Saturday, May 19, 2018

How Markle redefined royalty

 

By Mpoki Thomson mthomson@tz.nationmedia.com

It’s every woman’s fairytale to marry a Prince and live like a Princess. Meghan Markle, a retired American actress best known for her role in the American legal drama television series ‘Suits’ will today marry into royalty at Windsor Castle in England. Markle will be the second American and the first person of mixed race heritage to marry into the British royal family.

This is not your average wedding, today; millions of people across the world, a sizeable number living here in Tanzania will be glued to their screens watching history being made.

Questions are being asked about what time the wedding will be broadcast locally and on what channel.

One thing is for certain; the royal wedding has attracted a lot of media attention and will be televised in different parts of the world. In Tanzania, a few hotels are offering packages for guests to watch the live broadcast of the ceremony. Hyatt Regency Dar es Salaam, The Kilimanjaro, one of Tanzania’s most popular hotels will televise the royal wedding during an afternoon tea party at the hotel’s Palm tree Coffee shop. Dress code for the event is ‘UK Royal hats’. “We’ve received great responses from guests who are eagerly waiting for the big day,” says Lilian Kisasa, the hotel’s Marketing Manager.

While a hotel in Tanzania charges Sh35,000 per person attending the live broadcast of the royal wedding, in neighbouring Kenya it has been widely reported that a Kenyan hotel is charging couples up to $10,000 (about Sh22million) for a package to watch the televised proceedings of Britain’s royal wedding today.

A poster of the event dubbed “A Royal Wedding Celebration” informed guests to dress in their “finest wedding guest attire” to the viewing party at the Windsor Golf Hotel and Country Club in Nairobi.

Narindwa Msongole, an office administrator at a local law firm in Dar, says she’s super excited about the royal wedding. “I’m a fan of Meghan Markle, I’ve been her fan ever since she was on Suits,” she says. Narindwa is up-to-speed on the date and time of the live broadcast of the royal wedding.

About the bride

Born and raised in Los Angeles California in 1981, Markle, 36, attended Northwestern University, where she attained a degree in theatre and international studies in 2003. Her acting career has seen her play small roles in several American television series.

Her credits on screen include roles in movies such as Remember Me, Get Him to the Greek and Horrible Bosses. What attracted her onscreen persona to the public is her top notch portrayal of Rachel Zane in Suits. In the series which started airing in 2011, her character, unlike most that we normally see in series of such genre, was both quirky and smart. Markle played the role up until her engagement to Prince Harry, when she officially retired from acting.

But even as social media has been super excited that an African-American woman will be part of the royal family, Markle’s rise to the top wasn’t set on a silver platter.

The now-so-famous American sweetheart didn’t have it all easy in Hollywood when she first started. She had to work as a freelance calligrapher to support herself between early acting jobs. Being a woman of mixed race, she found it difficult aligning to one side of the race. In a 2015 essay for Elle UK, she wrote: “I wasn’t black enough for the black roles and I wasn’t white enough for the white ones, leaving me somewhere in the middle as the ethnic chameleon who couldn’t book a job.”

Just like her soon-to-be husband, Markle was also a child of divorce. Her father, Thomas Markle, and her mother, Doria Ragland, split when she was young.

It’s only after her relationship with Prince Harry was publicized, that Markle was on everyone’s search engine. Throughout her career in Hollywood, she managed to remain under wraps and avoided to have any bad publicity for tabloids to feed on.

For those obsessed with staying up-to-date with the royal family, Markle’s addition to British royal family provides that perfect diverse appeal. However, due to the status of the royal family, Markle has had to cut ties with social media. She closed her blog ‘The Tig’ that focused on lifestyle and fashion and also deactivated her instagram account.

The known feminist who advocates for women rights will have to tone down her rhetoric on different worldly views now that she’s part of the royal family.

First marriage

It is due to her reserved lifestyle that many people, mostly those outside the US might be surprised to learn that Markle was once married. Her marriage to Prince Harry will be her second time down the aisle.

Back in 2004, she started a relationship with actor and producer Trevor Engelson. They got married in 2011, and divorced in 2013.

Dating the Prince

Markle and Prince Harry managed to keep their relationship under the radar for a while. But soon as a whiff of suspicion was raised, onslaughts of insults targeting Markle prompted the royal family to issue a statement through the family’s communications secretary addressing the “wave of abuse and harassment” directed toward Markle.

The couple met on a blind date that a mutual friend set up. They started dating in June 2016, their relationship became public in October 2016, and on November the same year the royal family had to make a public announcement regarding the rumoured relationship.

Just like her choice of lifestyle, Markle’s engagement to Prince Harry was very simple. He proposed to her while they were enjoying a cozy night at home, trying to roast a chicken for dinner.

Markle’s Dad missing the wedding

As exciting as the weeks leading up to the royal wedding have been, it has equally been a turbulent time for Markle’s family. Apart from having feuds and conflicting preferences with some of her family members such as her half-brother and sister, there’s also been the issue with her Dad, Thomas Markle.

Thomas Markle Sr, 73, was subject to public humiliation after it was revealed that the photos published by a number of media outlets of him getting measured for his wedding suit, while reading a book on British history, working out with weights in a park, and looking up reports about his daughter’s wedding in an internet café were staged. CCTV footage later showed Mr Markle and the photographer entering the café together.

Later reports started circulating that Mr Markle would not attend the royal wedding at Windsor Castle. He however changed his mind and decided he’d walk his daughter down the aisle. However, latest reports came in and it was said that Meghan Markle’s father will not attend the wedding because he had a scheduled heart surgery on Wednesday this week.

As the world today witnesses history being made, this wedding will be written in history books as one of the most anticipated weddings ever. Be it in Europe, Asia, or Africa, millions of people have been following the royal couple ever since their relationship was made public.

In Tanzania, a country that’s known in the digital world for its rise in the use of the social media site instagram, the royal wedding is being keenly followed by a number of people. Just like local socialites such as Wema Sepetu, Jacqueline Wolper, Hamisa Mobeto have constantly stayed on the radar for their social media engagements, it is no surprise that the royal wedding has found some relevance in an African nation.

Also, there’s no denying that the British royal family loves visiting Africa. They’ve visited countries such as Lesotho, Botswana, Senegal, South Africa, Angola, Egypt, Kenya, and Nigeria.

Prince Harry’s older brother, Prince William, proposed to Kate Middleton during a getaway at a log cabin in the shadow of Mount Kenya. Prince Harry and Markle have also visited Africa together. They traveled to Botswana together, and even though Harry didn’t propose to Markle in the African nation, he still made Botswana a big part of his love story by giving Markle an engagement ring that features a diamond from Botswana. Markle described her ring as the perfect representation of their time there. “It’s incredibly special to be able to have this, which sort of links where you come from and Botswana, which is important to us,” she told CNN.

East Africa in general was colonized by the British, and to date some countries such as Kenya still maintain close ties to the monarchy.

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Saturday, May 19, 2018

DEAR DIARY: The royal wedding

 

By Janet Otieno Prospa

Some people might not understand this enthusiasm that surrounds the royal wedding. One might even ask why a country like Tanzania finds this ceremony of any interest. History books trace the roots of our political, social and geographical development back to colonial days. Days filled with foreign influence from the British.

Even after 50+ years of political independence, we can’t help but keep an eye on the British monarchy. Harry and Markle’s wedding is relevant to us as members of the commonwealth.

To-date we still keep ties with Britain be they economic or simply social. The royal family has traveled to Africa a number of times and each time they’ve left a mark on the continent.

Today the world celebrates a union of two people who represent different ethnicities and cultures. In Prince Harry we have a man who’s been brought up under the royal umbrella. His whole life has been surrounded by royal formalities. In Markle we have a mixed-race woman from the US whose life, prior to the royal engagement, was filled with Hollywood glitz and glamour.

Together these two represent diversity. As they enter into matrimonial ties, we can only wish them the very best in their marriage.

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Saturday, May 19, 2018

THE DIVA: Why I will never buy anything online ever again

 

By Caroline Njung’e

I am generally a Doubting Thomas, one of those people who actually have to see to believe. And not just see, I also insist on touching to ascertain that what my eye is seeing is actually there, that it is not a mirage. I also insist on testing the product before I buy it, besides asking a bucketful of trying questions.

I am such a die-hard sceptic, I had never bought anything online until recently, even though that is the route the world has taken, the argument being that online shopping not only saves you time and money, it also delivers the globe to your doorstep at the click of a button.

Anyway, a few weeks ago, against my better judgement I must say, I bought some water glasses online.

It all started with a relative who is familiar with the contents of my kitchen cabinet sending me photos of glasses on WhatsApp accompanied by a message that read, “Can you believe that 12 of these are going for just 1K?!”

Well, I couldn’t believe it because the glasses looked like something The Queen would have on her dining table, all delicate and slim with an elegant, expensive-looking cut.

The Doubting Thomas side of me typed, “Are you sure?” This relative assured me that the glasses were legit, that if I had 1,000 bob with me, they would be delivered to me that same day.

“Si you know, you remember you don’t have enough glasses when you get visitors?” She commented before going ahead to forward me a link to a website, saying that the company selling the glasses had other designs I could consider, if the one she sent me had not impressed me.

Still unconvinced, I clicked on the link, which, sure enough, revealed glossy photos of various household items on sale, including glasses.

I scrolled through and eventually settled on the set she had sent me. Even though an inner voice was screaming “Don’t!” repeatedly, I dialled the number at the bottom of the website and ordered the glasses, which I was assured would be delivered within the hour.

Forty-five minutes later, the delivery person informed me that she was outside the Nation Centre. I knew that I would not get what I had seen on the website immediately she handed me the package — the glasses were so heavy I almost toppled over.

Obviously, there was nothing delicate about the contents, and I was pretty sure that the glasses I was struggling to hold on to would never have gone anywhere near The Queen’s palace, leave alone her table.

Swallowing my trepidation, I handed the young woman Sh1,000 and took the package with me to the office. I gingerly unwrapped the glasses, only to be confronted by what can only be described as 12 very distant cousins of the glasses I had seen online.

Ladies and gentlemen, I was the proud owner of 12 dangerous weapons. I call them that because they are so heavy, if I smashed one on your head, you’d immediately keel over and die.

As you can imagine, there was also nothing elegant about the cut, what I was looking at were 12 functional heavy-duty glasses manufactured with tear and wear in mind, glasses that would easily survive a hurricane.

Nothing short of a miracle will convince me to buy anything online again, not even a handkerchief.

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Saturday, May 19, 2018

ONE MAN'S VIEW: When other people know us better

 

By Chris Hart

Have you noticed how good shop assistants always seem to know what you’re going to buy? That’s because they’re skilled at spotting the unconscious signals that show your intentions. Even though you’re completely unaware of them.

That also happens when you’re dating. Like no matter what you say about the people around you, your body language shows who really turns you on. So they’re the only ones who approach you. Or how your friends can see that your relationship’s over, long before you do. They’ve spotted the signs that say you’re falling out of love.

That isn’t as odd as it sounds. Because feelings like that are all entirely subconscious. They leak out as unconscious signals, but you only become aware of them as you put them into effect. So brain scanners can predict your plans, several seconds before that little ‘voice’ in your head knows anything about it. And the people around you constantly pick up those unconscious signals. So they often have a better idea of what you’re feeling than you do.

Especially as sometimes you’re completely unaware that you’re making a decision in your subconscious.

So for example, you probably don’t know why you choose what you wear when you go out. Like a woman who’s going clubbing without her regular partner, tends to wear more revealing clothing on her fertile days. The rest of the time, she dresses more modestly!

She’s also far more likely to have an affair when she’s ovulating. And if she does, she’ll choose a more masculine man as a partner. Her regular partner’s subconsciously tuned into all this, of course, so he tends to be more attentive around that time. What he’s really doing is making sure she’s not out on the town!

There are other reasons why our friends understand us better than we do ourselves. Like we pay more attention to feelings that reinforce our self-image, rather than those that conflict with it. So if you’re shy, for example, you’ll quickly forget how much fun you had at a party, and focus instead on your anxieties.

Your conscious mind also makes up stories to explain why you made a particular decision, even though it doesn’t actually know the real reason.

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Saturday, May 19, 2018

THE PUB: Dar rains mess us up

 

By Wa Muyanza

Downpours in Dar don’t make news any longer and it’s thanks to our Creator that they aren’t killing anyone nowadays as they used to kill in the past. We’ve learnt how to perch ourselves on the rooftops and treetops to remain safe! Or flee our endangered houses altogether—and return when the rains have gone away!

Motorists quickly abandon their cars and waddle to safety before their machines are all swallowed up…or dragged towards the Indian Ocean by speeding waters. “Gari kitu gani? Uhai wangu kwanza!” one car owner was heard saying as he settled for a beer in a roadside bar.

The man had just watched his saloon, which he had just escaped from, being swept away after he miraculously pulled himself out. The engine of his newly bought mtumba Toyota conked when it was just a couple of feet from the bank of a just-created river that was swelling rapidly.

As we partake of our drinks, the talk is on the ongoing rains messing up everybody and everywhere. Some houses, including those in the so-called planned areas, have been rendered unreachable by vehicles, including the normally unbeatable mashangingi. Commercial parking yards we call “Eneo la CCM” or simply, “CCM”, are doing good business—that is, when they too aren’t waterlogged and rendered unreachable.

“We’re paying the price of poor planning and underdeveloped infrastructure,” says a drinker at our table of four (today you missed a spot at the counter, which drinkers consider safer and a little comfortable, for there you escape the torture of having a drink with your feet ankle deep into water that at times fills the drinking arena).

Another drinker (call him Hatibu) agrees, but notes that it’s not the government alone which is to blame. “You see, even when the government constructs drainage systems, we clog them by converting them into garbage dumps,” says Hatibu. He’s right, you say to yourself.

Another drinker talks of violation of land development regulations. The man—call him Freddy— gives the example of Mbezi Beach, where only the affluent live. “This is a surveyed area where only the cream of Bongo’s elite can afford, but look at what they’ve done?” he poses.

“What have they done?” you ask, for much as you’ve an idea of what he’s lamenting about, you let him explain. It’s his story.

“They’ve ignored the plans and, like in most of Dar’s surveyed areas, Mbezi Beach has degenerated into a slum, an up-market slum,” charges Freddy.

He talks of open spaces that have been grabbed; two or even three medium density plots that some greedy developers have fenced as one, blocking ways through which floods would find their way to the sea… Properties neighbouring such stupidity get flooded, with water finding their way through the windows!

“And strangely, among such greedy developers are our most educated compatriots,” concludes Freddy

“Educated? Educated my foot!” spits this tablemate seated next to you. You understand.

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Saturday, May 12, 2018

Make Mother’s Day special for your mom

 

By Esther Kibakaya ekibakaya@tz.nationmedi

Tomorrow is Mother’s Day, a day which honours mothers as well as motherhood, maternal bonds and the influence of mothers in our societies. This day is celebrated in different countries and it gives many people a chance to show their appreciation towards their mothers in diverse ways.

Mother’s day is a special occasion not only for the mothers but also for the children. Children put lots of efforts to make this day a celebration for the most special person in their lives – the one who has not only raised them to be better people of today but the one who has stood by them through thick and thin. Though simple words and gestures like hugs is what our mothers find most special –there’s always room for that ‘extra’ thing to complement the affection we have for our mums. Then why not surprise her with something unusual.

In Tanzania, we have an abundance of ways you can make this day special for your mum. Woman magazine has compiled a list of tips on how you can your surprise your ‘superwoman’ on mother’s day.

Spend some quality time with your mother: Ever since she gave birth to her three daughters seven years ago, Angel Dominic admits that motherhood has completely changed how she sees and values her mother. “There is this love and appreciation for my mother that erupted after I too became a mother. I’m not saying I didn’t love my mother at all but, going through the same experience she had of being a parent taught me so much of what my mother had to go through for me and my siblings to be where we are today,” she says.

As a result, for the last four years, Angel and her siblings have been celebrating Mother’s day in a special way by going to their mother’s house and spending quality time with her. “We try our best to make her feel like a queen on that special day. We cook for her nice food and most importantly tell her how much we love her and appreciate everything she has done and continues to do for us,” she says.

Choose a thoughtful gift: This is also one of the things you can do to make your mother feel loved on this special day. The best thing to do to make or come up with the right choice of gift is to figure out what are some of her favourite things or what does she like to do most. This will show her that you know her well and you thought of her on this special day.

“If you are not sure of what to get her, there is no harm in asking around to get an idea on what to buy her. Family photo for instance, can also be a good idea of a gift. Having family members in one photo with her can be a good gift that will remind her of how blessed and loved she is,” explains Joanita Gabriel, a gift shop owner based in Msasani.

