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I was heading to work one morning when Mom called me. After pleasantries, she told me to tell my boyfriend to come home for introduction. I was livid and in that moment I immediately called her off. I did not want to speak of it any further.
Well, three days later, that relationship ended and broke me into a million pieces, but that is a story for another day.
I have three sisters, one teenager and two adults. For some reason, mother mine is of the opinion that we all must marry soon. I find this funny, and a part of me really feels sad for her because I am African, but I do not want to get married. At least, it is not a priority for me, I can sincerely do without it.
No, I really am not a hoe. I am full-time monogamist who can love one person for the rest of her life, however, marriage is not one of the things I want to do with the said person. Is that weird? Maybe.
Marriage is a societal and religious construct, and well all the perks of marriage can be gotten out of it.
From sex to companionship, to love, to even children (I do not want these either, but, story for another day). What is with the insane desire to give up your surname? Okay, you would not give up your surname for the feminists in the house (Hello, coven member here), so why exactly do you need all that fanfare? Maybe it is for legal sex because that is the only reason I see for y’all to go through the stress -the right to have sex and not feel bad about it.
I already have sex, and I do not feel bad about it (colour me reprobate), I love like a person in a marriage, even more, and I can co-habit. So what else is there?
If you think marriage is going to stop a cheating partner, ah, I have no words for you. A cheat will cheat and it will pain you more because God does not like divorce. For people like me, I can just walk away from the relationship if things are not working. I do not know if you know, but the Nigerian divorce process is a nightmare. You are expected to stay in that relationship, whether you are dying or not. Your mother, father, pastor and the world will tell you to stay back and work on that marriage.
“I am breaking up with you”, a lot of alcohol and anxiety pills later, and a relationship is over for me. I take breakups really badly, how do you want me to survive a divorce? Ma pa mi nau. Pity this girl. Then again, that is not a reason why I don’t want to get married. I just do not think it is necessary, I think it is mostly a waste of time and resources. I also feel that inasmuch as relationships should be worked on, there should be the freedom of walking out when things no longer work out.
You do not need marriage to legitimize your relationship. I know society says that you do, but society also said that women could not work a few decades ago. Women are currently working and becoming vice presidents in the number one country in the world (go Kamala, go Kamala go!).
Women are also presidents and powerful leaders in other countries. The bible also says you should marry, but then again, there are a lot of things the bible says we should do that we do not do and vice versa.
I know, I know, I am rambling at this point, but you have to understand. I will be 24 this year, and I got tired of everyone asking me when my boyfriend will see my parents when we were still together. I hated that they (my neigbours) called him my husband too. Why did they do that?
When the relationship ended, they assumed immediately that it was my fault (I had a huge part to play in it, but not even a vote of confidence for your neigbour). Then when they were consoling me, because I cried sha, they said that I was still fine, and that I was young and that I would find a man that will love and marry me soon again.
Hay! Jehovah! I almost screamed at them. “I do not want a husband. I want you all out of my house, so that I can cry in peace!” I did not scream sha. I just nodded and said thank you. After they left, I rolled my eyes and continued my salty tears.
The bottom line is, I am an African woman who does not attach importance to marriage, I hope my mother understands if it does not happen for me. I have three sisters and they are very homely and perfect, they will get married and give her grandchildren. I will be that rich aunty who is barely around, who everyone sees once in four Christmases and who opens trust funds in millions for her sisters’ children.
Let me die in peace and alone when I’m old (I get threatened with this a lot when I say I do not want husband and kids), and get burnt like the African who does not want to be buried.
My name is Gail. I’m a dread head feminist who loves cats and hates the idea of societal pressures. I think Donald Trump wasn’t all that terrible too. Amala belongs in the swampy waters of Makoko. You can find Gail on Instagram.
This is the tenth entry in the “I’m an African But…” blog chain started by Valentine Makoni and Bolaji Gelax. Trust me, you also want to read episodes one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight and nine.
To be a part, all you have to do is to write about something you are expected to be, do or like as an African but you do not like or are not. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org & email@example.com, and we will share on our platforms and yours, of course.