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BN Hot Topic: Is Domestic Violence Ever Forgivable?



As the Chris Brown and Rihanna saga unfolds…(What? You haven’t heard? Chris Brown allegedly beat his girlfriend Rihanna to a pulp early on Sunday morning. Apparently the two lovebirds were arguing over a saucy text message that Chris received when Rihanna threw the car keys of his silver Lamborghini out of the window. When he couldn’t find it and she insisted on walking home, he punched, bit – as in with his teeth and choked her until she passed out. They both subsequently cancelled their scheduled Grammy performances) Anyway, the issue might seem like the typical crazy shenanigans of the rich and famous but it highlights a very serious and common issue.

Domestic Violence.

According to Wiki, Domestic violence (also known as domestic abuse, spousal abuse, or intimate partner violence) occurs when a family member, partner or ex-partner attempts to physically or psychologically dominate another. Domestic violence often refers to violence between spouses, or spousal abuse but can also include cohabitants and non-married intimate partners. Domestic violence occurs in all cultures; people of all races, ethnicities, religions, sexes and classes can be perpetrators of domestic violence. Domestic violence is perpetrated by both men and women.

The Chris Brown and Rihanna situation has led to various conversations on the domestic violence issue and while most have been shocked and appalled, some of the responses and reactions to this issue have been very surprising. I have heard from more than one person that:

‘He is a young guy, he just made a stupid mistake’

‘That Rihanna chick seems like someone who has a sharp tongue, she probably provoked him’

‘Maybe she hit him first so he fought back’

‘Whatever, they will get back together’

‘If this is the first time he has hit her and he is sorry, if she still loves him then she should forgive him’…

We live in a society where, in many cases, women have nowhere and noone to turn to if they are facing these abusive situations. In Rihanna’s case, the police actually drove her to the hospital in the police car rather than waiting for an ambulance as they were so concerned about her injuries. Can you imagine that happening in Nigeria considering cases like Uzoma Okere’s. There are hardly any women’s shelters, access to counseling is sparse and bad advice is rife. Especially for married women in abusive relationships, even pastors and parents in most cases offer little solace. The advice is usually limited to forgive him and pray (not that prayer is ever a bad idea) but in most cases, women end up remaining very negative relationships. Although, we have also heard of cases where abusive men undertook serious counseling and actually ‘changed’ and broke those patterns of negative behavior but that is a select group. For men being abused by their partner, it is also very challenging as they probably feel emasculated by the situation so end of being isolated and subjected to further domestic violence. Lets not forget about psychological domestic abuse, there are very stories of popular and successful Nigerian women who appear so perfect and well put-together on the pages of magazines but have rock-bottom self confidence and other issues because of the serious psychological domestic abuse they face from their spouses.

So what are your thoughts on this issue? Is Domestic Violence ever forgivable? What advice would you give a woman i.e Rihanna in such a situation?

UPDATE: Rihanna’s Photo after the assault –  No words needed, this explicitly Illustrates the seriousness of domestic violence.


  1. sinker

    February 11, 2009 at 7:44 pm

    There should be a related article entitled: Is giving someone an incurable STD (Rihanna gave Chris HERPES) ever forgivable?

  2. Paris

    February 11, 2009 at 8:32 pm

    Sinker stick to the topic and stop writing off of fake news that was perpetuated by So he found out he gave her herpes while they were driving at night?? What? did his radio station announce it 2 him while driving? why dont pple even stop & think 4 one sec b4 jumping on d bandwagon of rumors??

    With that said, Bella i have no answer 2 ur question so i’ll just sit and watch SENSIBLE readers comment on this.

    As 4 me, the answer that comes straight 2 mind is “hell no” but then again we never really can tell what we’ll do in a given situation.

    However Chris Brown and Rihanna NEED to go their separate ways for now.
    Rihanna probably got 2 possessive and Chris Brown probably got to …*insert any word*… if u may.
    Nothing gives a man the right 2 hit a woman,POINT BLANK!

