Joyce Nekesa

Joyce Nekesa got married at 17 years of age. They were neighbours, he noticed her just like she had noticed him. They decided to get married. He got some cows and paid to my father. After paying the cows, we had five children together. After having the five children, he started neglecting her and he was always in the company of other women. Whenever she raised this with him, he would start beating her. Each time he beat her he would say, “I am beating my property, I am beating my cows,” because his father had paid three cows and three goats at her traditional marriage. Joyce has known no peace or happiness in her marriage. She believes that sometimes her husband mistreated and beat her so she could leave to enable him bring another woman to her home. But when she did not leave, he left me and rented a place at a trading centre. He lived there with another woman. Joyce stayed on and managed her small food vending kiosk; selling tea and chapati. He however would come to take all the money from the sales. Each time she asked him where the money we were making from the business was going, he would tell her, she has no right to ask him. He would respond saying she was just a squatter in his home and have no right to question him on issues regarding the money she made from the kiosk. When he was upset, he would beat her using a whip, his hands and kick her with his feet. One day he beat her badly. She tried to defend herself but failed because he was strong. She decided to leave and returned to her parents’ home. Her father started to pressure her to return to her marital home because they did not have cows to refund her Bride Price; adding that when she left, she left to go get married. When her mother tried to speak on her behalf, he could not let her say anything concerning her and her marriage.