Girl Grandeur Zimbabwe

Do you have a family member that leaves a bitter taste in your mouth?

Does being around insufferable Aunt Sheila leave you feeling emotionally drained?

Are you tired of being the bigger person because that’s just how “so and so” is?

Well, if you answered yes to any of these questions then you’ve come to the right place.

Step 1 – Grow up with a toxic family

Step 2 – Move out and start a new family

I couldn’t help but pepper in a bit of dark humour. On a more serious note I do hope this piece offers some comfort if you are burdened with a dysfunctional family.

What toxic family members may look like?

You know that gripping fear you get when you receive a phone call from that one family member because you know whatever it is will turn into a colossal argument that will leave you miserable for at least a month? I am pleased to report you are not the only one.

  • They believe they are above reproach – Toxic family members believe rules don’t apply to them and they can say whatever they want to you regardless of how vicious or unkind it could be.
  • Inability/failure to apologize – They are always right and you are always well, not.
  • Constant thirst for drama – They thrive off sowing conflict between family members.
  • Serial gas lighters – They make you feel bad about feeling bad in other words you should not take offense when they say anything offensive. They believe the hurtful things they say, “build character”.

Speaking of things that are detrimental to your mental well-being, take my family for example:

If I never see her again, I will be overjoyed, she is a filthy pig, it is a possibility that she is bewitched, she is a completely useless individual who will amount to nothing”.

This is an extract from an email I received from my uncle, after I resigned from the “family business”. Following this incident, I was told that he said all these things out of love. So that’s how we are justifying name calling and bullying these days. I guess I can’t call it emotional abuse because we share blood. I mean he did get me a pair of socks last Christmas so he is incapable of being a toxic human being.

I am in no way trying to throw shade at my relative but this is just to show how some families like mine are guilty of enabling problematic behaviour and dubbing it all sorts of nonsensical things like care and love.

Do you know where the danger is?

If you don’t heal from scars emanating from your family you end up becoming just like them. Worst case scenario you carry the hurt like daggers in your heart slowly chipping away at your happiness.

How to choose your mental health over family

Unfortunately, there’s no amount of therapy in the world that could change a toxic family member. However, you can ensure whatever they do ricochets off you.

“Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or your self confidence.” – Robert Frost

  • Create boundaries – put your needs above theirs. It is your right to protect your peace.
  • Limit contact – They can’t hurt you if they do not have access to you.
  • Do not engage – This is probably the hardest thing to do as it requires a lot of restraint but with enough practice you can learn to tune out all the vile things said to you.
  • Create a solid support system – Blood is supposedly thicker than water but sometimes it isn’t, lean on your friend groups, get a puppy, whatever is it that brings you an inkling of refuge, do it
  • Evaluate their value in your life – if it calls for it, cut them off completely especially if they are violent or threaten your life

Take away

“A toxic person is the product of a toxic environment themselves” – there is nothing wrong with you, how they feel about you is not a reflection of who you are.

If you or a friend are in this predicament You are not alone and I’m sorry you do not feel safe around people you’d expect to have your back. You can create your own tribe that isn’t connected to you by blood. Do not let them see you sweat You do not have to deal with their venomous personalities despite the amount of times you are reminded of your blood ties. They can still be your brother or your cousin from the curb. You do not need permission from anyone to put yourself first.

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Don’t you just hate it when you are spilling your guts out to your best friend and then the very next day, they’ve blocked you?

No warning, nothing.

Like you meant so little to them you weren’t even worth an explanation.

I think I know where it stems from. I’ve narrowed it down to a couple of things which will be scattered throughout this lengthy blog post.

Why I think female friendships are important:

Ever wondered why women live longer than men?…you guessed it! I’m kidding please do not quote me on that it is definitely not scientifically proven.

  • They allow you to be vulnerable – Women are social creatures, we love having people we can rely on. We love going on and on about that guy we’ve been texting or the new job we just got or the fancy apartment we just moved into.
  • Free emotional support system – Nothing beats having someone to share similar life experiences with i.e., post grad blues, unemployment or financial dependency (if you are in your mid-twenties, you will probably relate)
  • Improve your quality of life – Sincere and supportive female friends are the must have accessory for boosting your self-esteem in a society that prospers from women hating how they look.

