Anthropologists advise that we should never lose sight of the past. Events of the yester years are very integral in shaping the future. The recent pandemic would be an excellent place to build from in dissecting such a critical insight to give it a societal perspective.
When Covid-19 came, it treated society to certain realities beyond the medical impact that cost us many loved ones. The facet that was tried the most without anticipation was whether love exists in marriages or whether it is a matter of convenience that keeps two people under the same roof assuming one identity. It clearly emerged that the key ingredient holding most families together is not love but money.
Naturally, therefore, when many men inadvertently lost their jobs in the wake of the virus, details of how weak the foundations are set and how unimportant the church vows are quickly taken centre stage.
The pandemic put under keen scrutiny the mentality that we contest in public yet appears to haunt us timelessly – the notion that if you took sex out of a relationship, ninety per cent of women will have nothing to offer their men. Also, 90 per cent of men will find no relevance in the family setup and will be cut loose to explore their sad freedom alone in the event that money is removed from the equation. It appears to be the silent reality much as we hate to accept the stubborn truth. Maybe it is how nature was intended and we have only been working frantically in vain to overturn things.
There are arguments that men bring more to the table than just money. That they offer companionship, security, and leadership and that they control the power to sire. They would wish that all these fringe roles mattered to us primarily, but unfortunately, that is not the case. We expect a man to go out and find financial solutions for himself and for us as a family.
In essence, we do not question their role as family heads or even poke holes into the hypothetical assumption that they protect the family because they are more masculine. The age-old reality though is that the privilege to lead comes with some sense of control and advantage over one’s subjects. Our politics put into accurate context how positions of leadership are earned and maintained. The leader has to be able to take care of the problems of the followers in order to have them follow him continuously. If or when he slackens, another powerhouse emerges automatically to take over. It has nothing to do with us being daughters of Jezebel, it is the way life is designed to fill vacuums.
Women pick and choose our men based on instant comfort. This is, however, something we will continue to deny publicly but practice privately as was revealed by the Covid-19 era.
The Covid-induced surge in breaks up should have served as the last reminder for men to understand that physical and emotional contribution only come at the bottom of the hierarchy of their responsibilities to their partners. That the surge of divorce was universal across the world also acts to vindicate us; qualifying our reaction to failing men as a purely female phenomenon that is beyond any level of education or exposure. I have indicated elsewhere that women are here to stay in the lives of men.
- Being a parent of a sleepwalking child is terrifying
- Sex education begins at home
- If you cannot take care of children, don't sire them
- Tough love: When does a parent say enough is enough?
What varies is our positioning at any one time depending on the success factor. Popular discussions will only highlight that behind every successful man there is a successful woman cheering the man up to cross the following finish line but we are careful not to mention that we also position ourselves ahead of a struggling man to give ourselves a better view of newly available options. Most critical though, is that Covid-19 exposed that you will find us nowhere close to a failing man.
Men, on the other hand, are considerate animals who believe in saviour schema and are powered by the protector instinct that ensure they cover us under their wings when we lose our sources of income for as long we keep their beds warm and empty their gonads. This should be the simple explanation of why marriages thrived when women were entirely dependent on men.
Unfortunately, we have hit the priority lane and society will never go back to the old setup again. The best men can hope for is that another wave of a pandemic does not sweep in again to reignite the surge of separations and divorces because our very nature will not change. We are who we are and they must be who they are intended to be to help us preserve our families.