Adelle Onyango Speaks On Living With An Abusive Father

by Muthoni Kimani
February 8, 2021

Adelle Onyango, who is heavy on social activism and women’s rights and empowerment opened up about her childhood. The radio presenter and a host on her podcast, ‘Legally Clueless’ revealed rather shocking details about living a difficult life in her childhood. She opened up after one of her ardent listeners named Miriam opened up on her experience living in an abusive home since childhood.

“I told Miriam this, but I will just repeat it. I am so thankful that she shared her story. It is so powerful and such an important story because I know it is not easy to be that vulnerable.”

She added; “I am also thankful on a deeper level because that was my lived reality for a few years until my mom left my dad. I think she left him when I was in, I think, class 5, class six…. But my dad was super abusive, like physically abusive.”

Adelle Onyango remembers how insecure she was as a child when she heard her father’s car approaching her house, not knowing how her father would react every day that he came back home. She expressed her gratitude about her mother finally left him for the sake of her safety, sanity, and her children that she would forever be happy about that decision.

Adelle narrated; “The anxiety that would come when I’d hear his car horn, like when he’d come home in the evening, it was intense. I was just thinking…. and Imagine at that age, I was thinking would he be violent today or will it be a peaceful night, silently trying to make a deal with God praying, ‘Please just let him be peaceful today, and I’ll make sure I do ABC, and I am so thankful that my mother left him.

It was such a huge act of love for herself first and then a huge act of love for my sisters and I. When I look back, I’m just like I am so thankful she left him,” Finally revealing why she’s always happy and always smiling, Adelle Onyango says she recently came to know the source of it all.

“I don’t know about other people or other countries, but here we have really normalized violent homes so much, and we ignore the effects it has.

Not only on the spouse getting abused but on the kids. For instance, I remember once in therapy, it came up, and I realized people always tell me I’m never angry and you are always smiling. The truth is I am very scared of anger. This actually just came up in therapy. I am scared of anger; I am scared of confrontation.”

She concluded by saying; “And so if someone wrongs me, I will either just cut them off; by the way, blocking people and just cutting them off is the easiest thing I can do once I see we are heading in a direction where we will end up in a confrontation or worse off anger.

I remember my therapist telling me I can communicate whenever someone angers me or when I get myself in a confrontation that I can communicate that without it getting abusive.

For me, anger has always been synonymous with abuse, violence, confrontation, yelling, screaming, just a mess. I just stay away from such emotions and obviously many other things.”