By Ezinwanne Onwuka
On the eve of this year (2020), most ladies already had their goals for the year ready. The first on the list, undoubtedly, is to get married. With this goal in mind, they will spend half of the year prowling for suitors – tall, handsome, rich and God-fearing men. For the not-so independent ladies, their mothers and aunts will push them around, pressuring them to bring a man home because all your mates are married and you are not getting any younger, you need a man to take care of you”. Sister, can’t you take care of yourself?
This depicts the kind of society we live in. A society where women are taught from infancy that no matter how successful they may become tomorrow, they are incomplete without a man. A society where the rightful place of a woman is under a man. A society where the education of women starts and ends in the kitchen. A society where women are groomed from a tender age to become ‘good and virtuous wives’. A society where it is drummed into the ears of young girls that whatever they do, the ultimate goal should be to end up raising a family. A society where if a lady remains unmarried at the age of thirty, she will be looked at as unserious with her life. Shakes my head.
What a society, I must say! This has caused many ladies to set an ultimate goal for themselves: being in a man’s bedroom and kitchen. Whatever they do is geared towards the attainment of this end. They see themselves as worthless, unfulfilled, unsatisfied and unhappy until a man puts a ring on that finger. Hence, to have the title ‘Mrs.’ is considered a great feat, an unparalleled achievement and an unprecedented success in life; and they will go to any length to see that they answer someone’s wife. I am not talking of an abstract thing. Call a girl of ten years, ask her what her biggest dream in life is. The answer won’t shock you. She would tell you it is to get married to a banker, business man or whoever after school. Ask a twenty-seven year old lady her prayer point for the past one week. I bet you won’t be surprised if she tells you it is for God to send a suitor her way earnestly. What is all these?
Nowadays, most ladies are now so marriage-conscious that they do not do anything meaningful with their lives anymore. All they do is to make bucket lists of what they want in a partner; move from one prayer house to the other with the pictures of young men who they would like to marry; day dream and fantasize of a ‘happy home’; fight over men and jump from one relationship to the other, hoping to bump into ‘Mr. Right’. Some even go to the extent of using diabolic means to get a real man. Like seriously?
What happened to self-development and self-investment? What happened to having lofty dreams and setting goals? What happened to building a life? Critics are now likely to attack me with ‘she (I) can do all that under a man’ or ‘the right’ man can help her (me) achieve all those dreams’ blah, blah, blah.
Truth is, most often women have had their dreams shattered after getting married. Some men feel threatened by the success of a woman; they feel the more successful and educated a woman is, the more difficult it is to subjugate her. And I want to ask, who told you that she (you) belong under a man, of all the places in the world? Smirks.
No matter how much we try to deny it, men are now taking advantage of women due to this garbage idea of feminine inferiority that we have been indoctrinated with. Occasionally, pastors hold conferences, seminars for single ladies with the sole aim of giving you tips on how to trap a man. Let me ask you, how often have you come across a flyer or poster about such seminars or conferences for single men? I will go ahead to answer the question because you might sugarcoat the answer. Rarely! The answer is, rarely. Sometime ago, I came across a post on Facebook. It read (not quoted verbatim, though): Ladies, you may have a Ph.D, answer Barrister, be a successful chartered accountant but remember, only a man can add a ‘Mrs.’ to your name. (And I must admit, this informed my choice of writing this piece). What rubbish!
Ladies, did you get the hidden message? I am not sure you did, let me tell you. They are telling you to forget about education and forget about your passions; chasing all these is a waste of time, all you need in your life is a man! The phrase, it’s a man’s world and our President’s one-time remark that the wife (and by extension, women) belongs only to the kitchen and the other room adds impetus to the issue at hand.
Most ladies are trapped in the box of, ‘I am incomplete without a man’, ‘my education starts and ends in the kitchen’ ‘my rightful place is under a man’. Consequently, they perceive any lady who is different as stupid. When you see a single mother working hard to give her child and herself a better life, you will say she is irresponsible and wayward. You see a married woman who doesn’t want to have a child yet because she believes children will deter her from reaching the zenith of her career, you say she is selfish. You see a feminist advocating for women rights, you say she is jobless. Why do you resent them because you didn’t have enough courage to step outside the box like they did? If you are reading this and you are one of such ladies, it is high time you get out of that box. Until you get out of that box, you won’t understand how much bigger the world is.
Get educated. Follow your passions. Dedicate enough time and energy to your skill and career. Chase your dreams and hunt your goals. Do not make a ring your ultimate goal in life. Grow.
Ezinwanne Onwuka is a speaker and writer. She writes unique and research-driven content about life, politics, religion and more. Ezinwanne is available for speaking and writing projects. You can reach her on [email protected].