June 21, 2018

Woman, you are doing enough already-Viola Okolie

Woman, you are doing enough already-Viola Okolie

Dear Woman,

From the moment you pop out of your mother’s vagina, you have done enough.

Not too long ago, your very existence itself was a challenge that needed to be explained away.

A giyal?
Anoda giyal?
No boy for insaid ya belle?

You almost had to wail a little louder than your male counterpart to convince your mother you were well worth the effort of nine months in the belly, especially if you were not the first in a long line of girls, but the 5th or 6th or 7th.

Or 9th.

Hopefully your mother doesn’t die pushing  you out into an unforgiving world, all in a bid to prove that she can do “better” than make baby girls.

Dear woman, for the act of being brought into the world alone, you have done enough.


Dear woman,

When you were a little girl, you had little to no choice or knowledge about your body, how it works and what went in or out of it.

Subsequently, almost right from when you were too little to know or understand, someone was either pulling, prodding, pushing or poking your body.

The uncles who promised you death if you revealed that they were slowly killing you each time they violated your body. The ones who groomed you into willingly giving what you did not have the right to give at a tender age, the ones who took by outright force and even took your life as added insurance to cover their tracks.

If ever a decision was taken for a child to drop out of school, that child would be you – the girl.

If someone needed to be sent out of the family to go and slave for a living, everyday narrowly escaping sudden death at the hands of a crazed madam – it was you – the girl.

If someone had to quickly marry, whether ready or not, in order to either reduce the number of mouths the family had to fend for or to bring in some little money and provisions for the family (otherwise known as bride price and  dowry),  it was you – the girl.

If someone had to be harassed into giving up sex in exchange for grades, passing marks or even graduation from an institution of learning and that being in spite of their brilliance or because of their lack of it, it was you – the girl.

If anyone would be backed into a corner by a gang of pimply contemporaries or elders and gang raped into “submission”, “humility” or “silence”, it was you – the girl.

Dear Woman, if you beat all the odds and survived your childhood and teenage years, then trust me on this, you have done enough.


Dear woman,

Going into the labour market was like working around with a “kick me” sign taped onto your back by a mischievous younger sibling, only that this time around, your idiot sign says “f*ck me”.

Every one and their dog assumed you had sex and were obligated to dish it out to them in exchange for some favour or the other.

You get propositioned even for sport – just to add that extra notch to the headboard.

You almost always had to make a choice:

Your honour or your job!

Your dignity or that contract!

Your pride or a signature across a document!

Your sex however reluctantly given or that favour.

And woe betide you if you meet a Yahoo plus practitioner who pairs up with an equally scramble brained juju doctor. Your breasts and vagina may or may not be prescribed as an avenue to stupendous riches without lifting a finger in one day of honest labour.


Dear Woman,

Harassment is your second name:

You are harassed into getting married.

You are harassed into staying married.

You are harassed for thinking of yourself and your needs.

And when you finally die in a violent marriage, you are harassed for being so stupid even as your murderer shops for a replacement.


Dear woman, if you survive your youth, believe me when I say to you, that you have done enough.

So, please my dear, feel free to flip society your middle finger, and take decisions that would affect your body all by your self.

For instance Dear Woman, if any body tells you that you absolutely MUST have a vaginal delivery to prove that you are woman enough, even when the signs and superior reasoning dictate otherwise; feel absolutely free to spit in their face.

You do not need to prove a thing further to anyone else.

Your being woman, being alive, is more than enough.

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