Buy her flowers: Flowers make your day and it is such a thoughtful gesture to gift anyone. What better occasion than mother’s day to put a smile on your superwoman. These flower shops are just a phone call away:

1. Al’s Flora

Al’s Flora is a floral shop headquartered in Arusha and they offer a variety of bouquets to choose from. Alice, the owner, is passionate about what she does and this translates into her customer service over a phone call. The online floral service offers not only a variety of flowers to choose from but also arrangement and door step delivery. My preferred pick was a mixed bouquet in a bowl vase. You can check their Instagram page ‘@alsflora’ for more details.

2. Petals and leaves

Petals and leaves is a flower shop based in Dar es Salaam in the city centre. With the choices of fresh and dried flowers, one cannot leave the shop empty handed. You can learn more about them through their Facebook page ‘petals and leaves – Dar es salaam’.

3. Little roses

Little roses, a floral shop based in Arusha, is a phone call away. They are the best judge when it comes to what you want according to your pocket size. Their friendly and quick responses will get you your bouquet delivered on time and at the door-step. You can get in touch with them through their facebook page – ‘little roses’.

Pamper her: Most of our mothers have worked tirelessly and are often times left with little or no time to take care of their looks. This day can be perfect to pamper your mother if you have some money to spend.

There’s a saying that goes, ‘nothing a massage can’t fix’. A spa time is what our mothers need – to relax and to rejuvenate. Instyle saloon based in Dar es Salaam’s city centre has Mother’s Day offer up for grabs. From their herbal ball compress body massages to their papaya hair spa – they have packages for all treatments and services.

“If you can’t afford that you can choose a simple treat at a salon where she or both of you (together) can get manicure, pedicure and makeover,” explains Zuhura Mohamed, a self-employed makeup artist.

She further explains that if one has run out of budget they can make a decision to pamper their mom at home by buying her a nice face mask and other beauty products to make her feel beautiful and loved.

Take her out for a nice dinner: Harold Clement and his two sisters lost their father 15 years ago. Their widowed mother then took both the role as a father and mother to raise them. Today, the three of them are married with children. They appreciate the sacrifices their mother made to ensure that they become who they are today.

“We always take our time to show our mother how much we love her and appreciate what she has done for us to be who we are today. I think we always try our best to make everyday a mother’s day for our mother,” explains Harold.

However, to make it a more special day he and his siblings have always come up with a different plan to celebrate their mother’s day. “We try to spend time with our mother away from home. Last year we took her to a National park, this year we plan to take her for a special dinner where she can eat and enjoy herself with her children and grandchildren. So when someone asks me for the best ideas to do on mother’s day, I would say go out to some place nice to have fun with your mother.

There are hundreds of restaurants in the city that have special meal offers on Mother’s Day. You can make arrangements for your mother on the special day. Restaurants such as Akemi, Southern Sun, Coral ridge spur all have special offers on Mother’s Day.

Gift hamper is another great idea to surprise your mother. Since it is a last-minute thing, you don’t want to go hip-hopping places assembling your mother’s favourites. Step into Confetti Tz, a gift shop located in Msasani, Dar es Salaam where they have customised gift items for this special day. Pick and Mix gift items are available for Mother’s Day at their store and plenty others for grabs.

Make contact: The single most important thing to do on Mother’s Day is to let your mother know that you love and appreciate her. If you can’t be there in person to celebrate your mom, give her a call.

If you’re living overseas or upcountry, you can send a card, but a phone call is even more important. If you have Internet connection and a computer, phone, or tablet with a camera, you can even video chat with your mother.

Sakina Shabbir Dossaji, a renowned poet from Tanga, is grateful for all that her mother has done for her. She attributes her success today to her mother. “At 40, a mother of 3 teenage kids and a fulltime working mother, all that I am, and what my children are, I owe it to my precious mother. A mother whom I call an Angel who has moulded me into what I am today. My morning is perfumed by her good morning messages and flower pics, I love her with every breath I take,” she says.

This mother’s day, Sakina has lots of plans for her mother. “Mother’s day I want to show appreciation and surprise her with a red velvet cake, a lovely bouquet of roses and a beautiful poem penned by me. Her kitchen will remain closed as we shall spend the day out. A lovely facial treatment and hair cut will await her at the salon. Then I will treat her to the most glamorous make-over and we shall spend time at the movies and treat her to a sumptuous lunch, sizzling prawns, her favourite to devour,” she plans,

Sakina further adds “As we believe in sharing joy, we shall visit the nearest orphanage and spread our love and hug the tiny sweethearts and watch joyous faces as they appreciate the treat given to them. Apart from material things, I want to hold my mother’s hand and promise her my time and attention, warm companionship and to listen to her in her darkest moments. Paradise lies under the feet of your mother and my life is heaven on earth because of her sublime presence and unconditional love. As they say, there is none like mother, treasure her while she is alive for it will be too late when you see her empty chair. Even the finest of silk pillows loses its essence of luxury, as you yearn to hug her one more time.”

Additional contribution by Tasneem Hassanali and Janet Otieno-Prosper

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Saturday, May 5, 2018

We are all beautiful



Janet Otieno

Janet Otieno 

Ladies, listen, God made us fearfully and wonderfully. Let that sink in first. We are all beautiful the way we are.

There are those who are not comfortable with their shapes, others don’t appreciate their height and for some their colour tone annoys them. I don’t know if it is just us or the society’s portrayal of a beautiful woman that make us hate our bodies or there is something more.

This is the moment to appreciate yourself the way you are. Whether old or young, bald, thin, full figure, short or tall. To be comfortable the way you are is the beginning of an inner strength and confidence.

The moment you have achieved this, then you can carry yourself with this inner power. Let us not accept and become what the world want us to conform into but what we want ourselves to be. The moment you live to please anyone, then life becomes boring.

We should be free from outside pressures and not live with the baggage of society’s expectations and definitions of beauty. So it up to us to choose, if we want to become what the world wants us to be or accept ourselves as we are and treat ourselves with respect without feeling inadequate.

@JanetOtieno

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Saturday, May 5, 2018

Do not adhere to every dating rule out there

 

By Christine Chacha

I once read somewhere that insanity is doing the same thing in the same way and expecting different results and it struck a chord in me. Once you make an entry into the dating game you realise there are rules of engagement that you are to adhere to. We’ve all experienced it. You go through a particular situation, and then someone says something like, “Oh no, you can’t be friends with your ex.” You ask why, only to get their life story, their experiences and somehow that’s meant to be applicable to you. We are expected to follow these rules, guidelines, restrictions, regulations in order to be successful in the dating game. And we dish them out to others, because it’s all we’ve ever known.

How did we get to a place in time where we no longer date with intuition and feelings but rather live our lives following a set of made-up rules when it comes to dating? Surprisingly not only do they complicate issues but the rules ensure that you date in the same way over and over again expecting things to work out every time. If that’s not insanity, I don’t know what is.

I say it’s time to throw the dating rule book out through the window. Technology and new ideas about sex and gender have dramatically changed the laws of love, from who pays for dinner to how long to wait to call after a date. Here are some key rules that I feel should go out the window.

The man should pay: Who says one person should have to foot the bill for a date just because of their sex? I know so many women who feel mortally offended if they have to contribute to their own date. Can we ditch this stupid “rule” please? It’s 2018. Both genders make enough to be able to cater for the date so why not contribute? If he wants to pay it all, good! But it shouldn’t be his obligation.

The man has to do the asking: Wishing, hoping, thinking and praying that someone will ask you out is giving someone you don’t even really know control of your life. Madness, right? In 2018 we shouldn’t sit around and wait for someone to ask us on dates. Woman up and take your fate into your own hands. Want someone? Go get them, girl. What’s the worst that could happen? If he says No then you can move on boldly.

No sex till date: For years women have been told to wait as long as possible before giving up the cookie. Getting naked with someone new should be done at your own pace, not when some arbitrary dating rule says so. And if someone loses interest after sleeping with you, they were always going to regardless of when you did the nasty. The new rule is to sex whenever you want to.

Play hard to get: So many games. Don’t say I love you first, don’t be the first to pick up the phone, wait three days to text. What all of these say is “Avoid being vulnerable at all costs”. The big problem with this is that a true relationship needs to be emotionally vulnerable to succeed; putting up walls won’t work. If you don’t express yourself because you need to “play the game”, you’ll never learn if your potential lover is emotionally capable and you’ll never learn to properly deal with rejection. And those who react poorly when you’re honest about who you are are not the guys you want to be dating. Quit the games and you’ll stop wasting your time on the wrong people. Its 2018 baby, nobody has the time or patience to await around for you.

The best way to get over someone, is to get under someone else: But this rule doesn’t work for everyone and should definitely not be a rule. I hear so many people give this advice and push recently heartbroken girls into something way too early for them leading them into tough situations. Only have sex when you feel ready and not to get over someone.

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Saturday, May 5, 2018

Man, put down your foot firmly

 

By Marete Wa Marete

Over the years, I have known men who yodel, crawl, grovel, snivel and do what puppies do - if only to please their women. They are whipped men who, if left at home will mop the floor, wash the dishes and do the laundry.

These men no longer find time to hang out for a beer. They watch those lousy soap operas and have lost the manly thing – they are in dire need for resuscitation. They’ve been suckered into emasculating obedience to female whims and find it as normal as breathing. Depending on the kind of a woman that you land (some find a lot of fun riding on a man’s back), the situations vary.

Someone out there might be tempted to say that a man’s authority ended with women lib of the yesteryears but that is not so. A real man knows the boundaries.

Understanding the boundaries

In Tanzanian (African) context, a man who succumbs to acts of self-effacement is deemed to have been fed with tons of limbwata (love portion) that emasculates men to the level of an animal.

Of course, while I may not agree with such crap, there is always the need for a man not to perpetuate the image of women as their domestic guardians but as partners. In other words do not allow a woman to walk all over you emotionally, mentally, and in certain extremes, physically.

Do not relinquish manhood and your own happiness for what you perceive to be the greater good of your girlfriend or wife’s happiness. Be a leader in your relationship!

kaumbuthupeter@yahoo.com

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Saturday, May 5, 2018

Rains not going away and villager in us is exposed!

 

By Wa Muayanza

It’s continually raining, wet and chilly at times. That’s the kind of weather we’re having currently and residents of Bongo’s commercial capital aren’t amused. You often hear the lament: Oh, it’s like we’re in Kilimanjaro! God! Are we in Njombe or what? Ah; we might as well be in Arusha! Woi! It’s like we’re in Mbeya! Fellows who happen to hail from the land of UhuRuto can be heard wondering why Dar is behaving like Nairobi; or Kericho!

As we all agree, beer tastes better when the weather is warm or when it’s hot even, the way Dar is most of the year. Yeah, here we normally talk about a man craving for a beer to quench his thirst. Kukata kiu, we say in Kiswahili. A desire to wet his throat.

Now besides the water pouring from the heavens, the wetness, mud, ponds and mini rivers everywhere, it’s kind of cold at times. It means, we no longer have our usual reason (read excuse) to have a beer. The present weather is not “drink friendly”, yet we still patronise the grocery “to have one or two”. It all goes to stress the truth about men: we just have to get our drink, come rain, come shine!

We’re on a weekend and you’re among patrons that are crowded at the counter at this neighbourhood grocery. It’s raining out there; and in here, there’re sections of the grocery where rain water is finding its way through the roof, with drops ending up in patrons’ drinks and meals. But we’re braving all that. It’s like everybody is saying: let it rain as it wants, but we won’t be deterred from having our booze.

The ongoing rains that aren’t showing any sign of stopping are a big nuisance alright, but at the same time, they are, in a way, a welcome situation. Why, they provide residents of the normally very hot Dar the opportunity to take out from the wardrobes old jackets and hats that were gathering moss. Gumboots that had virtually been forgotten in the family storeroom are coming out too. Women are forced to put on headgear, much as they deny them the pleasure of showing off their expensive weaves!

Today, for instance, this man, clad in a hat, a mtumba jacket, a polo-neck sweater plus a pair of gumboots and carrying an umbrella, walks into the grocery with a swagger characteristic of a Kilimanjaro coffee farming aristocrat. Or, a tea estate supervisor in Mufindi. Or, a big maize farm owner at Ismani in Iringa.

From the way other patrons turn their heads to look at our man in apparent envy and admiration—and he notices it—you’re sure he’s feeling very important. Which is understandable, given that despite our stay in cities, most of us—especially those who were born before the 1980s, are villagers at heart, our posturing as urbanites notwithstanding.

Quite surely, the long rains in Dar are exposing the village bums that most of us are, aren’t they?

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Saturday, May 5, 2018

Be comfortable in your own body

 

By Elizabeth Tungaraza @TheCitizenTz etungaraza@tz.nationmedia.com

There’s a saying that goes; “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”. And that’s what most people will tell you when asked about qualities that make them attracted to someone. The degree of beauty differs from one woman to another. It is a fact which even women themselves know and will strive at their best level to look beautiful before society.

Society has a certain set of standards when it comes to beauty. It specifies what colour, size, hairstyle, fashion and other things that women should be or should have in order to be considered beautiful.

But we all know that not everyone is comfortable with their body or how they look. We have women who think they are too fat or too thin to wear certain outfits or go to certain events. We have those who enhance their body parts just to look more appealing. To them, such perceived looks are what define beauty.

It has become common place today, especially in the western world to find women going for plastic surgery to change their facial appearance (Botox), go for breast, hips and butts enlargement, they do all these procedures simply to look more appealing.

Eunice Adam*, a university student, says she is very uncomfortable with her body and how she looks. She is particularly displeased with her small behind. “I’m flat like the way men are,” she says. For her to look good, she says she always wears a skin-tight which has a special sponge on its back just to make her have a feminine look.

“Without boosting my buttocks, I will not go anywhere because I’ll lack that confidence that I want,” she says, adding; “I want to look good in front of my friends and other people.” Another body part that Eunice is uncomfortable with is her big breasts. Having big breasts makes her uncomfortable, and that is why she has to wear sponge-fitted skin-tight pants to make her body look more proportional. Currently, she has seven skin-tight pants fitted with a special sponge for her to change each day.

Her state of feeling uncomfortable didn’t come out of the blue. “I remember I was walking down a street in Mara Region and I overheard some men talking about my body shape. I was truly hurt. Soon after coming to Dar es Salaam, I bought the skin-tight pants that have a sponge to help enhance my looks,” she recalls.

According to psychologytoday.com, “Women underestimate their attractiveness whereas men are overly complacent about theirs.”

“Why the difference?” The website poses the question, arguing that “it is tempting to imagine that this is simply a reflection of continuing power imbalances favouring men”.

The website goes further to answer the question, saying that there is a simpler explanation; “Women care more about their appearance because looks are more consequential for them”.

That is why women spend huge amounts of money on clothes, cosmetics and other beauty products and services just to enhance their physical appearance, something that clearly shows how insecure women are about their appearance.

Salustia Thobias, 25, from Tanga Region has had to live with a nickname that she finds repulsive. Her friends have chosen an ironic nickname for her, calling her ‘bonge’, a Swahili word that translates to ‘fat’, but in reality she is thin, a little too thin in the eyes of her peers, prompting such a nickname. “The nickname makes me feel uncomfortable. It draws people’s attention to my appearance whenever it is pronounced, making people eager to see how big I’m. When they see me they just burst into laughter. This makes me feel so bad; this is how God created me but some people find amusement at my expense,” she says.

Salustia states that despite the fact that body size and shape certainly contribute to physical attractiveness, they are not the only factors, and they certainly are not the most important ones! How you present yourself in social settings also plays a big role, she argues.

Pressure from society

For Jacqueline Mosha, a Dar resident, looking beautiful just to please people is not her first priority and there is nothing which makes her more uncomfortable. She says her parents raised her in a way that she has to accept herself no matter how she looks or what she has in life.

“My parents taught me to concentrate on more important things, like studies. I grew up in a family of six girls, I always remember what my mother used to tell us; “a girl must have beauty with brains and not just looks. So that was engrained in me and now body size and shape don’t bother me at all,” she says.

Josephine Tesha, a Psychologist and counsellor based in Dar es Salaam says many women are not happy with their bodies due to different circumstances. “For example, if you ask women who bleach their skin why they opt to do so, they will tell you that the pressure comes from their friends or partners,” says Josephine.

She says if a woman is not strong enough, she will find herself doing things just to impress other people. “This starts from home.

How parents or relatives raised their children matters a lot.

Parents are the ones who need to build children’s self-esteem because a child with high self-esteem feels loved, confident and generally happy. Parents need to compliment their children. Children who feel good about themselves will invariably act responsibly,” she explains.

