WE WILL NOT BE ABLE TO NORMALIZE FEMINISM AND EQUALITY OF SEXES IF WE KEEP DOING THIS SILLY THING OF COMPROMISING WITH PATRIARCHY FOR THE SAKE OF LOVE.

I started this year in a relationship I’d like to think was beautiful while it lasted.

But I was all of a sudden dumped.

Nothing happened. No major quarrel.
He just simply made himself fall out of love with me, dusted himself and left.

I’ll tell his excuses:

  • I had said countlessly that if the relationship happened to get to marriage stage, I would not change my name.
  • I had said that with all the complications that could happen during pregnancy and after childbirth, if we are going to have biological children, the least compensation I should get is a child carrying both our names.

And other mundane things like I am not friendly. But that’s by the way.

Have I ever disrespected you? He said no.

Has my stance on these issues affected my loyalty, love for you and commitment to this relationship? He said no.

Okay.

Now if you knew this guy, you’d know that once upon a time, I was, or at least seemed to be his everything.
With how unstable I could get with relationships and how I dey tire quick quick, everyone that saw us together usually “pitied” him. But look who got heartbroken at the end of the day.

I was saying that he loved me. At least, once upon a time.
But all of a sudden trained himself to stop because of the aforementioned reasons.

My girls asked me why I did not try to “bend” for love.
If he loved you so much as we all saw, what is change of name that you cannot do just to have a happy relationship? It won’t take anything away from you. It wouldn’t make you any less a Feminist. It is all about choice.

I was still very much emotionally unstable and hurt from the separation that they were almost making sense to me.
And if the guy in question had not expressly told me that he had fallen out of love with me for a long while, while we were still together, I just may have gone back to “compromise for love”, if he had given me the option.


I was that hurt and messed up.

What Do You Do To Cope With A Breakup Of That Sort?

At this point, I’d have to say that the best thing you can do for yourself as a (Feminist) woman no matter how “strong” you think you are is to surround yourself with a support system that gets these things.
People that will reassure you and reaffirm that your beliefs and ideologies are valid.

It was DEE that kept asking me why the guy in question would not compromise for love as well.
Why is his love not enough to make him forgo his patriarchal privileges? Why does it have to be my love that should do the cleansing?
Even when sometimes my mind would mess with me and want make me blame myself that I could have just “let it go for love’s sake”, DEE was there to remind me that I am not the problem.

Prior to that, I had a chat with Barr. Esiri and oh my goodness, that woman is a very intelligent woman, on “good patriarchal man”.

I used my Dad as an example who is a great husband to my mum, but not a Feminist.
He still believes he is the head, women should submit, blah blah blah but still, men should love and respect their wives.

Esiri told me something that has stayed with me since then.
She asked if my Dad would still love my mum if she woke up one day and said she was going back to using her maiden name?
Would he still love her if she insisted that he cooked an served her as much as she did in the house?
Would he still love her if she said she does not believe in submission and automatic male headship and dominance anymore?

Thinking about it, truthfully, I don’t think so.

Esiri said (paraphrased) that patriarchal men only love women on the condition of their subservience.

I thought about it.


After I was left by a “good patriarchal man”, I went back to play and absorb Esiri’s voice notes, especially in times where my mind would want to mess with me, and make me feel like the problem or that I am being over the roof top with the whole feminism thing and need to “calm down”.

Patriarchy takes every right away from women and it is seen as normal. Nobody says that Patriarchy is “overdoing it”.

But a woman insists that she wants her children taking her name as well and everybody goes “…Dora, you are overdoing this your feminism thing”.

I was broken that I had to talk to a handful of guys to ask their opinion about falling out of love with someone just because they wouldn’t take your name after marriage.
ALL OF THEM said that it is MORE THAN enough reason to fall out of love with a woman, even if they once loved her more than life itself.

Name! Name o!

It opened my eyes to see things from another perspective.

  • Patriarchy is absolute.
  • It does not negotiate with women “because of love”.
  • It will not drop its standards or hold back on what he thinks are his rights because of “love”.

It is always women –Feminist women –negotiating and compromising “for love”.

WE WILL NOT BE ABLE TO NORMALIZE FEMINISM AND EQUALITY OF SEXES IF WE KEEP DOING THIS SILLY THING OF COMPROMISING WITH PATRIARCHY FOR THE SAKE OF LOVE.

Imagine changing your name, for instance, having daughters and telling them that they don’t need to change their names after marriage if they don’t want to.

  • P.S: This is not a ‘women should not change their names upon marriage’ rant. I don’t care about the name you decide to use. E concern you
  • P.S 2: Omo, it took me eight days to get over being sad that a man left me. If you know me, you’d know that two hours is too long not to mention eight long days. Na mumu dey love o.
  • P.S 3: Women need to start being as “ruthless” and “brutal” with men over what they feel they deserve.

They will say “it’s not a competition. When you love someone, you naturally blah blah blah”, but these men never love us enough to naturally blah blah blah.

Women are the ones loving men enough to kneel in public places to show gratitude for all he has done for her.

Women are the ones loving men enough to call him their god.

Men would never do that, but hey, it is not a competition.

Eish!

— Inemesit Derbie

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