Monday, July 11, 2011

Of Childhood Myths and Realities

Austin Kaluba takes us down his memory lane.

This week, I will go down memory lane with you by highlighting some memories of motherhood and growing up in Zambia.

Among his memories…

Single motherhood was really frowned upon. Single female teachers who got pregnant were dismissed from the teaching service for fear they would set a bad example for girls. The practice lasted up to the early 70’s.

Parenting can be very challenging, which is one way polyamory and polygamy can actually be beneficial. But some of the same people who would run a single mother out of town would do the same to a poly family. I think what matters most in an employee is the ability to do the job, not their sexual orientation, marital status, or parenting situation.

Sometimes we were told as boys to put salt in the relish when our older sisters were menstruating. It was traditionally believed that a menstruating woman should not add salt to relish for fear of contaminating the family.

That's the old “girls are dirty” thing that taught females to fear or despise their bodies and their natural sexuality.

When we reached our teens, we were told that our d---s would be burnt if we slept with girls.

“Girls are dirty, sex is bad.”

Our parents kept several members of the extended family. An average Zambian family would have 7 to 8 children. As children we would sleep in the same room and sometimes incestuous sexual relationships would occur.

This is something that has been common around the world throughout human history.

As children we made love ukuchita ifyabupuba-doing foolish things-in abandoned houses, old cars, ditches or classrooms. We never had orgasms but just got tired after making several hissing sounds by sucking our teeth.

Kids will be kids. They should be raised to appreciate their bodies, their sexuality, and the diversity of the bodies and sexuality of others, not taught to fear or hate.
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