship with this parent is still strained today although we are on terms with that past (I have long made my peace with all of that); that with the other parent has survived and it is still on discussions’ level especially when there is any issue at stake.

With the above example from my own life, I want to look at the possibility of a violence free world if we become aware of what we get when we are violent in anyway. Was it worth it all those violent outbursts of anger and relay of frustrations on the kid I was and was just trying to be? What was achieved if anything at all? What is the consequences today, not only on our relationship but on the other ones we have with others?

I will again be candid here, intending to spark serious reflections into the imperative need to commit to a world free of violence starting right there in our home and not on the streets or in conferences.

The first answer to my own rhetoric question is no; no it was worth the ‘skinning me alive’ – all that made me more rebellious and ‘difficult’ to handle. I recall today I would just dissociate at some point and one day ended up collapsing and only found myself in bed all embalmed. I wish I could say that was the last time I was violated and abused as a child. What could be achieved after such violence? Hate, loathing, spite, urge for revenge whichever way possible, more rebellion and the list goes on. But, we have I must admit, a two side coined consequence. I emphasize on this ‘two side’ because it could have been a single consequence: ‘More violence’ even if only subtle say non communications or outbursts of rage and tantrums into adulthood and ruined relationships. But, in my case, I am happy to say while the relationship with parent took big hits and is still on its way to recoveryville, I decided long ago I wasn’t going to ever ‘skin any child alive’. Indeed, my 4 sons know I don’t do beatings, I hold discussions or find alternative ways of dealing with what issue comes up.

I couldn’t some how for the sanity of me ever understand why one parents had to ‘hate’ me so to find violence the only or best way possible to call me to order, which one I still don’t know since it would appear even up till date they still think I am ‘a lost case’ needing some further call to order.

Violence does not necessarily result only in violence; indeed it leads very often to worst case scenarios. Lives may be lost completely, or to a mental health disorder, relationships may be forever ruined, the children may grow up so volatile they become easy preys for gangs, armed rebellion, drugs and debauchery, in short any and all things contrary to what must have ever been foreseen in the beginning. Girls may grow up so insecure and fall prey to abusive relationships, unwanted pregnancies or further gender based violence. What kind of mothers and parents/partners can they be expected to become or replicate?

Non violence is possible. I enrolled in an online course on non-violent communication last year and it was such a turning point. When one of my sons was ‘mercilessly’ spanked by a teacher in school because as a 9 year active child he wasn’t expected to be talking in class when bored, I opted for non-violent but firm communication until the issue was resolved to my satisfaction. The teacher met with the dean of studies and myself, we reviewed what happened and why, we looked at alternative ways all that could have been handled, we appreciated the issue currently at stake and the consequences if I pressed charges both with the school administration and the national delegation of education, and he made all amends as tabled including apologizing to my son and his classmates. I organized a talk and he shared our experience in a light manner, encouraging his colleagues not to resort to violence in school again.

That is the commitment I am talking about. It is possible, we have to give it a chance; It however has to start from the ‘grass roots’ that is from our own homes. In my neighbourhood, I am known as the ‘lawyer of children’. When I moved in here in 2016, one particular neighbour made me have violent flashbacks because they were always on their 4 year old ‘skinning the poor child alive’. One day, I refused to ‘mind my business’, and stormed to their gate hitting same with so much anger in me. When they finally opened up, I told them I was calling the commissioner of police for our area because they had no right to beat up a child like that (it mattered not if it were their child as they initially insisted). Their spouse probably tired by then to make any attempt at getting the beating to stop, just watched as our ‘drama unfolded’. Anyway, my involvement put an end to those beatings and the news spread in the neighbourhood like a wild fire – even spouses ever on each other’s neck started reviewing all that thereafter.

I don’t beat and all the other kids especially the young girls who are still sadly over laden with the chores more than the boys, love playing in my compound or just being around me, especially those termed ‘difficult’. I hold neighbourhood gatherings as part of activities of my association Hope for the Abused and the Battered, as well the other one I am involved in as Secretary General called Ripples of love – a name I am proud to say I chose.

Love is all we need; love is what we get when we sow love and not violence; a violence free world is possible let’s all commit to giving it a chance and be the hope for the world we want. Let’s have discussions on the table and not use our hands, whips or guns.

