Is Your Ex A Monster?

Once upon a time I wrote a letter to my Ex Boyfriends, you can read the blog post here.  I felt that I needed to do that to get some form of closure for myself.  Once I did that I felt a whole lot better.  I remember most women on the Twitter Time Line started writing to their ex boyfriends as well after reading my post and boy did I read some interesting posts or what!

This morning however, I got myself thinking about one thing I never actually asked myself when I broke up with someone.  Was my ex really the monster that I made him out to be or I also played a part in the break up?  It’s not easy to admit that sometimes you are also to blame.  There is no way you can always be the one who was wronged, sometimes you also do wrong to the next person.  Let’s get right into it…


I have had so many talks with my girlfriends after they broke up with the “love of their life”.  We have gone all out in calling them names and reminding each other how much of a good for nothing man the guy being hurled insults at really was.  When your friend is hurting that isn’t the right time to remind her of what she could have done differently or what she continuously did that probably contributed to the break up.

YES some exes really are monsters.  There is a saying in Shona that goes; “Rinonyenga rinohwarara rinosimudza musoro rawana” It translates to something like “A person will climb the highest mountain to try and win your heart and once they know they have it they will show their true colours”.  This saying is usually used on men because they specialise in “selling dreams”.  One too many women have fallen in love with a mans “pretend version” not knowing that drastic changes await her in the not so distant future…What are these changes you ask?  Some stop calling as often as they used to, the good morning messages become a thing of the past, he doesn’t spend time with his woman anymore, the flowers that used to be delivered each month are nowhere to be found even going out for an ice cream date becomes something she reads about it magazines.   I want to know from the men, what brings about this kind of change?  Can we safely conclude that the Shona saying holds water or it’s something the woman says or does that makes you stop making an effort.

People lie, men and women alike but when you hear some of the stories women tell you, you have to admit that men take the cup any day! I remember a time my cousin was madly in love with her boyfriend.  He stayed in Bulawayo and she was in Harare.  Those days we still had landlines and we always used to rush to the phone each time it rang because we always used to think the call was either hers or mine.  Fun times!  It happened that after she had been dating this guy and even going to visit him on a few occasions she received a phone call from an unknown woman telling her to leave her boyfriend alone.  This came as a surprise because after she had been introduced to family and friends we naively thought she was the one.  We were wrong, the girl kept calling and we kept calling him trying to find out what was really going on.  Eventually her boyfriend got in touch and told her to leave him alone because he had got some girl pregnant and he was going to do right by her and marry her.  I have NEVER seen my cousin that way.  She is a strong individual.  She broke down on the phone and cried, she cried for so long I held her and didn’t know what to say to her.  She was never the same, she did not eat, she would not sleep.  She was heartbroken.  She lost so much weight I was starting to worry that she might take her own life from depression.  We were only around age 21 then and this was something I had never encountered.  It took her a very long time to get over him but time always finds a way to heal us.  Just last year, the very same guy called her and said he had made a mistake and wanted to do right by her.  I don’t know what that guy is on but he has some balls!  My cousin would hear non of it and I was happy she let that ship sail. In this case, I would like to believe the only thing my cousin did wrong was to give her heart to someone who clearly did not deserve to have it!

On the other hand, exes are really not monsters.  We see the signs, we really do, but we close one eye and pretend we don’t see them.  Let me give you a very good example of what happened to me.  I met a guy who I knew was the real enemy of progress.  Back then I had a routine.  Leave work, get home, hit the gym, come back home, bath, watch a series and sleep.  On weekends I would hit the gym first thing in the morning then make my way home to bath and watch Gossip Girl while sipping on my drink all day long.  It was the perfect setup.  I had no boyfriend to worry about and I had very few friends.  Then this guy showed up, started asking me to go for coffee, for lunch, for dinner and I would say it’s fine and never showed up.  Who was he to change my routine?  You know guys though, once they want something they will go in and go hard!