Josephine says parents should appreciate their children and show them unconditional love. By doing so, they will be helping them to be more comfortable with their body shape and appearance.

At a young age, a girl should realise that she is beautiful in her own unique way. She doesn’t have to fit into the mould that the society has set for women just to feel good about herself. It should be instilled in her that she should be proud of who she is and what she is, no matter what that is.

Self-acceptance

“When you’re hard on yourself, the people around you usually jump on the bandwagon,” says Quebec-based nutritionist and body coach Robyn Jaquays. “They’re hard on you, too.” The more you honour and appreciate your body, the more likely it is you’ll attract positive, uplifting people into your life. “Stop telling yourself you’re fat, ugly or stupid,” she says.

“And stop comparing yourself to others…you’re doing yourself an injustice! Instead, focus on your best qualities.”

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Saturday, April 28, 2018

Ladies, steer clear of these men!

 

By Esther Kibakaya

Finding the right partner that you’re willing to spend the rest of your life with is not that easy. Women often times make the wrong choices and end up dating Mr Wrong instead of Mr Right. Men come in different shapes and sizes, all having unique qualities and characters – a hefty selection process for women.

There are women who prefer dating ‘bad boys’, while others find solace in the arms of men with a more collected persona – to each their own.

Generally, though, there are men who should be avoided like the plague, men who are not fit for any woman, those who fall short in all qualities deemed appealing to women.

Woman had an opportunity to talk to a few women who have been in relationships (including marriage) for a long period of time and they gave advice on the type of men women need to avoid if they want to have a good, long-lasting and healthy relationship.

Mama’s boy

Magreth Noah, 48, has been married for 20 years and her advice to young women out there is that they should avoid men who are ‘mama’s boy’. According to her, for any relationship to be strong it takes two people to put in equal effort, 3 is a crowd.

She says men of this type prefer to include their mothers in everything they do; they seek approval from their mum every single chance they get. “They cannot do anything without the go ahead from their mother, even if they have a wife and the decision they are about to make involves his family,” explains Magreth.

She says such type of men hail their mothers as the key decision makers in almost everything in their life. “The mother’s decision is always final, even if it contradicts that of the wife,” she says, adding, “as a woman who has been through the same experience, I think women should be more careful when they find themselves in a relationship with this type of a man and if possible try to avoid them altogether because it is a very frustrating experience to live with.”

Careless and irresponsible men

There is nothing worse than being with a man who is careless and utterly irresponsible. Such a man doesn’t own up to his role in a relationship and will only frustrate you more with each passing day.

Joan Waziri, 30, has had her share of such type of men. A professional accountant, Joan dated a man whom she grades as being irresponsible and careless. She dated the man three years ago and it’s no surprise that their relationship didn’t last long.

Joan was under pressure to find a husband and so when she started a relationship with the man, she didn’t pay much attention to his behaviour , “I was happy at first, and I did everything to make the relationship work, however with time I realised that I was dating a man who didn’t like to be independent and he preferred dating women who are well accomplished.

“He was the type of man of would sit and wait for me to do everything for him, even buying him air time. I tried to support him thinking that he’ll learn to be independent but my efforts were in vain. Basing on my experience, I think women should steer clear of such types of men who have these traits because the relationship is doomed to fail,” she says.

Con artist/Playboy

When you are in a relationship you do have a lot of expectations and beliefs about what you are getting into. But with a playboy, nothing is exact. You should expect a lot of surprises that are not really positive or thrilling when you are dating a playboy. Playboys often times share similar qualities with con artists – they dupe women in to falling for them under false pretence, harbouring a hidden agenda under their sleeves.

Rhoda Solomon, 29, was involved with a good looking man who worked in the same office building. She felt lucky dating a man who was the envy of many. “He captured my heart and made me feel so much loved but what I didn’t know is that he was involved in a series of other relationships as well. He had his own way of captivating the hearts of different women all at once without any of us knowing about the other,” she says.

Such men love to appear smart and this increases their chances of attracting women easily. “When he was with me he would make it seem like no other woman exists,” Rhoda says. However she was lucky to catch up on his act and left him, even though she had to endure the heartbreak. “I advise other women to avoid getting involved with such men, they will only hurt you in the end,” she says.

Men who refuse to grow (immature)

Some men mature physically but remain mentally immature. According to articles published by a renown relationship expert based in Dar es Salaam, Dr Chris Mauki on his website chrismauki.com, some men do not mature enough and some of the things they do can reflect to their level of immaturity. The relationship expert says some of the precursors in identifying such men is how they spend their money on things that are of no importance, the types of friends they keep are those who have also not matured well enough. These type of man is a big no for any woman who wants to have a serious relationship because they will cause you more trouble than you bargained for, especially when it comes to making important life decisions.

Sex addicts

To add on to the list, Dr Mauki points out that men who love sex too much are also to be avoided by women. He writes “There are men who are sex addicts. It doesn’t matter if you are a kind of woman who loves to get intimate often. What you need to understand is that a man who loves an undue amount of sex poses a real possibility that he will one day cheat on you once he gets bored of having sex with you. It is difficult to satisfy this type of man so once he finds that he can no longer get sexual gratification from you, he will look outside for satisfaction.

Mr Unavailable

According to Dr Mauki, there are some men who think the strength of their relationship is based on their ability to provide for their women.

For instance if you don’t have a phone, he will buy you two of them and even an extra one. If you don’t have air time he will send you more than you require. If you want him to rent you a house he can afford to buy you a mansion.

The problem comes when you want to have time to spend with him, he will have a number of excuses to give. This type of man will only show up when he wants to be intimate with you and once he is satisfied you won’t see him until when he needs you another time.

Chris says this has happened to a lot of women who have found themselves getting into a relationship with married men. “Never will a married man have a truthful and wholly satisfying relationship with another woman who is not his wife, you will have to agree to be play second fiddle after his wife and children,” he says.

Violent\ abusive men

Such types of men are very dangerous and can cause both physical and emotional wounds to women.

We often hear of domestic violence, it is men who are violent that propagate such kind of ordeal in relationships. No woman should ever date a man who physically or emotionally hurts her. You are better off single than being with such kind of a man.

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Saturday, April 28, 2018

Women should be smart with money

 

By Christine Chacha

“His money is our money but my money is mine alone,” is probably the one commandment that most women live by and those who don’t have paid a big price for it.

Relationships have changed but this one remains unwavering to this wind of change.

I have gathered knowledge about dating from people’s experiences, observation and reading and I can tell you that the issue of finances in a relationship is always a time bomb waiting to explode.

I remember this woman in my neighborhood, every now and then auctioneers would come to her house and take her furniture sometimes throw her out. Despite the fact that she was a nurse in a reputable hospital and earned enough this happened over and over again. All she ever did was call her husband and tell him what happened. I always though she was the stingiest woman I knew because she probably earned enough to pay the rent and make ends meet for her family but she chose to rely on her struggling business man of a husband. I used to pity the man who paid the rent and school fees with his meager income while the woman used hers to buy clothes, make-up and look pretty. But somehow despite all this they were a happy family and are still together to-date.

I never understood her behavior till I came of age and went to talk to her. She gave me some advise about dealing with men. “There are things in life that are a man’s responsibility” she said to me. According to her, a man has to do some things in a relationship regardless of his economic status; he should provide for basic needs of the family; clothing, food and shelter. The woman only comes in to complement his efforts or help when he really can’t meet these needs.

Like other mysteries that surround the female species, men have always wondered what women do with their money. If a man provides all the basic needs then where do women take their paychecks? We certainly spend it on clothes, shoes, handbags, cosmetics and all but majority of it goes to saving. Despite the fact that there is marriage, I have learnt that there is always uncertainty in relationships. Men are like chameleons they change depending on the environment so feminine instincts demand that woman be prepared for such time, the assurance of knowing that you can provide for your children should your husband take a hike. So men need not be offended if their woman has a secret bank account or hides her earnings, it’s for the good of all.

Nowadays women are financially independent; they can take care of themselves, shoulder family responsibilities and basically do anything. The fact is that unlike in the old days women do not need men to take care of them. While I celebrate this, I believe it has its own advantages and disadvantages especially when relationships are concerned. While we embrace the independent woman spirit, I feel it is making men take advantage of women.

How many men do you know who are living off a woman’s finances? It is not a strange sight to see financially capable women supporting a man one can consider good for nothing. It’s like the roles are reversing; men are the new gold diggers. Although I despise such men, I blame the women for it. Once you show a man that you can take care of yourself he backs off and takes a back seat letting you do all the work. Soon you will be the ‘man’ in the relationship while he takes his money to a mistress somewhere who probably needs it more. Women should let men be men, let him struggle to provide for his family and chip in only when he is unable to.

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Saturday, April 28, 2018

Destroy the bottle top or else you’re finished!

 

By Wa Muyanza

You’re having a drink with two guys. As you partake of your little Serengeti, one of them is having Konyagi while the other is taking K Vant delivered in the 200m bottle. These guys are serious drinkers, you conclude.

Why, your style and that of most gin drinkers you know, is that of pouring into the glass little amounts at a time; but these guys aren’t doing that. They pour everything into the glass, and the amount of water they add to soften the poison is just ceremonial—very little.

Well, people’s drinking style is an issue that’s neither here nor there, so let’s leave it aside. The issue here is, you fail to understand when the K Vant guy discards his bottle to the trash bin nearby, minus its cap. “Why didn’t you throw away the bottle with its cap intact—somebody could make good use of it in due course, but that can’t be when the cap isn’t there,” you say.

The guy (call him Joe) looks at you, his eyes clearly showing he’s surprised by what you’ve said. “Aisee, we don’t do that… it’s dangerous!” he says as he destroys the cap using his fingers, after which he casts away.

Dangerous? Well, he might be having a point. He’s most likely worried a used bottle collector would sell it to someone who would refill it with fake gin, you opine silently. Crooked entrepreneurs do that. Nodding in agreement with him, you say, “You’re right; we shouldn’t make it possible for crooks to misuse discarded bottles.”

“You don’t understand; that’s not why we destroy the tops,” Joe says with a tone that shows he’s baffled by your reaction. He therefore explains:

“You see, Mzee Muya, if you dispose the bottle together with its top, someone could refill it with something else… that would harm the person who drank its original contents!”

The other guy, who has no need to destroy his bottle top since the Konyagi makers have made that unnecessary as the top gets destroyed as you open it, nods in agreement. You ask them to explain further. The K Vant guy says: “When someone refills your bottle with anything, even water, it upsets your stomach, wherever you might be.”

“Duh!” that’s all you say. This is spiritual. Outright superstition. You’ve lived in Bongo long enough to know you cannot reason with anyone who seriously believes in the supernatural, in things that cannot stand the test of scientific verification.

And strangely, many otherwise educated people are into it too. That’s why self-declared prophets are taking advantage of that to win followers to whom they impress on the need to get divine intervention, via their hands of course, to get rid of bad omen, defeat mapepo, reincarnate misukule, wachawi, reclaim “stolen stars” and be rich and all such other crap.

That’s why you understand your drinking mates peculiar standpoint, even as we proclaim that we too are citizens of the 21st Century world of science and technology.

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Saturday, April 28, 2018

Reasons why your spouse, girl is your complement

 

I have a million problems that without my woman, I would end up in Mirembe madhouse, drooling and raving mad. Does that sound funny or far-fetched? Sample this simple fact - I am the sort of a fellow who scours the entire house, upsetting everything looking for a pair of socks in his hands.

I am literally reminded to comb my hair as I walk out of the house and my wife never gets tired of reminding me. On the contrary, my wife is so meticulous and can easily trace little things that I certainly forgot about.

The gist of this is that no matter how we look at it, a woman possesses what nature might not have handed her man and vice versa. I know a man who rarely opens his mouth – a complete introvert. But his woman on the other hand is the direct opposite – the type of woman who never really shuts her mouth.

I would assume that had they both been introverts, the marriage would die a natural death. In other words, my woman complements for my lack of memory, careless and shabby disposition inherent in me with her care, focus and attention to details.

While I may be one hell of a spendthrift, my wife is so frugal with money that I might end up borrowing from her even though I earn nearly twice as much as she earns.

That is the mystery of life – complementarity of relationship perhaps happens in order to fill in for so many flaws and inadequacies.

What you do not have is what your partner has. That is chiefly the reason why we should not try to mold a personality out of our partners – we should treat them as that – partners.

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Saturday, April 28, 2018

Ladies, steer clear of these men!

Ladies, try not to get involved with a wrong

Ladies, try not to get involved with a wrong man! 

By Esther Kibakaya

Finding the right partner that you’re willing to spend the rest of your life with is not that easy. Women often times make the wrong choices and end up dating Mr Wrong instead of Mr Right. Men come in different shapes and sizes, all having unique qualities and characters – a hefty selection process for women.

There are women who prefer dating ‘bad boys’, while others find solace in the arms of men with a more collected persona – to each their own.

Generally, though, there are men who should be avoided like the plague, men who are not fit for any woman, those who fall short in all qualities deemed appealing to women.

Woman had an opportunity to talk to a few women who have been in relationships (including marriage) for a long period of time and they gave advice on the type of men women need to avoid if they want to have a good, long-lasting and healthy relationship.

 

Mama’s boy

Magreth Noah, 48, has been married for 20 years and her advice to young women out there is that they should avoid men who are ‘mama’s boy’. According to her, for any relationship to be strong it takes two people to put in equal effort, 3 is a crowd. 

She says men of this type prefer to include their mothers in everything they do; they seek approval from their mum every single chance they get. “They cannot do anything without the go ahead from their mother, even if they have a wife and the decision they are about to make involves his family,” explains Magreth.

 She says such type of men hail their mothers as the key decision makers in almost everything in their life. “The mother’s decision is always final, even if it contradicts that of the wife,” she says, adding, “as a woman who has been through the same experience, I think women should be more careful when they find themselves in a relationship with this type of a man and if possible try to avoid them altogether because it is a very frustrating experience to live with.” 

 

Careless and irresponsible men

There is nothing worse than being with a man who is careless and utterly irresponsible. Such a man doesn’t own up to his role in a relationship and will only frustrate you more with each passing day.

Joan Waziri, 30, has had her share of such type of men. A professional accountant, Joan dated a man whom she grades as being irresponsible and careless. She dated the man three years ago and it’s no surprise that their relationship didn’t last long.

Joan was under pressure to find a husband and so when she started a relationship with the man, she didn’t pay much attention to his behaviour , “I was happy at first, and I did everything to make the relationship work, however with time I realised that I was dating  a man who didn’t  like to be independent and he preferred  dating  women who are well accomplished.

“He was the type of man of would sit and wait for me to do everything for him, even buying him air time. I tried to support him thinking that he’ll learn to be independent but my efforts were in vain. Basing on my experience, I think women should steer clear of such types of men who have these traits because the relationship is doomed to fail,” she says.

 

Con artist/Playboy

When you are in a relationship you do have a lot of expectations and beliefs about what you are getting into. But with a playboy, nothing is exact. You should expect a lot of surprises that are not really positive or thrilling when you are dating a playboy. Playboys often times share similar qualities with con artists – they dupe women in to falling for them under false pretence, harbouring a hidden agenda under their sleeves.

Rhoda Solomon, 29, was involved with a good looking man who worked in the same office building. She felt lucky dating a man who was the envy of many.  “He captured my heart and made me feel so much loved but what I didn’t know is that he was involved in a series of other relationships as well. He had his own way of captivating the hearts of different women all at once without any of us knowing about the other,” she says.

Such men love to appear smart and this increases their chances of attracting women easily. “When he was with me he would make it seem like no other woman exists,” Rhoda says. However she was lucky to catch up on his act and left him, even though she had to endure the heartbreak.  “I advise other women to avoid getting involved with such men, they will only hurt you in the end,” she says.

 

Men who refuse to grow (immature)

Some men mature physically but remain mentally immature. According to articles published by a renown relationship expert based in Dar es Salaam, Dr Chris Mauki on his website chrismauki.com, some men do not mature enough and some of the things they do can reflect to their level of immaturity. The relationship expert says some of the precursors in identifying such men is how they spend their money on things that are of no importance, the types of friends they keep are those who have also not matured well enough. These type of man is a big no for any woman who wants to have a serious relationship because they will cause you more trouble than you bargained for, especially when it comes to making important life decisions.

 

Sex addicts

To add on to the list, Dr Mauki points out that men who love sex too much are also to be avoided by women. He writes “There are men who are sex addicts. It doesn’t matter if you are a kind of woman who loves to get intimate often. What you need to understand is that a man who loves an undue amount of sex poses a real possibility that he will one day cheat on you once he gets bored of having sex with you. It is difficult to satisfy this type of man so once he finds that he can no longer get sexual gratification from you, he will look outside for satisfaction.

