The Soloist, Contributor
I count myself lucky to have walked away from all but one of my relationships after periods ranging from four months to four and a half years. I have always felt strongly about being told by a man that he is tired of me. For that reason I have never lived with one, neither have I placed myself in the 'baby madda' position.
So having heard of last week's slaughter by a seemingly jealous man, of his infant daughter and himself after his woman decided enough was enough, if I ever decide to walk away from my present relationship, I will make sure I secure citizenship in a far away land first. Not taking any chances at all. Some of these men are certainly coming unglued.
I have heard all sorts of 'reasons' for men going ballistic. They range from depression, failure to show/express emotion or unresolved childhood issues to mental illness.
Do some digging
I also have a friend who is an ex-cop who, when his daughter became serious about her husband, he used all his investigative powers and skills to thoroughly check out his family history and background for any hint of mental disease or other social dysfunction that would put his precious angel at risk. Perhaps women need to do a lot of digging before they go and start living with these men.
And as for this 'living with' business, what's up with that anyway? I firmly believe that women set themselves up for just about anything when they shack up so early in life without the benefit of a marriage licence. I would much rather be married 10 times than live with a man indefinitely without any security of tenure. My father always told me that if a man can get free cows, he will not buy milk. I added my own twist ... if I am good enough to be your baby madda, I'm even better to be your wife, so marry me first ... damn it!
Don't get me wrong, husbands can become violent too - and they do. But when a couple has the blessings of family, church and the wider community, there are more eyes paying attention to them. Sometimes, too, I do believe women see the warning signs and fool themselves into thinking the men will change.
But most importantly, Jamaicans have to get back to being their brothers' keepers. In many instances, people always "know something", "see something", "hear something" or "suspect something". It's time to start telling what you see hear and feel. Also, the girlfriend network is important. Never forget your gal pals just because you think you now have Mr Right. When he turns on you, it's the girlfriend whose shoulder you will cry on. Simply put, we have to watch out for each other a lot more than we are doing now.
We have become too busy, too selfish and too caught up in our own daily stresses to show care and concern. Let's do what we can to stop this cycle of murder and mayhem.