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Emotional abuse is crippling. It robs a person of their self-esteem, their ability to think rationally, their confidence, their independence and autonomy and much worse, it robs them of their belief in themselves.

#ESTARSENSE INSPIRED BY WISE QUOTES FROM SUCCESS.COM

As a woman of a certain age, and from a judgemental-holier-than-thou culture, I was delighted when two years ago I met the perfect man. I was with one of my girlfriends, sipping cocktails at an exclusively trendy bar in London when someone sent us an expensive bottle of champagne. I didn’t think I liked Champagne until I tasted that one…


A three part series

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In London during summer, the sun doesn’t go down on time, it lingers long after the children have gone to sleep. In the morning, it peeks out a little too early. I was used to an equal division of time between day and night. But for the first time in weeks, I was grateful for this early appearance and late departure of the sun. I was also grateful for the searing heat. As I sat on the park bench watching parents reluctantly push their kids on the swings or cheer them as they swung on the…


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Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you need is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down

Oprah Winfrey

If the death of the Prince of Wakanda has taught humanity anything, is that a trusted circle of friends is just as important as having air in your lungs. T D Jakes said, “surround yourself with those who won’t compete but will revel in your success and see your ascent as a reflection of their own possibilities.

In 2016, Chadwick Boseman was diagnosed with colon cancer. He kept his…


Photo credit: Unsplash — Mohau Mannathoko

This time last year I was in Kenya swinging from one party to another. This year all I got are travel refunds and e-vouchers… thank you KQ. However, I have great memories and I look forward to the death of corona and the inevitable parties that will ensue.

Let me tell you about these captivating parties in Kenya. Some I have experienced; others are things I’ve heard.

In every party, there is the obligatory ‘auntie’, ‘the elderly uncle, ‘the select-group’, VIPs and then there’s the rest of you.

In a typical party, relatives from every corner of the globe will…


Photo credit: Mark S @blocks

You have lived in the UK for many years, but you are still unsure of what you want to do with your life. Your friends who have made it, tell you the only way up is further studies. They advise you to undertake the most lucrative courses that would propel you to greater heights, of course you know this, but you need a push — literally and figuratively. You apply to a few universities and most offer a place, but you need to do a foundation course first — because you belong to Kenya’s 8–4–4 system of education and you…


Disclaimer: the following fictionalised story happened to a real person; names and places have been omitted to ensure anonymity and maintain confidentiality.

I came home to a room full of strangers. This was nothing unusual because my mother hosted Christian vigils that went on the whole night. I assumed it was one of those. But as I made my way to my bedroom, a woman I didn’t recognise stopped me.

“Join us, please.” She said as she extended a wrinkly overworked hand. I wasn’t sure why, but I joined them. As soon as I sat down, everyone started praying out loud in languages only they understood…. and maybe God. From the corner of my eye, I could see the ringleader praying the…


Disclaimer: This 2-part fictionalised story happened to a real person; names and places have been omitted to ensure anonymity and maintain confidentiality.

My memories of childhood are those of isolation and contempt. My parents were happy until I was born. I looked different from my older brother and sister. I was amazingly light-skinned while my siblings were darker than Sudanese tribesmen. My father accused my mother of infidelity: “why else would she be so light-skinned unless you slept with your white boss?” She hadn’t. She believed the devil had something to do with it.

As time went by, I came…


The problem with the stigma around mental health and mental illness is really about the stories that we tell ourselves as a society.

Matthew Quick

The first time I heard the woman’s voice, I was in a crowded market. This was before lockdown. I was there to buy fruits and vegetables: lately, I’d been craving for very watery tropical fruits. As I spoke to the vendor, I heard a female voice — it appeared as if whoever it was, was talking to another person about me. It was very confusing.

“She’s about to buy all the mangoes! What a bitch!”…


I had a different post prepared for today and as I polished it, the memorial service for George Floyd aired in the background. I couldn’t help but think how his life ended so abruptly and in the crudest way possible. How his family must feel! His children left without a father — needlessly because his death was not natural. Racism is an injustice that breeds violence. A cruelty that must surely come to an end.

Could his heinous murder be a turning point? Could it be the much-needed change in America and the world? …


I read an article advocating God to be a woman, the evidence given wasn’t quite convincing as I’d have liked. Traditionally, God has been depicted as a man — in movies, books, and in the bible — but some fierce feminists have tried to convince us that he must be a she. I have now decided he is definitely a he — the proof is in the woman.

Recently my friend visited her GP because her body was ‘misbehaving’. After a thorough MOT, she was told ‘there was nothing to worry about’ (thank God?), ‘but because of her age (oh…

Estar Gathu

Educate. Inspire. Empower. Transform lives by lifting the lid on societal, cultural and mental health issues through storytelling. Visit www.thingsihear.co.uk

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