No first prize for marriage

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Just recently, I was going through my Facebook wall and came across the wedding pictures of a ‘junior’ friend of mine from secondary school. I shared it with my friend and as we scrolled through the pictures and commented on each, she was literally counting all our mates from back then and even the university that had gotten married. She counted quite a number of them altogether and said to me after “babes, what are you waiting for”? I know right? Just heap the pressure already. Ironically, another friend of mine interviewed an On-Air Personality (OAP) in one of the popular talk radio stations in Lagos and in the interview, she said that if she had known that it would take that long for her to get married, she would have spent her earlier twenties doing bigger and better things for herself as regards her career life. Now putting these two out of a million scenarios together, you’d agree with me that “the race is not for the swift neither is it for the strong, but it’s God that showeth mercy”.

Let me just add one more. I read something where a woman was asking if it was okay to unfollow her friend on all social media since her friend was now flaunting her ring on social media and giving free relationship advice because she had just gotten engaged and she was still single. My question, a quite serious one born out of serious confusion, is that is marriage a competition? Dem dey win first prize for marriage?  Why do people now view marriage as some kind of trophy you get as a reward for winning above your peers? Honestly, I don’t understand it! I mean, marriage is beautiful and all but can we just chill on the pressure already? Everywhere you go, once you’re about ‘that age’ (23-27), everyone is going all “when are you going to get married”? on you.

This is a huge contributory factor to failed marriages everywhere today. People getting married out of pressure and societal expectations, biological clock ticking and what not. What if I get married and after five years, it crashes? What if I get married and my husband is a philanderer, a serial cheater? What if I get married and don’t have children on time? What if I get married and become a victim of domestic abuse? What if I get married and have to deal with a lazy man who cannot provide? There are so many what ifs here, so many things that could go wrong.

I’m a strong believer in the fact that everyone’s race is different. Let us stop heaping pressure on women as a society and even ourselves as women, rather, let’s encourage women to build something solid of themselves while they wait for their better halves so as to complete that man in every way possible, when he eventually does come.


Article by Soomto Ajanma

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