  3. shoo

    February 11, 2009 at 8:45 pm

    please ooo, she should defo dump him!!! as for whether domestic violence is forgivable or not, my answer is NO. However, once people are married, u know everything is a different ball game. Abi, if your husband slaps you once, will you pack your kids and property and immediately leave? I’m sure most Nigerian women wont. That is why we must watch for the signs while dating. All this ‘indomie noodles’ sharp sharp marriages tend to reveal lots of unpleasant surprises. Also pray sincerely about your partner before you marry. My 2 cents

  4. Kpakpando

    February 11, 2009 at 9:13 pm

    My answer is NO. Domestic Violence is never forgivable.

    I hate that pastors say, pray more for your husband.
    I hate that mothers ask, what did you do to provoke him?
    I hate that fathers say, work it out with your husband he didn’t mean it, ndo.

    I pray that I’m never put in that situation, and if I ever do find myself there, I have the courage and resources to leave immediately. I pray nobody ever convinces me to turn to fasting and praying regimens to keep my relationship together “for the sake of the children” or other reasons or tell me that it is the work of my enemies and I have to fight a spiritual warfare, when I’m being battered in the physical. I hope that while I’m saying back to sender 10 times, that I have also gotten to a safe place where I don’t have to endure further abuse.

    Having grown up in a home, where the only thing I saw my father being generous with was his slaps and blows; I know that it is difficult for an abuser to change his spots. I know how quickly arguing and “light shoving” turned into blood spatter on walls and “solo holidays in US” actually spent in a hospital bed with broken limbs.
    My mother stayed for a long time, and I really can’t say that I see how her staying benefitted us. I know it left me with a focked up view on men, fathers, marriage and relationships. I know it left different results on my siblings as well.

    The backlash that Rihanna has gotten over this sickens me as well. I can’t believe all the excuses I’ve seen, heard and read this week; even sadder is that it’s mostly women making excuses for him, suggesting that Rihanna is at fault for ending up in the hospital. Tufiakwa!

  5. Temi Kolawole

    February 12, 2009 at 9:46 am

    This whole issue is just sad. On Grammy night again. Heard Jay-Z was mad as hell.

  6. Tosin Nguher

    February 12, 2009 at 11:15 am

    Hey sinker has it been confirmed by anyone that she actually gave this guy herpes? does herpes just appear out of the blues or are there symptoms? How come they were out for a party just a few hours before and the next thing he’s bashing her blue blacK? I would prefer to stick with Bella’s explanation of what lead to the violence on Rihanna. Even if she gave him herpes, it’s definitely no excuse for bashing a woman to the extent of biting her, is he a dog or what? How many women have gone to the great beyond because of their philandering husbands, who infect them with HIV/AIDS? how many people have beaten up those stupid men? Phuleeeze give us all a break! no man has a right to beat up any woman, and i think it’s the women who allow themselves to be violated in some cases, most of the time just because they want to remain in a marriage or prefer to stick to the ‘woman is the weaker sex’ profile… I know a woman who was always beaten up by her husband, the day she fought back…even though his strength was more, she used her teeth! bit him so hard and he had a bad scar and felt some pain, since then he stopped laying his dirty hands on her. A bully would continue to bully you until you fight back and show no fear. But I’m not saying every woman should always fight an abusive husband, you can just leave that situation, period! well its easier said than done too…

  7. Ifez

    February 12, 2009 at 12:06 pm

    Talking in general i can understand. Some men act nice and when they can’t win an arguement they turn into brutal monsters. And outside of their dealings (relationships, friendships et al) they are seen as nice guys becos their side of roaring beast does not show and come up. Nigerian men shld begin to go for counselling and shldnt be afraid to see a therapist, counsellor, shrink, whatever name is deem fit…true. Most naija men have serious issues stemming from their childhood that they dnt want to talk about and they cover it up with drinking, womanising, anal sexing (i mean c’mon), child abuse, visiting prostitutes, domestic violence, drugs (marijuana, the popular type), living the fast life (so called) sometimes and most times they are just depressed and it is taking its toll on them.

