In recent times, several women seem to have broken free from the shackles of societal prejudices which try to define them as worthless without being married.
In Nigeria for instance, the girl child is conditioned from a very young age to meet the needs of a man/husband with little or no regards to her own needs. You hear parents and relatives admonish or correct her with words like; if you keep behaving like this, no man will marry you, sweep that thing like a girl that you are! Etc. She is reminded at any slightest instance on how she should behave in order to attract a suitor in the future. This girl grows up to believe that her life is of less importance to that of a male child.
Most of our parents are not to blame for this anomaly because they didn’t know any better. They were raised with the same mindset so they can’t teach what they don’t know. Hence, the eagerness to transfer the supposed norm to their children.
Some of these girls grow up to detest their gender and the roles they come with. Most of these women once successful tend to always dance to the narrative of the same society/religion that demonizes their individuality. They become desperate in the bid to become a ‘Mrs’ no matter the truck-load of inhumane treatments they are faced with from their men. Their religious leader will advise them on how a virtuous woman never complains or leaves her home no matter the life-threatening situation she faces on a daily. ‘Marriage is for the patient and resilient at heart’, they are told. But nothing is done to call the man with whom this same woman is in this marriage relationship with to order.
While some of these women act in agreement to the narrative of the worthlessness narrative placed on them by the society by acting all desperate and ready-to-settle with anyone that stands up to wee no matter how undeserving of them these men are, others are busy breaking free from the shackle of this same narrative by not allowing the society define them by their relationship status.
Most ladies in Nigeria are no longer dancing to the same old tales. They are the rebellious narrative changers who have conquered several prejudices and have emerged victorious afterwards. These set have refused to remain in abusive relationships because they want to remain virtuous or be seen as the most resilient in suffering. They have decided to do away with the heavy load of enduring emotional, psychological and physical abuses in the name of finding/keeping a man. This has given them the chutzpah of enjoying their individuality the more.
These set of ladies bent on changing the narrative by telling their stories themselves are jeered at by the same society that shackles them. They are called old; hence their inability to find a husband. Who would want to wife an old, independent and rebellious woman? They jeer. Bitter; according to them, it is only bitterness against the male folks that will make a woman to not want to be with a man.