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DADDY DIARIES: Child custody and the gender debate

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HILLARY LISIMBA

By HILLARY LISIMBA
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From the days of Abraham, the social structure was that the men held all the centers of power, while the women tended to the children.

In essence, matters to do with household and baby care were left to the fairer sex, the assumption being that men could not be found dead doing them, and if they did the results would be disastrous.

As modernity kicked in, the world recognised that mothers, sisters, wives and girlfriends too had sharp brains and wonderful ideas that could do wonders in board rooms, and women empowerment took root.

The same world has, however, for some reason turned a deaf ear to the fact that men too are equal partners in parenting who can independently raise children as perfectly as any mother would.

Actually, sometimes the better parent in a family is the dad, but it takes an open minded mom to not just see it but also take a backseat and let him run the show.

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I once had a conversation with a woman who categorically told me that if the baby was admitted for whatever reason, her heart would only be at peace if it is her spending those nights in the ward beside the ailing one. This is regardless of whether or not the husband is willing to spend the night there.

In other words, even if that woman was married to the most hands-on and able husband on the planet, she would not trust him to come through for the baby at such a critical moment.

This is a baby the two sired and have most probably raised together, but somehow the male partner would be viewed with doubt. I can tell you for a fact that her hard-line position on this mirrors that of many mothers out there.

This is the mindset that has, to a large extent, caused a never-ending tussle between the two genders when the once good times end in a fight for child custody.

The women tend to reason from the angle of ‘show me you are able first, then just maybe I can trust you with the baby’ while the men’s maxim is ‘trust me with the baby first, then judge my performance.’

In most instances the ladies win; by simply not taking the risk to trust their men with baby care.

HEARTBREAKING
It is against this backdrop that we were recently treated to the heartbreaking video of a young girl clinging to the dad who had been ordered to hand her over to the mother.

The country has pointed fingers at the magistrate who made the obnoxious ruling, but any pedantic out there would argue that she was working within the law.

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Chapter 153 of the Separation and Maintenance Act vests more power in a mother to seek custody for a child who is under 16 years . . . Unless there is sufficient evidence to discredit her.

In other words, the man must work twice as hard to not only prove his abilities but also discredit the woman for him to be considered fit for custody.

On this the law is failing us, totally. Such a serious system should not seem to be partisan in the gender war, rather begin by putting the child’s interest first through heaping emphasis on ‘the most deserving parent’ regardless of whether it is the father or mother.

And therein lies the problem.

As the man sat on that wooden bench trying to absorb the unfortunate news (and our judicial system needs to work on getting better seats), I saw myself in him.

He is a father who, like me, gave a blind eye to the world order and raised a baby in the absence of the mother.

It is however absurd that the law, which is supposed to be the voice of reason, had ignored all his years of raising the girl and deemed the other party better, because she is the mother.

The happy ending is that someone with a more reasonable mind saved the court’s blushes by overturning the ruling to allow the man have his baby back.

I bet the case was reviewed because one; the young girl exonerated the gentleman in court by totally refusing the mother, and two; the social media uproar.

If the girl was slightly younger, not the type to react the way she did or the video was not shared online, custody would have easily gone to the mother, who as we have learnt is what I would brutally term as toxic.

The deserving parent would have lost his baby on the basis of being a father.

I am lucky enough to have gotten an opportunity to share my story to such a large audience, but there exist many men out here quietly raising their kids alone.

The sad bit is that unless the law is amended and our judicial system employs people who can use wisdom in places the law shows gaping loopholes, men will continue losing their children to undeserving mothers because they have a lower hand in matters custody.

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Six ways to prevent pregnancy stretch marks

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The best way to avoid the stretch marks after pregnancy, is to prevent them from occuring (Shutetrstock)

Stretch marks can really weigh down on your esteem especially if you enjoy wearing particular outfits and partaking in certain outdoor activities. They take a long time to heal and some don’t go away completely.

ALSO READ: How to use a pregnancy pillow

Prevention is always better than cure and that’s why the best way to avoid the stretch marks after pregnancy, is to prevent them frfom occuring, and prep early on.

With enough preparation, you have a higher chance of preventing stretch marks or reducing their appearance from pregnancy.

Here are simple tips on how you can avoid stretch marks during pregnancy.

  1. Keep your weight in check

Stretchmarks appear whenever there is rapid weight gain or weight loss. And during a pregnancy, there is usually a lot of weight gain in many women, which results in stretch marks on the skin. However, you can prevent this by doing some light exercises and by avoiding overeating especially the unhealthy foods. For your diet, ensure that you eat foods rich in vitamin C and zinc. Having a healthy lifestyle not only prevents stretch marks but also keeps you and your baby healthy throughout.

  1. Drink lots of water

Your main focus during pregnancy should be drinking enough water. Water will hydrate your skin from the inside and improve its elasticity. Drinking a good amount of water everyday has significantly prevented the presence of the streaks in pregnant women.

Moisturize your skin to improve its elasticity externally (Shutterstock)

  1. Moisturize your skin

Now that we’ve seen how you can improve your skin’s elasticity internally, let’s look at what you can do externally. There are so many oils and moisturizers that can significantly prevent the appearance of stretch marks. Some of the best natural oils include cocoa butter, Shea butter, avocado oil and vitamin E.

