Darren Maule: 'I am so tired of amending my behaviour to fit criminals'

Darren Maule: 'I am so tired of amending my behaviour to fit criminals'

As a father of an 11-year-old daughter in South Africa, I have gotten to the stage where I am tired of always having to amend my behaviour.

Amashova - Mouse and Darren

Earlier this year the crime stats came out, and when I heard the statistics of murder in South Africa, I was forced to amend my behaviour in order to ensure that neither my child nor I am in any situation in any place where this could possibly manifest in our lives. 

It is a constant and recurring threat that hangs over us everywhere we go. Every single day that we wake up, we have to deal with that reality.

Then one day, we wake up to the news that rape has overtaken murder as the number one crime in South Africa. So, I have to amend my behaviour and tell my daughter prematurely what sex is and what sex without permission is and why men would violently assault you for it and what steps to take in how to avoid it.

We are constantly reminded every day of hijackings; and I have to amend my behaviour. It means making sure that I can't have a decent conversation with my daughter which might, in any way, take my attention off constantly checking my blind spots and mirrors and ensuring the doors are locked at all time; making sure we're 'safe' and driving through a 'safe' area.

I have to take in all news at night and check first thing in the morning that I won’t be driving through a violent protest of slung rocks and burning tyres. 

When the cash-in-transit heists are back in season; I have to amend my behaviour.

Make sure you don't park near the bank or ATM; I have to amend my behaviour.

Don't pull up to, or drive near a cash-in-transit vehicle; I have to amend my behaviour.

Find another parking, pull up to another stop street, take another route; amend my behaviour. 

A friend of ours asked if Mouse could go for a sleepover, but they live on a farm; so I have to amend my behaviour and explain to my child why I don't feel safe with her going to stay with her friend because of the high rate of farm murders and attacks. 

You hear about the latest surge in kidnapping and I have to amend my behaviour and make sure that my daughter has passwords in case anyone else were to collect her on the off chance I were injured or unable to make it. 

I have to check on the latest monitoring and tracking device and hope I don’t violate her privacy. I have also had to explain to her what kidnapping is and what she might have to do if she were to be kidnapped; and again I have to amend my behaviour. 

In order to just be a parent, a father, and enjoy life in South Africa, I constantly, almost weekly, have to amend my behaviour, amend my relationships, amend my thoughts and decision-making processes because of what might or might not happen to me or my daughter. 

Aren't you tired of amending your behaviour to fit in with criminals and the crimes they commit?

ALSO READ: Darren Maule for Mayor!

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