One Sunday afternoon, I had just returned from church, my wife was cooking the ritual Sunday jollof rice while I was playing with my daughter and then I received a call from the police station.
Good afternoon Sir, Please Is this Mr Segun Ogedengbe
Yes Ma, I said,
Your mother has been arrested by your stepfather. Come and bail her ooo.
I was reluctant to go but my wife persuaded me to go bail her. I picked up my car key and drove to the station. I got to the station and realized my mother had been in the cell for three days. I was livid!!! she got into a verbal altercation with her husband and he called the DPO to come and pick her up. She was arrested like a thief!!!.


She had marks on her body due to the insect’ bites. I advised her to move out of my step-father’s house and start living in my brother’s house who had relocated. The policemen advised that I take her to her husband’s house. They spoke about how she has suffered with the said man and how she should also enjoy the good things. I bailed her and after dropping her at her home, I drove to my house because I had to resume work on Monday morning. As I was driving, I had flashbacks, I parked my car and cried my eyes out.

My mother has not been a good person and we had a strained relationship. Sometimes I would wonder if she was my mother or a monster. I could say my mother was very wicked to me and my siblings.
As a child, I realized it was just my mum and did not see my dad often. I am the first of three siblings. I have a younger sister and a brother. I always had to take care of my siblings.

We all lived in a church and it was a terrible experience. My mum was a prophetess in this church. We attended the community primary schools and were always sleeping in class because we hardly slept at home. Because my mum was a prophetess, we were always in the church when vigils were held. This church was one of those deliverance churches. We would attend vigils almost every day. During the deliverance, pastors including my mother would accuse people of being witches. If they denied it, they would get beaten until they ‘confess’.

Often I was accused of being a wizard during the vigils.
The spirit of God is saying that you are a witch!!!!! eskeleboto eskelebeto ti o lele, a prophet would say.
Yes, I am a witch, I said.
You have a ranking in the marine kingdom rara rere shhhhhh
Yes, it is true, I killed my grandma because she offended me, I would say.
I would usually just accept being a wizard/witch to avoid being beaten. I was still beaten but not as much as if I denied it.
The individuals who were accused of being witches were to fast for days. There were days I was locked in a room for three days without food or water. I would not see the breaking of the day nor the dawn. I also missed school during this period. I was just a young child going through horror.

I had marks from brooms used in beating me. I was the true pictorial description of Kwashiorkor. Very thin with a big stomach, and scaly rashes on my skin.
Apart from the compulsory three days fast whenever I am accused of being a wizard. We also had to fast for days from the church and my mum would not cook because we were the prophetess’s children.

I would visit my mum’s friends. Anytime they offered me food, I would beg them not to tell my mum. I also took this food to my siblings to share with them.
Myself and my siblings were malnourished. We wore torn school uniforms and were poorly taken care of. We were the children of ridicule in school and on our street. We were practically abused physically. The abuse graduated to sexual at age 13.

In the house we lived in the church, we also had people living with us. Individuals who got delivered and did not want to return to their “witch” family were allowed to stay with us. They were predominantly women and these women were mostly young adults.The abuse started with these women who started showing their breasts and asking me to touch them. I was told to fondle their breast and touch their private parts. Very soon, these women started touching my penis and forced me to have sex with them. I would just lay on my back while they did the work. They would bring pornographic videos for me to watch so that I would know what to do next time.
I told my mother once and I was mercilessly beaten. She took me to church and the spirit of immorality and spiritual wife was beaten out of me. This abuse continued till I was 17 years old.

My mother got married to one of the people who came for deliverance at the church. After the wedding, they moved to Lagos and I moved in with them.
Not long after, I gained admission into the university. I remember my mum saying “My husband cannot pay your school fees, don’t put your responsibility on my husband” I started menial jobs to save for my school fees. I would come home and my mum would just refuse me food. My stepdad would say “I am not the person telling her to treat you like this”. “There is food to go around, I don’t know why she is doing this”.

I gained admission to study computer science in school. I started learning programming while schooling and doing menial jobs at the same time.
When I graduated, I was already proficient in software development. Coupled with my degree in computer science, I got good jobs.

Finally I moved out of my mother’s house and continued my hustle. I was also able to take care of my siblings.

My stepfather turned out to be a serial cheat and a wife-beater as well. I just believe my mother deserves it because of what she made us go through.

Later in life, My mother had apologized and sought my forgiveness, and our relationship had gotten better but I get angry afresh any time I have these flashbacks.

I felt terrible when I found out my sister went through hell as well. She was raped multiple times during private deliverance services by these so-called prophets. I was so angry I could not protect my younger sister.

I have started my journey of forgiveness with Arogi Foundation. I was ready to cough out millions for therapy only to find out that it is free. They have licensed clinical psychologists ready to help you with your journey.

My name is Segun, I am male and I have gone through sexual abuse.
Call 080011002200 for FREE THERAPY

Adetutu Somade


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