Do Jamaican Young women love the Beating?

It is quite a quotidian occurrence for young men to be seen hitting their girlfriends on the street or at parties. It is as trendy as skin bleaching. If one should listen to the women on the street recounting nocturnal fights with their partners among throngs of friends you would think the beatings were a new form of mating dance.In some cases it might appear that the “beating” is some type of foreplay, a precursor to sex. After the fighting and “tumble down” , a passionate night of lovemaking ensues, next day, the estranged lovers are as tight as sandwich biscuits. ‘You woulda never know a fight took place a few hours ago’.

Some of these ‘beatings’ are often over some infidelity the female assumed her lover committed for which he would rather beat her to accept his version of events than fest up to. The beating involves some level of threats and promises of more assaults if she decides to leave the relationship. The female is then reassured that he loves her and will calm down. Next time she might go at the mistress instead of the man who has convinced her that he loves her and is only unable to resist the sexual lure of a disloyal female who keeps waving her goodies at him.

Most women do not necessarily endorse the “murderation”. But the male uses it to cower the female into submission. He affectionately calls it a “touch up”. He will brag to his friends about how he has to give his girlfriend her weekly “touch up” so she will learn to behave herself and love him more.

It is unclear how they bond during this beating phase but the male becomes empowered by the wailing sounds of the woman while onlookers murmur among themselves, some men might intervene when the situation becomes disgraceful. Most elders decline arbitration citing that it is futile to meddle for she will not leave him. Let them fight out their frustrations and work on their relationships until they get tired of each other.


It is clear the young women have a distorted notion of what a healthy relationship is. This may be due to lessons they inherited from their mother who tolerated abusive relationships, unknowingly giving rise to a flawed perception that it is okay to be in a relationship with a men who abuse them.

Lack of denouncement among other members of society might encourage this behavior among young men since most men within the cultural nucleus especially those of lower socio-economical class, have no hiccups against “touching up their women”. They jokingly call it “tablet” saying that the women need it whenever they act crazy to settle them.

One female admitted that she could not leave her relationship with her ” beater” because she had no where else to go and she refuses to go back to her parent’s house. She does not have a job and she has children to take care of and if she leaves then he might not be willing to support the children. From her story one can garner that there is a need for social intervention with young women such as reasserting values, relationship convictions and insisting that they pursue improvement within their own lives before they begin a relationship.

Many Young Jamaican women remain in abusive unions solely because they lack the financial means to leave and live on their own. The men ignorant of how to handle conflicts with their partners cannot tame the “toxic tongue” of the female and hits her to calm her down. Females tend to emasculate men in quarrels by alluding to oral sex which in many cases enrages the male. An elderly man said. ” Woman mouth a them power and them young bwoy yah must learn fe ignore woman when she a beat up her gum”. He continued. ” Take a walk and leave her, make she calm down, caan deh batta bruise her,”

It is very customary for the couple after the cussing and fighting to sit quietly and go over their problem. The man might express regret at hitting the female and she might get some answers and reassurances regarding her concerns. Tomorrow them sweeter than honey!”

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Crystal Evans

Crystal Evans was born in Westmoreland Jamaica. She is the author of several books centered on her experiences growing up in rural Jamaica and the Jamaican cultural nucleus. She is a voracious reader.

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