No, I Will Not Marry Your Son – The Life of a Nigerian Girl
There are some things that we go through as girls that we just can’t help but talk about. It could be random men saying “baby I just wanna know you” or random aunties that insist on you marrying their son. Either way, these cringe-worthy situations are inevitable so it’s best you be like Tishe, Ushang and I – write about it! This post is a collaboration between myself and the writers of Everything in Between (Tishe and Ushang). We’re going to be talking about the life of a typical Nigerian girl. Make sure you head on over to their blog (click here) to read their storytimes. I guarantee smiles and laughter or your money back!
Now, here are 8 perfect scenarios that sum up the life of a typical Nigerian girl.
- Trying to be modest in the heat. This country is undeniably hot. Boys are free to walk around shirtless. No one really cares. We, on the other hand, have to make sure we’ve covered 75% of our body or someone’s going to call you a few names. It’s worse when there’s no light and you’re somewhere public like the bank. It’s hot and everyone is sweaty. Some intelligent ones will decide that deodorant is optional, so that your discomfort can be intensified x1000. The heat won’t even allow you concentrate in school. You’ll be fanning yourself with one hand and trying to take notes with another. The worst part of it all is that no matter how hot it gets, you must remain modest before one amebo aunty starts talking.
- Being the errand girl. Whenever I want to escape being sent on an errand by my parents, I stay in my room and plug in my earphones so I can say that I didn’t hear anyone calling me. We’ve all experienced our mum or dad calling us to get something that was right beside them the whole time e.g. the remote. My sister was telling me about the night that my dad kept sending her on so many errands that she literally had to stop and ask him, “am I a robot?”
- You’re allowed to talk about your dad’s side of the family to your mum. Have you ever had any of those conversations with your mum, when you just gossip about all the people on your dad’s side of the family? I definitely have. There’s always that one aunty that you have to talk about. Maybe she’s the one that always has something to say about your hair or your weight. She could also be the one that calls your dad to say she saw you out with a boy one afternoon. Either way, your dad’s family is a common topic of discussion. If you’re Yoruba, you must have heard your mum say these words at least once: awon ebi baba e…
- Waking up early for church. I don’t know about you guys but sometimes I just want to stay home. The drama that ensues on Sunday mornings is too much to handle. I’m usually quick to get ready because I don’t wear makeup that often. When my mum is finally ready, I become the designated photographer. That’s when my sisters decide that they also want to take pictures for ‘the gram’. Before you know it, we’re thirty minutes late because our living room became Studio 24 for a while. After you’ve sat through a three-hour service and it is time to go home, your parents decide that it’s time to greet the congregation. This will take another 45 minutes before everyone is finally in the car and ready to leave.
- Language and extended family gatherings. I’ve noticed that nowadays, a lot of us can’t speak our languages fluently. At home, this isn’t a problem for me because I understand Yoruba. When I’m with my extended family though, that is when the wahala begins. Everyone expects you to be speaking *insert your language here* like a pro. I have aunties that will pretend not to understand English just so I can speak Yoruba. Ata family meeting, we were supposed to introduce ourselves in Yoruba but I said mine in French because I speak more French than I do Yoruba. I feel for the people with English names. They are the ones that can’t get away with telling older people only their first names. You can’t simply say your name is Sarah. Sarah what? They want to know your last name so they can relate with you on a more traditional basis.
- Everyone wants you to marry their son. My earliest memory of a scenario like this was when I was about four or five. The hairdresser came to the house and while she was plaiting my hair, she said that I’m very beautiful and I must marry her son. I don’t know why I remember this. No matter what age you are, there’s a lady that wants you to marry her son. You’ll know it’s serious when she gives said son your number and discreetly discusses the wedding’s aso ebi with your mum.
- Must you always go to their house? Can’t they come to your house? Or you don’t have a house? If you’ve never heard those words before, you must not be Nigerian then. When I was younger, going to a friend’s house was a struggle. I first had to make sure said friend had been to my house or that was the first time going to their house. My parents wanted to speak with their parents and make sure I wasn’t going to visit ritualists. I needed to give a week’s notice before I could go anywhere. I think that’s why Nigerians are such good event planners. Sleepovers were a completely different thing. Why must you go and sleep in another person’s house? Do you want them to think we are suffering you?
- Eys fine girl! This is what some intelligent specimen will call you to get your attention as you’re walking down the road. Sometimes it’s when you go to the market that you’ll be called all sorts of names. I was in Wuse Market once, and this gentleman not-so-subtly told me that he would give me a million Naira if I left my mother and followed him. Imagine! All these young men that seem to think they have acquired wife all of a sudden. Some of them are even more creative. They’ll be telling you that they recognise you and they’ve seen you before. Seen me where, please?? In the same Wuse Market, on the same day, another gentleman grabbed my arm and said, “AH MY SISTER! DON’T YOU REMEMBER THE FACE?” Uncle please, which face? I don’t know you from anywhere.
This definitely isn’t all. There are so many other scenarios. Yes, they are quite frustrating but I must admit, they make interesting stories. If you’ve been through any of these, feel free to tell me your experience in the comment section. Make sure you visit Everything in Between to read their storytime posts.
Everything in Between is a blog that’s basically centred on food, art and fashion. So head on over to their website and show some love. You’ll be very entertained by their musings on life and their positive take on every situation. Feel free to spend time going through all their stories and pictures. I’m sure you’ll love it just as much as you love this blog or even more!
Follow their Instagram page @everythinginbetweendot_com
And Ushang’s art page @anitaart (her drawings are really nice!)