I was having a conversation with a friend sometime ago and she asked, “How did women who end up with the likes of Dangote, Otedola and Adenuga get there? E be like say e go hard to become rich man wife o!”
I was dumbfounded. I couldn’t imagine she was just another pretty face aspiring for nothing but the good life at someone else’s expense. I was disturbed that all she wants is to marry a rich man.
I did my best to enlighten her. I told her, “I think the question should be how did women like Oprah Winfrey, Dora Akunyili, Serena Williams, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Linda Ikeji, Chimamanda Adichie and others become who they are without depending on any man.
These women took their destinies in their own hands, strove to be the best in their chosen fields and are still pushing to be more successful. Today, they are standing tall, making waves all over the world.
I also buttressed my point further by giving her another example of women making money within the social circle they found themselves without looking for rich men to marry.
I told her, “Our mates own tricycles popularly known as keke bringing them monetary returns of N15, 000 weekly. My neighbor in her 20s owns three tricycles and makes N45, 000 weekly which amounts to N180, 000 monthly on her three functional tricycles.
My other neighbor has moved into the house she built from scratch. Before she moved to her house, she owned more than eight tricycles. She decided to go down this business because of the situation of things in the country.
After her National Youth Service, getting a job was impossible, and when there was no hope of finding a job after trying so hard to get one, she bought her first tricycle reluctantly with the money she saved during her service year. That was the beginning of her tricycle business that built her a house.
There are few ladies who own motorcycles in the suburbs of Abuja bringing them monetary returns daily. They own as many as two, three and four now. Yet, these girls are still earning salaries no matter how little every month from their work place.
With the little they earn, they think of how to invest and double their interest, unlike most of us their agemates who once they get money above N50, 000 all that comes to mind are human hair, make-up kits and shopping.
Some ladies buy human hair that cost between N150, 000 to N300, 000, make-up kits and cream, go on shopping spree while praying and waiting for rich men to “come and make us great.”
Their lives and total existence is centered on monthly alerts from work place, stipends from boyfriends or monthly allowance from sugar daddies.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for living the good life if you can afford it–– you only live once after all––but plan for a better tomorrow. You can make your own money and be financially independent of any man. This will make sex and relationships recreational rather than transactional. There’s no better way to champion gender equality than this.
She sighed deeply, and gave me a patronizing response “Na true sha but I don tire abeg, I need a rich man in my life!”
The truth is that the rich men of this world did not marry women who were just pretty faces whose only life ambition was to marry already-made men. A rich man should be like the icing on the cake.
It is tragic that our culture encourages women to derive their sense of worth from men. Her opinion and aspirations does not count until she’s married. We raise our girls to think and believe marriage is their easiest way out of poverty and attaining greatness.
But the chunk of the blame goes to girls as well who even after acquiring higher education refuse to engage their minds beyond the title of ‘Mrs’.
On social media, our young girls waste productive hours and money patronizing good-luck charm vendors, native doctors and prayer houses so that they will get rich husbands or boyfriends.
All they want are wealthy men to sleep with or marry while they get huge amounts of money in return. These girls are simply lazy and their attitude is annoying.
Let’s not forget that we are the next generation of successful women to take center stage and we must start thinking and working towards it now. Success is not gender-based.
Be true to yourself, work hard, live a decent life, challenge yourself in business and in academics. Study harder, graduate with better grades, apply for scholarships to ease financial burden and watch you go places.
You can defeat poverty, become academically and financially stable and not sit all day fantasizing and waiting for a rich man to marry you. We all have 24 hours in a day; use yours to better you, that is what equality is about.
While you are busy adding value to yourself, a real man who finds you, finds a good thing and obtains more favour because you are the icing on his cake as well. That’s how empires and conglomerates are built. Great men marry great women. Beware of insecure people out to discourage you, they will tell you to slow down and get married first, that men avoid successful independent and overly educated women, but have it behind your mind that nothing good comes easy.
Keep bettering yourself, real men who appreciate greatness will spot you out because it takes real to recognize real.