Thank God I’m Not A Woman!

All men must thank God that they are not women. As a man, I thank God that I’m not a woman – most especially an African woman, or better still; a Nigerian woman.

A woman has just given birth to a new baby. Everyone begins to rejoice with her. But on further enquiries, they discover the new baby to be a girl! They feel disappointed. The husband’s mood changes immediately. He thinks, “This woman has given birth to a girl again!” He becomes unhappy within. He wants a boy, not a girl. His family wants him to have an heir apparent – an Aroleas if a baby girl is not qualified to be one. He doesn’t care whether the woman had endured discomfort for nine months. “That’s her role as a woman,” he says.

The baby girl is here anyway. There is nothing anyone can do about it again. But she begins to feel pains from childhood. The first baptism of pains comes in form of circumcision. Just like a boy, she is circumcised; nay, mutilated. She cries aloud in pain but nobody cares. That’s the only time she must behave like a boy. She must endure the pain. She’s being treated like a boy. It doesn’t matter she came into the world as a woman.

Thank God I’m not a woman!

She begins to grow up. She reaches a school age, but the father doesn’t want her in school. She’s a girl, not a boy. Why wasting money on a girl’s education? She will soon become an adult and go away to another man’s house. For now, her place is on the streets. She must hawk bread and banana for her mother. Schools are for boys, not girls.

Thank God I’m not a woman!

She’s first a teenager before becoming an adult. As a teenager she must live in constant fears. She’s afraid of what the future may hold for her. She’s afraid of the boys in her environment. She must not walk alone, or in darkness. She could be raped and become defiled.

A teenage girl must not lose her father. She may end up without any inheritance. Only boys are qualified to inherit the estate. Who is a girl in the family? When a meeting is being held she must excuse herself. She has no voice on important issues. The boys of the house take decisions with their father. She prays to grow up quickly to become a young adult.

Thank God I’m not a woman!

Her prayer is answered. She has grown up. She is now a lady.  But she must face other issues. She must now live her life according to certain rules. There are certain things a lady must not do or say. There are places a lady must not go. There are things a lady must not eat or drink. The rules are for her own good. It’s all because of her future. If she fails to comply, she may end up without any man to marry. Her life is not like that of a young man. Hers is quite delicate.

As a teenager, she was scared of a possible rape. Now she’s a lady. The fear of rapists is still within her, but she has additional worries. She’s afraid of all those sweet talkers who come to her every now and then. They all praise her beauty and candor. They each want to marry her. But how would she know a sincere guy? It is very difficult to tell. Yet, she knows she’s not getting younger. Time may not be on her side. She’s not like a man who can decide to wait till eternity. If a man likes, he may delay his marriage till he clocks 50. Not so for a lady. Age 30 is considered late!

Thank God I’m not a woman!

She finally finds a serious guy. A date is set for her wedding. Few days to the agreed date, the guy begins to flounder. He finally drops the bombshell: He’s no longer interested. There is another lady somewhere.

Thank God I’m not a woman!

She doesn’t want to end up in wrong hands. The Catechist teaches that she must keep her glory. Her virginity must not be lost before marriage. She holds seriously to this. But the boys will never agree. They want to have a taste of what they want to buy. Yes, they think they are buying her! An African man believes he’s buying a woman when it comes to marriage.

Our lady finally succumbs. She allows him to “have his way.” But what happens next? He has had what he actually wanted. He’s now free to run. She’s ditched. Another one comes around with his promising sermon. She agrees again. And she’s jilted again! Four guys in four years but no marriage! Her neighbors begin to gossip. Her parents begin to mount pressure. She must get married NOW. It’s a parental order; as if she’s to manufacture a husband.

Her ex-boyfriends somehow meet at the joints. Discussions flow with beer and pepper soup. Her name comes up as they gist. She becomes their object of ridicule. “She’s a whore; an ‘Ashewo’ to the core;” so they mock her. They are not to be blamed. It is accepted as a norm in Nigeria. A lady with previous unsuccessful relationships must be an Ashewo. No man can ever be an Ashewo. It doesn’t matter if he has chains of girlfriends. He can even be a gigolo. It is allowed. He’s a man; he can do whatever he likes.

Thank God I’m not a woman!