 

Mr Unavailable

According to Dr Mauki, there are some men who think the strength of their relationship is based on their ability to provide for their women. For instance if you don’t have a phone, he will buy you two of them and even an extra one. If you don’t have air time he will send you more than you require. If you want him to rent you a house he can afford to buy you a mansion. The problem comes when you want to have time to spend with him, he will have a number of excuses to give. This type of man will only show up when he wants to be intimate with you and once he is satisfied you won’t see him until when he needs you another time.

Chris says this has happened to a lot of women who have found themselves getting into a relationship with married men. “Never will a married man have a truthful and wholly satisfying relationship with another woman who is not his wife, you will have to agree to be play second fiddle after his wife and children,” he says.

 

Violent\ abusive men

Such types of men are very dangerous and can cause both physical and emotional wounds to women. We often hear of domestic violence, it is men who are violent that propagate such kind of ordeal in relationships. No woman should ever date a man who physically or emotionally hurts her. You are better off single than being with such kind of a man.

 

 


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Saturday, April 21, 2018

You’re off beer and nobody is impressed!

 

By Wa Muyanza

You haven’t been drinking for some time now, and this, to the chagrin of grocery associates such as Uncle Kich the ex-headmaster. “You aren’t sick, you say, yet you aren’t drinking like a man should, why?” he had queried when you informed him of your ongoing one-month break.

“It’s just a vow I took, check out if life is possible without beer and allied liquids like Konyagi,’ you reassure him. However, he remains concerned, most likely worried over what’s wrong with his uncle (read “nephew”)

“Okay, uncle, but if there’s something you’re hiding, I’ll wait…we’ll know the truth in due course,” says Uncle Kich as he polishes off his second big Serengeti while you continue nursing your first bottle of Club Water.

He’s at least pacified, somewhat, that you’re buying him beer. You see, as we all know, fellows who patronise bars ‘kupiga tu stori” while having sodas, including Fanta, as if they’re school children, have the tendency to drink for free, courtesy of boozers.

Indeed, when teetotalers join the table and asked by the barmaid, “Unakunywa nini?”; their answer normally something like: “Soda TU —naomba Fanta.” Ouch! And their thinking, you’re certain, is: why should I give a round that includes Heineken which costs a whole three thou, yet I take ONLY a soda sold at only six hundred bob?”

The proprietor-cum-manager of Halichachi Bar, Mzee Salewa , isn’t amused either by your self-imposed drinking ban. As you walk past his “grocery”, he waves and shouts: “Hey, Mzee Muya, you aren’t seen nowadays, what’s wrong?”

You’re certain it’s not you he’s missing, rather, he’s missing your hard-earned Bongo shillings you normally spend at his grocery.

“Nothing is wrong,” you say, “but I’m just off beer for now and shall remain that way for quite a while.”

“But you’re not sick, are you?” he asks.

“Not at all, actually I’m now much fitter than ever before, having abstained for three weeks,” you say. You read disappointment on his face and feel sorry for him as you decline his invitation to have at least one on him since, he argues, you haven’t stopped drinking on any doctor’s orders.

And, contrary to your expectation, your abstention hasn’t been heartily welcomed by members of the mini-tribe that share a roof with you either. The very people who’ve always mumbled of “a dad who wastes maelfu at the bar even as we survive on ugali with mchicha”, are wishing you could as well go back to your boozing ways. You can’t be sure why, but you suspect it’s because by being at home early, you at times grab the TV remote and make them watch “boring things” like news bulletins, health or wildlife documentaries, while everybody else wants to watch those “interesting” soaps.

Yeah, soaps in which characters you’re a hundred-plus per cent sure don’t know a word in our national language, are featured speaking perfect Kiswahili. Arrgh!

It looks like you might as well go back to your beer much sooner than later—oh yeah!

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Saturday, April 21, 2018

Coping with endometriosis

 

By Salome Gregory sgregory@tz.nationmedia.

When I met Hellen Malika, 37, she was standing in a long queue waiting to see her gynaecologist at Mwananyamala Hospital. Wearing a long red dress with a blue scarf on her shoulders, she waved at me with a warm smile.

She was attending her monthly clinic on endometriosis, a disease that affects millions of women across the globe. Hellen is one among other 176 million women living with the disease globally. Endometriosis is a condition resulting from the appearance of endometrial tissue outside the uterus and causing pelvic pain, especially associated with menstruation. As women living with endometriosis share their stories with Woman, global statistics show endometriosis affects one in ten women and the disease is diagnosed in women between the ages of 24-34 years, with 27 being the common age of diagnosis. Between 25 to 40 per cent of women with endometriosis are affected by infertility.

Hellen is a primary school teacher, married and a mother of one child, Eneka, 11. Due to her condition she has not been able to have another child however much she has tried to conceive for the past eight years.

“My journey with this condition has never been easy. I go through severe pain during my monthly periods, also, the cost of treatment is very high for someone with medium income,” says Hellen.

Five years ago she fell ill during her menstrual cycle. She had severe and strange pain, pain she had never experienced before.

She tried pain killers but none of them worked until she was taken to the hospital and got a diclophenac injection.

The injection helped ease the pain momentarily however two months down the road the situation remained unchanged. She decided to go for check up at the Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH) and she was diagnosed with endometriosis.

Dr Living Colman, a gynaecologist at the MNH, says in a week he attends to up to three women with endometriosis. According to the doctor, majority of women who attend his clinic have no idea of what could be the underlying cause for their illness even when all symptoms of the disease are laid bare.

How it happens

Dr Living states that endometriosis happens when some menstruation blood and tissue travels out through the fallopian tubes and enters the abdominal cavity.

In most cases endometriosis can appear anywhere in the body but usually found in the pelvis and in the lower abdomen.

Commenting on the cost of treatment, Living says treating endometriosis is expensive, costing up to Sh100,000 per visit. And every month a woman has to see her gynaecologist for check-ups and treatment.

Mentioning the symptoms of endometriosis, he points to severe pain during menstruation, pain during intercourse, pain with bowel movement, blood in the urine and pain in the urination and sometimes abnormal vaginal bleeding.

He says, endometriosis can be diagnosed when a doctor does surgery to check the abdomen with a camera through the belly button and takes a sample of any anomaly.

Laisa Abdalla, 35, is a woman living with endometriosis. She has been married for ten years now. In those 10 years she has gone for several surgeries in Nairobi but has never been able to get a child.

She says it all started with painful sensations during intercourse two years after her marriage and was later followed by severe pain during her menses. During that time, she has been trying to conceive, with no success. When the pain started she decided to visit her gynaecologist. “My gynaecologist suggested I should do some more checkups to see what could be the problem. He also mentioned something about endometriosis when he suggested for its check up. Since I was accompanied by my husband he suggested we should go to Nairobi together, he had to attend to other official matters as well,” speaks Laisa.

She says it was the hardest decision for her to make because she had just started her career at a certain bank in the city. But since it was a medical emergency then she decided to sacrifice her career and joined her husband for the trip to Nairobi.

While in Nairobi she went through surgery, she had hoped for prompt results after the surgeries owing to the doctor’s statement that she’d be able to conceive soon after the surgical procedure. Unfortunately Laisa hasn’t conceived to date.

“I have undergone several surgeries to the point that I have given up on having a child because we have spent a lot of money with no ray of hope,” says Laisa.

Julius Twoli is a doctor at Mwananyamala hospital. He says women living with endometriosis differ as some might not have same symptoms and after trying to conceive for so long without success one can be advised to do elective sterilization.

Between 1-7 per cent are diagnosed at the time of their surgery.

Adding to that, the doctor says that such a situation happens to women with strong immunity and some people are likely to get endometriosis if one has a close relative with the condition, it is also genetically caused.

Commenting on why endometriosis is connected with pain, he says, when blood touches the abdomen it causes pain and sometimes it can result to a scar tissue which also contributes to pain. Between 20 to 40 per cent of women with endometriosis go through infertility issues as fallopian tubes are distorted and become unable to pick up the egg after ovulation.

Rehema Said, 39, is a business woman at Kariakoo market. Endometriosis has been a very difficult journey for her to travel for the past nine years now.

She only has one child and has since decided to concentrate on her treatment, letting go of hopes of getting a second child.

She says together with her husband they’ve worked to make sure things become better for them but that hasn’t stopped money from pouring out of their pockets trying to deal with the condition.

Rehema has even made friends at the hospital she attends due to frequently meeting them at the clinic. “I have been living with endometriosis for the past nine years now.

After six years of trying to conceive with the help of medication, nothing has worked for me and I completely chose to ignore it. It is never an easy journey to any woman,” says Rehema.

She says she has been on medication for years now to ease her pain.

In order to deal with the pain, her doctor gives her medication that affects her hormones. The pills are called ibuprofen and gonadotropin.

Rehema had to come to terms with her condition, acknowledging the fact that she will never be able to have another child.

She calls upon other women out there who are living with endometriosis to focus on other things that define them as women since trying to get children while suffering from endometriosis can be very stressful to the point a woman loses herself in the process. She advises them to be hopeful but not put their entire focus on that or make their life stop trying to overcome the condition.

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Saturday, April 21, 2018

Men will always stare at this woman

 

By Marete Wa Marete

Dear readers, be warned that this is a one man’s view although it may represent most men’s views if they were allowed to air them.

We have individual preferences when it comes to women’s sizes and shapes – some of us prefer petite women (referred to as “potables”) while others prefer them well-rounded, fleshy and curvy.

I can bet my last farthing that most men love round but, big bust and flesh on a woman’s thighs.

If you doubt it see how we almost get knocked down by speeding cars, open-mouthed gawping at such women.

Modeling world has for many years concentrated on rubbing it on men that self-starved skinny women have the standard shape. In other words, sexiness has been pegged on the so-called figure 8.

Women from Africa, South of Sahara are generally well endowed and curvy.

In them, I see aesthetics on them than I can ever see on a beauty cat-walking on the runway.

The African woman is an embodiment of a spirit of strength and enigma. She is sexier and a man can see it from a mile away. It would be abnormal for any African man to claim attraction to a woman who has starved herself thereby leaving no flesh to grab on to.

This however does not mean that those with smallish bodies are not sexy – it is a matter of relativity here – one man’s meat is another man’s poison.

What I am trying to tell my dear ladies here is that at least they ought to try to put on some flesh. On the flip side, neglecting one’s weight is dangerous.

By this I mean that even though I advocate for a woman being fleshy, it is very unsightly for a woman to gain excessive weight that risks certain health hazards.

A great body is one that is well-toned and promising great sex even from the mere look of it.

Men, by mere look at women can almost predict a woman sexual tenacity. In the meantime, have a great weekend and look for your sexiest size and shape.

When you get it, you will know from the number of complements and dates that will find their way to you.

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Saturday, April 21, 2018

These are the relationship rules of engagement

 

By Christine Chacha

Relationships are awesome and Love for another person is perhaps the most profound emotion anyone can experience. For many people, romantic relationships are the most meaningful element in their lives and who can blame them? We live in a culture that values our relationship status over who we are as human beings. Unfortunately, this extreme pressure to be part of a twosome can lead many of us into relationships that are sub-par, and in some cases, pretty unhealthy.

Love or the desire to remain in a relationship can make you blind and overlook some things that are troubling. Ladies stay woke!! If your man wants you to do any of the following things, you may find that in the long run, you’re better off single or with someone else who better appreciates you.

Change your looks: It’s natural to want your partner to think you’re attractive, but when he decides that you, a thin and skinny woman would be prettier with a curvy shaped figure then that’s not right. And your significant other should never, ever pressure you into changing your looks with surgery or cosmetic enhancement.

Go beyond comfort in the bedroom: By the time you’re an adult, you know what turns you on and what doesn’t. Ladies there are some real perverts out there so do not be pressured into some crazy things just because you don’t want him to leave you.

I have heard some women advice each other to give into perverted things with their partner or else he will go look for it somewhere else. That is madness I tell you. Do not go beyond what is comfortable or morally right to you. If he insist or forces you into something you are not into then we’re moving into abuse territory. Ladies know your limits

Cut off your friends or family: A partner who’s always finding fault with your friends or trying to distance you from your family is setting you up for an abusive and controlling relationship. If he gets angry and resentful of everything from the time you spent helping your sister plan her wedding to a night out with coworkers then he wants to separate you from the people you love and consider your support system. Jealousy and controlling is not cute but actually a warning to you.

Give up all privacy: Invading your privacy is not only annoying, it’s also a form of control, and it can quickly escalate to abuse in its worst form. He wants to know your phone password, your bank account details, your email password and any password you have. Don’t make the mistake of thinking, “it’s just because he/she loves me so much!’ It has nothing to do with love, it’s a warning that he is abusive and should you deny him access things could get physical.

“Get over it”: This is a word that shows that someone is uncaring and insensitive to your feelings.

Maybe you had a scary situation with a bodaboda driver, a minor altercation with a coworker, or concerns about his behavior but once you share it with him, he tell you to get over it.

It’s a red flag if your partner asks you to get over issues that are affecting you.

A good partner is supportive and comforting when you need him to be. If he can’t support you when you are bothered, does he really care? And FYI you are not being dramatic.

Feel bad about yourself: A good relationship should make you feel confident, loved, and supported,” It’s actually part of your partner’s job description. If your partner makes you feel insecure or ‘less than, get out! “This person may be laying the groundwork for an abusive relationship, or they may just be a moff, but regardless, you don’t need that in your life.

chacha.kristin@yahoo.com

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Saturday, April 21, 2018

Now is the time

 

Though Winnie Madikizela-Mandela passed on and is now buried, I still have some things to say. It is so sad that people were coming out to speak the truth about her after years of vilifying her.

At least she is vindicated in her death though some people still tried to drag her name in the mud.

This reminds me of the act of hypocrisy that has become part of us. Why don’t we tell people good things about them when they are still alive? Must we wait until they die? If you have good things to give or say to someone, the time is now. If you want to call or visit someone do it now because tomorrow they may be no more.

This life is so fleeting so we should honour people when they can still appreciate it. It is futile to do something good for someone when it’s too late. By doing so you will only achieve to appease yourself, but it might be too late for the intended.

It is easier to do something when you still have the opportunity than live in regret for failure to take that bold step. It only takes courage for you to do something nice to someone.

Do good deeds while you are still alive as it will impact on the lives of the future generations even when you are gone.

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Saturday, April 21, 2018

Little ways to up your style game

 

Whether you’ve got a job interview where you’ve got to dress to impress or you simply want to look super stylish on the first day of school, it can be tough to up your style game. If you’re looking for a few great tips to step up your style game these suggestions are sure to come in handy. I’m sure that if you follow even one or two of these tips, you’ll be sure to turn heads and impress!

Accessorize: I think accessories can instantly change any look from simple into one that looks like you took hours crafting and cultivating into the perfect outfit. If you’re in a hurry but want to look fashionable and like you’re really in control of your life, the perfect accessories will solve all of your fashion woes!

Layer: Simply layer a few of your favorite pieces that you wouldn’t think to layer, whether it’s a blazer with a denim shirt and a statement necklace or a pull-over sweater with your favorite summer dress. Whatever it is, layering adds instant depth to your favorite pieces!

Add some colour: If you look into your closet and see one tone, it may be time to add some much-needed color to your wardrobe. It can be tough, especially if you’re comfortable in the colors you’re used to wearing. However, if you start adding different colors to your wardrobe, you’d be surprised just how much people will take notice!

Or take some out: On the other hand, if you’re a huge fan of color, try going in the opposite direction every once in a while. Wear a monochromatic outfit to look especially chic, or just experiment with mixing neutrals from time to time. The look will be more subdued, but it will be a change from your usual look!

Go for different textures: Different textures instantly add so much depth to an outfit. Whether you’re mixing textures that you usually wear in different seasons or something simpler, you’d be surprised just how much wearing different textures can make your look appear more stylish and put-together!

Wear one statement colour: We’ve all heard about a statement piece, but now it’s time for the statement color! A statement color is so easy and will make you stand out so quickly. Go for a mostly monochromatic, neutral outfit, and then add a pop of color to it, like a bright pink coat or something similar that will stand out all the time.

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Saturday, April 21, 2018

Coping with endometriosis

Millions of women across the world suffer from

Millions of women across the world suffer from endometriosis 

By Salome Gregory

When I met Hellen Malika, 37, she was standing in a long queue waiting to see her gynaecologist at Mwananyamala Hospital. Wearing a long red dress with a blue scarf on her shoulders, she waved at me with a warm smile.

