It is no longer news that many Nigerians are entitled humans. There is almost this feeling like it’s our right to be given, to be supported, to be continuously acknowledged and placed above others. It is in this Nigeria that people call you out once you refuse to be manipulated.
This sense of entitlement is the reason people give birth to more children than they can cater for, yet blame their relatives of not supporting them financially. They even poison the hearts of the children against their aunties and uncles.
Music artistes expect financial rewards from rich people whose names they mentioned in their songs. On Air personalities and bloggers shamelessly call out musicians on social media every day. They tag them ingrates because they once promoted them on air by playing their songs, and when these artistes become famous, these OAP’s feel the artistes owe them allegiance for life. They want the artist to worship them literally all the days of their lives.
Politicians in this part of the world are godfathers. If they endorse you or give you financial support, they expect absolute loyalty when you assume office, anything less is considered disloyalty and they will do anything to get you out of that office.
Many older people have zero regards for the younger ones, yet they feel entitled to respect. It doesn’t matter that they may are misbehaving or disrespectful, they expect these people they are older than to continue putting up with their disrespect. Age has become their instrument of blackmail.
Clergies speak to their congregation as they wish. Some go as far as calling out members to the podium to embarrass them, and then go right ahead to threaten them with touch not God’s anointed. These pastors have made themselves demi-gods to their congregation.
Two years ago, a Nollywood actor took to her social media handle to subtly shade Femi Otedola for donating five billion naira to his daughter’s charity. In her words: “N5bn? I’m not angry. I’m just here wondering what my Dad was doing when Dangote was getting rich. I need to know if he just went to God for a fine face and forgot to ask for money. I run 11 years foundation, spending my own money without help. Las las, it is who has money, not who has passion. God bless Otedola for the next generation he is about to bless. I just wish you bless them also through other working foundations.”
The average Nigerian believes you should support them financially on whatever project they choose to embark on. It doesn’t matter that they throw caution to the winds when it comes to their reckless behavior with money, nor does it matter that they do not act in ways that give you confidence to invest in them.
One thing we must all know is that people will hold back what they want to offer you when you cast negative impressions. It doesn’t matter that they have in abundance to support your passion, dream or suffering and want nothing in return.
For people to believe and even invest in your project, dream, or need, they must see commitment on your part. They should be able to trust you to an extent. It’s not about displaying pictures of you feeding the needy on the street; it is also about you living lavishly above your means on the flip side.
Many years ago, I had to lecture a colleague who called me out because I have never supported him financially during his charity fund raising exercise. He does a lot of charity work, visit orphanages with food items and cash. I rarely supported him financially, hence the call out.
In his words “Amaka, are you this insensitive to the needs of the less privileged? When God blesses you, learn to bless others. I just said I should tell you.” In my defense, I told him I visit orphanages as well, pay strangers hospital bills, have kids in school on my bill. Some also have roofs over their heads and food on their tables because I care enough.
Just as you are doing your best to be a blessing to many, so are others striving to meet up with their own obligations silently. That you have the passion to help people and go about soliciting financial assistance does not make anyone who doesn’t contribute to your passion insensitive. We all have our own passion and ways we go about funding them.
It is important that you deliberately quit getting under people’s skin because you are part of their success story. Stop rubbing it on their faces or shoving it down their throats. They don’t have to acknowledge you or live by your dictates for the rest of their lives.
You are not entitled to tell people nonsense or throw shades at them while they swallow your insults hook line and sinker, your age and the position you occupy none the less. Until you have learned to respect people by not disrespecting them first, you will always get that which you deserve in good measure.
Learn to live deliberately and remind yourself often that no one owes you anything. Know this and know peace