She becomes born again by force. She prays and fasts like a prophetess. Oh! The Lord has listening ears. Her prayers are answered. She finally gets a husband. She’s now married. Her bible says she must submit to her husband because he’s the head of the family. She’s a good Christian. She understands the dictates of the bible.

But her husband’s interpretation is different. To him, submission means slavery. She must become the slave of the house. As a good Christian, she’s expected to know how to worship. Apart from worshipping God, she must also worship other gods: She must worship her husband; her mother-in-law; father-in-law; brother-in-law; sister-in-law; and some lawless and reckless people in her husband’s family.  And she dares not complain, or else hell will let loose. Her plights are well captured in “I Doff My Hat for Lagos Ladies.” You may take a quick look.

Thank God I’m not a woman!

She must endure everything. For her, it must be a matter of “What you cannot cure, you must endure.”  Forget the fact that she’s still alive; her husband can bring a strange woman into the house. And they can make use of her matrimonial bed for some time. Yes, she has the right to fight and complain. But she will never win. She must not forget the common saying: “It’s a man’s world.” And the man owns the house irrespective of who builds it between the two of them.

Her man can have many women. He can fill the house with wives and concubines. But she must never make an attempt to compete with him in such a game. To an African man, the biblical injunction is one woman with one man; but one man with as many women.

She’s encouraged to rush to her parents to lodge complaints. But she knows what they will say. They will advise her to persevere. Daddy will say her marital home is a school; “Ile oko, ile eko ni.” She must continue to stick with it.

Thank God I’m not a woman!

She has to be very careful. She must not be too emotional about her issues. Yes, women are made to be emotional. But she must be cautious. Her husband must not develop hypertension on account of her agitations. If the man should die, she will face dire consequences whether or not she contributes to his death. In fact, whatever her husband does to her, she must continue to pray for him. She must continue to ask God to give him long life.

If her husband should die young, she must automatically be the witch that killed him. She must be forced to sleep beside her dead husband all alone for three nights. She must drink the water that was used to wash her husband’s corpse. Those are the only things that can prove her innocence to the aggrieved in-laws.   At the end of it all, she must still be ejected from her matrimonial home. It doesn’t matter if the house actually belongs to her; “He who owns the slave also owns the slave’s possessions.”

But wait a minute. Maybe it’s actually great to be a woman!

A woman is blessed with beauty that men can never resist. Her radiance is a source of perpetual amazement to man. He at times becomes jealous and can’t help saying, “How come God didn’t create me like a woman!”

Maybe it’s great to be a woman!

She shrieks and man shivers; most especially in an office environment. Even at home, the man does not want her troubles – her wahala. Wisdom therefore dictates that he does her biddings most of the time. Yet she may never be satisfied. But a man would have to simply conclude, “Well, she’s a woman; she can have her way!” A man toils for the money; a woman spends it all. Maybe it’s a woman’s world after all. It may be erroneous to think it’s a man’s world.

Maybe it’s great to be a woman!

Vehicles stop for her on the road. She can never be stranded. She will get a lift. But she must pray the driver is not a “ritualist.”

Who cares about man? He can stand there till eternity, in the rain or in the scotching sun, no vehicle will ever stop. His pose is not inviting enough.

A woman is driving and will never give you the right of way. The lane belongs to her.  Can’t you see she’s a woman? But you dare not retaliate. If she hoots you must give way. She’s simply claiming her right. If you are stubborn and she hits your car, you must be the one to blame. You must pay for the damage. If you refuse to cooperate and she slaps you, please use your head; don’t ever return the slap. If you do, you will be in soup. The whole world will beat you up.

William Golding was right. He had said, “I think women are foolish to pretend they are equal to men. They are far superior and always have been. Whatever you give a woman, she will make greater. If you giver her a sperm, she will give you a baby. If you give her a house, she will give you a home. If you give her groceries, she will give you a meal. If you give her a smile, she will give you her heart. She multiplies and enlarges what is given to her. So, if you give her any crap, be ready to receive a ton of shit.” 

I endorse.

Women are wonderful.

I think it’s great to be a woman. They make the world so interesting.

The Catechist has spoken!

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5 thoughts on “Thank God I’m Not A Woman!”

  1. Great article sir, I guess we can say that the “interesting part” or “privilege” a woman derives is a compensation for the “dilemma” of being a woman.

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