Being single as an African lady

AFRICANS, STOP STIGMATIZING UNMARRIED LADIES

Some years ago, a friend of mine brought another friend to stay in my room at the school hostel without prior notice. While telling me about her friend, she insisted on the fact that “she is married” as though it made her some sort of champion that we all needed to make way for. In African societies, a woman who reaches a certain age without some form of attachment to a man is considered unfortunate.

If Africans were to rewrite the first verses of 1st Corinthians 13 in the Bible for women, it would probably read something like this:
1. If I can speak 10  different languages and I am gifted with eloquence, yet I have no husband, I am nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate.
2. If I speak and inspire people all over and change lives  and acquire a huge mansion yet I have no husband, I am nothing.
3. If I do charitable works and work so hard to make it in life but I have no husband, I’ve gotten no where. So no matter how much I achieve, I am bankrupt and pitiable without a husband…
Instead of carrying on with the beautiful things life has to offer, some women languish in self-pity because they are ‘husbandless’. It’s like having a husband is everything. It is what defines them. It is what they live for. It is what they try to get against all odds.
This is a cancer that has eaten deep into our society and we need to cure it. This cure starts with YOU. You that insults the single lady and labels her with names. You that accuses her of being insufficient because she has no man. You that keeps comparing her with others, saying, “all your mates are married.” You that pushes her till she wants to wear the Mrs. shoe even when she hasn’t found her size. You need to stop.
You that flaunt your husbands and brag about them not because you are appreciative but because you are using that as a bridge to insult the single lady. You that suddenly stops calling that friend because you are married and she isn’t. You need to to stop.
You the single lady needs to stop too. Yes, you need to take a deep breath, look deep within and value yourself. Regain that self-esteem, which you lost because you didn’t get a husband when you thought you should have gotten one. Stop hanging on men and swallowing their bullshit just because you want them to wife you. You deserve better. You need to stop.
Unfortunately, many ladies (married and single) continue to live under the shadows of men.
Woman, you are special. You have a life to live and even when you share that life with someone, always remember who you are. Marriage is not everything. It is not a must-do. Paul in the Bible wasn’t married yet his writings have blessed us in many ways. You don’t need a man to validate you.

I’m all for marriage. However, I am against society shunning the unmarried as though they are diseased or something. Let’s focus finding and accomplishing our purpose in life, married or not.

First published in my journal at Worldpulse.com.

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32 Comments

  1. Don't mind them oo it's really bad in Nigeria my neighbor in school has it really bad if u are single and u greet her husband dia ll be trouble can sum1 please tell d married women dat behave like that say we ain't interested in dia men..
    Ow is Mr N n d kids

  2. Hah na wah for those women oo. Mr N and the kids are fine. Thanks for asking. Hope you are good too.

  3. Hahahahahahahahaha that ya 1Cor 13 according to the version of African men na die. I Laughed out loud! As always, you talk about something serious with so much humour which captivates the reader. Society has to change the way they groom women and what aspirations they make them aspire to. Women need to take care of themselves too before they start thinking of settling down. If you lack emotional maturity and pin your happiness only on being married, you will never be happy.

  4. No be so? Society really has to change the way women are groomed. Emotional maturity is important as you say. Marriage doesn't come with happiness. People put happiness into marriage. Thanks for adding your voice to this, sis!

  5. From today I would start reading your blog Precious.Long time !! Stay blesses honey

  6. Welcome on board, dear.

  7. My dear your blog na therapy especially this period where one can't even run away from the depressing news out there. I had to read 2nd corinthians chapter 13 again and showed your post to my other half. We were all smiles and I bet u that particular Bible chapter will never be so ordinary again. You take people's pain away with your very creative and humorous posts. May God continue to bless you and your beloved family. Amen

  8. Thanks for always stopping by, dear. The Bible says laughter is good medicine so we need to laugh every now and then. Greetings to your other half. *wink*

  9. I guess it's too ingrained to expect them to change. They were born into society treating unmarried women with disdain. And the worst offenders are women, some of whose were probably treated the same way when they were unmarried.
    It's a vicious cycle.

