A Sad True Story

I’m referring mostly here to that society, or culture that has you so worried about living to please everyone to the detriment of yourself. There are many of those, but the one I’m referring to here is the African society.

I never understood why people were so concerned about appearances that they would do anything to not look “bad”.

I came across this true story. I initially hesitated to post it because of the pain it brought to me. I like sharing love, and joy, not pain. How am I going to ensure that this, or something like it, doesn’t happen if people don’t know about it? I have to shine the light on it.

Too many Nigerians are concerned about what people will say. What will people say? I have heard that question so much that it’s irritating. Why should you care about what people will say instead of doing what is right? Having spent part of my formative years in Nigeria, I came across many mothers, and fathers like the ones in this story. Selfish and wicked people who were only concerned about keeping up appearances. I thank God that I had parents that loved and cared for me. Because we don’t get to choose our parents. God knows this 17 year old didn’t.


Joanna retched and bent over the toilet bowl.

The pain and nausea twisted her stomach until she couldn’t breathe. The stuff came up and burst out, all yellow and slimy and tasting of bile.

She knew more was coming, so she sat on the bathroom floor waiting. In the interval, the door banged and her mother’s voice asked her to open up. Seconds later, she was standing over her, a look of anger on her face.

She had just begun feeling the wrenching of her gullet when suddenly her mother gave her a resounding slap, She fell on the floor and that was the trigger for another outburst of her stomach’s contents.

When she rose her mother was waiting for her. Tears filled her eyes as she tried to ask her mother for help. She didn’t know what was really happening to her.

Then the sound of her mother’s voice shocked her
“Whose child is it?” she asked

“What do you mean?” she forced to bring out a response. This time the tears were not held back. She began sobbing quietly.
“What do I mean? I am not stupid. Don’t you think I know morning sickness when I see it?

“I’ve heard you vomiting all over my toilet for the last two days. You have been complaining of being sick for three months.
Now tell me, whose baby is it?”

“But mum I’m a vir…”
“shut up!!! do I look like your age mate?”

There was more retching and vomiting. She was getting weaker and weaker, loosing energy to even explain herself to her mum, she wished God will touch her mother’s heart to help her get to a hospital before the blames.

When she was done, she kept heaving but nothing would come out. Sobs gushed out of her as her mother glared at her in anger. Not ready to calm down or even help.

“All this time I thought I was raising a daughter and instead I have a whore in the house! Those tears will not help you. Tell me
who the father is before I beat it out of you”
“If you don’t stop calling me mum and tell me who father of that bastard is, I’ll give you the dirtiest slap of your life! Was I there when that baby was made?. Do you expect me to be the proud grandmother of an illegitimate child? And who do you think will pay for that child’s upkeep?

“Believe me mum I am a vir…….”
“The mother gave her a very hot slap in the face stopping her from completing the word “Virgin”

“What do you think the neighbors are going to say of me? Do you think I can walk into church with my head up anymore? I will make you regret every second of that day you decided to bring shame on me!”

You will pay for every embarrassment I shall suffer!”

“MUM!” She was screaming now. “I’m not pregnant!”
“Don’t you dare! It’s bad enough you spread your legs for every man, now you look me in the eye and lie? Pack your things. I want you and that bastard out of my house.”

“But mum… I…”
“Nothing. I want you to leave in the next 30minutes or I will throw you out like a dog.”

Joanna was left crying as her mother walked away without a backward glance. She was in too much pain to move but she knew her mother. If she did not willingly leave she would be beaten up like a thief and is already weak and in severe abdominal pains.

She dragged herself on the floor to her room and packed her things slowly. A severe pain was going through her but she ignored it.

She had 10 minutes left and her mother was already yelling for her to get out. She couldn’t believe this was happening. She wasn’t pregnant, but her mother would never believe her.

The pain increased and she screamed out for her mother. Her mother came to the door but was unmoved.

“Stop that acting and get out.”
“Mum help me!” she cried clutching her tummy as she fell to the ground.

Her mother simply watched her, yelling about how it would be good if she lost that bastard. She didn’t want an illegitimate child.

Joanna cried and said a prayer for God to forgive her mother as she felt the life get sucked out of her but her mother was still unmoved.

“I love you mum, and I’m not pregnant, you’ve trained me well and I know no man……but I’m sorry I don’t really know what is making me feel this way, I wish you send me or my body to the doctors to actually tell you what is wrong with me, I know it won’t be pregnancy,  trust me, but whatever it’ll be…… will be too late for any help”. She managed to tell the mother who was now touched and trying to help her to the hospital

Joanna was pronounced dead on arrival to the hospital

Days later, the autopsy results were in. Her mother had ranted about a pregnancy and the doctor had to set the record straight.

The doctor was brief. He had learnt from experience that it was best to give this sort of news in the fewest words possible. He broke it down into simple layman’s terms.

“Your daughter was not pregnant. She had ovarian cysts, which raptured and she bled out when they raptured. If she had gotten to hospital in time, we could have saved her. May she rest in perfect peace”

Joanna’s mother sat there in shock. Her daughter had told her the truth. She allowed her daughter to die in pain. Tears ran down her face as she thought of the last words of her daughter before her death.

She had failed as a mother and as a human being. Joanna’s death was all her fault.

You must not always be the best judge, you may be judging wrongly like Joanna’s mother, even if at all you won’t help, just listen before you end up with “HAD I KNOWN”

Treat every life as a life to exist only once.

This is a true story. Yes, some women can do worse than that and may God have mercy upon the soul of little Joanna who was only 17years.

Even if she were pregnant, is this the way to handle the issue? Why couldn’t she just help? This hurts too much.


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