15 things Nigerian parents must teach their daughters
“Dear parents, please teach your young girls how to successfully navigate the new world they will be living in when they grow into adulthood.
Please tell them that they are complete and whole as individuals and should not subscribe to the ridiculous, age long myth that, without a man they are incomplete.
Also tell them that being in a relationship is not equal in any way to being enslaved or losing their personal identity and self worth.
Tell them not to rely on any man or woman for their upkeep. Teach them the dignity in labour and the satisfaction that comes from being financially independent.
Tell them that they can be anything they dream about and they should not limit their growth trajectory to suit the insecurities of any man or the dictates of retrogressive cultural demands.
Please teach them self defense techniques including martial arts training, defensive driving, weapons training and mental/emotional control, because they may one day have to confront physically stronger guys that may have the intention of doing them harm.
Give them quality education to tertiary institution level, if you can afford it and train them in ethics, integrity, will power and respect for others.
Explain to them that the society, culture and tradition has placed an unfair advantage on the male gender and has enabled a lot of men to have an unjustified superiority complex over the women folk.
Help them to understand that they are in no way inferior to men and differences in genitalia is not a sign of superiority or inferiority. Both sexes are equal in the eyes of God.
Explain to them that a lot of mothers have enabled bad behavior in their male children due to patriarchal cultural and religious beliefs, so she should study signs of poor upbringing before committing to any relationship.
Tell them they are not punching bags and a man has no excuse whatsoever to hit them. They should seek legal redress or simply walk away and never look back if this occurs for any reason.
Please teach them to be kind to others, to love themselves unconditionally, to look after their bodies and guard their hearts from negativity, with all diligence.
Help them understand that sexual harassment or assault of any kind is not their fault, it’s not because of how they were dressed or their body shape, it’s because the idiot responsible has the will power of a dog.
Encourage them to never see themselves as helpless victims but strong, beautiful individuals, created in God’s image and fit for only the right partner. Train them in legal ways to address any wrong done to them.
Don’t forget to tell them that marriage is not a do or die affair, but a beautiful meeting of like minds, it is better to be a single mum than an abused spouse and that equality in any relationship should never be compromised.
I’m counting on you to prepare our young girls for a world radically different and a lot more complex than the one we grew up in.
Thanks and God bless.”
Written by Femi Aderibigbe