What the internet tells us:

Cut off culture is disguised as “self-love” and claims to promote peace of mind but in all honestly the internet just loves a good cat fight otherwise they’d be nothing to tweet about.

  • You don’t owe anyone anything not even an explanation” – Please just stop. Queens of our calibre know how to communicate without being malicious and strive for conflict resolution in friendships.
  • Female relationships are not like romantic relationships” – Yes, they are. They require mutual effort. Schedule those phone calls, show genuine interest in their lives, ask about their well-being, reassure them where necessary, celebrate their accomplishments. The world is filled with so much uncertainty as it is you do not need that in your friendships
  • You don’t need anyone besides yourself” – We celebrate women who act like men, the ones that topple each other to get to the top. How can we rule the world if we’ve torn each other to shreds?

Did someone ask for a story time?

Nothing beats the loss of a female friend, heck I’ve lost three. Its heart wrenching when you’ve known someone your whole life and suddenly you don’t know how to reach them. Because I never got a chance to say any of these things to each of them, I’d like to take this opportunity to get a few things off my chest…

Dearest best friend(s)

I hate how one sided our friendship had become, how you made everything about yourself and never stopped to ask how I was doing. I hate that you still entertain my exes. I hate that you post the most hurtful things on your statuses after we argue. Most of all I hate how you did not defend me when I wasn’t around. I hate how you didn’t notice when I cried at work. I hate how you chose a guy over me, the same guy that violated me. I hate how I couldn’t be myself around you anymore for fear that you’d derail the conversation and make it about you. I hate how you think I stopped caring. I hate how you think I believe I am free of blame, more than anything I hate that I still love you, I just don’t know how to talk you.

Your ex-best friend

What the internet doesn’t tell us:

  • The most painful thing about being ghosted by a friend is that you have to invent a reason for them leaving which in most cases is more hurtful than the actual reason.
  • Friendships should not remain stagnant. Learn to grow, evolve and progress with your friends. You can’t be upset at a friend for not picking up their phone when there are demanding jobs, spouses, children, heck maybe they just didn’t have the energy to talk
  • Avoid involving third parties in your squabbles this includes posting subs on your WhatsApp status. You don’t need advice from your mother to tell you how to fix a situation she was not involved in. Talk to your friend directly, don’t cut corners. Sibadala!!!

Tough pills to swallow

  • If they make it clear that they want nothing to do with you its time to move on
  • It’s easy to blame the other person, Start taking accountability and sharing your side of the blame.
  • You don’t understand your own emotions and triggers as a result you end up losing someone important because you don’t spend enough time with yourself and ask the hard questions i.e., why did I react like that? Have I eaten? Is this trauma from a previous relationship? Is there a better way to convey my emotions in future?
  • We have shallow relationships with our girlfriends. We want our friendships to be a fairy-tale but that’s not realistic. You will fight, you will have different pov’s, that’s normal. Don’t let the internet tell you otherwise. We are not meant to be clones of our friends otherwise you wouldn’t need them to begin with.

Queens should stick together. Let’s fight the patriarchy sis. There’s nothing in this world that can’t be solved with open communication and having both parties actively work towards addressing any issues. We can accomplish so much by doing away with the cattiness, I implore you to start building long lasting friendships that leave you feeling fulfilled and empowered.

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I’m here to tell you the things other single mom’s wouldn’t dare share. Of course I won’t be able to squeeze everything into this one post because there’s a lot goinyon on this side of the tracks.

​Let’s get in to it shall we. Full disclosure, this is my experience and this is my story to share. Some mom’s may or may not relate to it and that’s okay because results may vary when it comes to parenting alone. I’m so sorry to those of you who can relate and kudos to those of you who can’t because WOW life no go balance.

After I gave birth to my daughter the real work began having to look after this tiny human and to make sure that she was well provided for and loved. It sounds easy but it’s not, not when you’re dealing with post partum depression.

For those of you who don’t know post partum depression I’ll explain it to you in layman’s terms. Post partum depression is a complex mix of physical, emotional and behavioral changes that happen in some women after giving birth. I was battling with depression and it didn’t help that I felt like I couldn’t talk to anyone around me. ​I was absolutely terrified about opening up. I mean there’s already a stigma about mental health what more just after giving birth. People expect you to be excited and over the moon but child birth takes a toll considering I delivered my child all by myself no friends, no family just the mid wife, nurse and I. It takes a toll.



