It’s such a crazy world for the girl child, right from infant-hood to adulthood. She goes through a lot all the days of her life. If she is lucky, she gets through without any physical/emotional trauma but most times, she isn’t spared from the lustful look of even male relatives, some even try to play the nice card all the while making her trust them in order to thrust her. The girl child gets scarred easily because of the fragile being she is, she is constantly reminded of how it’s a man’s world and at such, she needs to strive extra hard for certain things, she doesn’t stop learning about the ways of men and she wonders a lot why everything revolves around men. From childhood, she is being taught to stay away from men because they use their charms and it could be extremely damaging so you learn to keep yourself for the future man you eventually give yourself to. In my part of the world, there was the old culture that strongly supports keeping your virginity till marriage because this symbolizes that you are pure and fit for your husband. On occasions when it is discovered that you are no virgin (anything short of a stained bed after sex), you become a disgrace to the whole town and your parents. Your husband sends you packing that same day which was often accompanied with empty box of matches signifying EMPTY. It was generally thought that every girl on her first sexual intercourse must bleed so if blood was not seen, it meant one is no virgin. It was a big deal at the time and perhaps, this created a leash on some of them from having premarital sex, this also made it seem like all a girl does right from birth is mould herself to become desirable for a man. Now in recent times, this tradition has been eradicated.
Mothers try so hard to keep their girls away from these beings that claim to be superior, even the infants are not spared. Some big ugly predators enjoy preying on small girls, what a world! I have had the opportunity of listening to abused girls talk about how they were abused and this was often done by closed relatives, this has formed deep scars that takes longer time to heal; if they are lucky. There is also the issue of child marriage which is so rampant in the northern part of Nigeria.
It doesn’t stop at that, As a young female trying to build a career/brand, you get disrespected often by men, it’s either they try to downplay your efforts or they want you to sleep with them to get favors, some even go as far as punishing you once you refuse to go against your morals. It is quite disheartening that these things keeps happening. There is this old saying “What a man can do, a woman can do better” all because she is always trying to prove that she can in a world where most times, her efforts are less appreciated.
It is such a privilege to witness this era of girl empowerment, amidst the issues females faces on a daily, it is a relief to know that things are changing and yes more work still needs to be done but we will eventually get to a world totally free of statements like “you are a girl, you shouldn’t be here” . I know fully well that females are doing great things now, even taking over the world like the popular song (Who run the world) by Beyoncé but this post is fueled by personal experience because I still feel girls are being shut out from doing what they want and gender inequality is still very much in play.
There is more to being a girl than her pretty face and curvy body, there is more to being a girl than marriage and childbirth, she shouldn’t have to try so hard to be taken serious, she is powerful and marvelous. Being a girl should be fun because even with dirt thrown at her and many challenges that shows up in her way, she comes out even more determined and stronger. Respect the Girl Child