MAKING IT BETTER: Speaking My Truth!

In this column, every so often I started writing a section called ‘my own personal rant’ (which was warmly received…thank you very much) I would like to add another section I am calling ‘speaking my truth’ that is making its debut today.

During this bizarre Trump era, we have heard of alternative facts, we are definitely familiar with fake news. In both instances let’s cut to the chase and call it what it is which is a euphemism for LIES!! However when you talk about ‘speaking your truth’, one might be tempted to say it falls in the same category as the afore mentioned. I beg to differ! Speaking my truth denotes my lived experiences. Not something I’ve heard or been told, but what I know to be true, what I know for sure as I have seen it or lived it.

Someone once said that when two people give an account of something, there is one persons truth, the others persons truth and the actual truth which lies somewhere in the middle of both. Simply because people embellish their stories and depending on the level of baggage they are carrying, which tends to have a substantial impact on the account of the situation; the longer they harbour anger and pain the more their account of the situation is distorted.

Speaking my truth means I have to be clear from whence I speak, In other words am I speaking from hurt, anger, shame or envy. All of which as mentioned above will surely distort the truth of my narrative. This means I have to be mindful, thoughtful and think about my experiences, to find the  truth. I have to separate what is real from what emotions I have projected unto a situation or experience. Whenever I can accomplish this (it’s not always an easy feat), I come away with something authentic, free of baggage and something I am happy to own as my truth.

They say the truth will set you free. It might be painful and inconvenient at times, but it is always empowering and liberating (eventually!). I have also found it allows you to inch closer to who you want to be and where you want to go.

I believe we are in a time and place where ‘speaking your truth’ (your authentic lived experience) is vital to our survival as a people, as the human race. We are descending into the abyss of malice, irrelevance and deep pain. This is a time when there is a need for authentic voices and experiences to gather momentum and volume (no whispering here). As the deafening white noise continues to rage and threatens to drown everything and everyone else out, the rest of us must speak our (the) truth whenever we can.

So last week I gave an account (my truth) of the inauguration week. I got the sense that it resonated with some of you based on your comments. Today I am further inspired to speak my truth about what I know of Governor John Kayode Fayemi and The First Lady Bisi Adeleye Fayemi. My knowledge of JKF is limited and mostly in the context of the couple. In the many years I have known him he has always presented in a consistent manner. I do believe it almost impossible to fake who you are indefinitely. You are bound to slip up and your true self will be exposed. In my experience of JKF, he has always had a generous spirit, he has always been gracious, kind and sensitive to the plight of those less fortunate. His intellect and academic achievements are well documented and are evident in how he conducts himself ( it has cost him criticism in the past); although, what emerged after him was the definition of Crass. JKF’s passion for the welfare, development and success of his beloved country is one of the main components that have kept him driven, ambitious and brought him thus far. I think I can be bold enough to call him a Feminist (not a bad word for a man), a man who is also committed to elevating the status of women in society and contributing to gender parity and social justice.

As a couple they are a team, formidable! Their support of one another and love for each other is tangible, palpable and unabashedly obvious for all to see. I remember years ago back in the UK at an event where Erelu was giving a talk, JKF had quietly slipped into the venue and I watched as he listened attentively to the words his wife spoke. He responded accordingly to the points she made and appeared to me to be a very proud of her. I have seen him on a couple of other occasions and his support was always unwavering. I think I can also take the liberty of saying she is his rock! I heard the man say at her birthday celebration in church (you can’t get any more public than that), in a tribute to her, ‘I worship the ground she walks!’(I heard it!). At the time I thought that was very impressive and I said to myself…you go girl!

Erelu Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi, I know a lot more about, again from first hand interaction. The length of our association I think I can safely say covers close to a couple of decades. In that time she is also someone I can say has been consistent in many ways. Friendships are important to her, she nurtures and cherishes her friends and she is loyal. As a person I have experienced her to be kind, generous, blessed with boundless energy (ooh lala!), she just keeps going! She has a wonderful sense of humour (thank God) and can show you younger folk some wicked dance moves…ask around!  She has a forgiving heart which has been tested and challenged vigorously over the past few years; I suspect this trend will continue over the next four years and beyond. She takes the hit, dusts the dirt off her shoulders, goes back to the drawing board and comes back stronger and clearer about her next move and way forward. She is not immune to hurt and pain, but she is on a mission and is clear about her intentions, and committed to make a difference in the lives of as many people as she can.

A few weeks ago it was documented on this website the achievements of The First Lady to date, it speaks for itself. She clearly has a lot more to do. I am excited at what this power couple will bring to their (old) but new roles, what Ekiti can look forward to with them at the helm of things. Their future shines brightly and they bring this light to illuminate the paths they will walk and the lives they will touch.

Returning to the theme of my column today, ‘speaking my truth’, I enjoin and encourage you to speak your truth (maybe not as lengthy as mine today!). When you hear what you know to be untruths (like a lady I challenged at the Ekiti fair who was announcing that the coconut oil she was selling cured everything including cancer!); whether it’s about people or situations , be bold., be courageous to challenge it where and when you can.

I am particularly enamoured by the quality and calibre of the growing readership on this website. Your voices are coming through, some in whispers some quite boldly. I read in your comments, your truths as you express your views and hunger for information, education and life experiences.  Many of you who might read this column know I am a strong advocate of the youth. You are our hope and our future. While some people may have a bigger platform and resources to make significant changes for many, we can all make a difference in some small way to reclaim our humanity.

Make yourself better, make someone’s life better, and make the world around you better!


Gloria Ogunbadejo writes a weekly column for Punch Newspaper. She is a Psychotherapist, a life coach, a holistic counsellor and an ordained Minister. She can be reached at

Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to as the source.

As you engage, comment and discuss, Please abide by the in-house Code-of-Conduct  for Above Whispers Community. Thank you.






Sign up for Updates

2 Responses to MAKING IT BETTER: Speaking My Truth!

  1. Femi Diipo November 3, 2018 at 5:53 pm

    I think my thoughts resonate with this truth, as much as I may not know this couple personally or met them, I’ve had enough impressions about them to confirm all this. It is always very good to express truth from such a subjective stand point and I know I can count on reading more interesting truth from this column subsequently. Thanks for sharing this ma’am

  2. Olakunle Olajide November 7, 2018 at 2:38 pm

    This is beautiful. I rarely know JKF but for Erelu I have read her books and watch her speak on few occasions and I can say she is a true and rare gem to emulate. And i am so glad JKF cherishes you.
    Thank you for sharing ma’am and for supporting youths.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Notify me of new posts by email.