Don’t you think it’s time to change that mindset? Ooh please! Don’t pretend like you don’t know what I’m talking about. Well, if you insist, let me enlighten you. I’m talking about the mind set that a man is allowed to have ambition, chase his dreams, get rich and have a family while a woman just has to grow and get married. No, I’m not trying to shove feminism down your throat. I’m not even one.
In as much as I believe in gender roles, I also believe that a woman should ‘have a life’. Really, I don’t blame the people who think women should not dream. This is because it is where our culture stands; handed out from generation to generation.
Based on observations of my childhood, I recall vividly that when a male child helps an older person run errands and does it well, the older person in thanking and praying for him always wish him to be successful in life, to be rich and have many children. However when it is a female child, the first prayer is for her to marry a rich and good husband.
Subconsciously, this has slipped into the mind of our young girls of today who believe that the man can be ambitious and the woman is expected to grow up and get married. Though we have passed out from the age when we belief that a Woman’s Education Ends in Kitchen (WEEK), things are almost the same thing. Of course, many girls are opportuned to go to school today unlike before but most of them rarely practice whatever they study in school. In most cases, as soon as they graduate, the supposed spouse already mapped out plans he wishes you as his woman to follow. Once a girl gets to final year, the question, when are you going to get married becomes a trend. Some will even go as far as reminding you that you are already in final year in school and even ask you what you are waiting for. This mindset should however be changed.
It’s just so appalling that it is the women who really keep calm and follow the map tradition had written for them. Recently, a friend of mine made a post on one of her social media accounts stating how she is waiting for a rich man who will be interested in marrying her. This is someone studying to be a lawyer. She disclosed that she would be willing to be housewife as long as the man provides for her. Of course I’m not condemning a man providing for his family. That’s OK. My point is no woman should relax and just live when they can be someone great. That you have a rich spouse does not and should not intervene with your dreams as a human.
Due to gender roles, women are the ones who have womb. It is the female gender that gets pregnant, give birth and nurse children. How then can a woman who wants to get married still go on with her dreams and manage family life? The key is to strike a balance. You can start building your career possibly before you get married. It is nice that you attain a certain level of financial stability before saying ‘I do’ to that man. It would not however hurt you to take few years off when you are married to nurse your children. After that, you can bounce back and continue your life. It also depends on your partner and how supportive he is. These are part of the things you should discuss before walking down the aisle.
Hello girl, Can you recall the occupation you said you wanted to forge into when you grow? Can you remember what you wanted to be as a kid? How many have you achieved? You never know how your career may have affected people’s life if you don’t go further. There could have been a way you would have impacted the lives of other people if you had lived your dream. Don’t sit back. This nevertheless won’t be easy but it’s better to pass through the stress and live a happy and fulfilled life.
Dear young people don’t forget that marriage is not the greatest achievement a woman can ever make. Marriage rather is an achievement for both sexes and not just a woman. The world has changed, time keeps evolving and we should move with it. Everyone is entitled to live his or her dream.
Dear young woman, gone are the days of answering ‘Oriaku, Odoziaku’ and the rest of them. Living your dreams does not stop you from getting married and having lovely children. Having a life does not make you over ambitious. (So what if it does!). It does not make you disrespectful. It does not make you marriageable nor stops you from having a happy home. Some women are breadwinners of their family but you would never know unless you are told. You are here for a purpose, fulfil it. Don’t sit back and fold your hands, the world will not live your life for you.
Remember, before we all were assigned genders, we were humans first. It’s time to change that mindset; every man as well as every woman has dreams. Live yours.