What You Teach The Girls, Teach The Boys.

March 22, 2019

In a society that is changing and hoping to be balanced for the better, it is important we have conversations about smashing societal created gender roles, behaviours and systems; aka fuck the patriarchy. It is necessary to cancel the subscription of what women should be or shouldn’t, same goes with men. Time has indeed come for us Nigerians and even humans to put an end to the spiral and spiral effect problems caused by these things.

To start with, we are going to have to throw away those ‘talks’ given to the children but differentiated by gender. Those talks that advise girls on boys, domestication and discipline and advise boys on career, success and independence. From this moment, our society has started breaking us apart and ruining the fight against equality.

Imagine a world where we teach boys to aspire to marriage like we teach girls. Or better still, a world where we didn’t teach children and young ones to aspire to marriage. Do you know what is going to happen? Women will stop limiting themselves with the thought that they cannot do too much in life since marriage is ‘soon come’. Yes! Don’t act so shocked.

Women will stop teaching themselves to be good wives at a time when they’re supposed to be teenagers. Women will stop seeing each other as competitors and spending their lives trying to look the part of the best wife, the one with ‘beauty and brains’. And for the men, they will start catering for themselves knowing that nobody is being trained to cater to and for them.

We raise girls to be prim and proper, to be prissy and perfect. But you raise boys to be tough, angry and rich. You raise two people —who should normally have a bit of all these things—and you force one gender to learn and adopt it. Somewhere in the future, when two people raised under these circumstances (quite literally) find themselves married to each other, the woman- who is likely more worldly, better educated, better skilled, more knowledgeable, more responsible and more dependable- is expected to submit to the man as ‘the head of the family’ who at best is more successful or richer.

We should teach the boys to also aspire to cleanliness, to be respectful, to know that success and excellence is not exclusive to their gender. We need to teach boys that it’s normal to be afraid, cry and seek help. Girls do it and still flourish. Teach the boys that they will not die if they feel emasculated. That that word in itself —emasculation—is dangerous and should be destroyed.

Also, as we often teach boys; let us teach our girls to grasp opportunities with both hands and “have a go.” To be unapologetic about it, to be brave.

We teach girls to be careful and safe. But I dare ask, to be careful of what? Of men? Of challenges? Of opportunities? Of themselves? How come we teach girls these things and we never teach the boys?

We teach girls to be ashamed of their hormones, their bodies and their femininity. The ones who are unashamed about it, we call them shameless, in the way we would describe a naked person on the street.

We should teach boys to also be ashamed of their promiscuity, to stop celebrating infidelity and overt sexual behaviours. We must teach girls to be liberated sexually and be free of shame. We must teach boys that menstruation is not the apocalypse and they will be fine. You go dey alright las las.

We teach girls to say more of ‘no’ than ‘yes’. We teach girls to act like a lady and think like a man because thinking like a man means thinking sharp, dubious, unashamed, selfish and proud. We must teach boys to be, to act and to think like a human. I mean, how hard can that be?

Avatar

Join The Conversation

Bring a friend.

You'll like this

Mum and daughter
November 11, 2020

The subject of this week’s What She Said is a 26-year-old Nigerian woman. She talks about the trauma she faced growing up with her mum, her dad leaving and how therapy improved her relationship with her mum. Tell me about your earliest memory. Growing up, I was very stubborn. I used to get into a […]

November 16, 2020

A lot of people tend to experience pain when they have their periods. Some women have been able to hack this thing (lucky them), so we asked them to share how they handle period pain. P.S: None of these are professional advice from a doctor. Just women stating what has worked for them. Amaka, 25 […]

September 16, 2020

The woman in today’s What She Said thinks of herself as a hustler. At 29 years old, she has a decade-old career spanning industries without a university education. Now she’s committed to expanding her business. She loves what she does.