Image from Google

As the story goes, we eventually started spending time together and my gym membership went down the drain.  He was a lot of fun BUT he had one three many women in his life.  We were good friends and I would ask him about these other women and he would tell me they were having problems and he was going to drop them.  In came “Miss Fix It”.  I told myself it was going to be my mission to be the leading lady in his life come rain or shine.  What a joke!  Why did I even do that to myself.  Like hello, this guy had some serious commitment issues and there I was trying to put him in the straight and narrow.  BIGGEST JOKE EVER!  Then I decided if you can’t beat them join them and also started seeing other people just to get to him.  It was a mess.  Obviously it didn’t end well and yes I called him all sorts of names after things went sour.  It’s really funny how we get ourselves into situations we already know will hurt us.  He didn’t change at all, I still had stress when he didn’t pick up his calls and it was my very own doing.


The Awesome Ex

Then there are some amazing Ex Boyfriends.  The one in the picture isn’t a monster anymore.  LOL.  I think the reason why even after all the drama we put each other through we remained in each others lives is because we were good friends before. Yes, we have had a time we have gone a whole year without saying a word to each other. (read as me ignoring his messages after he tried to talk to me enough times) I have pride issues I know, I am working on those.  We have been friends for nearly 13 years and counting and it’s amazing how we have grown over the years from being bitter to being better.

Sometimes we need to learn to accept that even if things didn’t work out some people are put into our lives for specific reasons.  With him I think the reason was to show me that I can do anything I set my mind to because he has that kind of attitude.  I know my life partner is probably out there reading this and thinking so this is the ex that will give me stress, don’t worry about him, he stays farrrr away from Zimbabwe, besides you and I are going to move to Belgium and live happily ever after.

I would love to hear from you.  When you broke up with your last ex, who was to blame? If you could do things differently what would it be?

©MaKupsy 2016


Shona Lobola Procedures

Roora (Lobola/Dowry)


A man marrying a woman from the Shona culture has to observe the roora. This is a sign or show of love and affection when a man saves up and marries his beloved. There are many ways this can be done but I will dwell on the general procedures followed on the following condition  The man has done all the other necessities e.g. proposing (not musengabere, kutizisa), formal Introductions (dated for over 6 months) and more importantly girl is not pregnant (damage) or previously been married (virgin?).  In Zimbabwe, roora takes place in a number of stages and each stage has its own traditions and small amounts to pay. The process can differ from place to place due to the fact that in the Shona culture there are 12 different ethnic groups.

Stage One – Introduction

This stage involves the ‘munyayi’ who is a go-between when a man goes to pay the bride price at his future wife’s family stating to the family his intentions and purpose of visit e.g. “I have been sent by (the husband) to look for Sadza” , literally translated to I have come to marry your daughter (name). Here they are asked who they mean. Once this is done the bride’s family will ask the daughter if she knows the people who have come to marry her.

Stage two – Grocery

A list is given to the groom prior the ceremony, this will be a list of groceries required to bring to the family. The items are then checked and should match that on the original list for example, if its 5kg of sugar he should bring exactly that and not less.  Adhering to the stated requirements of the new in-laws is a show of respect from the new son-in-law. It is often advisable to do exactly as stated or better, to ensure smooth relations between the newly united families. Some families are more tolerant than others; A LOT of tolerance is needed as this is not a money making ceremony.

Stage Three – Preparations for payment

At this stage the bride’s family will ask for ‘ndiro’ normally a wooden plate from the munyayi and if he has brought one he would present it. This (the plate); in the past used to be provided by the bride’s family but since some people began charging for them some go with their own wooden plates.  Once the plate has been placed a process known as ‘sunungura homwe’ (loosening pockets) or ‘Vhuramuromomo’ (meaning opening of mouth) where a small fee is paid to for the greeting of the guests. At this stage some fines may be imposed.  For instance if the groom failed to meet an earlier date even if he notified the bride’s family well in advance and any other misdemeanours he might have done, These however should done with humour and laughter just to make the ‘munyayi’ feel at home and comfortable.

Stage Four–Payments

The process of Roora negotiations can be long and complex, and involves many members from both the bride’s and the groom’s extended families so these days due to our busy nature in some parts it being shortened and made less complex. The payment stage has quite a many stages which can even take days to complete. These are now grouped in two main sub processes which are:-

1.    Zvireverere zvaBaba (Gifts for the father)

This stage involves payment that are direct from the bride’s father (a guardian or representative can accept charge for these if the paternal father is deceased or not known) which in the old days had a lot of very long sub-processes and has been shortened. The main payment is the ‘Matekenyandebvu’ to acknowledge him for “the pulling of the beard” as she sat on his knee, or putting up with the playful antics of his daughter as a child. The amount paid for the father is negotiable.

