Is not a man you will marry???
At one point or the other in our lives, we have been asked this question; is it not a man you will marry?
Maybe, I should not generalise but, a woman especially one who is independent and empowered with standards she lives by, has been asked this question.
There was a time, I went to Lagos Island market (Oja Eko) with my mum and one of her friends to do some pre-school shopping, I was going to 200 level then and during the course of bargaining and all, one of the market men (you know rude they can be) kept tapping me, everytime he wanted to talk, not that he had bad intentions of anything but I just wasn’t comfortable with the way he kept touching me, I mean you can talk to me without touching me. My mum’s friend noticed my discomfort, she told the guy to stop tapping that I wasn’t comfortable with it and his response was “no be man she go marry?” This is just one scenario and if you are familiar with popular markets in Lagos, you’ll understand how annoying market men can be.
Another time, during a discussion with a friend which somehow led to us talking about relationships and marriages. She kept on saying men are egoistic and we are the ones who will eventually marry them and that I needed to calm down on some of my ideals because to marry a man we as women have to give up a whole lot of ourselves and to stay married we have to give a lot more of ourselves. If we don’t make this sacrifices we can’t get the best out of the men we marry.
Someone also once said to me that when I get married all my feminist views will change because marriage has a way of changing a woman and I could not be a feminist and be married at the same time. Say what?
Linda Ikeji recently got engaged and today she announced her pregnancy and while we are all excited for her, someone tweeted something like this is Linda who is always promoting women standing up for themselves as if it is not a man who will put a baby inside her (not quoted verbatim)
The whole essence of being a woman is not to get married, have kids and boom that’s the end. Don’t get me wrong, I love marriages, I love love, I am the kind of person who will love a person’s love story more than I love the person. But the whole point is, people don’t even get married for the sake of love these days. For a lot of people it’s just all about being married, about ticking off one societal requirements off the list.
Back to what I was saying, because a woman stands up for herself and for other women does not mean she hates men, the fact that she fights for her rights does not mean she doesn’t want to get married, or the fact that she is successful and wants other women to be successful does not mean she has declared a war against men. Also, and most importantly, the fact that a woman is married or aspires to get married does not mean that her whole life has to be put on hold.
The idea that feminism is for single women should be discarded and thrown into the trash can, because feminism is not just about equality, it is about choices, trust, respect, reciprocity and love. If a marriage lacks any of these, I don’t know what the marriage is all about; societal status, maybe?
The idea that a woman must be the one to sacrifice everything for her marriage is sexist and disgusting. Men are egoistic and so are women, do not expect a woman to rub and pet and nurture a man’s ego just to stay married, just thinking about it is unhealthy.
Lastly, a man is not entitled to a woman’s body to do as he pleases just because it is a man she will eventually marry. Even her husband cannot touch her without her consent not to mention someone who is absolutely strange to her. A woman’s body is not a man’s entitlement and also remember, that ‘No’ is a full sentence.