Why are we a nation who adores murderers, rapists, and violent men?

Nurul Dahyatul Fazlinda Mat Haizan, her mother, siblings, and cousins reunite with Nurul Dahyatul's father in prison. Source: The Star Online

Yesterday, I read with despair and bewilderment about 9-year old Nurul Dahyatul Fazlinda Mat Haizan who was first subjected to an acid attack by her father and would later meet him in prison with “tears of joy”. The reason why Nurul Dahyatul would weep for joy upon meeting her violent father as if reuniting with a long-lost loved one is bewildering and raises a lot of question marks.

Attacked while asleep by her father who “flew into a rage” during an argument with her mother, the disfigured girl has presumably forgiven her father’s violent deed and accepted his action as pure “accident”. Nurul Dahyatul is not the only one who sustained injuries; her mother and two other siblings also suffered from burns.

Yet despite the traumatic event, Nurul Dahyatul and her mother appear adamant that the man who kept chemical weapons in the family home, who would go as far as to disfigure his family and subject them to psychological distress, has reformed and is by nature gentle and worthy of their love and devotion. Nurul Dahyatul’s mother, Ku Huzaimah, also believes that because Nurul Dahyatul was his “favourite” child he had never meant to hurt her.

Nurul Dahyatul and her mother represent a part of similar cases in Malaysia that invite suggestions of delusional behaviour. In June, a Malay woman insisted on posting bail for her husband after he had raped their daughter three times. The woman explains to the incredulous court room that “As a wife, I know my husband is problematic”. In another case some time back whose details I cannot recall, a Malay woman defended her husband even after he had murdered their daughter. Her reason for standing by her man? Because they were still bound together by wedlock.

Why do some people defend their violent partners, fathers, and relatives?

It is common in abusive relationships to have the abused defending and returning to their abuser because of a number of reasons; mainly fear, emotional blackmail, and diminished self-esteem. Here we have three women and one girl who would tell the world that they resume with life post murder, rape, and disfigurement with the perpetrator almost as if nothing had happened. I can only hazard a guess that the fear of challenging a man at his weakest point – due to imprisonment, humiliation by the press – and domestic retribution can force a woman or girl into the role of defender of the man’s scarred ego.

Despite being a ubiquitous fact of life, divorce is still deeply stigmatising and even taboo in Malaysia. Perhaps it is not far-fetched to suggest that for some divorce is far worse than living with an abusive, murderous, and misogynistic man. Another familiar theme underlying the cases is the gentle man beneath the exterior of the beast who can do no wrong, the myth of the protective husband and father who had momentarily lost his head, the fantasy of the household that will perish without the presence of paterfamilias, and the myth of accommodating wives and daughters. Perhaps Nurul Dahyatul’s tears of joy are not so bewildering after all.

By Angry Malay Woman

I like plants.

1 comment

  1. It is remarkable what an abused female will do to recover their abuser. They believe that they only deserve the “love” of the abuser, that no one exists who could love them, they are so low on the food chain. You give a female this kind of mistreatment for 10, 20, or so years, and they come to believe they deserve to be “loved” only this way. Here in America my sister spent 40 years as head of domestic violence agencies, and you see it all of the time, the abused just having to take back her abuser. Sad beyond description. And of course abused girls grow up to be abused women. And of course, with the Muslim religion, men are in charge, and often themselves show a huge lack of respect for females, so they are definitely not going to do anythng to change things. It is amazing to me that the religions of our world, having been ran by men, manage to maintain so little regard for females, for so very long. I guess they are afraid they would end up placing their own butts in prison for many years. Considering what the abuse does to women, maybe it should be made a capitol offense, and then men could face death penalty or life in prison for it? How can men possibly claim the wonders and love of God, Allah, or whomever, and allow this travesty to exist? I say your God, Allah, or whomever are not worthy of worship if this is allowed. Maybe if we cut their balls off, and place them in prison for life, possibly it will curb the offenses, certainly making repeat offenders a thing of the past. Just my thoughts. Thank you. Don

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