She was attending her monthly clinic on endometriosis, a disease that affects millions of women across the globe. Hellen is one among other 176 million women living with the disease globally.  Endometriosis is a condition resulting from the appearance of endometrial tissue outside the uterus and causing pelvic pain, especially associated with menstruation. As women living with endometriosis share their stories with Woman,  global statistics show endometriosis affects one in ten women and the disease is diagnosed in women between  the ages of 24-34 years, with 27 being the common age of diagnosis. Between 25 to 40 per cent of women with endometriosis are affected by infertility.

Hellen is a primary school teacher, married and a mother of one child, Eneka, 11. Due to her condition she has not been able to have another child however much she has tried to conceive for the past eight years.

 “My journey with this condition has never been easy. I go through severe pain during my monthly periods, also, the cost of treatment is very high for someone with medium income,” says Hellen.

Five years ago she fell ill during her menstrual cycle. She had severe and strange pain, pain she had never experienced before. She tried pain killers but none of them worked until she was taken to the hospital and got a diclophenac injection.

The injection helped ease the pain momentarily however two months down the road the situation remained unchanged. She decided to go for check up at the Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH) and she was diagnosed with endometriosis.

Dr Living Colman, a gynaecologist at the MNH, says in a week he attends to up to three women with endometriosis. According to the doctor, majority of women who attend his clinic have no idea of what could be the underlying cause for their illness even when all symptoms of the disease are laid bare.

 

 

How it happens

Dr Living states that endometriosis happens when some menstruation blood and tissue travels out through the fallopian tubes and enters the abdominal cavity. In most cases endometriosis can appear anywhere in the body but usually found in the pelvis and in the lower abdomen.

Commenting on the cost of treatment, Living says treating endometriosis is expensive, costing up to Sh100,000 per visit. And every month a woman has to see her gynaecologist for check-ups and treatment.

Mentioning the symptoms of endometriosis, he points to severe pain during menstruation, pain during intercourse, pain with bowel movement, blood in the urine and pain in the urination and sometimes abnormal vaginal bleeding.

He says, endometriosis can be diagnosed when a doctor does surgery to check the abdomen with a camera through the belly button and takes a sample of any anomaly.

Laisa Abdalla, 35, is a woman living with endometriosis. She has been married for ten years now. In those 10 years she has gone for several surgeries in Nairobi but has never been able to get a child.

She says it all started with painful sensations during intercourse two years after her marriage and was later followed by severe pain during her menses. During that time, she has been trying to conceive, with no success. When the pain started she decided to visit her gynaecologist.  “My gynaecologist suggested I should do some more checkups to see what could be the problem. He also mentioned something about endometriosis when he suggested for its check up. Since I was accompanied by my husband he suggested we should go to Nairobi together, he had to attend to other official matters as well,” speaks Laisa.

She says it was the hardest decision for her to make because she had just started her career at a certain bank in the city. But since it was a medical emergency then she decided to sacrifice her career and joined her husband for the trip to Nairobi.

While in Nairobi she went through surgery, she had hoped for prompt results after the surgeries owing to the doctor’s statement that she’d be able to conceive soon after the surgical procedure. Unfortunately Laisa hasn’t conceived to date.

“I have undergone several surgeries to the point that I have given up on having a child because we have spent a lot of money with no ray of hope,” says Laisa.

Julius Twoli is a doctor at Mwananyamala hospital. He says women living with endometriosis differ as some might not have same symptoms and after trying to conceive for so long without success one can be advised to do elective sterilization. Between 1-7 per cent are diagnosed at the time of their surgery.

Adding to that, the doctor says that such a situation happens to women with strong immunity and some people are likely to get endometriosis if one has a close relative with the condition, it is also genetically caused.

Commenting on why endometriosis is connected with pain, he says, when blood touches the abdomen it causes pain and sometimes it can result to a scar tissue which also contributes to pain. Between 20 to 40 per cent of women with endometriosis go through infertility issues as fallopian tubes are distorted and become unable to pick up the egg after ovulation.

Rehema Said, 39, is a business woman at Kariakoo market. Endometriosis has been a very difficult journey for her to travel for the past nine years now. She only has one child and has since decided to concentrate on her treatment, letting go of hopes of getting a second child.

She says together with her husband they’ve worked to make sure things become better for them but that hasn’t stopped money from pouring out of their pockets trying to deal with the condition.

Rehema has even made friends at the hospital she attends due to frequently meeting them at the clinic.  “I have been living with endometriosis for the past nine years now. After six years of trying to conceive with the help of medication, nothing has worked for me and I completely chose to ignore it. It is never an easy journey to any woman,” says Rehema.

She says she has been on medication for years now to ease her pain. In order to deal with the pain, her doctor gives her medication that affects her hormones. The pills are called ibuprofen and gonadotropin.

Rehema had to come to terms with her condition, acknowledging the fact that she will never be able to have another child.

She calls upon other women out there who are living with endometriosis to focus on other things that define them as women since trying to get children while suffering from endometriosis can be very stressful to the point a woman loses herself in the process. She advises them to be hopeful but not put their entire focus on that or make their life stop trying to overcome the condition.


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Saturday, April 7, 2018

In the quest to gain weight

 

By Salome Gregory

Have you ever thought on the other side of life for a woman who is struggling to gain weight? As much as majority of women struggle to lose weight, there are also women out there struggling to gain weight.

From dieting, change of lifestyle, becoming gym friendly in the name of weight loss, some women go beyond the above for them to gain some ‘more flesh’.

However, interviews by Woman shows struggle to gain weight seems to be more difficult as for majority of women it takes time to achieve weight gain compared to those who are working out to lose weight.

For more than five years now, Happiness Mwanyika, 32, a hotelier and a mother of two children has been struggling to gain weight in vain. Currently she weights 49 kilogrammes.

She dropped from 55 kilograms when she stopped breastfeeding her second born who is 2 years now.

“I hate it, I am unable to gain weight I want. I grew up thin and most of the times while still at school I was bullied because of my weight. It affected my confidence,” says Happiness.

She says, 21 years have passed since she completed her primary education but she still remembers how other pupils mocked her saying she can easily be lifted by wind just because she was thin.

In the beginning it was not something she took seriously, with time she started comparing her body size with other pupils and realised she was among other thin pupils who were not more than three at her school.

She says, she could no longer find that joke friendly and reported it to her teachers who as well laughed at the joke at first then punished the pupils who mocked her.

She could feel more comfortable when she is at home as her father used to call her ‘model’. He told her body size is normal and every human being has his/her size depending on the genetics.

“My family realised how my body weight and size affected my confidence. I would tell them about the joke from school,” she says.

Even when she resumed work, colleagues were commenting on her body weight. However, it does not affect her anymore but the desire to gain more weight is still there.

She says, when she got her first born five years ago, during her pregnancy and breastfeeding journey she gained up to 58 kilograms. She was happy and pushed herself by eating more. When she stopped breastfeeding, she reduced number of meals and she slowly lost weight up to 51 kilogrammes.

Agnes Malembeka is a nutritionist at Ifakara Health Institute. She says being underweight is a word used to explain about an individual who is not having healthy weight with less body fat than what a normal human being is supposed to have.

She says, a body fat is using Body Mass Index (BMI) and a person is identified as underweight when his or BMI is below 18.5.

“With weight gain people should also consider if one has a history of thin bodies at her family to avoid stretching too much with weight gain and end up being stressed,” says Agnes.

Commenting on how one can measure his or her BMI she says one has to know his weight and height. Your height should be multiplied by itself. Then divide your weight to the figure you will get from your height once you get a BMI which is 15.4 below then you should consider yourself underweight.

She says, it is advised once you find your BMI is not normal, it is better to visit your doctor for medical check up to see if there are no signs of medical conditions that needs more attention immediately. For women, it is advised to ask about your menstruation cycle, heart issues, anaemia and diabetes.

She says one can be underweight due to less calories consumed. If enough calories are consumed then the body weight will be needed. However if too much calories are taken, the body will manage itself and it will result to weight gain.

Halima Sadick, 29, a law student at the University of Dar es Salaam agrees that gaining weight has never been an easy journey. She is currently weighing 56 kilogrammes and she has been working out for the past three years to be in that position.

She says, altogether with small six meals a day, three days a week of exercising to enlarge her muscles, results took about a year to manifest.

“I feel much comfortable right now after gaining 7 kilograms for three years. Finally I changed my wardrobe and got compliments on how my body has gained some flesh,” says Halima.

She says, she is so lazy with food and thinks that if there could an injection that can be replaced with eating she would have gone for it. Eating six small six meals is no joke.

Her doctor told her she can gain up to 65 kilogrammes. But she has no hope for more weight as she is tired with carrying food.

Her doctor also advised her on learning to go off things that result to stress and make her not able to eat all of her small six meals a day. She was warned about taking drinks before meals as fluids can affect one’s appetite. It is advised for one to take drinks after half an hour of a meal.

She says, with drinks she avoids soft drinks, and caffeine that gives little nutritional support. Drinks like milk, fruit smoothies as well as fruit juices energizes the body.

With foods and snacks she goes with vegetables, nuts, bread, whole grain cereal, avocados, cheese, lean meats, peanut butter, pasta and dairy products. Snacks between meals is a good way to help gain weight.

Bonaventura Balige, a physiologist based in Dar es Salaam, says there are physical issues that can affect ones weight. Issues like how one is happy about his body size has a lot to do with boosting confidence and self esteem.

Adding to that he says, being in a state of struggle to gain weight can lead to mental health complications due to depression and majority with such problem experience loss of appetite.

It is important for someone who is struggling to gain weight to also be asked about relationship status, career life, and if is a moody person so that to get the right treatment for such problems.

“When you counsel a client and ask such questions it is easy to understand whether a client needs emotional support or just a well balanced diet,” says Balige.

Anastazia Petro,39, is a business woman at Kariakoo market. She struggled for weight gain for the past five years but it never worked.

She weights 50 kilogrammes and before her marriage distabalized she was 72 kilograms. She has lost appetite. She visited her doctor and she was told it is not easy for her to gain weight as her doctor told her she has problems with her marriage and it affects her health.

“It was not easy for me to remain in my marriage of ten years. I decided to move on with my life however I am still struggling to rebuild my business as I spend a lot of time struggling to get the divorce papers done,” says Anastazia.

Dr Julius Twoli says that, people with weight loss are the danger of developing health complications such as infertility, lack of vitamins, weak immunity, anaemia and psychological issues.

He says, it is advised to gain weight as required but one has to be sure that she gaining weight in a right way. One may chose to use sport and diet as a way of gaining weight.

He says the symptoms of underweight includes hair loss, feeling tired and strained, falling sick more often, with women they will experience irregular periods. Dr Twoli says for naturally thin women, gaining weight is difficult since it is a genetic situation.

n women knows are thin, they always ignore food and create more room for them to remain thin.

He says, for a naturally thin women to gain weight they have to decide how many kilograms they want to gain and get to know if one needs fatty weight or in the lean muscels. This will help to know exactlyu which expert one should see, it it the nutrionist of weight trainer.

One has to find out about daily calorie requuirement to gain weight as one must consume 500 to 1,000 extra calories.


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Saturday, April 7, 2018

Style rules when meeting his parents

 

By Woman Reporter

No pressure or anything, but meeting your significant other’s parents is a big step. Meeting the family and celebrating various holidays together is a telltale sign you’re here to stay (cue searching for the perfect wedding gown). Sure, you want to wow them with your charm, intellect, and sense of humour, but you’d be lying if you said you weren’t the least bit concerned about your outfit. Because of this, we’re sharing 10 style rules every woman should follow when meeting the parents.

1. Avoid anything low-cut

Who doesn’t like to pump up the sex appeal for date night? As tempting as it is to wow your partner in a cleavage-baring blouse, save that for when the two of you have some alone time. To be blunt, your partner’s parents don’t need to see your, um, assets. But that doesn’t mean you have to wear a frumpy turtleneck, either. A modest V-neck or simple crew-neck top is a happy medium between sultry and stodgy. On that note, anything sheer or skin-tight is off limits, too.

2. Keep your makeup simple

Wearing makeup to the big meet can feel like a catch-22. Too much, and they’ll be too mesmerized by your artful cat-eye and cherry red pout to listen about your killer promotion. But if you forgo the cosmetics altogether, it may look like you rolled out of bed to meet them. Either way, not the best first impression.

The key is to wear a little makeup that enhances your natural beauty. We love the recent no makeup movement as much as the next girl, but sweeping on some mascara, brow pomade, and a subtle lip is great when meeting new people. Heed our warning, and the only thing they’ll be thinking is how beautiful and confident you are.

3. Ditch the sneakers

Unless meeting the prospective in-laws includes a four-mile jog — which in that case, kudos — leave your sneakers behind. Elevated casual kicks are having a big moment right now, and are ridiculously comfortable, but they’ll look lazy in this instance. You wouldn’t wear your gym shoes to a job interview, right? Or a first date. So why would you wear them here? If things go well, they’ll have tons of opportunities to see you dressed in ratty leggings, a tank top, and sneakers, so don’t start early.

4. Practice colour theory

Should you wear a red dress or an oversized black sweater? Perhaps some science can help you make your decision. Though there are a lot of things that go into making a great first impression, Leaf believes the color you wear may make a difference.

There’s a colour for every situation you can imagine, but when it comes to meeting that special someone’s parents, you might want to consider purple.

Commonly associated with royalty, Leaf says purple expresses sophistication and loyalty. As a girlfriend, you want the parents to believe that you treat their son or daughter with respect and loyalty. So, wearing the deep hue will only support your words of affirmation and longing gazes. And if that same colour associates you with the likes of Kate Middleton, all the better.

5. Eradicate wrinkles

Very few things say “don’t take me seriously” like rocking a completely crinkled dress to meet the parents. Sure, some fabrics naturally wrinkle throughout the day — and nobody’s going to judge you — but sporting a shirt that looks like it’s spent years crumpled in your closet? Hard pass. Whether you take a iron or steamer to the problem areas or simply hang it in your bathroom as you take a hot shower, we implore you to do something about those wrinkles. If you don’t want to run the risk, err on the side of caution and opt for a wool, knit, or cashmere top.

If we had a dollar for every time we banished leggings from your adult wardrobe, we’d be rolling in the Benjamins by now. Like sneakers, leggings are comfortable but are far from appropriate. Unless you want your partner’s parents to think he or she is dating someone who’s stuck in her glory college years, keep your leggings where they belong: in the depths of your dresser drawer.

Many girls opt for dresses or skirts when meeting the parents, but we think cropped trousers or jeans are suitable if the occasion strikes. While we’re on the subject, sweats of any type are out of the question.

As if you needed yet another thing to worry about, you might want to reconsider your purse. “Both giant carry-your-life-in-it satchels and compact little clutches read high maintenance, and that is the very, veeeery last first thing you want them to think,” writes AOL. While we’d be very surprised to meet a parent who’d bat an eye if you showed up to dinner with a bag chock-full of your laptop and important work files, the publication does have a point. If you have time to switch up your accessories, a bag that fits all your essentials (no more, no less) will show them you’re responsible and practical.


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Saturday, March 24, 2018

When the other parent cannot see the children

It can be heartbreaking for parents faced with

It can be heartbreaking for parents faced with the awful prospect of not seeing their children again after separation. 

By Devotha John

Every March 8, the world commemorates the International Women’s Day,it is a day that is celebrated with passion and promise, but to some it is a different story.

This year, Emmanuel Mbasha, a renowned gospel musician, posted a message on Instagram congratulating his ex-wife Flora Henry and asking her to let him see his child since the law is clear regarding children’s rights.

In the Instagram message, Emmanuel expressed how he misses his daughter and two years have passed since they last met.

He claimed that his ex-wife had stopped him from seeing the daughter and he also hoped that the child could be missing him.

This massage on Instagram created a conversation on other social media platforms on why some women stop men from meeting their children after separation.

The two had been married for over ten years and the couple were blessed with a child before their marital conflict that culminated into a divorce in 2015.

Emmanuel was accused of attempting to rape his sister-in –law but the court acquitted him.

Speaking to Woman, he says,“The last time I saw my daughter was during the case hearing. I had prayed with the court to allow me stay with the daughter after the divorce. Since I am a born again Christian and I stay alone in my house, it could give me some peace of mind,” says Emmanuel.

He notes that he agreed with the court decision to let his ex-wife have custody of the child on condition that he would be allowed to meet her at his convenience, adding that he wonders why the court’s decision has not been followed.

“This is my biological daughter. I am entitled to take care of her and see her anytime. I really miss and love her and miss her so much,” he says.

When asked why he should not send the matter to court again, Emmanuel says, being a man of God, he cannot start fresh court proceedings against his ex-wife.

