The hazards of Jamaican 'love'Friday, May 14, 2021
For most Jamaican men, love is a feeling that is as disarming to confront as it is dangerous and explosive.
Maybe why most Jamaican males find it a challenge to even say I love you is that it leaves the softer side more vulnerable to exploitation and attacks from unsuspecting sources. Thus, bearing a hard and coarse exterior, even if it betrays your truer self, provides more security and aligns more with male expectation.
Maybe mothers contributed towards this paper tiger development in no small way by discouraging boys from performing “girls' work”, such as washing dishes, cleaning, and so on. So there is an aversion to anything that seems soft and associated with girls.
Love is soft, so whenever this nuisance affects a man, aggression is, ironically, the result. It's strongly resisted or else channelled into some physical force such that when a man says to a woman, “Baby, mi luv you like cook food, yuh nuh baby,” it's pure emotion, no less than if he had got high on white rum or weed, until the temperature subsides.
For most Jamaicans love is a hazard to handle. It's so risky that whenever they think they love a girl/woman, and a betrayal occurs, it becomes a death sentence for the betrayer, since his so-called love is just a flip of an emotional coin without anything really called love to hold back violence and murder.
Sadly, love in a Jamaican man's heart can be a very perilous rope to walk.
Mount Vernon, New York, USA
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