♬ original sound – Zamaswazi shabalala

​On top of that there are quite a number of people who’ll use the single mum card just to get to you. Uyathethiswa (you’re insulted) for a man leaving you. I mean I’m already going through the emotions of carrying out this parenting thing without a partner, insults are a sure fire way to drive you off the edge. There’s so much emotional backlash and don’t get me started on the dress code. Apparently mum’s are supposed to dress a certain way. I wonder if dads get the same treatment.

​Then we go on to the subject of dating, boy is this one complicated. Fortunately for me, I have an understanding partner who gets the fact that I’m not looking for someone to fill in the daddy role or take up responsibilities and duties. I mean he insists and that’s great but it’s not always the case for other women. Some men feel entitled to you being with them because they do certain things and I think that’s tricky, imagine he turns abusive or cheats and suddenly, “you can’t leave me, not after everything I’ve done for you and your child!” Excuse me? Or the fact that a man can pretend to be everything you want and hope for only for him to show his true colours down the line in to your relationship. There’s also a breed of men who believe single mothers are ‘used’ or ‘damaged goods’ somehow. These men believe that single mothers are the rejected women with lowered standards after being disappointed by another man. The truth is actually the exact opposite.

Nobody chooses to become a single mother. You don’t think that a man you were in love with would turn around and flee. There’s no sign whatsoever that he is a deadbeat prior to you having his child. Trying to reconcile this, mentally and emotionally, sometimes in the thick of the pregnancy is horrific. Unfortunately with deadbeat dads the pudding is in the tasting. You only see them for what they truly are after the child is already on the way.

It’s tricky all round, especially for women, so before you judge single mums like they asked for any of this, take several seats and keep your unwarranted opinion to yourself. If you are really feeling froggy, you can leap at all the deadbeat dads who made the mothers single in the first place. This might come as a shocker but yes, a man was there too.


#fypシ #nona98

♬ original sound – jannetkuretu

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Will somebody please call an ambulance! Actually wait, I forgot to introduce myself, hie I’m La Louve and I suffer from post coital dysphoria or at least I used to. Post Coital Dysphoria (PCD) is also known as Post Coital Tristesse in France (I’m kidding, I have no idea what they call it in France however triste is French for sad, anyway I digress).

PCD entails being engulfed by sheer sadness and despair after testing the mattress (okay so my definition is a little over the top but it got your attention, didn’t it?) Moving on, it is usually attributed to a dip in hormones (i.e. oxytocin – the love hormone) after a sexual activity. I guess you could compare it to the aftermath of a sugar rush, you know coming off a high. It includes but is not limited to irritability, sadness, crying, and feeling like you’ve been “used” sound familiar?

So why does it happen?

The reasons differ from person to person but they may include:

  • Personal values, religious beliefs, etc.
  • One’s feelings about sex i.e. embarrassment, anxiety and even paranoia, this could cause you to feel vulnerable and restless afterwards,
  • One’s feelings about their partner perhaps you want to be more than just casual lovers (?)
  • Unrealistic expectations about sex (You’ve been watching too much Fifty Shades haven’t you?). On a serious note, if you envisioned rose petals and eye contact only to end up with huffing and puffing, zero eye contact and an Uber waiting for you outside when you are done well that could be quite disheartening

Prevention? Cure?

You didn’t think I was just going to dump all of this on you and not give you a way out did you?

  • Self-introspection – this involves digging deep and asking yourself why you feel the way you do: religious reasons perhaps? Did the act trigger past trauma?
  • Physical check-up – Ask yourself if you feel safe, have you been hurt in any way?
  • Open Communication – is there anything your partner can do to make you feel better? Is there somewhere else you would rather be? Is there anything you need? a bagel? a cuddle?
  • Sexual Aftercare – this is perhaps the most important bit when it comes to love making.

Sexual aftercare is checking in with your partner after consensual intercourse, it involves:

  • Pillow talk – it is said that it builds an emotional connection after a primarily physical activity,
  • Replenishing your body with fluids – water break anyone?
  • Solitude – being alone with your thoughts and emotions might be what you need depending on what works for you.

Side bar – Aftercare originated from the BDSM (Bondage, Domination, Sadism and Masochism) community but applies to everyone who has sex and yes masturbation counts too. If you feel sad after finger painting clears throat or making it snow (if you know you know and if you don’t, you’re definitely too young to be reading this) try putting on your favourite comedy or watching a YouTube video or even snuggling up with a cup of hot cocoa. Aftercare is different for everyone and for some people aftercare is the best part of the entire experience.

