Wednesday, April 17, 2013

I am treated worse than a maid in my Aunt's house

Dear YB readers, I really need your help on this. I'm practically becoming a shadow of myself and I don't know what to do. I feel trapped in my Aunt's house.

I am a 27 year old Economics graduate from Delta State University, Abraka. I finished service in 2010 and worked for a while in a secondary school in Enugu where I served but in 2011, I decided to relocate to Lagos to look for a better job.
Since both my parents are in Delta State, I was very happy when my newly married aunt offered to house me. I thought everything will be fine as she's my mother's youngest sister with only a few years between us while my mom is the first child of 7 children.

At first everything was perfect, just the way I thought it would be. I started job hunting and eventually I got a small job while my aunt had her first child.

Since the child came, she treats me worse than a maid. She ordered me to move into the maid's quarters as she doesn't know when she'll be ready to set up my room for her daughter. She said that's the original plan and she can't let me destroy her dreams for her baby.

She used to have a maid, unfortunately, the maid couldn't handle the treatment being meted on her, so she left. Now, I have practically become the maid at home.

She expects me to clean the house, wash the baby's clothes, bath the baby, make the family breakfast and lunch, sterilize the baby's feeding utensils and  whatever chores there could be in the house before rushing out at 6am. We stay on the mainland while I work in VI, so I always have to go early to catch a bus to Obalende.

No matter what time I return in the evening, be rest assured that there'll be no dinner until I prepare it. In short, she gets angry if I come in late. She also expects me to serve the food and and knock at her door to inform her that the table is set.

All these things are driving me crazy as I don't even have a life of my own anymore. I dare not say I'm going out on a Saturday or Sunday. She always has one thing or the other for me to do. It's either I have to go to the market to shop, wash their clothes or accompany her to one of her friends' babies' parties to babysit the child. Truth is I'm so so tired. I wake up at 4am and sleep at 11pm just to meet up with her expectations. I always feel sleep deprived these days.

The newest one now is that she has become physically abusive. The last time she asked how the last vegetable soup I made got finished so quickly, she slapped me across the face even before I could answer. She has always been verbally very abusive and I'd always taken it with the mind that it can't cut deeper than the flesh. Now, it's getting to me really bad. I'm afraid I'll react one day and she'll throw me out on the streets.

I really can't talk to my mother about this because there's absolutely nothing she can do except to feel really hurt and maybe cause a strife between them.

I can't move out because my salary is only N60k and I'm trying to save up for a masters' degree program. I also send 7k to my parents every month and can barely survive on the rest, so getting my own apartment does not even come up in the picture.

I've been searching for a better job but yet to find anything good enough.

What I face at home is beginning to affect my productivity at work and I'm afraid that I could even lose my job if this continues. 

Yimiton Says... 
A problem shared is a problem half solved.

This is a real story of a young woman whom I know personally crying out for help. Please feel free to offer your candid advice and also share your own personal experiences here if you've ever passed through this kind of situation. Maybe that could give her an idea of what to do. 

For the purpose of this post, she'll use Bella as her name. That's not her real name, she'll rather not put her real name here. I've told her to come back here often to check and respond personally to your posts.


  1. Better stop that savings and look for a house pay or u look for someone to squart with u will soon loose the one u had by then ur eye will be clear. Go to ur church and talk with someone, u must get assistance and keep praying to God he will grant u ur heart desires IJN Amen

    1. Thank you for your advice. I would have been happy to but the houses I have seen so far are so expensive, especially when you add the agency and agreement plus 2 years. It seems like I will have to save forever to get a decent place.

      As for squatting, the challenge is I work in a small place. We're just 10 all together in my office and I really don't have friends in Lagos.

    2. What about ur church u were silent on that or are u not a christian

    3. I am a Christian but I can only afford to go to church only on Sundays with my Aunt and her family. I will look at that possibility. Thanks

    4. Bella since you said u are saving money for your masters i will say you should be patient with your aunty to achieve your goal.not until you finish clearing the farm you can not remove dirty from your body,just take everything you are going through in your aunty's house as a training and move on, God is ur srenght.

  2. Thats so sad! you need to be prayerful. see this as a training, that is building you into a stronger and better person. try to talk to her about your plight or better still involve your parents in it
    i. but whatever you do, apply wisdom. God will give you a testimony soon. Cheer up and don't lose faith.

