“You must be very stupid. I am not the quarrelling type o. It is the way you talked that made me respond like this. Why should you talk to me rudely? Am I your mate? I am a married woman and a mother o. I have three kids…”
I was sitting at the front passenger’s seat of a bus, trying to enjoy the ride home after a not so fruitful day, when quarrel broke out between two ladies sitting just behind me.
The issue was about space. One was angry that she wasn’t sitting well because the lady close to her had refused to shift. One thing led to another and a full-blown quarrel was the result.
Hehehe… Who cares? They could have killed themselves and I wouldn’t even turn back to see what was happening. I just felt they were two grown-ups behaving like little kids.
I ignored them; especially as I was too busy drafting an outline for my next blog post with my phone.
However, the statement above caught my attention and refused to let go. I tried to shake it off but Mr. Beans’ smiling face chose that moment to occupy my thoughts as the words replayed in my head.
“……..Why should you talk to me rudely? Am I your mate? I am a married woman and a mother o. I have three kids…”
The statement was funny to me and Mr. Beans’ face didn’t help matters. I laughed from inside out. I couldn’t hold it. The person sitting next to me gave me this look that said, “What is this one laughing about?”
I ignored him and turned around to look at the lady. I wanted to get a good look at her. She sat by the window; slim, fair, void of make-up but beautiful. Strands of loose hair danced around her face. They couldn’t resist the breeze.
I did admire her beauty. But she wasn’t making me really like her as she was still raking.
My eyes moved to the lady she was quarreling with. Dark skin, wearing perfect make-up and a long weavon over dark blue gown. One wrist was graced with gold bangles and the other, a gold wristwatch.
She had become quiet; probably thinking silence was the best answer for fools. In this case, the fair lady.
I’ll call the fair lady making so much noise about being a mother, Lady A. And the dark lady, Lady B.
Lady A was still making so much noise about being a mother and for that, she deserved respect.
A closer look at Lady B told me she was about same age as Lady A. Worst case scenario? Lady B would be a few years younger or older than Lady A. But of course, with Lady A, age or manners was not the prerequisite for measuring maturity. Marriage and children were.
I couldn’t help but wonder why that had to even come up. What did marriage and kids have to do with the space they were quarrel about?
It reminded me of when I was handling school run for the kids I used to take private lessons. There was this woman who used to come pick her kids from the school too. Every day we would meet at the school’s reception and hit the ground with hilarious conversations, at least, until the closing bell went off and we were able to pick the children.
During our first conversation, I got to understand that she thought the kids I came to pick-up, were mine.
I didn’t try to correct her thinking; after all, I felt really close to the children and treated them like my own.
After picking the kids from school, we would walk down to the bus stop together. Still gisting.
I enjoyed the friendship we had. I enjoyed the bond we shared.
However, the day she finally discovered the kids were not mine, she didn’t even exchange greetings with me. And when I greeted her, she answered like she was talking to a small girl, like I am not up to her (in Ichabod Crane’s voice), level.
She began pulling aunty strings for me. The annoying part is we are same age. I knew that from our earlier discussions. But because I am not yet a wife and mother, she suddenly felt I was a small girl.
Dear Nigerian women, is that how you use to do to fellow ladies? Must we all be married and have kids before we are regarded as anything? Rolling my eyes.
So, have you experienced this sort of discrimination? Biko, share your experience. Are you guilty of this? Tell us why you do it. We want to know.