  10. It's indeed a vicious cycle. We can only do for one what we wish we could do for all. By this, I mean treating the unmarried ladies around us with much love and respect regardless of whether we are married or not.

    How are you doing, Sold to Christ? Thank you for your thoughtful comment.

  11. Abi, apart from disdain, I wish there wouldn't be pressure. That is the hardest. Even when they don't dare say it out because they know you will flip out, which is worse coz you know they are thinking it.
    You feel the pressure, the questioning glances, wondering what the problem is and if it's you, the anxious glances, some even go as far as gossiping amongst themselves. It's all very annoying. As if marriage is a criteria to enter heaven.
    Some will come and meet you, are you praying about it?

    Hmmm! No. I was just waiting for you to remind me to pray about it. You know! Because God appointed you as my prayer reminder.

    Most annoying are some pastors, exes and friends. Let me not write a post jare Precious.

  12. Some pastors are the worst. They keep telling sisters ridiculous things like,
    "There are husbands on this pulpit. Come and grab yours."
    "This is your year to marry"
    "Go and buy a wedding gown and pick a date" – that's to someone who is not courting anyone oo.

    Like you rightly said, marriage is not a criteria to enter Heaven!

  13. hahaha
    this is a great piece!
    a husband at all cost because of what people are going to think about you? No way, marriage is honourable true but a God given husband is a priceless gift!

  14. "… a God given husband is a priceless gift!" I couldn't have said it better. Thanks for stopping by, Leila!

  15. Thank you

  16. Really Precious your words go so deep. It’s such a shame to see what some of our sisters go through all in the name of marriage because they have been pushed around by family, friends and society. I wish they could learn to love themselves first. I hope they could be taught that what matters is “themselves” and nothing else. I wish they could learn not to live their lives through the eyes or thoughts of others. As you rightfully said, it all starts by one person “YOU”, ME

    • Thank you, Marvis! We can only do for one what we can do for all.
      Getting married due to overwhelming pressure from yourself, family or friends is just not okay. That sets the foundation for marital crisis. Like you said, it is important to love yourself first. When you love and enjoy your life alone, joining it to someone is amazing.

  17. Thank you Precious. It’s high time people start talking about this. One time years back we recommended a friend for a full masters scholarship. She turned down the opportunity her excuses were….” I will only further my education when I get married” , she was afraid she might not find a husband later and no man will want a woman who is too educated. It’s just unbelievable how much importance is attached to being married in our society. My friend if you are reading this and you are in this shoe please put more efforts in making a career for yourself . Find your purpose in this life…. if marriage comes it might be a plus if not life goes on. Don’t envy those who are married you have no idea what some of them are going through.

    • Amen! It is sad how someone will stop the advancement of her life because she is trying to conform to societal standards for marriage. So sad! Like you said, enjoy life then if marriage comes along, it is a beautiful addition. If not, keep enjoying life. Thanks so much for sharing, Awa!

  18. Precious, long time no reading posts from here. I sincerely love this article, it’s like you mirrored my thoughts on this topic. In African society, for the single ladies, it’s get married or die of condemnation by the society. I wonder when we Africans will bury this mindset. Thank you for speaking out, Precious. My love to the girls.

    http://dominikagoodness.blogspot.com.ng

  19. I thoroughly enjoyed your blog. I also watch your YouTube cooking channel. You’re doing it oh my sister. Big ups to you and keep it coming!!

  20. I think it is important to make peace with your own process. So, I’m currently single and patiently waiting for the person who embodies everything I require in a life partner. I am not going to settle for less…

  21. Thanks a lot for this. I will share with my fellow sisters who think they just have to say “yes” to some random guy because they “must” marry at all cost

  22. Hi Precious, I’m new here and I can say I’m enjoying getting to know more about you. I like this topic and I pray it will come to the notice of many sisters. .. you must not walk your life beside a man’s to be fulfilled. .. A woman is meant to be so much more than that… Thanks for bringing this up.

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