When Marriage Turns Violence

We heard disturbing news during lunar Chinese New Year on a gruesome murder of Choong Pei Shan, who was six months pregnant with a boy and his 4 years old daughter Teo Zi Ning. This is a shocking moment for most Singaporeans who sympathies the wife and her daughter. A 41-year-old Singaporean Teo Ghim Heng was on Monday (Jan 30) charged with the murder of his wife, who was found dead in a Woodlands flat on Saturday 

Singaporean Teo Ghim Heng allegedly murdered 39-year-old Choong Pei Shan between 8am and 11am on Jan 20 in their 6th floor flat at Blk 619, Woodlands Drive 52. It was understood that Teo then allegedly set Mdm Choong's body on fire on Saturday, the first day of Chinese New Year. While the case is still under police investigation at the point of press, let us reflect if such incident can be prevented.


On the day of marriage, most couples paint a happy moment of children and spouse living in a happy home. The wife sees the husband as a pillar of strength and the husband sees the wife as an anchor of love and care. After reading this tragic incident, there was a mixture of reactions from the netizens, one group blaming the husband for some gruesome act, cursing him a death penalty whereas the other group sympathies the deceased wife, daughter and the unborn son who suffered such a tragedy.


There are reasons why he killed his wife, burnt her to death and destroyed the home; he took 4 years to build. Was it financial instability? Being an agent, income can be unstable. However, should he be blame for all the gruesome acts? No normal human being would kill his beloved wife and worst, his daughter due to financial instability. Was it an act of impulsiveness? Did something trigger him to kill her out of frustration? Was he under alcohol or drugs influence? Is this accumulated problems where he kept to himself for months and he burst out at the moment of time?

I find it a pain for the wife, the unborn son and the lovely 4 years old daughter that they have to end their life, unexpectedly where they should be celebrating Chinese New Year just like everyone else.  If it is due to family dispute, the best way is to seek counselor's help. From this sad incident, we learn, no matter what happen, being open and frank on each other problem is crucial. If there are issues that cannot be resolved, staying away for a few days or weeks by moving back to in-law home and to seek agency help can prevent such incident. Never take matters in our own hands if we cannot resolve it.


Living together as a family for a lifetime is never an easy task. It takes compromise and more commitment, not necessary just tolerance. No human can tolerate forever, if they find it hard to accept. However, every couple can mitigate family violence by drawing a distance from each other to cool down. We have to admit that not every couple ends up in ripe old age nowadays. We see divorcees and they continue to live a happy life. 

Damage has been done for this case. What we can do now, is to pray for peace for the decreased and hope justice is done not just to punish the murderer but to send a message to the society that anger, problem and frustration once happen will paint a stain on the loves one who are still alive. Anger, frustration and problem cannot resolve anything but create more damage, hatred and agony. 

Violence should never be used even at the last resort. It should be totally out of question.