That’s it from me folks, boink responsibly!

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I often hear people talking about how unfocused the youth are and how we don’t put in enough effort to look for work or piece jobs and I’m baffled because I mean who doesn’t want their own money ? Who doesn’t like nice things? Nice things require money, you don’t just get money you earn it. How do you earn it? Get a job! Sounds easy doesn’t it?

​Now finding the job of it, that’s another story. I’ve worked four jobs two out of four of them l got through what they call “connections.” Fortunately for me, my friends helped me get in, the other two were by my own merit but not everyone has a connection or a way in. For example I have a good friend of mine she bagged two degrees all the way from South Africa and she’s back in Zim working a job that has nothing to do with anything she studied. It’s quite disheartening, you go to university and do your best only to come back home to nothing. Then parents make it seem like we’re not serious about work and the likes.

​I’ve applied and responded to almost every advert I’ve come across, qualified or unqualified. I mean it doesn’t hurt to shoot your shot right? Sometimes I don’t even get a response back but at least I’m trying. This is depressing and it causes one to feel useless and some people turn to alcohol and substance abuse which is really awful because it’s destroying the generation. Remember an idle mind is the devil’s workshop.

​The only solutions I can think of as a youth is to come up with a side hustle, let your side hustle make you money until you find a main hustle (a job.) You don’t always need capital for example my sister taught me how to make mats when I was in grade school. Just get a saka (sack) then cut you old clothing, bed sheets or cloths into strips, get a nail or crocheting needle and then prick holes in to it lining the cloth on top and using the nail/needle to pole holes to pull the material through or buy goods from the market and put your own mark up and sell to make profit. I know some people changing money and using their influence to make money. It’s very clear to see that no one is coming to save us, we cannot look to anybody else to solve our problems, we are our own solution. All the best in finding your hustle today!

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Greetings dearest fashion police, we kindly ask that you stop policing children on what they should or shouldn’t wear in the comfort of their homes. The dictionary definition of a child according to the Merriam Webster dictionary is “a young person especially between infancy and puberty”.

Growing up, did you ever have to suffer the stern looks from your mothers and aunts after you wore shorts or a skirt (THEY BOUGHT YOU)? Do you recall hearing things like “ugqokeni kanti?” (What on earth are you wearing?) or my personal favourite “What will your father say?” You’d hear things like “There are men in the house.


Stop enabling nonsense. The world does not revolve around men. It is not a child’s job to make men feel comfortable. How do you tell a MINOR their clothes might send the wrong message to their grandfather? What message is that aunty? When did pieces of fabric on a young female’s body become a net that catches prey?

Why pray tell should a pre-teen care what her father will think of her attire? Children especially girls are trained, conditioned and hardwired to live in fear of their male relatives from the moment they are born. They are taught that they should hide their bodies because they entice men.

Female relatives are usually the reason behind this fear. I hope you do not misunderstand me as I am fully aware of what atrocities are committed with each passing day: fathers violating their newborns and siblings pinning each other down after dark but that is not the point of my message today. There’s not enough cloth in the world to stop a predator.

Stop enabling disgusting behaviour in your households. The minute a male relative looks at your daughter/sibling with lust-filled eyes, nip it in the bud. Khaba lenja! (Kick that dog to the curb!) I know this is an impossible feat considering how you women love to look the other way because “abantu bazothini” (what will people say?) What will it take for you to open your eyes? How a child dresses is not the problem. Would you like to have your daughter raped before your eyes in her Catholic school uniform? Will you be convinced then? Don’t even get me started on certain Christian parents’ abo-Deputy Jesus who still act surprised when they hear stories of rape within the family despite dressing their kiddos in floor length clothing 24/7.

If you ever ask a kid to go and change the clothes they feel comfortable in because a male relative has arrived then maybe they shouldn’t be allowed to visit anymore. I’m sorry that this isn’t written by a man because maybe then you would have taken me seriously.

Instead of teaching your daughters to refrain from wearing clothes that accentuate their features, talk to them about bottom barrel individuals that like to take what is not theirs. Make it easy for them to come and talk to you should anything sinister happen under your roof. Most importantly act swiftly once an injustice has been reported. If all of that fails then maybe you could try put warning signs on all the paedophiles in your family with the label “QAPHELA! INGOZI! DANGER!”

