BUILDING/ RAISING THE GIRL CHILD

When the young men feel every woman should be at their beck and call, when they naturally feel they rule the world and are capable of doing anything they want to do without closing an eyelid but it becomes a high taboo when a woman does it. Well, all thanks to the almighty society for making this happen, to the cultural demands that automatically makes a woman a second-hand to the mind, to religion that consistently remind us that the ‘man is the head of whatsoever’.

A lot of things go wrong in this world but it seems there is little we can do as it has become a norm. I see parents as a root cause of some unpleasant attitude we see the male gender carry out in this generation. Especially in Africa, some parents are never done with child-bearing if they do not have a male child because to them, a male child is what will keep their name and the family’s prestige going. Although some of them pretend that it does not matter but ask them why they are still looking for a child after the seventh female child and they begin to stutter.

Then the children begin to grow up and unknowingly to some mothers they begin to give preferential treatment to the boys, the female child does the house chores, stays with mummy in the kitchen to learn how to cook but the male child is seen on the street playing or watching the television with his dad and when they are done cooking, his mum brings his meal especially when he is the only boy. The female child is constantly reminded that her life is meant to be lived for a man as she is always told to do things right because she will get married soon; and what do we tell the young men to prepare for? Are they also taught how to act when they get married? NO, I think our parents forget that part of their duty but are quick to shout at the girl child for misbehaving.

We regularly retell the girl child that her body is her temple, she should dress and cover up herself to avoid tempting any boy into raping her, but what happens to lecturing our boys on respecting the female folk, on holding their selves and making their body their temple too. Whatever happens to instilling sexual discipline in the male child rather than singing the ‘it is the men’s nature to cheat’ song? When a rape incidence happens everybody including some female folks put the blame on the girl child for not being properly dressed as at the time of the incidence or for luring the man into raping them, nobody wants to be truthful enough to say that the man should have controlled himself, even if she exposed her body, she must have passed by a hundred man before reaching your end; why then does it seem difficult to look away. People will say ‘he is a man now and his body is not a fire wood, when he sees things like this his body react’. (Like a female is made of firewood too) Society just have different ways of supporting the male folk.

In a relationship when the lady cheats, almost the everyone will castigate her but when a man has like five girlfriends at a time everyone hails him as the “don” and even help him explain to his woman, to be patient as it is a nature of man. A man almost has it all, the society keeps giving reason for their irresponsibility. In marriage, some men find it really hard to wash their own underwear because they are now married and the woman is automatically a wash woman and when she complains of being tired she is hit with the irresponsible wife status. A man and a woman will go to work in the morning and get back home late at night only for her to rush into the kitchen to cook and the man sits in the sitting room nagging her to hurry with the cooking.

In some of our homes, the parent bring up the female child to keep quiet when the son of the house is talking and it is funny how the child turns out later in the future that even his mother cannot talk whenever he is talking simply because the society has called him “MAN”. Sometimes the mother starts crying that her son just shouted at her forgetting that it was her call. And then some of them find it very easy to beat a woman because they naturally have the mind-set that they are above women because as a child their mother allows them to beat their sister and tell her to leave him because he is her brother.

Some of them grow up and feels naturally threatened whenever they see a woman stand up to them because they were brought up never to be stood against by women which makes most of them go violent when they say “YES” and their woman says “NO”. Some cannot stand their wives doing better than them so they just tell them to stay at home and take care of the children or they tell them to just open a shop to sell forgetting that being a woman does not make her dreamless. Women also have  dreams they can pursue, and that cannot make the children suffer as she can find a way around it, so instead of making her kill her dreams you can just help her plan her time accurately. A woman pursuing her dream does not make you less important to her; after all the society has crowned you a mini god.

I see some men mocking the gender equality concept because they feel it is a threat to their person. They feel the feminism theory is totally outrageous because they cannot afford to lose their pride which they built from violating and disrespecting women. A man who cannot even talk among his peers gets power when it is a woman who is involved, you hear words like ‘an ordinary woman, ‘oh that creature they call woman talked back at you, she must be taught a lesson’. They constantly demean the female gender with the concurrent help of the senior female folks of our almighty society making them feel less human.

The girl child is not less human than a male child, she was brought into this world the same way he was, her brain is not less useful because she is a girl child, her pride is not meant to be hijacked from her simply because she is feminine, her words are not less important and should not be trashed, her opinion matters and her consent should be sought before any decision is carried out on her behalf, she is not meant to sacrifice for her brother when it comes to education because she is a girl, she should not be brought up with the ’you will end up another man’s property’ notion. Her dreams should be encouraged, her opinion should be sought, and her ideas should be considered. And she should be constantly reminded that while living for others she should not forget to live for herself. She should also build her dreams and make her future.

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