It was in 2014. I was only 11 years old, in class six and a month after the dawn of my menstrual cycle when my biological father started raping me. My name is Mercy from Kwale County. I am the first born in a family of four- three girls and one boy. We were ‘common mwananchi’ people. None of my parents was a civil servant. They were uneducated. None had the connection with a politician or anyone in the government. So that means no one could be close to ‘NYS’ or to being corrupt or close to the fruits of corruption. In short we were poor and still we are.
My father worked in the nearby sugar plantation while my mother had been promised a job in Mombasa by her sister (Aunty Diana) who lived at Likoni. So she had left with our brother who was then a year old. It was I and my two sisters (Betty and Becky) 7 and 4 years old respectively and our father who were left at home. Father used to leave home very early in the morning but he would make sure he was back before 7pm to make sure everything was fine before leaving again for a cup or two of Mnazi. And although he would sometimes come home very late and very drunk, it never bothered us.
And, no matter how poor we were and how drunkard my father was, we were lucky to have a shelter and we never went hungry or naked. He was a responsible drunkard and mother trusted him. They understood each other. They loved each other. And they seemed happy together. So I believe that was the same reason she left us with him.
But things changed two months later. One day he came home at around mid-night and instead of going to his room he slept in ours but on the floor. He was our father and very drunk and thus that again it did not bother us. After three days, again he came to our room. I couldn’t therefore let our father continue sleeping on the floor and I thus woke him up and offered to help him to his room. But when we got there, things changed. He forcefully pulled me to bed and for the very first time not aware of what he was happening, he raped me. He thereafter regretted his action. He cursed his drinking, apologized and warned me not to dare tell anyone. It was really painful and in the following day I couldn’t even stretch or lift my legs. He therefore went ahead and bought me painkillers and assured me that everything will be just fine.
Three days later he came again to our room. But this time round he was a little more sober- he could think. He told my sisters to go and sleep in his room. As I tried to leave also he grabbed me back and whispered, “I am sorry my daughter the damage is already done.” We slept together and he raped me the whole night. And from that day it became a routine, he would do that after every two days and on weekends, every Saturday, he never missed.
This immensely affected me. I would always have headaches. It affected my concentration and consequently my class performance. In that term I dropped from being in position one to position thirty five. It is then my class teacher madam Jenifer became concerned and came to talk to me. I therefore explained everything to her with a promise that she will never tell my father.
Madam Jenifer took me to hospital immediately where after a series of testing I was found to be pregnant and on top of that infected with Chlamydia. I was given the necessary treatment and because she did not want to create an alarm, she again allowed me to go home. She assured me that everything was going to be fine. Discreetly, she called my mother and informed her that there was an emergency and that she had to come home that evening because they were to meet the following day. My mother explained how she couldn’t make it that evening but she will try at around 9am to be there.
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That night father came with a certain medicine that he forced me to take. He had already realized that I was pregnant and by morning the baby was no more. I was just seeing things happening. By the time my mother came, she found me bleeding and she had first to take me to hospital. My father had already left as usual. It was while at the hospital when she called madam Jenifer who after learning that we were in the hospital she came imediately and explained everything my mother.
To cut the long story short, from there they immediately reported the matter to police. My father was arrested. He was put into custody for about a month to allow for investigation. He was later arraigned in court and at the end the long process, he was given a judgment of twenty years in Jail.
Five years later, though I never saw him again(and I don’t want to see him) what I heard is that he was later set free after his people bribed for his freedom. One relative who sympathizes with us even told my mother that he has already married another woman.
I am now 16 years, a form two student studying in a certain national girls’ school in Kiambu county and whenever I boards the Madaraka Express either heading home or to school I thinks of how my father completely changed my life, how he took advantage of my innocence. Whenever the other girls boast of their virginity, I remembers how cruelly I was robbed mine by my own father. When they sweetly talk of their boyfriends, I usually don’t understand their happiness because in every man I sees my cruel father. I don’t know whether I will ever forgive him.
“It was all my fault, forgive me my daughter. I thought he was the best father. I trusted him. Please forgive me my dear. I promise to do everything to make it up to you. Please, please my daughter,” my mother remorsefully asked for forgiveness and I forgave her but whenever I sees her, I sees a mother who was not there for her daughter.
I always ask myself how life could be so unfair to me.
This is based on a true story. So let’s advice this girl.