Being a Woman and Mother in Cuba Means Sacrifice

By Nike

HAVANA TIMES – In Cuba, the first game girls play is “happy homes” which involves filling toy pots and pans with rice and beans so we can play at cooking them while we look after dolls as if they were our own children.

If we have brothers, then we protect and pamper them, as if they were our own children, washing their clothes and even making their meals.

As soon as we turn 10 years old, we help our mothers while the boys spend all day out on the street.

I remember how happy I was to help my mother wash up, standing on a stool in front of the sink. So happy that my mother didn’t have to do everything on her own.

With the constant shortages and needs here in Cuba, ever since I was a little girl, it was first my mother who took food off her plate to distribute it among my siblings and I, and now that I am a mother, I take food off my plate to give it to my children.

This sacrifice has been so great that many mothers are suffering diseases today which are the result of malnutrition and all the sacrifices they have made over decades, without a balanced diet to keep us healthy enough to watch our children grow and enjoy their company in good health.

A mother in my family has serious health problems because of forty years of malnutrition. She can’t walk and spends her days locked up at home, going crazy without a solution for her problems.

I wanted to tell you a little bit about the situation Cuban women are in. I have many friends who have suffered a great deal because of malnutrition and the sacrifices they have had to make, also the result of having to work so hard to eat poorly herself and feed her children. There are no isolated cases because at the end of the day, Cuban women are the ones who put hot food on the table.

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3 thoughts on “Being a Woman and Mother in Cuba Means Sacrifice

  • I agree Dr. Gonzalez with much that you have written, and as my home is in Cuba, I experience those “harsh realities”.But, I think you confuse communism with democratic socialism – I detest the first and dislike the second. But whereas communism is totalitarian, democratic socialism is not. The Cuban government policies are a communist model, although in the so-called new constitution they endeavor to confuse the free world into believing that their policies are socialist. But you use of the Trump phraseology betraying support for a man who self-evidently envies totalitarian rulers and is increasingly pursuing a path towards fascism.
    Equally, your endeavor to hold Kennedy responsible for the retention of power by the Castro regime is merely conjecture.
    As one who is politically of the centre-right, I would advise that all citizens ought to be permitted to openly express their political views, for that is the very essence of democracy – ie: freedom!
    The Trumpian methods of endeavoring to suggest that those who hold views contrary to his own are the enemy is dangerous and a threat to US democracy – which unfortunately is confined to two parties.
    As I have a Cuban God-daughter aged eight, I daily ponder whether she will ever know the freedom which those of her age in the democratic world possess.
    Totalitarian rule whether by communism or fascism is evil, beware of both!

  • I’m a naturalized United States citizen born in Cuba and find this article very touching and very truthful of all the harsh realities of present day Cuba. It’s not that the embargo is limiting Cuba but the system itself does not reward the resourcefulness and talents of it’s own citizens. It is shameful such a beautiful and heavily resourced island be subjected to a system that is so totalitarian and inefficient that it crushes the hopes for personal, spiritual and financial prosperity. The Cuban model of government and economy reflects a socialist model that never reached a point of legitimacy. Let Cuba serve an important reminder to Bernie Sanders, AOC and the rest of the Squad of the failures of socialism. Perhaps most Cubans and Americans would never have lived through a missile crisis or more than 50 years of communism a few miles away from our borders if President Kennedy had not called off the Bay of Pigs invasion when it was already launched.

  • So much is being said about free education and free medicine and bla, bla. When in reality the people are starving. You don’t see people migrating to Cuba or Venezuela.

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