In Summary
  • The African family has historically been under siege, first by the compulsory separation of husbands and wives during colonial times.
  • When the father is not home, that pushes too many mothers to be heroic sole providers of affection, humanity, security and character.
  • Lisa Mancini of Western Connecticut State University authored a scientific research paper on father absence and its effects on daughters.

Mothers are living saints, exceptional women, irreplaceable and unique. At least mine is.

There is something angelic about her, about mothers, which leads us to celebrate them this Sunday as Mother’s Day, even though Mother’s Day may have been reduced to a shopping day for most urban people.

Sadly, this is normal. Our modern world tends to banalise the most sacred things of life: this is how Christmas, Easter, Mashujaa and even mourning national days have turned into mere shopping holidays.

The African woman is an amazing creature. She is resilient and tough. She can bear it all, even a broken, irresponsible or drunkard father and husband.

It is as if women were created for suffering, and we men? To take them for granted.

The family in Africa has traditionally been a strong institution, the pillar and foundation of our society. This pillar has endured the test of trials and times thanks to the amazing strength and resilience of the African woman.

They withstand strong winds and storms, robust, unbreakable and unshaken, even by the cruellest happenings around them.

Mothers are amazing creatures, indescribable in beauty, strength and character. Nature formed them so that humanity should not lose its humanity.

The African family has historically been under siege, first by the compulsory separation of husbands and wives during colonial times. Women were left alone and too many children grew up in houses where fathers were largely absent.

Some fathers were fighting for independence, while others were in the cities, far from their families, working to provide and put food on the table.

This historical disconnection between fathers and boys, fathers and daughters is making a deep impact on our new generations.

When the father is not home, for better or for worse, whether he is dead or divorced, in the office or in the bar, at work or in the streets, that pushes too many mothers to be heroic sole providers of affection, humanity, security and character.

POLITICS AT THE BAR

Mothers come back home, cook, do house chores, homework, discipline children, clean them and scold them.

Fathers, instead, are largely absent, often too busy at work making ends meet, sometimes spending the family savings at the bar, until the wee hours of the morning.

Most of my friends in Nairobi grew up without a father’s example at home, and they feel uncomfortable at home; they do not know what to do, what to say, what not to say.

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