Purpose of Narijibon Blog

Nari Jibon Project seeks to increase our students’ and staffs’ abilities through different ways: classes, practice, computers, internet, and now the Narijibon Blog. Readers and writers (our students & staff) of the Blog will both learn about our lives, culture, Nature, activities of people in Bangladesh and the Nari Jibon Project.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Monowara Begum who faced domestic violence after marriage

By Taslima Akter

My name is Monoara Begum. I was born in Araihazar, Dhaka. My father was a service holder and mother is a house wife. We are two sisters and one brother and I am eldest daughter of my parents. My father died when I was only 8 years old. After death of my father our family faced serious financial problem. My mother faced much problem to arrange sufficient food for us. One of my neighbors (I used to call her aunty) took me in Dhaka and gave a work in a house as domestic worker. My salary was only 50 taka per month. At the end of month I used to send it to my mother. Nearly 5 years, I worked there. When I was 13 years old one shop keeper (who has a shop near by my work place) proposed to marry me. First time I refused and told him that I am poor girl. In reply, he told me that there is no rule that poor girl can’t get married. After seeing her good behaviors and passionate I was convinced and at last I fall in love.

We got married without permission of my mother. After two days of our marriage we decided to go to Bramonbariya in my father-in-laws house. My hardship life started when I reached to my in-law’s house. I had to hear lots of bad commands regarding our marriage. My mother-in-low, sister-in-low started to misbehave with me without any cause. In my in-laws house I didn’t get anyone who liked me. They abused me both mentally and physically. They didn’t give me enough food and enough cloth to wear though they had no financial problem. My husband knew everything but he could not say anything as he got married without the permission of his parents.

After few months of our marriage I went to my village to meet with my mother. I stayed few days with my mothers but no one from my in-lows house communicated with me. After some days one of my husbands neighbor (aunty) came and took me with her and that was my offence. I had to stand outside of the house whole night as punishment. They didn’t open their door. Next morning the village people came to know about that and to stop the mouth of village people my father-in-low took me in his house (it was just show). After this incident they had increased their torturing. But outside people didn’t know it.

After one year of marriage I became pregnant. But I didn’t get time to rest and enough food during my pregnancy; even I had to work hard. After passing hardship days I gave birth of a female child. My new born baby became sick after 2 days of her birth. But no one took her to doctor and at last she died. Maybe for the careless and for working hard my daughter died after 2 days of her birth. Another fault was I gave birth of a female child and for that my husband also started to torture me along with others. My husband used to angry with me without any cause. He was unemployed because my father in low stopped his business after our marriage.

One day my husbands requested his father for giving money and send him abroad. My father-in-low said, “we hoped, we could take wedding gift (dowry) from your in-lows family. And If we could take wedding gift (dowry) we would not had to think about your future but you got married in a poor family and could not take any wedding gift.” My father-in-low was so angry and was saying that he will not give any money. After lots of request my father in low agreed to give money and my husband went to Malaysia.

I was in my in-low house when my husband went to Malaysia. My mother-in-low wanted I leave their house and to make me leave their house they again started to abuse me physically and mentally. Sometimes they didn’t give me any food. They all always wanted that I leave their house and then they can get her son married again.

My husband didn’t stay long time in Malaysia as his visa was false. He had to come back to Bangladesh after 3 months. He was very much upset as he had to come back to Malaysia. The people of my in-lows family started to sandaled me and was saying me opoya (ominous). In spite of all these abuse I was living with husband and became pregnant again. I wanted to safe my upcoming baby and for that I left their house without telling anyone.

I was passing my days in my mother’s house. Since I left my in-lows house no one communicated with me. In due time, I gave birth of a male child. It was the happiest moment in my life but my happiness didn’t last long as I had to think of the child’s father. He was not there. My mother started to work as a domestic worker after the death of my father because my brother was too young to work. Our family was poor and I felt that I was burden of my family. When my son was 6 months old, I came to Dhaka with one of my neighbor and took shelter in one of my relative’s house. Dhaka city is totally unknown to me and I didn’t understand where I can get work. I took a job in a garment factory with the help of one of my relative’s neighbor and my salary was only 300 taka. I had to do overtime work. After getting work I took my mother and younger brother in Dhaka city and we rented a room. My husband didn’t communicate with us even didn’t meet with my son.

After long days my husband went to our village to meet with us but he didn’t get us over there as we were in Dhaka. Later he got our address and came to Dhaka along with one of our neighbor who knew our address. My husband came to me and begged pardon for what he did before. He informed me that he had left his parents. As I used to love my husband I forgave him. He took a job in a garment factory. His income was very poor. We had to do hard and also do overtime for earning more money for our family. Few months later my husband left his garments job and managed a job in a travel agency. Now he is earning much to maintain the family. We have rented a separate room. I have resigned my garment job. Now I am mother of two sons. I want to make my son educated.

I knew about Nari Jibon activities from one of my neighbors. After visiting Nari Jibon office I became interested to take training from here. I was uneducated but have confidence that I can study and get admission of Nari Jibon in Bangla section. I have a dream that after finishing my course I would like to start home based tailoring business. I would like to help my family financially. My husband makes all the decision of my family. I can’t make any decision but I think when I will be able to earn and help the family financially I could make some decision and my husband will priorities me before making any decision. Now I can read, write and make sentence in Bangla, can make little word in English and also know little about addition, subtraction, multiplication etc.

I would like to give my special thanks to all Nari Jibon donors and also mother (founder) of Nari Jibon who built this institute and given us the opportunity to learn what we really need.

See the video of Monoara where she is expressing her feelings and also moment of her studying.

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