2.    Zvireverere zvaMai (Gifts for the mother)

Same as the process above the payment are strictly for the bride’s mother (a guardian or representative can accept charge for these if the maternal father is deceased or not known).

The gifts for the mother of the bride in the old days included things like ‘mbereko’, for carrying the bride in a pouch or sling when she was a baby, and ‘mafukidzadumbu’ for covering of the belly; this is alternately translated as “carrying the baby in the womb” or “tucking the baby in with a blanket (when she wakes in the night)”. These are now charged under this blanket term due to the complexity of the past processes as well as the fact that people may have even forgotten exactly the names of the processes. The amount paid for the mother is non-negotiable.

Stage Five – Mbudzi yedare (yemachinda) Goat

This is a live goat that is brought by the man and is slaughtered during the payment process. The whole goat is then cooked and made ready to be served after the completion of the ceremony. If they don’t bring a goat a payment will be asked for and this money is shared equally between all the boys available at the household (usually can cause a lot of commotion if the amount is not even).

Stage Six – Musikana/Tete (Gifts for the bride)

The woman being married is required to pick some money from the plate for herserlf.  This money in some places can be set by the aunt or the woman’s sister. This is a small allowance for ’Mari inonhongwa nemusihare’ for the purchase of household or cooking utensils, and this amount is given to the bride. If there are younger sisters or siblings, she may give them a portion of the money. This money is for all the cooking that would have taken place for the party which the groom will finance after the ceremony is concluded. Usually this money can be returned by the woman to her future husband to cover the other payment that would follow.

Stage Seven – Rusambo (Roora, Dowry)

This is the most important stage called “Rusambo” and although the above process is referred to or called “roora”, this is the name given to the whole ceremony and all of the gifts, not just the bride price or dowry. Paying Roora is called ‘kubvisa pfuma’, giving (or parting with) wealth. Roora is wealth and its quantum must be consistent with wealth. This stage can only be reached if the stages mentioned above have been fulfilled. The bride price varies and nowadays factors in things like the social class of both the groom and the bride. This however can be paid as a part payment as long as some form of payment is made. For illustration purposes maybe the above processes may have cost the groom $1400 and he had only brought $2000 it is accepted for him to pay $600.00 and then the rest will follow for the next twenty years. If the groom fails to come up with any part payment then the whole process becomes null and void and will have to be started again at a later date and he will not be give his bride.

Stage eight – Danga (Livestock)

This stage traditionally is a gift of cattle and nowadays it is most commonly paid in cash, although the amounts will still be representative of fair market price for cattle.  Normally the number is between seven to eight cows and in those the most important one is the one for the mother known as ‘mombe yeumai.’ This should always be a live cow that the groom gives to the mother in law.  The cow is expected to produce an offspring as proof that the union has been blessed, also our belief the most powerful ancestors that protect us are the maternal ones.  ’Mudzimu wamai ukadambura mbereko’ (if maternal spirits let go) spells disaster.  To keep these spirits happy and attentive there is need to follow the ‘mombe yeumai’ protocol to the letter.  To to give ‘mombe yeumai’ is to acknowledge this spiritual symbolism. Once the offspring is weaned it is then expected that the cow can be slaughtered by the bride’s family and eaten by both families just as thanks giving and strengthening both the couple’s relationship as well as the family as a whole.  This will take place after two to five years. This stage is dependent on the Rusambo stage and if Rusambo is not available then they cannot proceed to this current stage.  In old times ‘pfuma/roora’ consisted of cattle, ’mapadza’ (symbolic iron hoes) and ‘machira’ (imported cloth) as indicative of a rich agricultural community.

