Recently, I met with two women who used to work part-time for me. Both women are married, have children, are young and are financially poor. Both women also have educated husbands who have no jobs so whenever I see them, I usually pay them much more than they have worked for just because of my soft spot for the children.
They came to see me on different days this week, both looking malnourished but rather than give them money again, I thought I should help them set up businesses. When the first woman came, I asked her what kind of business she could set up with a certain amount of money. She told me what she could do with even less amount but her mindset was just too shallow. I wanted something else for her that would bring much more profit so I suggested she managed another business that I had planned a while ago and she was extremely excited about it. There and then, we planned our budget and she went ahead to find a suitable location for her proposed business. Everything would fall in place, I could see the future of what we had planned and I was ready to pool every resource available to get her there.
The following day, she came to see me.
“Ehn aunty, about that business, my husband thinks it is not wise of me to go into it because of my 10 month old baby”.
Say what??? After talking to a few people who were willing to help her raise capital, she comes to me with such a flimsy excuse?
I admit, I felt anger and pity for her at the same time.
The other women said that her husband told her that she would become proud if she starts to make money before him. She did not want to lose her marriage.
It’s a shame, I tell you, how marriages that are meant for two people to support each other is just an institution for jealousy. Is it not better to be unmarried and free to make choices that to be stuck in a marriage that holds back your success?
It was sometime in 2014 when a young lady vowed to her lover that she would never to be as foolish as her mother who decided to leave all her certificates and degrees for full time housewife duties and let herself be bullied by her husband. Even when her lover tried to explain to her that it was her father’s duty to mould his wife – by way of encouragement – into a fulfilled woman, the young lady would have none of it.
She constantly blamed her mother for everything that was wrong in the family, for her father’s bad habits and her phobia for marriage and she wished that her mother would stop being lazy, but the fact is that somewhere in the words that her lover spoke to her is an element of truth that this young lady would have to accept. The woman would always want to listen to her man and the duty falls on him to support her or at least explain clearly to her why a choice she wants to make is probably not the best.
I’m unhappy with those families; the women for being too weak and the men for being weaker. It’s a shame the children will be the ones who suffer for the poor decisions their parents made. I have done my bit in helping the women and I now understand clearly why I probably will not bother with married women but will put my entire focus on young unmarried girls who think that marriage is an institution that they can go into because they think that what they feel at the time is love and that the earlier they get married to anyone who comes along, the better for them.
It’s a big shame on our society that some people will continue to remain poor and beggarly no matter how much you want to help them, and all in the name of marriage.
Photo by Aidee