    Being men they won’t talk about it they wld rather talk about sport and superficial stuff but when pressure point surfaces (mehn… boiling point!) See…brutal beasting. Mehn, that is some serious shit…that it isn’t funny at all. Women can help the men by leaving them so that they can get help (am talking about our generation) needed or better still not getting involved with them in the 1st place. When the signs are there, like: talking down on the female, emotional blackmail, deceit, staring too hard at other women in the presence of girlfriend, or intended girlfriend, bullying – not getting their way and everyone has to suffer for (biko anyi aka nnodi na primary school ka o nursery – biko ju kwam???), being honest about their feelings and not expecting the female to read their minds and having a life whilst expecting the female to have her own life..tone down on the possessiveness in general. Then again one can’t blame those type of men, women (most) make it easier for them as in ‘di di nu uko’ so they can’t breathe and exhale becos there are lack of men to go round; na today. Abeggi, those are society imposed lies. If the females in question (still talking in general) are firm with the men and they get the neccessary, required and needed help, common!!! The men will thank them for it and be grateful to them for life. And life becomes much easier, meaningful and fun for all the PARTIES involved. Trust me!!! These are my thoughts anywayz…so far…lol

  8. dScRiBe

    February 12, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    I’m sorry but IF a bagger hits u, he HAS to return the bride price. ’nuff said…

    ONLY a cowardly hidiot will even DARE to RAISE his fists at a woman NO MATTER the provocation, hence it is forgiveable BUT there r NO excuses 4 it, bagger MUST be apprehended…

  9. kimpossible

    February 12, 2009 at 2:09 pm

    no man has the right to beat a woman except if she`s one of those dat just need a lil slap to get her back to her senses(we all knw those kind) but seriously he cant use a woman as a punching bag it just shows wat a coward he is(most who are violent towards women often cant face up to a man their size or half) ……….

    i think dat every woman found in RiRi`s shoes shuld do ”a diary of a mad black woman”…….dnt b a mouse GET EVEN!

  10. Nneka

    February 12, 2009 at 4:23 pm

    Ifez and Kpakpando, you two have killed me with laughter! LOL.

    But I tooottallly agree with you. It’s funny how, with all the wisdom explicitly available in today’s world, young men in our generation are NO DIFFERENT from their/our fathers.

    Domestic volience in absolutely unacceptable.
    Especially if you are not married, you have NO EXCUSE to stay in that relationship except you are one of those agarachas that have sold themselves to the “men are scarce” theory. Ah women sha!!! Na we dey do ourselves…..

    Like ifez said, “Some men act nice and when they can’t win an arguement they turn into brutal monsters. And outside of their dealings (relationships, friendships et al) they are seen as nice guys becos their side of roaring beast does not show and come up.”
    …..I don tire for all these fake Mr Nice guys o and all their gullible pityparty members. It’s the girl wearing the (rotten) shoe that know how it hurts so get back to your lives and stop playing counsellor to a loser. FYI, women are more likely to be the victims here so don’t even try criticizing my focus on the male batterer.

    For those brothers thinking, “oh well, at least i have never raised my finger at her…”, let me ask you this…..Have you emotionally abused her with you self-centered, intimidating remarks that you think would “keep her on her toes”? You are just a step away from where Chris B is at the moment. Get a grip and face your issues squarely with your lady without resorting to emotional or physical violence, keeping a whore (aka the other woman) on the side and feeding her with lies on how ‘victimized’ you feel with you ‘unappreciative’ girlfriend. That shit is soooo old!! I can’t believe men still use that crappy excuse; but like I said they are no different from their/our fathers. It shows you are a chicken, a bully, less of a freaking man. Buu Huu to you!

