Scenario: You have two men who want to marry you.
One of them is very rich; he has everything and is willing to provide all you want but he won’t let you work or do anything because he expects you to be a housewife while he makes all the decisions.
The second guy has potential, he is still struggling but he is willing to be equal partners, to share all his plans with you and have you be part of the decision making process and will also support your dream.
Which one will you pick?
I have heard this question in many variations over the years. It is apparently a way of judging what kind of woman you are: a woman who is only after a man’s wealth or one who is willing to work hard. Of course we know which one is considered a ‘good’ woman.
Let me make this personal.
Which guy would I pick in this situation? Neither. Why would I pick the struggling guy just because I want to prove a point to society that I’m a ‘good decent girl’? See, growing up was not rosy and I’m working hard to make sure my kids don’t go through what I did. I have not finished my own struggling, I’ll now marry someone that is struggling, and it will now be NYSC, abi?
And then the rich guy is a no-no for me. I have been making decisions about my life from an early age; I cannot sit down and fold my hands and be pampered for the rest of my life (no matter how good that sounds). Boredom will kill me.
Comfort and idleness are two different things. My system doesn’t support idleness but I enjoy comfort, why else would I be working so hard? I would love to wake up at 2am to write, in an ac tight room, wrap myself in a silk dressing gown and sit at a desk made from the sturdiest oak, my butt cushioned on a well padded chair, with the finest Swiss chocolates at my elbow, my laptop with a RAM of 16G, internet that moves at the speed of light and no NEPA worries.
It is not a bad thing if I can afford to pay people to do all my housework and have more time for creating, whether with my money or my husband’s money.
By the way, why do we assume that all rich guys disregard their wives and treat them like chattels and cheat on them? Why do we act like we don’t hear the stories of women who helped men build their fortunes and once the man ‘hammers’ he discards her for a younger model? Or the ‘struggling guy’ that marries a woman and wants to control her every move and beats her to a pulp every time she challenges him?
There are a lot of wealthy men who set their wives up in whatever business they want to own; a number of them who do not mind having a wife who’s satisfied with doing nothing else but being a wife and mother.
That a woman picks a rich guy over a poor one doesn’t make her a gold digger or ‘bad’ woman. It just means she knows what is important to her and her scale of preference is different from yours. It might not be the best decision and she may encounter trouble down the road (or not). Same thing goes for a woman who picks a struggling guy over a rich one.
There are many shades to this matter: the woman may indeed be a gold digger and the man a controlling idjaat; but it’s not a one size fits all situation. So the next time a woman tells you she’ll pick a rich man over a hustling one, biko roll your eyes in your mind. Not everybody has energy for long suffering.