Children especially AFRICAN children are not allowed to express themselves and God forbid they have an opinion, how they dress themselves especially at home is their way of doing just that. Society crucifies us for our fashion choices as it is, don’t bring that negativity into the safe haven that is their home.

Okay so what did we learn today folks?:

  • Practice letting your child wear anything they are comfortable and confident in at home.
  • Give the kids age-appropriate sex education
  • Teach your children both male and female about the dangers of the outside world and how it can sometimes creep into households.
  • Pay attention when a child feels uncomfortable around a certain family member.
  • And for Pete’s sake lock that pervert out the house (P.S. I don’t care that you’ve been married for 15 years, he belongs in the wilderness with the rest of the predators)
  • Report all crimes of child abuse no matter who the family member is.

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The internet has so many hot takes about relationships and some seem to strike a cord with me harder than others. I am happy that Andrew Tate has been taken off the social media platforms but that doesn’t stop his followers from continuing his legacy. The truth is, there are men out there who subscribed to Andrew Tate and Andrew is better because he was public about it. Almost like, “the devil you know kind of thing.” This blog post was inspired by a tweet! This tweet in particular.

What’s scary is that about 160 something people liked this tweet and the comments? Don’t get me started on the comments, I was appalled to see how many people actually agreed with the hogwash that this man tweeted. Meaning that we live amongst men and women who feel this way. The whole tweet was upsetting but I’ll focus on just three things.

Count To Three Lets Go GIF by Honed Not Cloned - Find & Share on GIPHY

​I mean I get that people have preferences and that’s alright. I mean whatever floats your boat but he had me when he said “don’t marry a woman who is raised by a single mum.” I wonder why that is. What I find baffling is the fact that he said” single mum” not parent which goes to show that the war is on women not men. Men will not rest until we’re dead I’m sure. ​This is a conversation we need to have and there’s so much unlearning to be done by our generation. Where is this hate coming from? How do we fix it? How do we teach ourselves and the next generational line to stop thinking like this? It’s such a toxic way to look at life and women. Also it just further perpetuates GBV (Gender Based Violence). And from my observation sometimes one single mum is better than two toxic parents who are staying together for the sake of the child. The hate towards single mum’s shows that these men are bitter and the toxicity runs deep because of the hostile environment that they grew up in.

​Another point on his list was do not date a woman who drinks alcohol. I mean it’s not every woman who will drink excessively and if so there’s probably a reason they’re drinking that much, for some of us living in Zim life is tough and people have different coping mechanisms some women might drink to help them cope with life and what’s going on. I feel like if you love someone you’d definitely do anything in your power to get better. I’m not making excuses but some people feel it’s better to self medicate and instead of being written of they should be given the necessary help to get them better. I mean had it been a man who was drinking the woman would be told to ‘bekezela’ which means be patient so why can’t women be given the same love and treatment. Indoda layo mayibekezele! Periodt!


​The third one, last but not least is that men shouldn’t date materialistic women. I mean, what? I wouldn’t recommend not dating a materialistic and let me tell you why. Imama that is materialistic will push you beyond your limits, she will motivate you to get your life in order and is the fuel you need. Materialistic women can stimulate men’s desire to some extent and stimulate achievement motivation. This achievement motivation can improve individual income and living standards, also we know men love to provide, they’re natural born providers and doing so gives them a sense of pride. Also I believe that men who don’t date materialistic women and advise men not to are the ones that provide the bare minimum and are deadbeat husbands and fathers. It’s always the men with the imaginary gold that are afraid of the goldiggers but hey that’s just my opinion.




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There’s a lot of talk about how unfocused the youth of this time is and to be frank with you it’s quite frustrating. I mean no one decided they wanted to be a ‘loser.’ We all grew up with dreams and aspirations. I’m sure everyone reading this can relate. There was that one composition we all wrote about ” When I Grow Up.” I am 100% confident none of them included being a deadbeat youth.