  11. Lams

    February 12, 2009 at 4:58 pm

    What had happened was…
    Chris brown was in the car with Rihana and they had been fighting about his infidelities to her, and when Chris got a call from the girl that he has been cheating with, Rihanna started to assault him while driving…after Chris apperently had enough he started to beat her back. then she threw the keys out…I donèt get it why didn’t he just get out of the car…all you can do is pray for the best out of the situation, we can’t judge what went down…none of us were there only Chris Rihana and God…Beating men or woman is not what love is, where i live, woman beat on men, yes sounds funny but its true, you will not hear about it because the men are embarrased by it so they go through the abuse alone. This world is meant for love not hate…when will mankind understand that?

  12. formidable

    February 12, 2009 at 5:59 pm

    any man that hits a lady should be LOCKED UP .. … .this situation will not be forgotten too soon in his career.. hope he learns from this situation and ladies dont give any excuses for chris .. cuz there is no good excuse to hittin a female. a dog is a dog… Life is too short to be Makin stupid mistakes…i wish rihanna the safest recovery

  13. Chika Moses

    February 12, 2009 at 8:22 pm

    DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IS NEVER OKAY! I’ve seen things turn for the WORST! It’s never okay, if there’s abuse going on, BREAK UP! I’ve worked with troubled teens who live in an abusive atmosphere (watching their mothers get beaten or insulted or both on a daily basis), and they suffer the brunt of it as well. It’s much better to be alone than in a relationship that suffers incredibly! I can’t stress this enough… leave an abusive relationship. Love yourself, respect yourself, and give the abusive man or woman their walking papers!

  14. Chika Moses

    February 12, 2009 at 8:26 pm

    What disgusts me even more about the Chris Brown situation, is the number of infatuated, ridiculously stupid girls who stick up for him! Never make an excuse for weak men who get off on brutally beating up women. I read the article and the thought of not having a womens’ shelter in Nigeria is scary. That is a necessity!

  15. Fidelis Omozuapo

    February 12, 2009 at 8:54 pm

    I hold a woman responsible whenever I read/hear that a woman has been assaulted or beaten up by her partner (spouse). My reason is this – please ladies consider what the point I am making: before you go into any serious relationship with a man, na God I take de beg una my sisters, please carefully observe the way the guy treats his mum, his sisters (and if possible his female colleagues). If he honours and respects his mum especially when they have disagreements, if he can keep his cool while trying to make his point and show respect, such a man would almost certainly honour his girlfriend (and wife). The true nature of man is revealed in a period of conflict or disagreement (especially with or when a woman is involved). Ladies don’t get carried away by a man who kisses his mum on the chin or speaks so adorable about his mum yet either rain abuse/insults or beats up the woman that gave him life and brought him into this world any time they have disagreement. Look at how he treats his sisters also. Don’t get carried away by a man that buys you gifts but insults and beats you and locks you in the room. The foundation of an enduring relationship (and marriage) is peace of mind. If there are concerns or indications that your relationship with a guy wont be peaceful, work at it, if you can and pray to God for help and support. The power of love and faith in God can turn a beast into a prince – your prince of peace, a blessing from God. However, if the brute prides himself in being a beast and celebrates his animus by beating you at will, you should leave him, knowing you tried. And God will bless you for trying by giving you a worthy prince, worthy of your love and devotion. Having said that, don’t spend your quality life waiting when all indications shows that he does not respect and honour the woman that brought him into this world. May God help us all, amen.

  16. Ko Easy

    February 12, 2009 at 9:00 pm

    i heard she gave him herpes, he found out, flipped and beat the mess out of her ( i mean, who wouldn’t get mad to learn that their bf/gf gave them HERPES??)

    HOWEVER, i believe there are other ways to handle issues like that, violence is not the answer.. but then again, how many of us can react calmly to finding out that you contracted an STD from your bf/gf??

  17. tafia

    February 12, 2009 at 9:50 pm

    Una take this matter seriously oh…

  18. Kpakpando

    February 12, 2009 at 10:06 pm

    So even if she gave him herpes, it’s in the car that he found out? I didn’t know rental Lambos came with medical labs in the back seat? Abi his doctor called him in the middle of the night to give him results of his blood work? Give me a fricking break! Herpes is not the reason he beat her, he is the reason he beat her. He had many choices that morning, and he chose to use his fists. I wish people would stop getting away from the real issue at hand with all this extra (unconfirmed) information.

