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Thursday, January 10, 2013

Another Case of a Battered Husband in the Philippines



In my last posting about battered husbands, I cited two cases that had come to my attention last year. One case was here in the US( a coworker) and the other case was in the Philippines(a relative) The article dated 11/12/12 can be found at www.squidoo.com/abused-against-men-the-battered-husband.htm

This week I learned of another battered husband case in the Philippines. The battered husband is a close kin of my wife. For the purpose of this article, let me call the husband Benjamin and his wife Lola. Relatives and friends of Benjamin oftentimes just call him Benjie while Lola has another name Bu-angit( crazy in Ilonggo).

Benjie's family are rich landowners in Mindoro. When Benjie's parents died, the property were divided into the 7 siblings. But Bu-angit was later able to claim and usurp portions of land supposed to be inherited by one of the sisters of Benjie. The story of Benjie and Lola is a classic tale of greed, indifference, envy and marital discord of a well to do Filipino family.

I have met Benjie and Lola and have interactions with them several times during their married life. Lola has a temper, so I was sure that Benjamin was a victim of verbal abuses. Lola several years ago came to visit relatives here in US. On her way home to the Philippines, she had a temper tantrum in the airport. It took a while for her to calm down.

Today, I was surprised to learn that Benjamin was also a victim of physical abuse. Benjamin and Lola have four adults children and several young grandchildren. Both hailed from Mindoro(neighboring island of Marinduque), but decided to reside in Quezon City after their college graduations. Benjamin was an engineer and a business executive before his retirement. Lola was a full time housekeeper and occasionally teaches piano. We know of several friends of the couple and heard of incidents of Lola's temper tantrums. Lola is also known for her erratic behavior during full moon. We did not however have much contact with Benjamin and Lola for the last 5 years, not until last week when Benjamin died of heart attack at the age of 71. We were also informed that a week before Benjie died he was scheduled for heart by-pass surgery. For unknown reasons, the surgery was cancelled. It is rumored that Lola convinced Benjie not to have surgery, because of the costs of the surgery. I feel this is not really the reason, since the couple are very wealthy. They owned lands and two houses in Mindoro as well as beach houses in Batangas and Marinduque and has a good business in Quezon City.

Benjamin had several relatives residing in the US. Last week, a relative( Gilda) flew to the Philippines just to attend for his funeral and cremation services. It was at this time that she learned of Benjie's suffering as a victim of Lola's verbal and physical abuse. The story was relayed to Gilda by the personal caretaker of Benjamin.

The story of Benjie's abuse was relayed by Gilda to my wife and I am writing this story. This is a true story. But to protect the family and privacy of both the late Benjamin and Lola, the names and places in this article are fictitious but the story of Benjamin as a battered husband is true and not a product of my wild and vivid imagination.

Again, as I wrote in my first article on this subject, battered husband cases are not as common as the battered wife cases. But this story confirms that there are battered husbands all around the world, but are too ashamed to seek help when they are still alive. In the case of Benjamin, his case was only known after his death last week. May Benjamin's soul rest in Peace, Amen.

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