I am doing a fundraising campaign to open a mental health care support center for my association Hope for the Abused and Battered. If you can donate or share the campaign, please do. Attached is the budget in PDF, who knows where a funder or partner can be found?

budget mhbudget mhcsc and shelter 05.01.19 p1 budget mhcsc and shelter 05.01.19 p2csc and shelter 05.01.19 p2

Advertisements

What memories do we leave behind?


My dad was recently in our home for 10 days and on his last day he gave me money to go and buy a clock. He had noticed we didn’t have one although there was a nail that looked like one hung there previously – indeed we had one which had accidentally gone down when someone pulled the curtain without paying attention. When I tried to talk him out of it, he insisted the memories will remain forever and that’s what mattered to him.

He had equally been trying his best to ‘spoil’ the boys and I was almost getting on my nerves too lol. I now get it, it’s not every other month he sees them. Indeed, this is the first Christmas ever we are all spending together; and the second vacation they are spending together in 12 years (my second son is 12 and so you can guess they had never spent any time together – he only saw my son as a baby, and had never met the 9 years old oh Lord).

So, I got the clock and will move it some other place and further up. I will cherish that memory too.

That’s equally how, my friend in Brussels decided to immortalize my passage in his life by paying for a car plate with the initials of the special name I called him. I called him my super super hero aka SSH. He did that in 2016 but I am just sharing it now because the memories came back as I thought of Dad.

And so dear all, I wish to inspire+motivate us all to think about the memories we are making and leaving in each other’s life.

Safer spot for clock

Happy New year in advance

Book Release! Are you Husband Material: Reversing the Conventional Probing


AHM K

Are you Husband Material? Reversing the Conventional probing was inspired by the awkward though conventional question some gentleman asked me in December 2016. He asked me if I was wife material because I was hesitating responding to his offer to marry me. It didn’t make sense to me that I should at my age and circumstance, still get asked such a question. I mean, if at 37 with three kids you could be asked even if you didn’t seem ‘desperate’ to be a wife, imagine how much younger ladies should be dealing with in their strive to be wives. In our conventional societies where it seems getting married is the highest of achievements especially for women, preparing yourself to be wife material is actually right next to being taught how to be a girl. Conventional society expects girls to play with dolls, learn to cook pretty quick, do as their mums do so that daddy or their brothers are not embarrassed, not to talk of a potential suitor. But what of the boys and men? Are they groomed to be husbands too? Do they ever get the flip question too? I had never heard of any until I decided to embark on this other literary project. It is with all candour, my best book so far. I mean, as a mother of all boys, what a pleasure for me to provide such a book which helps them groom themselves and check their intentions ‘well well’ if marriage is their choice. Indeed, I think men even have a bigger role to play in conventional society because they are the heads right? The current statistics on failed/failing/or non contracted marriages also warrants some real soul searching. I decided to take the path less traveled and focus on men, giving the plethora of literature available on women and their preparation/expectations/obligations and all in between in a marriage. I have no doubt this book will make a good read and generate lots of brainstorming.

Available in Cameroon at: https://www.arreybuy.com/product/are-you-husband-material-by-marie-abanga/

Available on the Amazon in Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07L9ZNBVC

Paperback: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1791582877

Kindly visit my author page for more on all my books: https://www.amazon.com/Marie-A.-Abanga/e/B00ILM7IJK

ISBN: 9781791582876
Imprint: Independently published

Yes, total Healing from an Abusive past is possible: It took me 7 years


Hello Word Press world, I hope everyone is off to a magic filled start of a new week.

I want to share a personal experience which helped me find total healing from an abusive marriage. I left my marriage in 2011, and when I ran into my ex husband last week, the 5 minutes we shared made me realize my total healing was finally here.

I mean, I have been working and looking so forward to it, I am so happy it happened this month which is the last month of a year full of so much Grace for me.