Woman reached Flora Henry for comment and she said that she could not comment about things which are posted on social media. She also pointed out that only her family lawyer can comment on the issue.

However a Dar es Salaam based lawyer Richard Matei said all parents have the right to see their children and bear responsibility of taking care of them.

He says mothers who bar their children from seeing their fathers contravenes the law.

“According to the children Act 2009, if parents’ divorce, the court will decide where the child will live and also children under seven years will live with their mother and the child or father has a right to visit and stay with other parent unless this interferes with the child’s education,” says the lawyer.

He added that a part from that a father should contribute to the upkeep of the children until they are 18-year-old also the court will give permission to the father to take the child if his mother has got bad behavior, example drunkenness.

Richard says if a mother denies a father the right to meet his children, the latter should go to court and the court will ask her to state why she contravenes the law and if she pleads guilty, she may endure 14 days behind bars or serve a three month jail term.

“Under the section 39 (1), the court shall consider the best interest of the child and the importance of a child being with his mother when making an order for custody or access,” he notes adding that, Section (2) states that, subject to subsection (l), the court shall also consider - (a) the rights of the child under section 26; (b) the age and sex of the child; (c) that it is preferable for a child to be with his parents except if his right are persistently being abused by his parents.

Richard calls on parents to spend time with their children as right of the child, but the court can also deny the father the right to see the child in case it is proven that the father may harm the child or has psychological disorder that may impact on the child’s physical and mental development.

“Parents must send children to school and give them time to play and rest. Special care and treatment should be given to children with disabilities so that they can go to school like any other children,” says Richard.

He says parents and guardians must protect children from harm. They must also make sure that children have food, clothing and a safe place to live.

“Parental responsibility is very important but women who endure labour pain feel more attached to the children though men who develop cordial affection to their children the moment they are born also get very attached,” he says.

Meanwhile, Grace Chacha* 36-year-old says she will never take his son to his father unless he decides to look for him once he completes the university.

“I will never allow my son to see his father because of the suffering he caused to me. He had forced me to abort in the first place but I refused, the move which caused him deny to have been responsible for my pregnancy,” Grace whose son is now in Form Three at one of the schools in Dar-es Salaam angrily says.

Grace met John, the father of her son, when she was starting first year at the university when the latter was in his last year at the university Dar es Salaam.

The relationship was good as they had planned to get married after completing their studies but things changed when she got pregnant,” she says adding that as lovers they used to be together during the weekends and it is during that time that she got an opportunity to break the news that she was pregnant.

Grace says she thought her boyfriend would be happy but on the contrary he said he was not ready to be a father.

“Since then the communication between us died, he even ran away when I followed him to his home,” she says.

Grace says she decided to defer her studies and get back home where members of her family shunned her as well.

I was living like an orphan because my parents were really angry with me after spending all their savings to ensure I get education and a good job eventually.

“As time went by, I delivered a baby boy. I had no one who could shoulder my needs. I hardly received support from parents, thanks to some good friends who stood by me,” she says.

Grace says she was communicating with her friends in Dar es Salaam who advised her to seek a job that would at least let her earn some cash to feed the new born.

“After coming in Dar es Salaam, life was not easy as I had left my two-year-old son in the village. I started to work as a secretary in one of the stationery stores. The wage I receive had to be sent home to support my son,” she says.

Grace says three years later, her mother who was taking care of her son in the village passed away and after the burial she was forced to leave with her son for Dar-es Salaam

Grace says she tried to reach the child’s father with a view of ensuring that he grows up knowing both parents but unfortunately the father was not cooperative.

Her son started going to school and she used the opportunity to resume her studies at the university after saving some cash. She eventually finished her bachelors degree in marketing. At one point the son got sick and when she reached out to the father bhe refused to cooperate.

Grace says when the son was almost completing Grade 7, the father started calling her to seek redress saying he wanted to live with his biological son.

“I asked him where he was for all those years. I really felt so bad was so angry with the man,” she says adding that when the son was still in Grade 7 she got married and introduced the child to his step father, who had since allowed the child to use his surname.

Discussing the case of Grace lawyer Matei says even if a parent has the right to see his or her child, abandonment is another big issue. He says if this father abandoned a child since he was little, if he went to court he should get permission to prove that’s this child is his and for this he should undergo DNA test.

“If woman insist that’s she doesn’t want her child to be seen by the father, the father should give to the court valid reasons why he was absent and why he now wants the child. If his reasons are convincing enough then the court will give him the right to see and take responsibility of his or her child,” he says.

“Sometime there are some question on where he was for those years and why now, what he want to do with this child, he may want to harm him or her so the best interest would be welfare of the child. The court will look at all these before granting such a man the right to see the child,” he explains.

This brings us to a different case of Abdul Rashid, 26, an artist who claimed he was denied the right to see his son by his in laws who claimed that he was too poor to be a biological father of their grandson.

“Rahma and I met in Bagamoyo and the birth of our son cemented our relationship but I wonder why her parents look down upon me,” he says noting that his partner broke communication after her parents, who are Arabs, condemned her for having an affair bywith affairs with pauper.

“I sent the matter to the court but I failed the case in what I thought, and still think, money was used to deny me the rightful responsibility to my son,” he says.

Meanwhile Rehema Abdul 30, mother of two children denied his daughter and son to see their father because he didn’t take responsibility of the children after the divorce.

“My first child is in Grade 7 now and his young sister is Grade 5. Their father didn’t pay school fees. He didn’t care if children ate or fall sick. It was really worrying,” she recounts.

According Rehema Mwaifuge social worker from Temeke Municipal said there’s difference reasons which make women reach such decisions especially those who neglect the children responsibility including looking his children health, guidance and paying school fees and not having regular contact with child and their mother. At times a father can be achild abuser forcing the mother to be very protective.

“The conflict between parents sometimes make some mothers vangeful, “ she says.

“Both parents they should continue to have responsibilities and right towards a child.”

She says these actions might negatively affect the child in future.

St Augustine University (Saut) research and Psychology assistant lecturer, Noverty Deograthias says denying children opportunity to meet their biological parents may affect them psychologically, adding that child-parent attachment is of utmost importance in augmenting their mental and emotional development.

“Sometimes people claim that so long as a child is under mother’s care, they will still enjoy affection accorded by significant others but this should not be entertained because a child would still need attachment from both parents,” says the don.

He adds that if a child keeps on hearing bad comments about one parent, they are likely to develop hatred. Noverty pointed out that some impact caused by single parenting mode may be witnessed even in a child’s academic performance, adding that the morale of learn tend to be lower among children reared by one parent than those who enjoy attachments from both parents.

He on parents to shoulder parental responsibility notwithstanding their differences.

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Saturday, March 24, 2018

ONE MAN'S VIEW: Love slipping through our fingers like eels

 

By Marete wa Marete

You have known a thousand relationship tittles in the bookshelves by their names and perhaps you have devoured volumes of magazines with no success. You are left wondering how come women slip through your fingers like eels.

Indeed, you have a wonderful career, live relatively well and you have the benefit of an education.

Your own friends with lesser qualities have been successful with women to your chagrin. What could be wrong with you? You love, lose them and actually don’t learn. Here are a few things men do wrong.

You could be a workaholic. You work yourself to death and have no time for the woman you love.

Choosing between the woman and work could be tricky in that you could lose both work and the woman if you make the wrong calculations. Allocate time for her.

Women, not matter their status appreciate attention and you must do just that. Remember that just like booze and gambling, work is what you throw yourself into when, deep down you’re more important to yourself than her.

You are heads over heels in love with a woman.

You are there for her whenever she needs a bulb replaced or any other manly chore. You are ready to change your name to Mat so that she mop her feet on you.

A peck on the lips will become a peck on the neck – period! The truth of the matter is that fawning and ingratiating will leave you as a good friend and you will go no further than that. In love, never forget the rule of supply and demand. The more available something is the less they want it.

Women will always wait for you to set the ball rolling. If you don’t, you lose. I remember a certain girl during my primary school years. She was cute intelligent and genuinely good at heart. We finished school, I did not tell her feelings.

We went to different high schools – I stayed mum. We went to college, I said nothing.

We started working in the same proximity. I said nothing. On her part, it was evident she wanted me. It hurt deep when we met in the street many years later with her husband and a kid. I was stupid!

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Saturday, March 24, 2018

THE PUB: Some of us should not drink but then, we do!

 

By Wa Muyanza

It’s a Saturday afternoon. You’re heading home carrying a bag of consumables and a couple of newspapers. In front of you are two guys. One of them, the one who is fattish and short, is leaning on his rather thin friend.

It transpires that the fattish guy, who is carrying a bottle of a popular local gin in his rear pocket, is thoroughly sloshed. Yuko hoi! The thin guy must be less than half the weight of his companion who is actually dragging feet along the dusty reserve road. It’s like he’s pulling him along, and after every few difficult steps, they fall down together in a heap.

You delay walking past them. Why, this is an opportunity for a story and a study into why drinking is an indulgence that’s most unsuitable for some people.

Young boys and girls stop to take a look at this “free movie”. Some giggle, some shake their heads this way and that way in disbelief. From his appearance, the sloshed guy is of the age that qualifies him to be a father to age mates of the kids being bemused by his self-inflicted pathetic situation. You ask yourself: suppose a child of his appears here in the company of her/his pals? Or the wife—will she ever be able to stand before fellow women and proclaim she has a husband?

Clearly, the guy who is not fully drunk has a huge challenge in his hands. When you ultimately catch up with them, you take a look at the face of the hardly conscious fellow who must have taken one too many. He can hardly open his eyes and much as he moves his lips, he cannot utter a single intelligible word.

“Why don’t you get a bajaj and ferry your friend home?” you suggest to the less drunk fellow.

“I’m trying to, but all the bajajs are going the opposite direction and carrying passengers,” he says.

“How about making him sit and rest at a veranda as you go for a bajaj?” you suggest.

“He refuses to sit, claiming he can walk, and as you can see, I’m actually forcing him to hold onto me because he’s believes he can walk on his own; he’s very stubborn”

Some bystanders argue over what kind of alcoholic beverage the guy might have taken. “This can’t be beer…beer doesn’t make people this drunk, even Konyagi don’t do this to a person,” one opines.

Well, you personally can’t tell, just as you can’t be of any help to the two friends, so, you walk on. However, just as you reach this feeder road, there’s a bajaj that has just diverted from the main road. You stop it and tell the driver two guys are looking for transport.

“Ah, I know them, that Kibonge can be very difficult when he’s drunk, but I’ll go and see if his friend has the money,” says the driver.

You say okay and walk on, wishing the best for Kibonge and his friend.

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Saturday, March 24, 2018

THE DIVA: To the strong and independent woman out there

 

By Christine Chacha

There is something about the lent season that brings a lot of self-reflection, could be the hunger or the religious connotation. The other day I was thinking about my relationships then it dawned on me that in the past 5 years I’ve had about 6 guys enter my life and tease love then leave. Six relationships that I gave a part of myself to only to get disappointed. Six relationships that I couldn’t really call relationships because they never let it get that far, but the emotional investment was all the same. Six relationships that left me feeling robbed, questioning what I’m doing wrong or why I continue to find myself in the same situation.

It’s exhausting to say the least. For the longest time, I would just cry and wonder what’s wrong with me or what am I doing wrong? Why aren’t my relationships working out? I mean am beautiful, funny, smart and loving. Plus I always support the man I am dating and I never ask for too much, but they always made me feel like I wanted too much.

It took me quite sometimes to realize that there was nothing wrong with me and there was nothing I was doing to jeopardize my relationships. Some guys just can’t handle a strong woman. They will be intrigued and want to find out more that they initiate a relationship then run once they find out they can’t handle you.

But there is nothing wrong with being a strong woman and Independent woman and we shouldn’t have to “soften” ourselves just because men can’t handle our energy. I may have had numerous failed relationship but I refuses to let them deter me from finding love. There are times I would say I am done with love and close up my heart because there will be no heartbreak when no heart to break. But then I would miss love and would try again, I continue to love as if I’ve never been hurt.

So to all the strong and independent women out there- it’s okay to want love and to actively pursue it. There’s nothing wrong with being the type of woman who is comfortable in her own skin, able to live her life her own way, perfectly fine making her own decisions, and yet, totally and completely interested in finding a man to stand by her side.

We may be intimidating, have very high standards and refuse to settle for less but it does not mean there are no men out there who can handle us. Confident women inspire the secure and threaten the insecure so if a man couldn’t handle you, he doesn’t deserve you. Strong women attract strong men. Look out for an equally strong men who’s secure enough to allow you to be yourself without tying you down or being intimidated.

Unapologetically own who you are, how you love and the way you feel. What the world doesn’t understand is truly how hard it is to find love. You live in a continual state of conflict. You long to be independent and powerful, but you crave the connection you can have with someone else. You want to live out your self-focused, self-driven existence, but at the same time, you want to share your world with another person.

But do remember that being strong doesn’t mean we are impervious to pain, just don’t let it define you. It may not be easy but graciously let go of relationships that cause you pain. Cry it out, drink it away but mourn then get up and try again.

woman@thecitizen.co.tz

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Saturday, March 24, 2018

DEAR DIARY: When parents separate

 

By Janet Otieno

Often when a relationship crumbles, less thought is given to how this could impact on the children. Many a times couples do not make decisions regarding child’s upbringing during their breakup and who will have custody. And nothing is usually mentioned about care and the upbringing implication involved. Usually one parent goes away with the child and blocks the other depending on the circumstances of the break up. Few parents usually seeks legal redress on what is the next step for the child wellbeing. There are various organisation dealing with children welfare issues that can offer professional and practical advise based on the circumstances of separation on whether a co-parent can have visiting rights and participate on child’s upbringing. However, there is a provisiuon in the law which can bar one parent from visiting for instance if he is a criminal or a child abuser and can harm the child. According to the children Act 2009, if parents’ divorce, the court will decide where the child will live and also children under seven years will live with their mother and the child or father has a right to visit and stay with other parent unless this interferes with the child’s education.

Read our main story to find out more...

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Saturday, March 17, 2018

Coping with life after C-section

C-section procedure can have health effects to

C-section procedure can have health effects to both the mother and the newborn. PHOTO|COURTESY 

By Salome Gregory

As families celebrate a new life brought into the world, have you ever taken a moment to think about the battle that a woman who gave birth through surgery, otherwise known as C-section (caesarean section) went through? The entire experience is something that only those who’ve been through it can explain, in detail. Coping up after the surgery is a whole different journey.

According to a gynaecologist from Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH) Living Colman, C section or caesarean delivery is the use of surgery to deliver babies, it is a procedure that’s done a s a result of various reasons, some medical, others out of choice.

When Lucia Alfred, 38, a banker got pregnant with her first child 11 years ago, she never thought she’d have to undergo surgery in order to hold her baby in her arms.

Lucia is now a mother of three children, all of them having been brought in to this world through C-section.  She gave birth to babies who are relatively big in physical size, a situation that made vaginal birth a risk.

“Ever since I started giving birth through surgery, my life has never been the same. My body is filled with scars from the medical procedure and I’ve been left with multiple health complications. I am not complaining, but I am stating the fact that I’m living a life that a woman who gave birth the normal way is spared from,” she speaks.

Lucia says it took her more than four hours to regain consciousness after her surgeries. What followed was a difficult time with limited mobility. All she did was sleep on her back all the time.

As a result of the surgeries, Lucy now experiences back pain and headaches at least twice a week. Her doctor has advised her to get about 10 hours of good sleep a day, find time to exercise as well as eating a well balanced diet.

“C-section is very traumatizing,” she says, adding that a prospective mother is filled with excitement for the life that she’s about to bring in to this world, but at the same time it’s a moment that involves so much pain. “One can't manage to sit, eat, sleep, or even walk properly,” Lucia says.

Sometimes even taking care of your own baby becomes a daunting task. This is all due to the pain. It takes at least six weeks for a woman to start feeling well and manage to walk properly and enjoy parenting.

Commenting on the importance of the medical procedure, Dr Colman says C-section is only necessary when normal delivery is likely to put the baby or the mother at risk.

“There are a lot of reasons that may cause a woman to deliver via C-section but here are the major reasons; your labour isn't progressing, your baby isn't getting enough oxygen, your baby or babies are in an abnormal position, you’re having multiples, there's a problem with your placenta, there's a problem with the umbilical cord, you have a health concern.

However much C-section is commonly performed when medically necessary, it can also be performed when a mother requests for it.

Dr Colman says women who deliver more than once via C-section face an even harder time due to repeated incisions on the same scar. This makes surgery technically harder as the internal tissue start to fuse together.

Farida Mashaka, 35, is a mother of one. She went through a C-section that left her with just one ovary after she got an ectopic pregnancy.