    Also if anyone gets infected with a STI/STD, the main person to blame is their damn selves. Unless you were forced to have sexual intercourse at gun point, you chose to take the risk when you engaged in kpanshing. If you know you don’t want herpes, insist on getting tested with your partner before doing the grown up with them.

  19. Kpakpando

    February 12, 2009 at 10:09 pm

    kimpossible, biko what kind of woman is that? A lil slap abi? What if it’s your sister, your mother or even you that’s deemed that type of “training?”
    Even if that’s a joke of some sort, it’s not funny. That’s how we keep raising generations of children to be batterers and victims.

  20. Trendy

    February 13, 2009 at 12:00 am

    @ Kpakpando – totally feeling you on this on.
    “I hate that pastors say, pray more for your husband.
    I hate that mothers ask, what did you do to provoke him?
    I hate that fathers say, work it out with your husband he didn’t mean it, ndo.”

    @ Ifez – i agree with you a lot of nigerian men need counselling, because they have deep issues from childhood that need to be resolved. But, alas the society we live in does not encourage counselling, so they walk around with their garbage and dump it on the rest of us.

    Note: Ladies a man will treat you as bad as you let him, please run after the first slap. THERE IS NEVER ANY EXCUSE TO HIT A LADY.

  21. Mamasita Diva

    February 13, 2009 at 3:17 am

    Domestic Violence is a NO NO!!

    Thank God she found out this side of him early! I mean they are really to young for all this!
    She can get out now or if she decides to forgive ( which she may.. and should not be judged for doing so) she must always have it in the back of her mind that he could STRIKE anytime anyday! thats the risk of being with a man ( or woman) that LASHES out!

    It is easy for everyone to say leave him leave him get out! Although some women do leave first time around it does take a couple of times before actually getting the courage to leave. Afterall being realistic you can not stop loving someone over night!!
    Domestic Violence is not only physical it is mental and verbal so the victim is generally vunerable. And you know us women we are stubborn oh! ah we want to know why!! and always have the last word.

    Maaan i do not want to go in to one but domestic Violence is NOT a good look at all! Chris needs to sort his act out and Ri Ri needs to speak to some one she can realy trust on a level and make some serious decisions. ah it is not easy oh! I do not envy them at all!

    Things must be blurry for them all and on top of it, it is bad enough your man is knocking you about but must the WHOLE WORLD know!

    As they say he who wears the shoes knows where it pinches them the most!. ( or something like that)

  22. Qed

    February 13, 2009 at 5:06 am

    hitting is definately a NO! NO!
    but….really this is my stand at the moment, we dont know what really went on its all rumors at the moment and I think there may be more to it Chris doesnt seem to be that kind of boy, rihanna on the other hand I think get craze pas “he hit me”…as she says!
    but no matter the craze he got no right to hit her

  23. Shirley

    February 13, 2009 at 5:56 am

    I watched an interview with Cris Brown a while back on Tyra…he talked a lot about how his mother was in an abusive relationship and how he was glad she got out and how he saw no excuse for any woman to put up with that…very interesting…

    That said, he is in the wrong for doing what he did – NO QUESTION regardless of what the reason was – that is some serious anger that he could not control himself knowing that he was also beating up the #1 or so female R & B singer in the country and that eventually everyone would know about this! Hello! But I guess that is what anger does to you. chris probably learned this as a behavior growing up…

    This is all his fault but the reality is that we leave in a society that does nothing for victims of domestic violence as children who grow up and watch this unfortunate situation….These boys/girls/men need counseling and therapy on how to deal with their anger/controlling issues otherwise the cycle continues.