    1. Thanks Kemi. I wish I could see it that way. Right now, I feel more abused than learning. My question is, do we really need all these trainings in life? I try and talk to her again if she'll listen but the last thing I'll do is involve my parents. I know what that will lead to and it won't be very pleasant.

      Thanks again

  3. I'll advice you to endure for as long as possible. This is just a phase. Since you are educated and you have a job, this will be history before you know it. You might even meet a nice guy to marry tomorrow and all these will be in the past. Remember not to treat people this way too when finally you have your own home.

  4. Dear Bella,
    I would be candid with you as i have been in a similar situation.

    The truth is that you need to see your situation with the right eyes. Stop looking at it like, "this is my aunt, she is not even that older than i am, how could you treat me this way..

    Get mature, this is who she and that is how best she knows to behave, you have to brace up and accept that and know that you are solely responsible for your happiness and productivity, she has offered you a place, be glad and if for her the prize means being a help in the house, do it as free will offering with all your heart, get past the emotions, am sure she loves you and just dont know to act better. When you get mature on that am sure you will be happier living with her. You dont even need to move out, and bitterness is not good for you at all. You can live there and make good progress, believe me. I have been there.

    Ofcourse you will need to implore prayers cos when you pray, there is this happiness God gives you from the inside, God makes you see her in a different light and the Joy of the Lord will help you live comfortably and even help her out of that MENTAL CAGE. And then other house helps can enjoy living with her too.

    Brace up, look up and grow up! No one owns ur happiness but u! You need the Lord to help you!

    1. For the first time today, I have had a reason to smile. MENTAL CAGE, interesting. Thanks so much. You sound like a woman of God.

      That's the point, I can't afford to leave there just yet. I will try to live this positive life you've preached and work on my prayer life.

      You really understand where I'm coming from.

  5. All you need is get mature! Refuse to see your aunt's treatment as maltreatment. Bitterness and anger is bad and that is what the flesh wants and that will result in hatred.
    See it from the right point of view, she may not know how to treat people and you wont be any better if you do not know how to respond.

    The joy of the Lord gives strength, pray, see it in the right eye that she is not trying to maltreat you, that's all she knows. And then God will give you the right attotude and emotion to suit, and you can live there and be happy and adjust and make progress.
    Anger will only destroy things but God makes us happy and wants us happy always. See from God's eye.. He knows the wisdom you need to be happy there... I hope you have the Lord as your Lord??

  6. I have been there before Bella, i lived with my cuz, but this time the guy was my cuz but the wife was friendly and at the same time bossy, she wants to know everything you are doing, sends on errands o=and ofcourse no late nights or sleeping out.. u should get what i mean.

    I started by sulking, and feeling bad about the treatments i got, and my attitude ofcourse changed towards them which was visible, but you in that things got even worse, but as i consistently prayed to God for help, my Pastor also preached continuously in that line, that we need to let go anger and hurt, it only comes to spoil God's great plans. You have to pray to God to forgive your bitterness and anger and then ask Him for wisdom to deal with the situation..

    It's that easy, it works like magic but that is God for you!!

    Take courage Bella, all those outings with you aunt might be where you would meet the next job, the right attitude in that house might lead you to your own husband and your ability to overcome it, takes you a step ahead!!

    1. Thanks for your advice but how can I pray for forgiveness when I haven't done anything wrong? I'm not even angry, I just feel really bad about the whole thing. My mother couldn't have treated her that way. You're right about seeking God's face. I've been doing that although, most times, I'm too tired to even pray.

      Thanks for your words of courage and sharing your experience and how you dealt with it. I will try all I can. I hope you're out of that situation now.

  7. Its all been said.

  8. Hello Bella, i am out of that situation, it's almost 3years now, and because i was able to deal with it, i enjoy the eactions i get from them the little times i have seen them again. They look me like a god. I ran into my cuz himself one day at a super market close to their house, and thnk God i am doing very much better now, i could see the shock in his face. And then, this easter i also went visiting them, and got them stuffs, the wife could not hold herself.. so it's fun when u can deal with it.

    You need to ask God for forgiveness because the feeling of bitterness is as bas too in His sight, and he appreciates sincerity of heart.