“I kept my rape child”
What would you do if you conceived a child through rape?
Masanda speaks to a woman who became pregnant as a result of rape...

What happened on that fateful day?

I trusted a stranger and I thought he needed my help. I got close to the man by offering him counselling because he mentioned that he had family problems and then he started visiting my place. On his third visit, randomly he said “Do you know that there isn't a girl I want that I do not get”. He then started making suggestive comments to me and I rejected his advances.

And then what happened?

Out of the blue he jumped on me and locked my legs and hands then raped me. Overwhelmed by the moment I froze. When the deed was done, he got up and apologised for what he had just done mentioning that the devil made him do it. I did not know what to do and for a while I kept this violation to myself.

How did you cope afterwards?

I wasn't the same. I would come back from work and stay indoors. Once I confided in my pastor who advised me to report the matter to the police. One day my boss called me and wanted to know what was happening as my work performance was not the same. He noticed that I was going through something. I brushed it off and made up a story as I did not want to disclose what had happened.

My boss took a chair and sat in front of me and held my hands and looked me straight in the eyes and asked again” Cleopatra what is happening to you?” That is when I broke down and cried and detailed my ordeal to him. I later went to report the rape to the police and nothing much has been done about the case even though I gave them my rapist details and I decided to leave it there. I blamed myself for what had happened. I kept thinking that if I had ignored him things would not have been that way.

You discovered that you were pregnant, tell me about that.

I was ill and doctors told me that I had low blood pressure and they also took some blood tests. During that time I tried committing suicide three times but failed in all attempts. I went for counselling but that did not help either. One day I received a call from the doctor congratulating me on my pregnancy and my world fell apart.

That must have been a tough one.

On hearing the news I made an appointment with the abortion clinic. I felt dirty and wanted to abort the “thing” I was carrying. During the pregnancy every time the baby moved I hated “it”. I felt if I can cut anywhere in my body this dirty “thing” can come out. I hated “it” so much. On the day of the appointment I overslept and missed my appointment and to me that was a sign that God did not want me to go through with the abortion. I carried “it” full term.

Did you receive any support in all of this?

I told my sister and my family and mom collapsed when she heard the news. I then gave birth to a boy child I couldn’t even look at. The nurses cried as they have never seen a mother reject a baby the way I did. My birth partner who was my friend took the baby and asked me to at least look at him. She put him on my chest and I then gave “it” a glance still I felt nothing for the child. My mother decided to take him home with her as she feared that I might harm him. She told me that as soon as I was ready to be a mother I can have him back. After two months I went back home to fetch my baby and we've been inseparable ever since that day.

How are you relating to your son?

My son is my everything and I love him so much. I plan to tell my son how he was conceived but not in a way to make him feel bad but to let him know the truth and for him to know that he is loved despite of what had happened. I am now raising a little man of God whose smile can melt a rock.

Disclaimer: The views of columnists published on Parent24 are their own and therefore do not necessarily represent the views of Parent24.

Read more by Masanda Peter

What would you do if you conceived a child through rape?

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