Sunday, August 3, 2014

Of Singlehood

What is the worst thing you have ever been told regarding your single-hood? I bet it cannot be as dramatic as mine. You do not believe me? Lets give it a go!

First, an elderly woman from church:  "The problem with you girls is that you are too selective. You are looking for ready made husband. There is nothing like ready made husband. So just humble yourself and just agree to any man who comes to marry you!". 

A guy from my advertising agency (context is that I was given a visa to Saudi Arabia), "I guess they gave you a visa because you are over 30 years, and they figured, you are not a temptation or risk to Saudi men, because if you are still single at 30, that means no one wants you any way!" 

OUCH, I still think that was the rudest thing anyone has EVER said to me.

Lets face it - if you have crossed 30, and you are not married and you are female, you must be used to the aunts who wonder why you do not want to settle for Johnbull with crooked teeth and an even 'crookier' smile, smug married women who pretend to actually be worried that you are not yet settled, and the uber righteous sisters, with the zillion kids who always remind you every week how you are on their prayer list.

Don't get me wrong. I am a big believer in intercessory prayer. The Bible teaches us to pray for one another. But I vehemently abhor the type that reads more like an insult.  Case in point is when a newly married person in church said "I am praying for God to bring you to my level"  How do you respond to that?

I attended a singles program recently and true to type, it followed the typical template of  how women should humble them selves, and pray for the husband. Of course, the event ended with an altar call for single women, so that every yoke of 'spiritual husbands could be broken'.  Funny, I don't recall the men called out for prayer so their 'eyes could be opened to behold the wondrous women in the arena'. It is never their fault in any case. The problem resides with the women, 90% of the time.

My objective is not to go all preachy, but when there is so much pressure to get married, mistakes invariably are made. Singles, especially women settle for the BTN (better than nothing) guy as opposed to the real deal. And then they have to deal with the consequences. And you know them better than I do.

A friend got so worked up with all the taunting that she stopped coming to work on her birthdays. "Someone is gonna come up to me and say something about how I am getting old and still do not have a boyfriend," she said, "so I rather just stay at home or go watch a movie or something." Isn't that disheartening?

You know the ones who rub it in the most - Married women! and this is the one I do not understand.  Here you are, with the husband, kids and all the trappings of a happy family. Why should you be jealous of a single woman? Whats the fear- that she will always be prettier, or spend more money on herself, since she is not paying school fees? Or she just may seduce your husband? I struggle to get it.
Technically, to the world at large, you have everything, so what is the problem?

Speaking of money, we see a lot of prayer services for singles to get married, but truth be told, if there is a fund raising to be done - who are the first set of people that get the solicitation letters? Singles! Because the world has decided that they don't know what to use their money for, so they might as well repair the run down fence or purchase a new sound system or build a school! So, really, who is fooling who?

Why can't we just let singles be? Why can't we just let them enjoy single-hood without this sword of "Give me a spouse or I die' mentality?

"Oh, but Ehiz, it is society, its our culture," you say. "You just have to get married, else you have not achieved anything. You will not be respected," you argue.

Don't get me wrong. I am not advocating singlehood for eternity. I am quite happy being married, so I would be spewing bullshit if I say I want everyone to remain single and never get married.

What I am saying is - can we just let singles be and let them enjoy their singlehood? Can we agree to give them much needed breathing space?  No more jokes about getting old, no more stories about how difficult it is to have babies as women grow older, no more name throwing (what of this guy? he is ok ooo, not too great, but beggars can't be chosers), no more events where single women are made to feel worthless, no more bringing up to your level. No more!

Can we just let singles have an opportunity to really and truly feel just what the picture below says?



Can we?



Ehiz

9 comments:

  1. Honestly I know the pressure I face as an unmarried guy .. It's ludicrous ... that said .. I wonder how many married women are genuinely feeling empowered by their husbands in our African setting

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  2. Well said Ehiz, you just hit the nail on the head.

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  3. True talk, Ehis.
    Someone once told me "Being married is like a revolving door, those outside want to get in, those inside want to get out". A lot of the married women condescension is born out of envy and remembering that being single wasn't so bad and may even be considerably better than what they are currently going through. How dare you (single girl) enjoy your life, I (married woman) have to been seen to be better. Sad.
    Ps: I was told (at 31 before I got married) "You don't even have to get married again, its late now, just go and have a child so your life will still have meaning". I was speechless.

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    1. Ouch! That's a hall of famer right there. Please tell me you responded with a stinging retort

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    2. Awesome writeup as usual Ehiz. Should I feel bad that my fave/biggest take-out from this article is the line; "Its all good....in the singlehood?" :-)

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  4. Oyekunle Oluwatobiloba EmmanuelAugust 22, 2014 at 10:39 AM

    Sometimes it speaks well when you are married not even sometimes; most times; Sincerely there is nothing good than getting married, cos bible says TWO are better than ONE, most of the youths nowadays waste the time called the "singlehood period" after lust.
    Also a proverb says that "The difference between stumbling blocks and stepping stones is how you use them..." Hmnnnn

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    1. Indeed OOE. I am not advocating immorality. And I firmly believe it is not good for man to be alone. Neither is it good for a woman to be alone. But not everyone will get married as soon as they start working, or finish University... let's not make those years before they find the ideal partner torturous. ..

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