September 3, 2010
I am 39 years old. I am not working , have not been for almost 3 years. I have moved 3 times in the last month & looking for a place to escape to again. I am staying with family whom I have tried to avoid. As I type that I could hear my uncle saying ,'she expects me to ruin my own career by helping her' & my aunt yelling at me as soon as she opened the door to her home saying , 'You are causing me to lose friends.'
You see, here in the Bahamas - friends are everything. It is how you stay in business. People put out bids , let's say, but the person who gives the right quote has a friend in the office to let them know what the lowest bid was. Bahamians bypass all official procedures by making a friend in the office with a chicken snack. Long lines are avoided with a tip to a cousin. Favor returns favors. Pastors know everybody.
I went to a church called Bahamas Faith Ministries where Dr. Myles Munroe is the pastor. I was very young & just out of Miami, where I went to school up to the 7th grade. I was naive about the culture here. I was surprised at the amount of insulting treatment people just swallowed. I was used to the scenes on US news of people protesting , demanding justice in the courts & always there were 'supporters' around them. I am no longer in America.
I saw things in this church I loved & was expected to be quiet & even accommodating by covering up. It was against my morals. I was warned by family not to upset people. I thought they were backward people. I told married men I was not going to sleep with them. They made my work harder on the job. I started working for the church & thought I was in heaven. I was soon disappointed. I took everything as a good soldier.
Then some young school girls came in our department during the summer. The marred men treated them the same way. I became very upset & started protesting to my immediate supervisor & others. I found myself out of favor with all the pastors. They started in earnest - calling me a lesbian. Of course ,we had homosexuals in the church, no one was bothering them. No one talked to me. The pastors laughed at me & my family stopped associating with me.
I was in a white room. I felt nothing but pain. I tried to commit suicide the night I left work ( a family business, I left BFM) where I was being bullied just the same & when I went up for prayers I was slapped by the speaker. The men who became my enemies were laughing with tears pouring down their eyes.
I decided to cut my losses & go on with my life. After coming out of the hospital - I was sent a letter saying I would no longer be considered a member & I had to find another place to be buried. Members were buried for free ,sort of, you paid years of tithes & offering. I was left alone for 2 years.
I tried to join another church. My first meeting back in a church was recorded & many people told me they saw me on television when I returned to work. I was doing security, another job. The lady pastor who slapped me raced down the sidewalk to meet me & ask me where exactly I used to be posted. I told her & the same bullying started in earnest on every post they put me on. The same tactics started being used , everyone began complaining about me -where once I was always called the best worker - I was now causing trouble.
I began going downtown to ask for alms to get something to eat. Fifteen police officers surrounded me & one threatened to shoot me. I have been harassed by the police constantly. They tell people not to help me because I am a con artist. I do not want to work. I was called a prostitute when I called the police after being assaulted whiles being homeless.
I am in a very precarious situation. I never know what is going to happen , if I find a place to stay - how long will I be there. I am treated like a criminal every day.