ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Afghan Women Prefer Self-immolation to Escape Their Fate

Updated on November 13, 2010

Woe upon any woman living in Afghanistan that is native. Women in Afghanistan and in adjacent countries generally despise women culturally and are sub-serviant to their husbands. Their movements in a day are so restricted still, despite the "liberation" from the Taliban. Cultural legacies do not die easily in tribal, primitive countries.

For many women, it is a dire existence of boredom, restrict laws that stop their own dreams and just simple movement in society. Their man comes home, the master wants this, wants that. If she refuses, she is abused, hit, shoved, treated like a dog-guess the honeymoon is over! The woman seeks a way out. She becomes despondent.

Take the fate of Gul Zada. She took her children to her sisters for a party for her son Juma. When presents were given, Gul suddenly realized that she had forgotten one! Family members began to give her a bad time. Juma thought little of it. For Zada, 45, it was the straw that broke her. Up until then, she had six children and even was allowed to work as a maid cleaning houses, rare in Afghanistan. Still, she suffered from depression because of her life, or lack of. She was not educated, had no choice about the man she married, she was a slave to her husband. When she went outside, she felt like an outcast. Up until the breaking point, she had thought about just leaving him and the family, but fear of being raped and caught (easily done in this country) and then sent back home to her master where she would be beaten stopped her. Even worse, maybe her husband would just kill her as a honor killing because she spent time unchaperoned out in public where single men roamed. She could also be stoned in public.

By western standards, or any standards, all this is as alien as satanic rituals. But it is true in Afghanistan for women.

Zada, decided to self inflict burns over 60% of her body and fought for her life in a Herat sanctuary, the hospital. Just last month, the hospital had an influx of 75 women who did the same thing. Some of these women were not burned by men, but, family female members who agree with the men and their roles. Zada had hoped to escape by this self burning using match and cooking fuel. If successful, she would get a divorce and her husband would just marry another woman.

Some women arriving at the Herat hospital were not self inflicted. Some, were shoved into an oven by their masters after they had been knocked out, only to awaken in the hospital. For Zada, the self immolation was a painful way to get out of the hell of living with a sharecropper husband who was liberal by Afghanistan standards. He allowed her to work and she would clean their own two bedroom earthen floor and brick home. The thankless task was endless as winds brought in dirt every day. Juma, her 32 year old son who earns $140 a month, she was the provider, not his dad. Her two 10 year old daughters felt the same.

Zada, at first improved. Her sons and daughters were elated. However, sepsis, a deadly infection began to set in, common in severly burned victims. Sepsis is hard to stop even in the USA, expensive antibiotics are needed and they do not always work. Juma had managed to beg and borrow enough for many of the antibiotics.

Zada died two weeks after she lit herself up hoping to escape Afghanistan's hell for women. Juma thought about murdering his dad.

Stay tuned.........


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)