Gynaecologist Egbert Mbaga, based in Morogoro, explains that ectopic pregnancy occurs when the fertilized egg attaches itself in a place other than inside the uterus.

He says majority of ectopic pregnancies occur in the fallopian tubes which cannot hold a growing embryo, as a result one has to go through a caesarean.

This is what happened to Farida three years ago. To her, the experience feels like it happened just weeks ago.

Farida says it took her doctor about five weeks to know exactly what the problem was as the several ultrasound scans never showed if it was an ectopic pregnancy. Farida would go through serious stomach pain during the entire time of her pregnancy.

After her surgery that lasted about 45 minutes, Farida could not work for two months to give room for healing.

“I was put under anaesthesia, when I woke up I felt so much pain and dizziness. I also realised I had a catheter to help me not have to go to the toilet ten hours after my surgery,” she says.

The recovering patient was instructed to strictly sleep on her back seven hours a day, she couldn’t turn side to side. When she was allowed to exercise by just walking, the pain was too much for her to bear. It was through her husband’s support that she managed to turn around on bed as well as gaining some mobility.

After surgery Farida would experience intense desire to sleep, one which she never wanted to wake up from. However her doctor warned her that oversleeping could result to the wound not healing and it could instead rot.  

Health effects to the baby

Dr Mbaga says that it’s not just the mothers who are affected by C-section. The baby, too, may develop some breathing complications. This may occur because the baby is not being squeezed through the narrow birth canal.

“These health complications may occur to the baby due to the multiple medication that the mother takes, such as sleep medication. During the process of administering the medicine, some of it may be passed on to the baby,” says Mbaga.

Adding to that he says, if some of the medication, such as sleep medication is passed on to the baby, that baby will be sleepier than other newborns.  

The doctor says that women who undergo caesarean section are also at a risk of going through hysterectomy process, which may result from surgical complications from the procedure.

A hysterectomy is the surgical removal of a woman’s uterus. It is often done because of pain and/or bleeding.

He also says, women who go through C-section tend to be forgetful. This is a side effect of the medication used to induce sleep.

Farida and Lucia have had to live with medical repercussions of their respectful C-sections.  

Agnes Tarimo, 45, also gave birth through C-section 20 years ago. She decided to have only one child as a result.  

The mother of one says she has memory loss issues. In order to make it easy for her to remember to do everything she’s required to do, she makes a very long ‘to do list’ in her diary and ticks the things she does.

“Sometimes I forget to carry my diary with me whenever I go and it becomes more challenging to do or make follow up calls to my clients. I have told them that I have memory loss issues and asked them to be lenient with me and call me every now and then to remind me of their orders two days before delivery date,” says Agnes, who works as a business woman importing goods from neighbouring countries and delivering them to clients.

Agnes, who became a mother twenty years ago, could not manage to deliver her baby the normal way due to the baby's position in the womb in the third trimester not being supportive.

She says after her surgery, when it became cold she felt pain on her entire body and about a year after the surgery her scar developed some fluid which was so painful to remove.

She says the treatment involved no anaesthetic injection and the process to pull out the fluid using injection took about half an hour. It is an experience she never wishes anyone to go through due to how painful it is.

 

 

 

 


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Saturday, March 10, 2018

Celebrating women under the sun

Women at work: selling edibles is one of the

Women at work: selling edibles is one of the most common jobs done by women 

By Salome Gregory

It’s early in the morning, as you prepare to go to work, outside your house a hawker is heard advertising her fresh produce straight from the garden. “Mboga mboga,” she calls, passing through different streets in search of customers.

Sights of different women peddling the streets selling different edibles are rampant in Dar es Salaam. These women walk carrying the goods on their heads in search of customers. On top of carrying loads on their head, some hawk the streets with a baby on the back, with other two or three in tow.  They peddle for miles in difficult terrains under the scotching sun. What they earn often times cannot cater to all their needs; they only earn enough for basic necessities.

On Thursday the World celebrated International Women’s day with the theme ‘Press for progress. It is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women from different walks of life.

A series of activities took place throughout the country to honour the day and celebrate women’s progress in different spheres, as well as highlight challenges that women face. In celebration of International Women’s day, Woman magazine decided to look for some women who work everyday under the sun to support their family.

Geline Gerlady, 30, is a single mother of two children aged 6 and 3. For over two years Geline has sold fruits along the Mandela expressway in Dar es Salaam, one of the city’s busiest roads in rush-hour.

Through hawking fruits the single mother has been able to pay bills as well as cater to school requirements for her children. To the struggling mother, everyday is women’s day because she is tasked with the duty of providing for her family. As such, her challenges are constantly with her.   

Before delving into the hawking business, one which she describes as being ‘difficult’, Geline used to cook food at Buguruni market and sell to customers. She however had to leave that business after one of her children, in an unfortunate turn of events, got burnt in hot water while playing next to a charcoal stove.

As a mother, Geline found it difficult leaving her child to be taken care of by her young sister who was living with them. She thus had to stop working for a while in order to take care of her child.

“It was costly just staying home taking care of my child. It meant spending a lot of money on food and clearing other bills without any income coming in. I had to dig into the capital I had in order to settle bills,” she says. 

Geline says she had raised Sh400,000 in savings, but that was all spent on settling bills. At the end, she had accrued more debt.

Soon after her daughter’s recovery Geline was ready to start working again. She asked for Sh70,000 from her sister to start a fruits business. “Embarking on a new work line came with its own challenges such as standing and walking in close proximity with cars – something that is quite dangerous,’ she says.

She wakes up at 5am everyday and goes to Buguruni market to buy different fruits such as water melons, bananas, mangoes, pineapples, among others. Making it early at the market means you get good quality fruits at a cheaper price.

Geline then heads back home to pack the fruits ready to hit the streets. Talking about the most challenging part of her work she says, “When it rains it is not possible to go out so that means I miss out on making money.” The striving mother now plans to own a fruits stand near her home to earn additional income as well as be able to still make a living even when it rains.

Amina Salehe, 29, lives in Tandika and sales bites to different offices in the city center. She says she deosn’t have enough money to own a shop in town.

On a daily basis, Amina has more than ten offices to deliver bites to and that has to be done ealry before 9am. This is because majority of her customers buy the bites for brreakfast. In a day she makes up to Sh50,000 from her business.

“I am happy that I am able to feed my mother and two sisters who are still going to school,” she says.

However, the process of making the bites involves Amina being too close to the charcoal stove. As a result, she has over time developed some health complications. On top of that, she uses up to 10kg of wheat flour  to make different bites. This means that she has to labour with mixing the load of flour, an activity that has strained her back and caused some back aches.

Julius Twoli is a General doctor at Bagamoyo hospital, he says cookstoves are fueled by soild materials like biomass and coal which creates air that is harmful and can result to lung disease, asthma and pneumonia.

The doctor goes on to state that there is no clear number on how many people are affected each year due to traditional cooking methods and the people affected most by this are women and children in developing countries.

“It is obvious that a big number of women in developing countries spend most of their time preparing meals for the family. The method used can be very detrimental,” says Dr Julius.  

Mother of a 3-year-old child, Linda John, 32,  sells vegetables at Kinyerezi. She has been doing this business for the past one year and it has helped her in supporting her family, including her husband, who’s a tailor.

Linda is forced to carry her child wherever she goes becuase she cannot afford to employ a house help. She peddles the streets from 7am up to 11am. After that she goes back home to prepare meals for her family as well as doing other chores.

“It was never easy for me when I was still breasfeedng. I could not get enough time to eat well and breastfeed my child. I had to eat once I got back home and breastfeed my child while hawking,” says Linda.

Whenever her child starts crying, Linda finds a place where she can have a sit to calm her baby down.

Another challenge that she faces is having to deal with customers who buy goods on credit but don’t pay on time

Linda plans to own her own vegetable stand one day. Her husband supports her plan and vows to contribute to the capital. Through the vegetable business, Linda sees more light at the end of the tunnel, and promises to work hard to achieve her dreams.

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Saturday, March 3, 2018

‘Cat fishing’ on social media, the nasty side of the internet

Be wary of the person you communicate with

Be wary of the person you communicate with online, some are people trying to dupe you. PHOTO | COURTESY 

By Peter Muthamia

People have often found themselves romantically or emotionally attached to someone that they feel like they have known for all their lives after a lengthy rapport on social media.

The picture presented to them online appeals to their emotions so that they believe them wholeheartedly. The truth is that the persona on social media is hyped up to simply trap them.

This is called “catfishing” where people conjure up fake personas online to lure different people into falling in love with them or generally getting to know them so they can benefit from them materially, sexually or emotionally.

Cat fishers present larger-than-life persona of wealth, body physiques, beauty and virtues online to their targets – the too-good-to-be-true illusionary images of themselves.

The rapport that ensues could initiate online dating for months or even years only for the one to be rudely shocked that what one got was indeed a raw deal.

When you finally meet them (if you are lucky to meet them), they are not what they purport to be or what their posts present to you – beautiful and glamorous. They are con men (women) who have perfected the art of embellishing qualities they do not actually have.

Rehema Mwambiije*, a university student was recently a victim of catfishing. “I met him on my WhatsApp group, he seemed like a nice, genuine, caring, loving and attractive person, he was my type – a kind of Mr. Right. We interacted on social media, messaged for a couple of months last year, several times arranged to meet each other but something always came up on his end. I did not realize that all that time I was being Catfished.  I wouldn't have even considered that this person was fake!” she says.

Disguised low self-esteem

Noverty Deograthias, a counselor at InforPsych Center thinks that a whole complex combination of psychological factors are behind these self-exaggerated exhibitions on social media, including deep-sited inferiority complex.

“Dissatisfaction with self and one’s personality together with the urge to see themselves in a certain position in life drive people to post lies on social media.” Others are afraid of exposing themselves for who they are and would present a false picture of themselves. Say, someone is short or plumb would present themselves as slim and beautiful to the social media audience,” he said.

He further alluded that some escapists just want attention and pretend to be someone else because they're not self-confident enough while others catfish as a way to keep themselves busy.

“They often see it as an escape out of the life they don't necessarily want to live. They can be whoever they want to be online and don't feel as judged as they do in real life. There's the bored type who derive fun from it, seeking something to keep busy. They don't think about the effect it has on other people,” he said.

Another psychologist, Dr Isaac Lema also observes that people catfish because of various reasons including fear and hence the need for anonymity, the need to cope with the prevailing situations and need to create an “ideal” personality. Some of these actions are an ego boost for those with low self-esteem.

“There are many reasons that people seek to present larger than life picture of themselves and they have fixations to fill the void caused by stages they skipped in their lives.  The urge to feel desired may also play a part. They mirror between person and the “ideal” person and fear of presenting themselves as they really are causes anxiety. Catfishing is an ego boost for those with low self-esteem,” said Isaac.

Catfishing for money

But in some cases, as has been reported, what cat fishers are actually after is your wallet and bank accounts, emotional support or ephemeral relationships without having to leave the comfort of their chairs.

Financial-driven catfishing should be separated from cases where either the intention takes precedent. In that case, someone deliberately posts photos and mildly hints at monetary considerations.

Here is a typical scenario. The voice of someone you hardly know at the other end of the line says this to you; “Sweetheart, I am stuck at the bank and the network is so low. Kindly advance to me some Sh500,000 payable on Sunday. I just got a freak accident, and need to fix a few things” or something like “I am a Rwandan or Ethiopian girl (of course with a fake post on Facebook or Instagram to prove it), looking for a man to marry me,” or some other fabricated lies. These are not new ploys in this era of internet.

When a post of near-nude but luscious, well-endowed woman depicting a generous bust and appealing backside, the stuff that lures most men was put online, John* did not hesitate to immediately communicate with “her” on the mobile number “she” had provided.

Trouble is when she asked for taxi fare to Kigamboni from Mbezi Beach, it was not too much considering that she had not asked for out-of-reach amount of money. After all, she promised a fun-filled night. It never came to be.

It dawned on him later that the “girl” on the other end of the line was actually a man when he flatly told John that he was a fool to have fallen for the trick. He had parted with Sh30,000 to an unknown catfisher.

Sources say that such catfishers often present themselves on social media as seeking serious men for marriage, relationship or casual sex.

Men on their part fall for the ruse hook, line and sinker. She may innocently ask for some kind of financial help be it airtime or taxi fare.

“They post pictures of very beautiful women, some nude and men fall prey to their own lust. Men picture these women as their life partners only to realise later that he has been cat-fished.  In order to appear rich or women of substance, posts of large cars and houses do the trick,” a psychologist says.

“Assuming that such a woman asks for only Sh 2,000 from ten different men, she rakes in a cool Sh20,000. She may graduate to more asking for larger amounts and simple math indicates that if one parts with say, Sh30,000, the amount she is likely to make without lifting a finger is awesome,” says John

Deograthias further notes that being a catfish is often, but not always, a prelude to financial fraud and being able to trick or con someone is a kind of addictive thrill.

In the Get Safe Online Free Advice (www.getsafeonline.org), the blogger writes that for one to identify a catfish, the profile photos look staged (it is easy to use photo shop program) these days. A careful scrutiny should be able to tell the differences.

Furthermore, there is the tendency to overuse terms like trustworthy, genuine, rich, and sexy and others that paint a positive and rosy picture of one looking for a soulmate. The blogger further says that cat fishers will at a certain point ask for your number/WhatsApp and will tend to innermost objective in a relationship.

Some will “love bomb” you so much so that you will divulge so much information about yourself while they divulge very little about themselves – this is meant to make a “perfect” match out of you. Some will ask for money by talking about a disaster or other relatives or friends in difficult situations.

Sextortion is part of the game

Ask yourself this: isn’t anyone asking for intimate photos, videos or webcam chats before meeting you, disrespectful of someone really interested in a proper relationship? This behaviour may start with them asking for ‘sexy chat’ but will progress quickly.

As social media users grow in numbers, so does the number of people who use the different online platforms to dupe others.


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Friday, February 9, 2018

How myth derails family planning in Kasulu

In rural Tanzania, family planning doesn't

In rural Tanzania, family planning doesn't exist 

In some Tanzanian tribes today, a number of out-dated myths still live on in the minds and hearts of many people, especially in rural settings.

 Some believe that having numerous children is a blessing that makes one gain respect in the community to the extent that parents derive soulful enrichment by the number of children they have. 

 Dotto Mahulo who resides at Mkunyika Ward in Kasulu District, Kigoma Region, still shares similar beliefs.

 This 26-year-old single mother has three children, and each one of them has a separate biological father.

 Neema Brayson, 9, Nasra Nelson, 7, and Abdalla Nassib, 1, live with their mother in a single-room makeshift clay soil shed with very poor ventilation.

 The two little sisters have not started school yet, and their mother doesn’t have the financial ability to take them even to elementary or kindergarten school.

 Although Dotto doesn’t have any idea how she’ll manage to raise them up and guarantee their welfare, she is willing to have more children even if it is with another man.

 “Although I am a single mother, I still need to have more children because I believe every child has their own luck; village people value those families that boast of many children,” she says.  Even though the current mother of three doesn’t know what the fate of her children holds, she’s adamant that adding more children will bring positive light. At the moment she neither has a decent job nor an assured daily casual work.

Family planning is an alien concept to this village dweller, who expresses no regard to family planning issues or the methods attached thereto. As a result, avoiding unplanned pregnancies is a far-fetched option at the moment.

34-year-old Rashid Hamad and his 39-year-old wife, Rehema Petro, are rolling on the same boat as Dotto. This village couple have no inclination as to what family planning entails. It is simply a concept that they know nothing about. However, as time goes by, the couple, who live at Kumsenga Village in Kasulu District, Kigoma Region, with their seven children, have begun contemplating what to do in order to avoid adding more family members to their already over-populated household.

 Rashid and his wife, who have lived together for about 20 years now, confessed that life has been so difficult for them considering the size of their family.

 “Life is very difficult for us. Sometimes we only take one meal a day,” said Rehema, adding that all the children depend on her as the family does not have a farm or a paying job.

 She says her husband moves around the streets daily, looking for casual work to do in order to feed his family.

 Medical experts agree in common that family planning involves using birth control techniques to decide how many children you have and when to have them.

 According to them, the methods allow couples to have their desired number of children, and control the spacing and timing of their births.  The Kasulu District Executive Director, Eng. Godfrey Kasekenya, expresses his concern over the increasing high birth rate in the district. 

“The birth rate in Kasulu is very high. It is very common to find a family with not less than eight children,” he says.