    Also a lot of people are screaming …oh, its so wrong, e.t.c. b/c its rhianna but the truth is that a lot of people hear their neighbors fighting or even see signs of abuse, and they turn the other way…they don’t want to be involved…its not “their” problem or she/he prob provoked it. I think thats the saddest part and why it continues to take place in all societies…Nigeria it’s even worse…

  24. Earthwhisper

    February 13, 2009 at 6:04 am

    Please enough bs…Chris has no bruises!!! Who beat him? Rhianna had black eye, torn lip, and was chocked to being unconcious according to the facts in the police report! The police had to drive her to the hospital – not because she is Rhianna but because she was soo messed up! Give me a break…Nothing else matters. When you sugar coat this ….you are adding to the problem.

  25. kelendra

    February 13, 2009 at 1:45 pm

    Physical violence is definitely a no-no. I dont care the reason.

  26. albert

    February 13, 2009 at 2:05 pm

    I cannot begin to imagine what went wrong with Chris Brown. Didn’t they tell him you never win a fight with a woman? No matter what, they always win. Even if Rihanna kicked him in between the legs, he should have handled the situation better. I really feel for him as this ugly incident will very much affect his career.

  27. Angelica

    February 13, 2009 at 6:13 pm

    chris is just a typical guy,he cheats on her,she complains,and her beats her up.And am sure that is’nt the first time,wonder why she had to put up with him this long.its not like they are married with kids.She’s young,beautifull,Rich and famous,she can have anyother guy she wants,chris simply doesnt deserve her.

  28. munira

    February 13, 2009 at 7:01 pm

    i love chris brown but what he did is unquestionably wrong. no matter how much a woman provokes u, we have the choice to always walk away!

    violence in a relationship is a no go area. the moment it happens, u take a hike, if u stay then na u kill urself!!!

  29. Afribabe

    February 13, 2009 at 7:12 pm

    seems like u africans guyz have alot 2 say bout dis issue and it looks like yall know its very wrong. on the other hand u africans beat on a lady like its nothing so i hope dis is something that wuld make u guyz chill back and know that beating on a lady doesn’t u mean have power.

  30. Geekgirl

    February 13, 2009 at 8:13 pm

    My own is that no one knows what really went down as both sides have not released any public statement
    but if he really did hit her the way it was potrayed then that is messed up!if he had been hitting her b4 he probably thought she’d never report cos of the embarrassment it will cause for her!but then begin a victim ain’t no embarrassment.
    if it is true his career is most likely over while hers will sky rocket..she’ll probably go on all d talk shows and talk about the ordeal and probably start some foundation for victims of domestic abuse and then write couple songs about it!

  31. lovely

    February 14, 2009 at 7:26 am

    Domestic violence is not a good thing at all,I have been there and you can’t believe am still with the guy because he has changed.(not all men change) No matter what a woman does men don’t have the right to raise their hands to hit,push,slap(etc)In Rihanna’s case we all don’t know what went wrong.just wish the rumors could stop..especially the one of her giving him herpes,only God knows what really went wrong..they are both still very young and I wish them the best I hope he has learnt a lesson from this situation and I also wish Rihanna a quick recovery..

  32. Don-Dubai

    February 14, 2009 at 4:08 pm

    Huh, wonder why…. love fades, i can’t imagine beating up my woman even if the love fades i plan to exit safely,,,, better enough

  33. albert

    February 15, 2009 at 10:56 am

    The situation escalated so much that it brought out hitherto unknown Chris Browm talent – cannibalism. I read she had bite marks.

  34. oyenike Alliyu

    June 1, 2009 at 10:22 am

    Domestic violence is bad and no one should be caught in such act,even God frown at it,but that not enough reason to leave ur patner as long as he/she is willing to change in that u do not know wat ur partner future derive pressure in.

  35. Mike Ofomata

    June 22, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    The answer to your question according to my friend Chief Zebrudaya Okoroigwe Nwogbo, Alias 430 is neither nor. Remember it takes two to tango as they say but seriously voilence is never forgivable no matter the circumstances, but the ladies need to watch their mouths. Some guys have a very short fuse and bad mouthing them only goes to light up the fuse.

  36. tyuielethd

    February 24, 2012 at 4:31 pm

    Hello, i’m the very first time to come here,i am very happy to produce pals with you, in case you have any problems, i’m very happy to help you!

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