He is tall, slim, played a good game of basketball. He was even thinking of going to the states to seek the golden fleece… in basketball. In fact, he is also a good actor and the Film industry was paying him close attention. He is every girl’s dream, however, the joke is akin did not have a girlfriend and I used to wonder.
I felt something was not just right, I even wondered if he was gay, but he didn’t show any mannerism that would indicate he had such tendencies. Akin seemed closed into himself. Always friendly but he subtly resisted being close to anyone in the Rest House.
The Rest House was the place that victims of any form of sexual violence always came to and I am one of the volunteers. Maybe I would tell you how I got to be a volunteer there. I am telling you about Akin today I could break that wall of protection he always had around him until one evening when Mrs. Roberts brought in an eleven-year-old who had been battered by his uncle.
Akin’s eyes opened wide on seeing the boy and he unraveled right before our eyes. He dropped on his knees and held the boy tight as he whispered fiercely if the pastor had done anything else. The two hugged each other and the young boy just wept as he dropped his pants.
We watched in stunned horror as the boy collapsed in tears too. What was going on?
Akin rolled his eyes and bunched his fists. Mrs. Roberts asked me to take Akin to the inner room. Akin followed me, sat and looked at his bunched fists for long seconds obviously fighting for control. Then he spoke in very measured tones. What he told me chilled me.
‘I know that boy, I have been trying to trace his mother because I was worried what the pastor was going to do with him and to him. You see, he is my uncle and I had planned to find a way to castrate him. I have been keeping tabs on him since I learned he had opened a branch here. His wife is the owner of a church while he is the secretary. He does everything she wants as she claims to see visions. It is a crazy and sick circle.’ Akin fell silent looking into a personal hell then he continued in a soft tortured voice.
‘He is a henpecked who is too ashamed to own up to the fact that he is abused by his own wife, so each time his wife either beats him up, he takes it out on the boys in his church. He strips himself and then abuses the boys, re-enacting the abuse he suffers from his wife. I was a victim until I threatened to tell his wife and then ran away.’
The room was silent as Akin stared at his hands. He looked at me then ‘I want to help him but how can I tell him anything? He is abused by his wife sometimes and I knew nobody will ever believe my story. Are there human beings like that? How can he approach the Father almighty? Who will break the circle?’
‘He very rarely washes, he has a bad smell and then he asks you to come and take your punishment, he says. Then I find that he breaks down sometimes and cries that the devil should take his soul’.
I had to make a silent prayer to know what to tell him. I explained to him that he would have to accept that his uncle should seek help and get out of such a horrible situation. I did not have the answers but I explained that Akin himself needed to seek help as much as the young boy that Mrs.Roberts brought in. Now I understood why he was loath to have any type of relationship with girls. When I asked him that question and where his sexual orientation lay, he gave me a startled look. He was quiet for a while, then said he might like girls but how was he going to know she was not going to turn out a terror like his uncle’s wife?
You know we hear talk about violence against women, but there is violence against men too? The shame of confessing to abuse by women may turn a man into something more horrible.