How It Feels to be a Single Mum in Nigeria

Hi there, my name is Single mum. My name tag reads Single mum and society believes

  • That I don’t deserve good men because I’m now “secondhand”
  • That I am not worthy of a comfortable normal life
  • That I can’t make it in my career if I’m single and a Mother

I am advised that I don’t have a right to be choosy – if everyone is talking standards my voice should be far from the chorus. I should be happy with any carrot that’s dangling in my view with a stick between its legs. That any drunk who seeks for my hand is a great reason to dance because mother nature has decided to bless me…. That my surname is not worthy to be added as my child’s second name. That I am less of a human because I AM A SINGLE MOTHER. The Artisan will cheat and disrespect me but I should take it like a man because I chose to be mum and dad to my beautiful Angel.
She is amazingly intelligent by the way. I marvel at her brilliance every minute of the day. She’s my Jewel, my world. We’re both fiercely protective of each other. My very own little soldier 🙂

Society doesn’t see her or me though. We’re mere statistics, lumped together with the lowest of lows, because a child without a father implies the mother is promiscuous and loose. I get letters from her school requesting to see both parents because a man is everything. We can’t discuss her grades except her dad is around. Textbooks? Don’t get me started. The picture perfect family is one with your man beside you. (*whispers* anyone willing to pose as one? I mean it’s dire, I don’t know how we’ve been able to survive this long without your masculine prowess. THAT THING OPENS DOORS). My heart broke when one day my angel asked me where her dad was because that was just one of the questions her Aunty and friends in school were wondering about.

Sigh… In church

Man Of God: It’s immoral to have a child before marriage
Me in my mind: shaaaaaade
MOG: The child is dadadadada

At this point I usually tune out. I always go home seething. This really bothered me for a while but one Sunday after service, I got really mad, got in my car and lit a cigarette. I had a moment of reflection, “look here. Why do you go to church? To worship, pray and sit in fellowship with others. To have somewhere I can kneel every Sunday and seek forgiveness, pour my heart out and have inner peace. I realised I wasn’t getting them. I was coming to church everyday to be prayed for to have a man and twins immediately. It is important I tell you. Hedek!

When I had my baby girl at 24 I knew that was the end of love for me. I mean, who go marry me? I accepted this since and never had any reason to want to change my stance. Since I don’t plan on getting married then society will be fine (messed up mindset, based on how society see and define my “kind”).

The opinions of others when strongly shared by the rest of the masses can’t be changed. It shapes our world and affects our psyches. We’re all so keen to point our fingers, question someone else’s life and weigh in on their day-to-day lives.

We shouldn’t be so quick to condemn others. It destroys people, this stigmatization.

I have been reduced to just a “Label”. My position is Left to society’s Right.
I don’t want your pity. I don’t want to be singled out too. A million plus condemning single mothers. The married people too can’t roll with us.

See, life is hard enough.

Be conscious of how other people feel too.

Can we be seen as a complete or at least normal family unit too? Please, be careful when y’all out there warring with words, it damages both mother and child. Send us your love.

People swear we’re the devil… Much love to the ones that stand up for us.
Single MOTHERHOOD is not a sin. Stop the stigmatization? No? Continue.
I am not worthy of the Label, my daughter should not be defined by a Title.
Did I hear, you too learn to close your legs? Yeah, I should but you see the thing is sweet….. Lol.

It is not okay that I have to defend my being a mother everyday.
It is not okay that my baby’s life, mine and our welfare is being decided by the societal limitations placed on us.
It is not okay for her to be fighting this battle of “SOCIETAL STANDARDS AND PRESSURES” this young.
Being single doesn’t automatically mean I’m not a good mother or that my child will become a menace to the society because she’s growing up without a father.
I am TIRED of living in the box society has kept us in. I’m out of it.

I am worthy.
My child is worthy.
We are not the label society has placed on us.

MissAnon

With a false name, I can be anybody..... anybody as long as I am careful about the way I write. All that anyone would see are my words, my feelings, me." - Orton Scott Card (paraphrased) Are you Miss Anon like me?

2 Comments

  • Christabel says:

    1. If you’re ever at a church where you feel like you’re being shaded or where nobody can see past your ‘single motherhood’, run. Church is meant to be rest not to derail your heavenly race.
    2. With the school, stand your ground. Let them know there is no father in the picture for now. Don’t even smile with them. You paid good money for a good education not to be asked personal questions.
    3. “When I had my baby girl at 24 I knew that was the end of love for me” If you still want love, there is a lot of love to be had in the world. I don’t believe your chances of love/relationship are low. If you stand in your own truth as your own woman and are strong, You will find love.

    My mother was a single mum for several years after my father died. When she remarried, the whispers started floating about my ‘welfare’. People who had no idea how we were feeding had the guts to be talking.

    PEOPLE will be people. Live your life. Screw them! You and your baby girl will get all you need out of this life. You will enjoy it. You have plenty and gain the desires of your heart. God is her Father! Let her know that.

  • Clarion says:

    What Christabel said! #Gbam!
    Anyone who has the guts to scorn you because you’re a single parent deserves to be laughed at, to their face. What about those who are widows/widowers? Does being a single parent make you or your angel any less human? Abeg, if that school disturbs you again, tell them YOU’RE the one paying fees, and as such, they can shut the hell up and mind their business. Which is to educate. This is 2016, for crying out loud. Who are the *o-?!*** still discriminating against single mums? Abeg abeg….ignore them.

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