Watch

Now on Zikoko

January 19, 2021

When it comes to period products, there are a lot of things that need to change. A lot. So, we made a list with the help of the people of Twitter 1) Price They are too expensive. Period products should be free, because nobody chose to have their period. These products are essential, and nobody […]

January 19, 2021

The idea of lifelong friendships sounds nice, but it doesn’t always happen. Friends fall out or drift apart all the time for myriads of reasons. For some people, it happens because their friend got married and decided that they didn’t want to be friends anymore. This is a lot more common than you’d think, so […]

January 19, 2021

Admit it. You’ve always wanted to know which of the OG Nollywood campus babes you are. Now you can, just take this quiz and find out which of these bad bitches you are on the inside. For more like this, check out Zikoko Memes

Recommended Quizzes

November 12, 2019

Are you a single pringle, stuck in a complicated situationship or happily married to the love of your life? This quiz is here to guess your current relationship status, and as you know, Zikoko quizzes are incredibly accurate (don’t quote us). So, give a shot:

December 5, 2019

We already tried to guess how much you have in your account and your current net worth, and we think we did a pretty great job (keep any complaints to yourself). Now, we’re going to try and guess your monthly salary based on your relationship with money. Oya, take the quiz: 11 Timed Quizzes For […]

how much of an ajebutter
February 12, 2020

Are you an ajebutter or not? Well, if you’ve gone through life blissfully unaware of its harshness, then you probably are. Now, we want to know just how high you rank on that ajebutter scale, using your food preferences as a (very accurate) measure. Take to find out:

November 11, 2019

Everyone has something to say about what kind of person they are. But how well do we truthfully evaluate these things? Not that much, I can assure you. The average person is always lying to themselves to make sure they look good. But you know what and who doesn’t lie? Zikoko quizzes that’s what. Take […]

More from Her

January 19, 2021

When it comes to period products, there are a lot of things that need to change. A lot. So, we made a list with the help of the people of Twitter 1) Price They are too expensive. Period products should be free, because nobody chose to have their period. These products are essential, and nobody […]

January 18, 2021

What is it like loving women as a woman? Seven African women tell us about the experience. Hadiza, 20, Nigerian I expected it to be easier. I expected dating women to make me feel more safe and less insecure. The safety part is true, but the easy part is not. Women are challenging. Dating them […]

January 15, 2021

Dear men, you never know what to do after you send a woman pictures? Well, we are here to help. 1) Send us money Looking at your beautiful pictures has caused us eye pains because your beauty is blinding. You have to pay for eye treatments. 2) Buy us a new wig Your beauty just […]

January 14, 2021

Infertility is something Nigerian women sometimes struggle with. With a lot of importance placed on women’s ability to have children, what happens when you cannot? Four Nigerian women share their individual struggles with infertility. Kemi My sister is 40, and has been trying for a baby for about ten years. I think few years into […]

What She Said
January 13, 2021

For this week’s what she said, we talk to Uju Anya, a 44-year-old woman. She tells us about leaving Nigeria with her mum because of her abusive dad, discovering she is lesbian, not bisexual, and becoming an atheist. Let’s start from the beginning. Where did you grow up? I was born in the city of […]

January 11, 2021

A hijabi can be explained as a muslim woman who wears a hijab. We got 10 Nigerian women to share why they started wearing a hijab, and how being a hijabi is dealing with a lot of identity erasure, stereotyping, fetishization, and Boko Haram “jokes”. Halima, 22 I was motivated to start wearing the hijab […]

January 5, 2021

After asking some Nigerian women to share why they do not want children, we asked some that do have children if they regret the decision. These four Nigerian women share why they regret having kids. Abimbola, 44 Maybe regret might be a strong word because I absolutely adore my children, but since I turned forty, […]

January 4, 2021

New year’s eve is the one day in the year that carries the hopes of millions of people around the globe. It is the day we round up and settle all affairs of the previous year while looking forward to a new year. Today, I asked Nigerian women about how they spent their new year’s […]

January 4, 2021

We live in a society where having kids is expected of every woman, but there are some that do not want them, and will never want them. So, we asked some Nigerian women why they do not want children. Olamide, 34 When I was a teenager, I always told everyone that I was going to […]

Watch

Trending Videos

Zikoko Originals

December 14, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
November 2, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
October 26, 2020
A collection of videos documenting some of the events of the EndSARS protests.
June 22, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
June 22, 2020
Hacked is an interesting new series by Zikoko made up of fictional but hilarious chat conversations.
June 4, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
June 2, 2020
Quickie is a video series where everyone featured gets only one minute to rant, review or do absolutely anything.
May 14, 2020
Isolation Diary is a Zikoko series that showcases what isolation is like for one young Nigerian working from home due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
March 12, 2020
Life is already hard. Deciding where to eat and get the best lifestyle experiences, isn't something you should stress about. Let VRSUS do that for you.

Z! Stacks

Here's a rabbit hole of stories to lose yourself in:

Zikoko amplifies African youth culture by curating and creating smart and joyful content for young Africans and the world.
X