Stage Nine – Majasi (Clothes)

This stage also dependent on the Rusambo stage.  It is the gift of clothes that the groom is expected to buy for his in-laws. As stated after Rusambo has been paid and the bride’s family are happy the groom and his party will then be invited and welcomed into the family ‘Kupinzwa mumusha’, the groom will then greet the in-laws as a new groom (no longer a prospective groom or stranger, but a member of the family) with the special traditional clapping greeting ‘Gusvi’ and is permitted to be a part of the household. At this stage he will be given a list of items of clothing that both the mother and father require normally full attire from top to bottom.


N.B Lobola Groceries vary from family to family but the standard grocery list is:

Cartons or boxes of:

Cooking oil


Photo Credit: Blessing Mutinhiri


This article was written by Richard Chashamba Thank you very much for the information you shared with me, I hope someone will have a clear view of what the Shona Lobola Procedures comprise of and not be in the dark like I was.  This was very a very insightful article.

© MaKupsy

No Contender – Thulani (Thirst Level 100)

The moment I received this music video link my lust levels went so high, the ladies will understand why once they watch the video.

  • Amazing Voice
  • Lovely Lyrics
  • Catchy Beat
  • Good looking
  • Great Body
  • Abs of Steel
  • Perfect Skin
  • Well-Dressed
  • Quality Video
  • Sings in Shona
  • Zimbabwean

P.S I have this video on repeat as I type this.

What I need to know about Thulani… Is he single or nah??


Why Do We Shun Our Mother Tongue?

I have just about had enough rolling of my eyes with some people who can easily tell you that, “Oh, my child doesn’t speak Shona” or “We couldn’t help her with her homework because we didn’t know the answers I can’t believe how hard Grade 1 Shona is” and yet there they are born and bred in Zimbabwe and 100% Shona.  You grew up speaking the language from day 1 and yet you want to take that away from your children?  Apparently this “not speaking in Shona” is supposed to be something admirable and it still puzzles me because in my opinion all you are doing is stopping your child from learning an important part of themselves.  Let me give you a real life example.

My older sister has a son, who is now 15 years old.  When he was a little baby my sister insisted that we only communicate with him in English and nothing else.  If the little boy his age who lived in the cottage by their house came to play with my nephew and he spoke to him in Shona he was quickly asked to leave because he was not helping with my nephew’s English speaking learning skills.   When my nephew got older he would visit my grandmother who didn’t know how to speak in English and she had a hard time conversing with him.  Sad right?  So very sad if you ask me.  In my sister’s world she was happy because by now he had a proper English accent and no trace of Shona speaking in his veins.  Now that he is all grown up we still don’t know if it’s okay to speak to him in Shona or stick to English because we have never heard him speaking in our mother tongue so it just makes everything so uncomfortable for everyone.  (I hope my sister doesn’t get to read this she will be absolutely pissed off with me!)  As it stands now my nephew is doing well in all his school subjects except for Shona.  At Form 3 he has to go for Extra Shona Classes.  Imagine parting with money to get someone to teach your child his mother tongue?  Absolutely ridiculous!!

What makes it even funnier is that there are white people who actually speak fluent Shona and yet here we are acting like we are too cool for it.  Then there are the coloured folks who act like they can’t hear a single word of Shona…I could really go in on this but that will take forever and a day.



Anyways, who am I to judge, one must feel free to teach his or her child whatever language they see appropriate for their growth as an individual.  I have a daughter who I started speaking to in Shona because I wanted her to be fluent in communicating with everyone around her.  It was only last year when she started going to Nursery School she started to learn how to speak in English.  Right now she can fluently communicate in both Shona and English.  I actually wish I knew a third or fourth language because that way she would grow up to be multilingual.

I was doing a bit of research on the multilingual subject this morning and below are some of the benefits of being multilingual for both your child and yourself as well:

  • You can understand and appreciate cultural references and nuances.
  • Multilingualism can create job opportunities and help you navigate the world.
  • You notice and appreciate the things that are sometimes lost in translation.
  • You feel a sense of connection with your heritage, history and family.
  • Your interactions with people of different cultures go deeper.
  • And lastly, your self-expression excitingly takes on a multitude of forms.   (points taken from

I want to know your thoughts on this subject.

  1. Do you think a child should be exposed to exclusively one language?
  2. Do you have people in your country who also shun their mother tongue?
  3. What do you think is the real reason behind parents not wanting their children to speak their mother tongue.