It was one of those Sunday rides after Church Service with a friend. From discussing the sermon to a female friend of his. This shouldn’t make headlines but something he said struck a chord with me. This lady friend of his visited him in a “big” car and he found it threatening to men (Not him though, cos’ he wasn’t interested in her). He’s not alone in this line of thought, a colleague reiterated this claim when I mentioned the kind of cars I like. In his words “it will drive men away”.
Ursula von der Leyen, Nikki Haley, Chioma Ukonu. These names may just be other names but look closely, Ursula is the German Minister of Defense, wife and mother to seven (7) children, Nikki is the US Ambassador to the UN, wife and mother of two while Chioma is running a foremost Nigerian Recycling Company with her husband and has three children. If you’re still wondering what my point is with all these information just stay with me a little longer.
I grew up in a home with just my two sisters, there was never a time the place of our gender affected what we could or could not do. We practically lived lives to the fullest, if we had to race the boys in our streets on our bikes we did, if we had to slide down on the corridor, we did just that. When it was time for undergraduate studies our gender wasn’t a determining factor ; we studied Metallurgical Engineering, Geophysics and Electrical Engineering respectively. All thanks to my Father and Mother who were the wind behind our wings and haven’t changed.
But I’ve often heard some comments from people when I run my ideas with them, you’re too ambitious, you’re a woman, you need to take it easy, and you’ll chase men away. I remember a guy asking me why I wasn’t a primary school teacher (this isn’t to undermine the teaching profession) to enable me come back from work around 2 p.m. to take care of my children. at that time he was a prospect and I asked him what of the father, his response “You’re an African woman, when you people travel abroad you forget this”.
In a conversation with an acquaintance the issue of the equality between male and female came up. He went straight to remind me he’s a Bible believing Christian by quoting “The woman should be submissive to the man” (he didn’t know where it was written in the Bible). On the premise of his sermon to me, he went further to say the woman is inferior to the man using the most appropriate illustration – Star Radler and 33 Star Lager Beer. The alcohol content is 2.00 and 5.10 percent respectively. Radler representing the women while 33 was for the men, I went on to ask him what content was more in the men. At the time of this writing he hasn’t given me an answer yet.
What does it mean to be an African woman? Are women truly inferior to men? What does the Bible mean in Genesis 2:18 “Then the Lord God said it is not good for man to be alone, I will make him a helper fit for him” Genesis 5:1b – 2 “When God created man, He made him in the likeness of God. Male and Female he created them, and he blessed them and named them Man…”. Can women break glass ceilings and still be wives and mothers for those who choose to? If these women are breaking glass ceilings do we have a generation of men who are threatened by them?
A man I respect said something profound. In the past, men were the hunters but now we have women who are going out to hunt too. The career path chosen by many women is giving them a platform they never had before. I know I was created for so much more, I’m trying to make sense of all of that and at the same time coming to terms with the reality that there’s really no limitation except the one I choose to place on myself as a result of Cultural or Social bias. In the next couple of days I’ll be putting up articles written by Men and Women on these issues. I hope this challenges what you have thought and believed both as a Man and Woman.
Loads of Love
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