​The situation in Zimbabwe is frustrating for a lot of age groups especially the youth. One goes to school and if you’re fortunate enough to advance to university. I say fortunate because some people can’t afford to further their studies with inflation rising making basic commodities expensive or even hard to come by. The youth therefore fall in to depression some turn to alcohol and substance abuse and others turn to crime. It’s not at all pleasant and ends up affecting the majority because it has a ripple effect on everyone else. For example the victims of the crime whether the crime involves theft, vandalism, or violence, the victim always suffers loss. The victim may incur expenses related to lost wages, health care, or psychological care in addition to the cost of replacing damaged or destroyed items. The community as well starts to feel unsafe costing large amounts of neighbourhood money to be spent on law enforcement like neighbourhood watch. The family of the delinquent and the victim’s family will also have to get counselling and work through the trauma. I meant it when I said it has a ripple effect. So many lives hang in the balance.

The kids have no leisure centres or safe places for play. They hang around shopping areas, night clubs and throw Vuzu parties. Ask yourself this, “if you were a teenager today, where would you go to hang out with your friends?” Zimbabwe is stressful. The youth need places to learn new skills, play, relax and have fun.

​To curb the high rise of delinquent youth recreational facilities must be put in place. Recreation programs allow youths to connect with other adults and children in the community. Such positive relationships may assist children in later years. Youth programs must be designed to fit the personalities and skills of different children and may include sports, dancing, music, rock climbing, drama, karate, bowling, art, and other activities. The parks must be revived, the drive-by must be resuscitated. The skating rink at the park is a step in the right direction. We need to build more centres for the youth to grow and hone their talents, art studios sporting areas, and even counselling services for the youth to feel like they’re being heard and noticed. Positive community involvement such as opening tuckshops and employing the youth at the stalls. Free education or free programmes must be provided to the youth including skills oriented courses for those who aren’t gifted academically so that it is well rounded and everyone is catered for. It can be done if we as a community stand together and put in the work.

The conversation around suicide amongst the Zimbabwean youth had hit fever pitch. We will soon reach a point where each one of us will personally know someone who took their own life. The economy is hard. Trying to be an entrepreneur in this economy is close to futile, especially if you are not in the capital city. Leaving the country is the goal but that’s not simple either. There’s xenophobia and the capital required to relocate. It is hard. We need more safe spaces for counseling and mental health services. This chronic stress is taking it’s toll on the youth and they have turned to drugs and alcohol. It is very hard to not feel like a failure when it’s just the system that has failed you. We aren’t asking for a lot, just the basics.

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Yesterday my younger sister shared her experience about being harassed by a Kombi conductor and I thought oh this should be a blog post. The conductor refused to let her out until she gave him her phone number. I know many, if not all, women will relate to this post which is sad because no one should feel entitled to another human being ever and having your personal boundaries invaded like that is so awful especially in public spaces we frequent daily.

​When it comes to the issue of harassment in public transportation, it is so severe that even if you own your own car, you aren’t safe. This is because even just walking past a terminus can get you harassed. My heart breaks when I think about it because I imagine my mother, grandmother, sisters and daughter and I’m like oh WOW this is what society has been doing and will continue to do which is a dang shame. I know some men think that cat-calling and groping at women is a “compliment” but it is not! Please cease and desist. It’s unsettling and downright nasty. No sir, I do not want you touching my arm or any part of me eeew and I’ve seen men pee in public places and not wash their hands and you think it’s OK to touch someone else with those hands ? Not me abeg. Not only do they get you with sticks and stones but the words they spew at you will also hurt you. If they deem your outfit inappropriate, they will whistle, shout and call you all sorts of nasty names.

Also, ladies have you experienced how uncomfortable it is to stand in a ZUPCO bus and have a man breathe on your neck and rub himself against you as a standing passenger? It’s like when you’re out with the girls and you’re on the dance floor and someone helps himself to your body and just stands behind you while you’re just trying to enjoy the night and de-stress. Men need to stop this intrusive behaviour. It’s not cute, it’s really not. There was an article online about how cross-border Delta bus drivers were allegedly raping girls and women. They call it “Vula vala” read the article below #TriggerWarning.

People who have had to hitchhike at the Showgrounds in Harare have probably witnessed or been harassed by touts. This group of men will approach you and start pulling your luggage, yelling, shouting and shoving each other in order to scare you into getting into a bus so that it fills up quickly. The police are very much aware of this rouse. They will be standing in your line of sight and will do nothing. This experience is traumatising. You are forced into a bus you didn’t plan on taking. For the next couple of nights, you will go to bed hearing the voices of those men as they terrorise you into a bus. This happens to both men and women. If you can avoid it, avoid hitchhiking from the Showgrounds or that spot for Mutare buses (Roadport.)