Below is what I shared on Facebook on that day (14.12.18):

“I just ran into my ex-husband like after more than a year. The last time (01.09.17) we saw each other was at the police station where he had taken me to for breaking his door. I recall breaking the glass on that door with a stick so I could collect my sons ahead of their back to school on 03.09.17. He was called and he came with two cops. The kids and I went there with himself and we spent 4 hours in a cell – they refused to leave me alone or go with him. We were release after I signed a to never go near his house again. We got home at midnight that day, it was super traumatic especially for them. And since then they haven’t seen him either. They refused to go spend summer holidays with neither him nor their paternal grandma, and I refused to force them. He accused me of manipulation. That was a déjà entendu for me. He threatened to ‘disown’ them, and the last I told him during that very heated phone call was that he wasn’t our God. And so, running into him here at Gicam Bonanjo a year and plus later, was cool. Cool because I was happy to see him looking so good. He had some big nerves stuff last year and both his mum and wife called me alarmed and asking me to pray for him. That I did. I don’t have any grudge against him, no energy to hate or whatsoever. I just wish him so much well. I greeted him so warm and asked how he was feeling. I equally asked if he thought of the children and he said yes. He seemed to want to chit chat more but I didn’t want to. Anyways, I am sharing this to encourage especially my fellow sisters going through any such similar, to let all that be. I mean even if you prefer the saying “let sleeping dogs lie” use it and release (find it in you to deal+heal) all that ‘crap’. I just wish we had even taken a selfie hahahaha”
#releasethehurts
#notoshame
#notostigma
#forgiveandmoveon
#IamMAGnectic

We each have our unique journeys, I just share mine to inspire+motivate by Amazing Grace.

Watch “My Brother’s Journey with a mental illness reviewed by another Peer living with a mental illness.” on YouTube


In my country Cameroon, mental health and mental illness are still so much taboo.

As a passionate mental health advocate,a peer and now the Country Representative of the Global Mental Health Peer Network, I ceaselessly raise awareness as often as I can using any tools at my disposal.

I am honoured Ekema 39, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia 25 years ago, agreed to review my brother’s journey (diagnosed with bipolar disorder and died in 2014 after 18 years of turmoil). The similarities he points out in his own journey is striking.

A recent brain+body break & a book review


My body+brain break last Nov 30th led me to hole up in a library with an awesome book titled: “A Woman after God’s Own Heart” by Elizabeth George.

I needed a brain+body break and yes, what I had been planning to do over two weeks ago, that’s spend an entire day in conclave at B4Kids library, reading a good book, was seemingly the ideal thing to do to relax this brain+body.

I was there as early as 8:15 am after an early start at home and some meh workout. I had slept visualizing this day.

And yes, it was simply relaxing and blissful. Like I was with God all day in a special place ie, next to His Heart found in this soulful but thought provoking and action challenging book.

He knew I needed to read this book, this day, and to be assured and reassured of He having my back as I kept on in His Vineyard after 3+decades of grooming just for that.

I mean you will need to read the book too to get a feel…that is if you are ready.
The book is divided into 4 parts worth the read and I mean every letter of each sentence… grateful for the reading maniac I seem to be lol

P1: The Pursuit of God. How do you pursue God with your Heart, your words, your actions, your obedience to His own Word?
P2: The Pursuit of God’s priorities. How do you discover them as laid out for your life, and serve God with your heart and all your love in whichever corner of his vineyard He’s assigned you to?
P3: The Practice of God’s priorities: Do you seek God’s Heart and Grace to do the work you got according to His own priority?
P4: In praise of God’s priorities. What’s your praise if you got all the above going? What’s your legacy, and soul and commitment to keep being after God’s own Heart?

The author Elizabeth George makes no claims of sainthood in her own journey of being a woman after God’s Own Heart. Maybe this is what endeared me to the book so much and made me determined to finish it in one sitting? I read that she and her husband have been active in ministry for more than 30 years…which should actually be over 40 years of we consider that version was updated and expanded in 2006.

I am forever grateful to my new sister and friend Etonde NBA who has this beautiful kids’ library called B4Kids, and graciously told me I was welcome anytime. I don’t know what this book is doing in a kids’ library, maybe so that mothers read some while their kids are reading/doing their own stuffs?
To God be the Glory…
#brainbodybreak
#womanafterGodsHeart
#selfcarebestcare
#IamMAGnectic

I have been busy creating, and you?


This is very much needed in my country, and am ready
#IamMAGnectic

Hello all, pictures they say speak thousand words.

I hope you now understand how inspired+motivated I have been since the start of this year, bust especially since October when I joined SIWO (success inspires world). It’s like a 🔥 lit up inside me, and I rose like a Phoenix.

Many call me phenomenal, I have branded myself MAGnectic.

Be inspired+motivated in all your endeavours. Thank you for all the support you can’t tell how I love me this tribe.