You can get some stretchmark prevention lotions sold in stores although they might not be as effective. Normal moisturizing lotion should also work well because it’ll keep your skin moisturized.

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ALSO READ: Woman ditched by text before wedding becomes mum alone thanks to sperm donor

  1. Massage your skin

As you moisturize your skin, it’s important to massage the oils in every day. Massaging your skin is one of the unbeatable hacks because it also has many other benefits including anti-aging benefits. Basically, massaging improves your skin’s elasticity so you need to massage the oils in whenever you apply them.

  1. Exfoliate

This simple process will help keep the stretch marks away when done right. Using a hydrating scrub or an exfoliating glove could really improve your skin rapidly. They will help to remove the dead skin cells and improve the effectiveness of the creams and oils. Do this just a few times a week for best results and don’t go overboard with the scrubbing.

  1. Be consistent

Preventing stretch marks needs a lot of time and dedication. If you want to see real results, you have to be consistent with your routines throughout. Following up for one week and the skipping for the next two months won’t help. It is a commitment. Be patient with the process and focus on a day at a time.

Sometimes however with all this prepping, some stretch marks might still occur. But it’s much better to do all you can to reduce the appearance of some. At the end of the day you really can’t tell.

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Biashara lazima! Tanasha Donna to work with Diamond even after dumping him

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Maina Kageni,Tanasha Donna and Diamond Platnumz

Tanasha Donna has revealed that she would still do projects with Diamond Platnumz in the future.

The mother of one parted ways with her baby daddy barely a month after they released a collabo Gere.

Also read;

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Asked whether she would work with the Tanzanian singer during an interview with True Love, Tanasha said,

As an artist 3-4 years from now if we are in the same space mentally —I have to relate to an artist to work with them—then why not?

She added,

We are living in a female era. In a conscious era. Women are being elevated especially in the music industry.

Tanasha went through a lot while dating Diamond and when asked if she would ever go back to Diamond, she said,

AT THIS POINT, MY MIND HAS BEEN TRAUMATISED TO THE POINT I DON’T KNOW IF I COULD.

Also read;

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“All you Wasafi artistes seem to be s#x addicts” Queen Darleen calls out Lava Lava in new jam

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Queen Darleen and Wasafi’s own ‘Lava Lava’ are back on the music scene with ‘Bachela’. Just as the name describes it, the song is about Bachelorhood, with Lava Lava in support and Queen Darleen against it.

A song that gives the pros and the cons of bachelorhood. Lava Lava comes out in support of a free, youthful life while Queen Darleen bashes the multiple relationships most bachelors tend to engage in before they turn sour.

WCB artist, Lava Lava

The WCB first lady, who recently tied the knot early December 2019, flaunts of a healthy, comfortable married life.

Meanwhile, Lava Lava who is yet to marry, cites Tanasha and Diamond’s relationship as a good example of what rushing into marriage can lead to.

Ex-couple, Tanasha and Diamond

Bachelorhood

Darleen throws a bait in Lava Lava’s direction asking when he plans to tie the knot because the many good women around, might not be around forever.

Eti Lava utaoa lini? Mbona unazingua? Wazuri wengi mjini, wenzio wanachukua.

The female musician calls him out for changing girls everyday, each coming in a different package but at the end of the day, he remains single.

Lava Lava responds that he is waiting upon the Lord, to bless him in his time but for now, he is enjoying his bachelorhood.

Moyo wa kupenda sina, ya nini njipe homa. Doa majaliwa nasubiri apange Maulana. Atanitunukia, bado naula ujana.

Marriage

Darleen warns him of fooling around too much because everything he does has its consequences. Before flaunting how blissful marriage life is.

Ujana maji ya moto, utakunguza. Kwanza kuolewa raha. I am glowing, my husband owns the both of us.

Queen Darleen

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The young artist instead came out to remind Darleen how her marriage to businessman, Isihaka Mtoro was constantly criticized.

On Instagram, you are being trolled that you took someone else’s husband because of money and you agreed to be a second wife…I’d rather be a bachelor.

Bashing:

Utanishauri nini? Wakati wangu ndo sasa. Mi mtoto wa mjini. Let me have fun, I don’t need stress right now. Kwanza naona mapenzi faida hayana.

The 26-year old artist went ahead to diss Tanasha and Diamond’s relationship that eventually went down the drain.

Ask Dangote (Diamond Platnumz), he argued with Tanasha and she unfollowed all of us.

Diamond and Tanasha Donna

New age

An irked Queen Darleen admitted that in relationships of nowadays, the minute you fight or have an argument, the news has already gone viral on social media.

Only for Lava Lava to defend that that is exactly why he is keeping his cool in matters, marriage.

Ndo mana nimetulia, navuta pumzi, staki kuenda mbio. There is no need to pretend I am a pro where I am not.

Lava Lava and Queen Darleen

Darleen even attacked WCB artistes for being s#x addicts.

Wasafi wote, inaonekana mnapenda ngono.

Check out their new song.

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