​In a perfect world, I think that ZUPCO should introduce female buses, buses strictly for women and children because we are not safe. There was an image circulating online of a woman being helped into a ZUPCO with people propping her up by her buttocks. That’s what the transport crisis had pushed people into. The buses are unsafe, not just as passengers but also for the female conductors as well. There is a story that was published about female conductors being assaulted due to the early and late hours at which they commute to work.

For as long as men feel like they own women and that they can get away with anything, it’s us versus them and they have the upper hand. Ladies, get a rape whistle, if you’re in Zimbabwe. You can get them at your local China shops. Buy two in case you misplace the other one, travel in groups or at least try move in pairs if you can for your safety. Pepper spray and tasers are available at the Security Shop. There’s not much else you can do because most of us don’t have the luxury to avoid public transportation altogether.

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Article written by Tapiwa Mbaiwa

Excuse me queens! My apologies I meant goddesses, yes you with the kinky, coily curls; your shrinkage is impeccable and that’s on period!

For those of you that have no clue what I’m rambling on about, allow me to educate you, “shrinkage” as has been dubbed by the natural hair community is the phenomenon when hair appears shorter than it actually is especially after being drenched in water or when humidity hits.

So why on earth am I calling it beautiful?

Well, when your hair shrinks it means it has the ability to retain moisture, shrinkage is a great thing despite everything you’ve been told. Shrinkage means your hair is versatile, shrinkage means your hair is healthy, shrinkage means your hair is elastic. In other words, all the gel and mousse in the world couldn’t tame this mane!!!ROAR!!!

On the downside society views shrinkage as unappealing, ugly and unkempt. As 4C royalty myself I got the raw end of the deal. The backlash that comes with wearing the coiliest of hair types in its shrunken state is colossal. I had a guy say to his friend and I quote “Don’t worry, her hair isn’t usually like this”. Imagine being told that the hair that grows out of your head isn’t up to societal standards. Do you have any idea the time, energy and the stamina that goes into the perfect wash and go (I’ll insert a link on what that is below)? Anyway chilee! I wanted to hurt him so bad!!!!but then I realised that this is a universal problem that continues to persist because western beauty standards are what have been deemed acceptable for millennia.

Have you ever wondered how making snide comments about someone’s hair will impact their self-esteem heck their confidence? Society has groomed black girls who feel the constant need to have “presentable”, “manageable”, straight or stretched hair all the time. There is this constant need to please others and be more desirable which I find sad.

Today I want to preach self-love. Learn to love your natural features. If you don’t love who you are when you look in the mirror then you’ll be pressed about how others perceive you. Love the curls under that silk bonnet and remember to shower them with love as well. For the longest time I hated my 4C hair it was nappy and for lack of a better term “wild”, I felt like a cavewoman.  When I finally decided to take better care of it and wear it as a “wash and go” (the lowest form of hair manipulation) it became one of my signature hairstyles. You need to let go of unrealistic and unattainable beauty standards TODAY.

Before you come at me about how stretched and straight hair are just as beautiful. I agree with you. In fact, my hair is stretched to the max as we speak. I however didn’t come here to tell you how to stretch your hair or which products to use as it will be counter productive to this blog post. I would love for you to embrace your shrinkage, fall in love with it. Bear in mind it won’t happen overnight I mean they don’t call it a “natural hair journey” for nothing, it’s bound to be bumpy and messy, you just have to trust the process.

To everyone who has asked me when I’m relaxing my hair, we’re all good here sweetheart. I’m sorry the confidence I exude and will continue to exude threatens what you’ve been taught. I am beautiful and so is my shrinkage. Also, who died and made you people connoisseurs on MY HAIR, I shall wear it however I like. I look like Whitney Houston at the beginning of the week only to look like Baldylocks and the three hairs by Friday.

We need to band together to deconstruct societal norms especially when they impact how you view your natural features. You were blessed with that crown on your head. My fellow matriarchs you are endowed with the greatest of hair types that can transform with just a spritz of water, OWN IT, you are as sovereign and as majestic as you think you are.

I hope these songs can convey what I failed to capture in this article, black girls need anthems too:

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