 For women living in rural areas, having many children is not viewed as an anomaly, and the 2015-16 Tanzania Demographic and Health Survey and Malaria Indicator Survey (TDHS-MIS) showed that, despite the decrease in fertility from the average of 6.2 children per woman since the first TDSH survey in 1991-92 to 5.2 in 2015-16, still women in rural areas have an average of 6.0 children per woman.

 The survey also shows that Women living in the poorest households have an average of 7.5 children.

 The 2015-16 TDHS-MIS Key Findings correlates with the situation Rashid and Rehema are facing.  “If they would embrace family planning, they could have allowed spacing from one child to another, prevent unplanned pregnancies and plan the size of their families,” the Kasulu DED noted.

“Most families in Kasulu live in poverty. They have between 10 to15 children. Coupled with the large size of their families, guaranteeing the welfare of their children is almost impossible. It becomes very difficult to raise and provide their children with basic needs,” he added.

 Family planning has been widely recognized as a key strategy to improve health and overall well-being of women and families.

 The United Nations estimates that for “every dollar spent in family planning, between two and six dollars can be saved in interventions aimed at achieving other development goals.”

 The acting Kasulu District Chief Physician, Robert Rwebangira, says only 15 to 49 per cent of women in the district use at least one method of family planning.

 “Last year, only 34 per cent of women applied for family planning methods,” he says, adding that the rate is still low, making the district to lag behind compared to other areas,” adding, “Most women in Kasulu prefer injection method of family planning which is followed by filleted contraception, pills and Norplant. Not only that but also teenage pregnancies have dropped to 17 per cent, and this means that in every 100 pregnant women, 17 are expectant teenage mothers.”

Out-dated beliefs

 Outdated beliefs and misconception are among major reasons that scare most women from using family planning methods.

 A medical doctor with Marie Stopes Tanzania in Kigoma Region, Dr Salim Jaribu, agrees that there are still some misguided myths about family planning methods especially in rural areas. 

“There is a wrong notion among communities that when an implant is inserted when the time to remove it comes it will have moved away from its insertion site, something which isn’t true,” he says.

 “There are others who believe that the women will be haunted by the children that they have “tied or closed inside them, something which is not true either,” he said, adding,” “How could that have happened while there is no child for the woman is not pregnant?” Dr Salim, the outreach surgeon queried, saying they have been addressing such issues of misconception during their outreach visit programmes in more than 35 health facilities in Kasulu.

 Dr Salim, a surgeon with Marie Stopes Tanzania outreach team in Kibondo, Kasulu and Kakonko districts said men’s perception on family planning is still a problem as most men view family planning as an issue that concerns women only. 

However, he says, there is a positive response in the use of condoms than Vasectomies by men as a family planning method.

 “I attended very few cases for vasectomies not more than five in 2017,” he adds.

 “The situation is mostly due to misconception that a man who undergoes vasectomy would not be sexually active. Also community’s perception towards men who undergo vasectomy is negative. Through our health education we keep addressing the misconceptions and stigma,” says Dr Salim.

 Despite men’s perception that family planning is women’s business, most women have no say in deciding to use the birth control methods. Rehema said when it comes to family planning issues; it’s for the husband to decide. “This is a man’s decision. I am a woman and I don’t have any say when it comes to things like this. I do what he wants me to do,” she notes.

 Her husband seems to feel proud to have many children, despite difficulties in guaranteeing their welfare.   “A pride of a man in out tribe is to have many children. Otherwise, society will look at you as having infertility problems. This is how we were raised. A woman cannot decide without her husband’s consent,” says Rashid.


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Saturday, January 27, 2018

DEAR DIARY: Avoid insensitive remarks



Janet Otieno

Janet Otieno 

People can say the most insensitive things with no regard whatsoever to how such remarks affect a person. Either said with good or bad intentions, we should know how to filter our words.

Making uncalled for remarks on someone’s weight, height, skin tone or personal life is going a tad bit too far.

We need to put boundaries and know which subject matter is open for comment or discussion. Some people are very sensitive and just a single comment badly articulated can cause a big problem. Let us not focus too much on other people’s lives, but live our own.

What’s worse is that the people who say these insensitive comments often times are our friends, family members or colleagues. These are the people that should be supporting you instead of putting you down or demoralizing your efforts. We should be able to know how badly our words can affect someone. Do not be oblivious of your actions.

Don’t be the kind of person that blurts out the first thing that comes to your mind. You need to have a “social filter” otherwise you will find yourself offending someone with each uttered word.

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Saturday, January 27, 2018

THE DIVA: This is why guys are the ‘ghosting’

 

By Christine Chacha

Imagine having the man you want being head over heels in love with you, so in love that he will never dream of leaving you. It would be great never having to worry whether he will leave but this is the 21st century and ghosting is the new trend. Ghosting is when one goes poof and disappears out of someone’s life without a word or explanation and guys are the ghosting masters. He could have promised a second date but never followed up, you could have been intimate and he vanished come morning, or he simply cut off all communication with no explanation.

Sometimes guys run for the hills when a relationship gets serious but in most cases they notice something in you that turns him off, or circumstances around your life scare him. So rather than deal with it or face you they opt to just ghost on you. Here are the most common reasons why guys ghost on women.

Your past history: If a guy finds out that you slept with someone he knows whether it was before or after the relationship, he will call it off. Men are governed by their pride and will have a hard time getting past the fact that you slept with someone he knows. Do some background check on a guy before you commit, if you discover that you had a romp session with one of his pals be cautious and let his pursuit of you be a sign that he is able to handle it. If not, just move on.

You want to change him: Women have a natural tendency to fix things; we always want to be a psychologist to every one including the men we date. I read somewhere that no woman can change a man except his own mother. In dating, men just want to confide and trust the women in their lives not to be changed. If you are determined to change and fix him, be sure that he will run.

Too dependent: Most women tend to make the men they are dating the center of their universe. If you lose yourself, and make him your all in all, he starts to freak out. You lose your friends, your life, hobbies and make him the source of happiness thinking that is how you can keep him. You will be shocked when he calls it quits without any valid explanation. Of course it’s good to need your man but when you sense that you are losing a bit of yourself in him, take a step back and remember that interdependence is what balances out a relationship

Too independent: A university degree, a great job and your self sufficiency may attract him to you. But, once he’s in, he wants you to let go a little bit and need him. Others hold on and become arrogant and bossy. It is at this point that you must learn to let a man be a man, allow him to meet your needs in a way that only he can or else he will feel unneeded and take off.

You can’t mind your own business: I advocate for keeping tabs on your man but it should not be taken to psycho levels. If you are ever watching and monitoring his every move on trying to decipher what he’s up to then you are getting to dangerous levels. Guys feel smothered or stalked when you monitor each and every move he makes. Give him some space. It gives him a chance to let his true feelings develop and show him you have better things to do.

You’re full of drama. Men hate drama yet women are full of it, sometimes it might be the hormonal issues in our bodies but sometimes it’s just psycho tendencies. If you’re up one day, then down the next with no explanation, it will only confuse him. You’re making it hard for him to figure you out and your attitude makes him feel like he isn’t wanted, he’ll disappear.

chacha.kristin@yahoo.com

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Saturday, January 27, 2018

ONE MAN'S VIEW: It’s true, some people marry for sex

 

By Marete Wa Marete

We cheat ourselves that we marry for companionship. I am deeply convinced that we marry for sex. Religion too has never bothered to make things clear for couples intending to make it out in a relationship in that regard.

On the contrary, men (and women) are encouraged to marry without having “sampled” their partner’s honey to make sure that it is sweet and compatible – the synonym of the Swahili saying “kununua mbuzi ndani ya gunia”. Loosely translated, it means buying a goat inside a sack. What this means is the blind marriage contract or relationship where one hopes that the partner is sexually compatible only to be disappointed later when it is too late.

Numerous trips to your local padre will not solve a thing – it is like closing the gate after the horse has bolted.

In any case, your padre who has never been anyone’s husband (except for clandestine sexual stints), will not be of any help. One Man’s View goes against the grain – “sampling” your partner to me is perfectly normal. Gone are days when we married virgins (by the age of twelve, you-know-what).

Ok! A marriage or relationship without sex is dead. I believe that although people talk of happy sexless marriages (not in Africa), where mates shake hands and fall to sleep is nonexistent. Indeed, it’s hard to imagine a happy relationship between romantic partners without sex involved.

If it gets to this point and the other partner has not done anything to try to remedy the situation, it’s safe to say that your relationship has gone to dogs and they are ferociously mauling it. The more resentment there is, the more likely it is that the love has all but disappeared from that bond. This sometimes may result from a relationship where you have not “sampled” your partner!

kaumbuthupeter@yahoo.com

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Saturday, January 27, 2018

THE PUB: He’s 60-plus, she calls him ‘husband’

 

By Wa Muyanza

Drinkers have the tendency to feel important, even when, like Wa Muyanza, they are not. While at the bar, you like to be called “mzee”, not because you cherish the idea of being reminded you’re past your prime, meaning it would be okay if you rejoined your Maker now, with people behind claiming the old geezer died, not of any illness, but simply due to “old age complications”.

At the bar, the barmaids and male spongers strive to make you believe you’re important, and when you thus feel and you happen to have money in your usually thin wallet, you become foolishly generous.

“Have one, kijana wangu, pata moja,” you’ll order the barmaid nearest to your table. You become even easier to fool when you’ve issues at home, like when the conduct of the brats who you accommodate, feed and pay school fees for make it look like it is they, not you, who is head of the house.

That, just because you don’t know how to change TV channels. Okay, you can’t operate the TV, but isn’t it you who bought the gadget? Isn’t it you who bought the king’amuzi? Young fellows who patronise the same bars with you don’t fuss about the fact that you aren’t on Facebook, Instagram, Tweeter (you aren’t a twit, why should you tweet?). However, the ones whose count on you for their very survival view you as a mshamba, even if they don’t say it in so many words.

Your better (ha!) half doesn’t help matters when she questions your habit of “wasting thousands upon thousands” while the main dish in your house comprises ugali and all manner of “edible grass”.

With this kind of mini tribe at the place you call home, who will fail to understand why you consider the “grocery” a better place to stay until you’re forced to leave by the unfortunate closing hour rule.

Your friend Ommy doesn’t leave the grocery until closing time because the woman whose five children call him dad (or “buda” behind his back), constantly accuse him of being unfaithful.

“Mama watoto strongly believes I come home late, not because I need to be out here with fellow men to exchange ideas, but because of some ‘small houses’ out there!” he laments as he refills his glass while summoning Tina, the pint-sized barmaid.

“Yes, my husband…another beer?” asks Tina.

“Oh, yeah, give me one for the road; it’s almost 11 o’clock, you know,” says Ommy.

“Can I have one also, my dear husband?” she says coyly.

“Of course; why not, my dear,” says Ommy.

Tina, who is hardly twenty, is of course, the furthest thing from being a wife to Ommy, a guy who was born several years before Tanganyika’s independence.

She, however, teases the grey haired man, who cannot remember the last time his children’s mother called him “darling”. The guy likes that, and Tina gets her beer and at times, a meal. It’s mutual.

wmuyanza@yahoo.com

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Saturday, January 27, 2018

Dealing with hurtful comments

Don’t be put down by the negative comments

Don’t be put down by the negative comments people make. PHOTO | COURTESY 

By Salome Gregory

Throughout her life cycle, a woman goes through a lot of changes. From puberty, pregnancy, menopause to hormonal changes, all these take place at varying stages, often times lead to change in body appearance or shape.

Given the situation, one can be faced with anxieties that only she can fathom. But society on the other hand might not be on the same page with her. Negative comments can be thrown at a woman without having any regard to what she’s going through.

These insensitive remarks can be hurtful and harmful, especially if they come from close friends.

From being overweight, underweight, too dark, too short, too tall to being pregnant, all these are examples of women who face some form of verbal harassment simply due to their appearance.

Woman brings you interviews with women who are coping with insensitive remarks from people around them that stem from their appearance.

It was on a cool Saturday morning, everything for her husband’s family get-together end-year party was well set at her house located in Mbezi beach, but Miriam Irenca, a 35-year-old primary school teacher, had a deep sadness that she’d been living with for the past five years of her marriage. The loving wife was not blessed with a child, even after trying many times.

As it is with so many other families that are not blessed with children soon after marriage, so many bitter words were already being thrown at her, attacking her infertility status.

The situation was about to get worse for Irenca after her and her husband were asked to host a family get-together event at their home.

“As soon as I got that information I smelled a rat, I knew my husband’s relatives, especially his sisters might try to steal a moment and make a scene just to embarrass me for having fertility issues,” says Irenca.

Before the get together arrangement Irenca would hear rumours about her not being able to conceive. It was never easy hearing the bitter comments, especially considering the fact that her gynaecologist confirmed to her that it would take a while for her to have a baby.

The party was in full swing. Everyone in attendance seemed to be enjoying themselves. However, the children who had come with their parents had started becoming unruly, jumping all around laying waste to everything on their path. When they got to playing with flowers that were beautifully maintained in the house, Irenca couldn’t resist but tell them off.

“I love my flowers and I spend a fortune each month maintaining them,” she reveals. But Irenca’s move of telling the children to stop destroying the flowers ignited an even bigger problem;

According to Irenca, one of her sister’s in-laws approached her and told her to stop harassing the children by stopping them from playing with her flowers. She went ahead and told her they are not happy about her being married to their brother because even after being married to him for five years; she’s failed to make him a father. They further attributed her intolerance for the way the children were playing to her failing to have children of her own.

“I couldn’t stop myself from shading tears. I felt offended and everyone at the party heard that statement. However, none of them came to my defence, including my husband. Though he later tried to apologise on behalf of his sister,” she says.

Insensitive remarks are harmful even when one tries to deal with them; this is according to physiologist Bonaventura Balige. “It is never easy to deal with such a situation because most of the time the negative remarks come from friends, relatives and sometimes co-workers,” he says.

He suggests that if a victim of insensitive comments wants to get over the negative remarks, she should learn to ignore what people say and block all the negativity that people try to throw at her.

“It is advisable that a victim should face the offenders with an honest opinion. She should tell the offenders that she doesn’t like their uncalled for remarks. Let them know that you don’t entertain anyone mocking your situation or making uncalled for inquiries,” the psychologist advises.

Don’t show weakness

Balige further states that it is okay to feel sad about the situation, but make sure you get your own time to cry when no one is seeing you. Do not give them the satisfaction of seeing you weak. Show them that you cannot easily be shaken by their words.

Amina Salehe, 45, is a mother of two children and has been married for the past fifteen years. For years she has been a victim of insensitive comments due to her body weight. People mock her for being thin, saying that she is too underweight.

“Even when I was growing up, this has always been my weight. I have never gone beyond 50kg for more than ten years now,” she says. Salehe has received various comments about how she looks. Some people advise her to gain weight; with others saying that she will never gain weight.

When she was first pregnant, her hope was that she’d gain weight soon after the pregnancy. Some people discouraged her, stating that she will never gain weight no matter what she does.

That was partly true, for nothing has changed until now. The situation has gotten so bad to the extent that some people have started suspecting she has HIV, much to her dismay.

Extreme measures

Out of desperation, Salehe resorted to exercising at the gym just to make her body more active and stimulate the ability to eat a lot of food and a well balanced diet for her to gain more weight.

According to the mother of two, exercising didn’t help much. “I had to stop going to the gym. I just decided to resign myself to my fate. The bitter comments hurt so much but there’s nothing I can do,” she solemnly speaks.

Available information from fitday.com says health experts are beginning to explore the idea that people who eat all they want and don’t gain weight are actually more active than the rest of the population, and therefore burn more calories. However, these folks don’t necessarily spend more time at the gym.

They probably engage in a practice known as non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT). NEAT may sound like a lofty concept, but it’s actually quite simple all physical activity aside from regimented workouts counts. When you stand up and pace while talking on the phone, chop cabbage for dinner or even twiddle your thumbs sitting at your desk, you are engaging in NEAT.

To some, negative comments are not particularly aimed at how they look, but rather their social lifestyle.

Praxeda Lameck, 30, a University of Dar es Salaam student as well as a bank teller has had to withstand pressure to get married. At her age, her parents, relatives and friends keep asking her why she’s not married yet.

The question has become so rampart now, one she faces everywhere. It has reached a stage where she avoids family gatherings just to steer clear of the nagging question about her personal life.

When faced with such a situation, Balige says if the offenders are the people you see everyday, then you should embolden your feelings by shielding the extent to which their comments hurt you. “you should appear to be strong in front of their eyes, this might help them stay clear of the matter,” he advises, adding; “focus on being kind to them doing simple things like smiling at them. Try to wear their shoes and think that they might have their own issues which they cannot handle and instead of focusing on their issues they divert attention to your situation just to justify their own problems,” says Balige.

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