Is Marriage For Every Woman?

Is It Okay not to want Marriage and Kids?

Sarah & Divine Polyvalent Wedding

So I’m here again, with another twitter saga that got me just the right info to scrabble up this post in the shortest time possible (which sadly took longer).
I was hoping to publish this sooner, but you know what procrastination can do to a man, sorry I meant a woman lol.

Last week I spoke with some friends of mine in their early thirties (YES I always speak to people before writing). And as usual, my focus questions were based on the two topics that intrigue me most, i.e. relationships and personal development. After a long talk with them, I realised how I felt about marriage at this point in my life was okay, normal and darn right legal. I also went further to read what modern psychologists think about the issue that got me seriously brain drained.

As a monthly ritual, I had a day off to reflect on my purpose in life and what I really wanted for myself at this point. After a painstaking reflection, the same thoughts and patterns I mounted before came flashing right in.
At that very moment I knew “it was sealed”, it is clear what I want, and no one will talk me out of it . Yes, it may be doltish to make a decision and ignore all “good-will advices” from ever present well-wishers, but it is what it is. Sometimes silly works out for good.

I don’t know why I just can’t stick to one thing, enough about me and my crazy adventures; let’s take a look at the tweet that triggered this write up.
PS* I posted this tweet after my monthly ritual.

Based on this tweet and the comments I recieved, there are a couple of things I will like to hit on….so brace yourselves for impact.

First off, when is the right time to get married and have kids?

As a proud African woman, a few years ago I would have said; between 21 and 29 if you are not married, then “your village people have started dancing on your destiny». But as I grow older and experience life my own way, my thought patterns have changed (as it should, that’s what growth does). It is quite difficult to answer this question today, with that much assertiveness.

The world is changing and people are evolving, I do not believe there is a specific period which has been termed “THE MARRIAGE DEADLINE” within which if you haven’t tied the knot, you should be disregarded. Sadly, the world isn’t linear, people carry varied opinions patterning to the perfect marriage period. In Africa most especially, we are strictly made to believe that the best period to get married is in your early twenties; after which you may not get a man at all. But just in case the heavens happen to smile at you, all you may be blessed with is a leftover/second handed man. As much as there is some biological logic in terms of child bearing and other aspects related to this belief, I still stand against it.

This thought pattern helps kill self-discovery & encourages unhealthy unions
The idea of pressuring people to get married before they even discover who they are is dangerous. Individuals should discover their purpose, walk in it first, before clinging to another for the rest of their lives. Why? it’s simple, you can better choose the right companion on life’s journey if you know where you are headed. Imagine getting into a cab with your spouse, just to discover miles away that you had two opposite destinations in mind.
Most women are miserable in their relationships because, they didn’t build themselves enough before getting into a union. Discovering your purpose in life is more important than finding a husband or having kids. Why? Because, finding what you love gives you clarity and satisfaction, which ensures genuine happiness, which ensures selecting a partner for the right reasons, which ensures building healthy relationships etc… and evidently a happy life.

Today people get married at different times and for varied reasons, some don’t get married at all, while others are still trying to figure the whole thing out. Whatever choice any one makes, I believe should be respected.

Is it okay not to want marriage or kids?

This question is as straight forward as it can be. And my answer to this is a whole and loud YES! It is totally okay for a woman not to want children for reasons best known to her. Reverend sisters don’t have children and we don’t judge them for that, they chose the path of serving God. Other women may not want to join the convent in order to fulfil this wish, but I believe they should not be stigmatized for that.
This is not me saying women should not get married, just in case some of you hear wrong. My point is this, women who chose not to get married should not be insulted or stigmatized for that. Sometimes a woman may be walking in her purpose decide to dedicate all her time to it. She may not be a brutal feminist or man hatter, but a person who has just chosen the path of singlehood.

On the side of kids, we cannot ignore the advantages of having a child to call your own, your blood. But we can also admit to the fact that a number of people have dysfunctional homes and can’t take care of the children they birthed. We hear of fathers raping children, mothers abandoning kids and all what not. Having children goes beyond just birthing them, it needs mental, physical, financial engagements, and much more.
There is no parenting manual that works for all, so those involved need to be ready before bringing in kids. Imagine a woman who doesn’t want kids having to give birth just because society says so. There is a high chance she will be a reckless mother. Thus my point again, do it when you are ready. I didn’t say do it when you have a billion in your account, but if that is what you need to feel you can become a good parent, then great, go ahead.

Does not wanting marriage or kids make you less of a woman?

This is a tricky question. Based on what some societies belief, you are probably less of a woman. Not being married at a certain age is tantamount to being ill-mannered, a prostitute, barren, a radical feminist, extremely picky, you name it. Fact remains, some women are unmarried today for most of the reasons above and more, but there is another dimension people miss.
A woman may choose singlehood for the following reasons;

She is getting to learn and grow in her purpose

She hasn’t found the right partner with a similar purpose to grow with.

She may choose to remain chaste for personal reasons

She wants to dedicate her life to a higher cause e.g. spiritual, humanitarian, activist, business etc.

Many things can make a woman stay unmarried, and may have nothing to do with men hatting and other negative connotations. As hard as it may be to believe, women may want to be single because it makes them achieve greater things and find fulfilment, which may be hindered in marriage and with kids. We should be more open minded to understand why people make certain decisions and accept them for who they are. The same way everyone doesn’t like music, architecture, salads etc., that’s the same way some people view marriage and kids. That said, my humbe answer is NO, not wanting marriage or kids does not make you less of a woman.

Hello, I’m Ama J and I’m your friend, thanks for reading & feel free to share your views in the comment section; don’t forget to come back for more crazy from moi.

A one-time Business Developer who fell for writing — lover of life. Pursuing MA in Communication.*Ghostwriter, content creator: contact me: Twitter @joanamanwi