Being a woman is never an easy feat. This is not just because the physiological makeup of a woman makes life uneasy for her but also because she has to face a lot of social biases all through her life. Society has placed women in a particular position and has not allowed them to raise their heads from there. Any slight effort they make to readjust that position is met by condemnation, criticisms, and resistance. A woman is not expected to lead a group that has masculine gender as members because “a man must always be the head of a woman”.
She is not expected to challenge a person that has “male” attached to his name after all “she must be submissive to a man in all cases”. She must not be ambitious or even think of owning a property “in her name”, since “she must belong to a man, whom she must serve”. In many cultures, she can’t own a property, considering that she is seen as property too. Above, a woman should never think of being rich because society gave that gift to the opposite gender.
Discriminations against women are, sometimes, involuntary. We grew up with the belief that women do not deserve inclusion in certain discussions and privileges. We grew up with the mindset that women are incapable of doing many things. So when we see women doing what we believe they are incapable of, we react. Yes, we are never passive when a woman achieves feats that the society made us believe that she could not.
Take an instance from the case of Nwando Okpalaeke, one of the first pilots that landed planes in the just-commissioned Anambra International Cargo and Passenger Airport. We knew that three planes landed that day but we only know of hers because it was piloted by a woman. People believed she did something extraordinary because she did a “man’s job”. If she were an air hostess, no one would have noticed her because society felt that’s the only job women should do while up in the sky.
Women were also believed to lack the ability and intelligence to make money. This ideology has affected many women because they have been brainwashed into believing they are incapable of doing any substantial thing that will make them financially independent. Those that managed to pull themselves out of this hypnosis are constantly told, “Remember you’re a woman” as if it is taboo for them to be among the bourgeois. If this mentality can be wiped off, a great percentage of the world’s population will be pulled out of poverty. But here we are, watching as more persons wallow in penury because they believe a woman can never help them out.
The women that finally paved their way towards financial independence and succeeded are negatively branded. Tell me any rich woman in this world that wasn’t said to have made money through illicit affairs, aka bottom power, or marrying a rich man. The shocking thing here is that even women say that about their fellow women. What people fail to know is that such castigations discourage others from pursuing their own dreams and financial goals. If people make you believe that you can never achieve much as a woman by offering sex in return, why would you want to work hard since that doesn’t work? Even if someone tells you it is not, you will not believe him because society says so.
When you consider the stereotype and bias against women’s ability to make money you will understand why many of them settle for jobs and businesses that pay close to nothing. Many of these women would have become great entrepreneurs if not for what was instilled into them by the people they had contact with. The most devastating about this scenario is that it is not about to change because the ideology is being instilled in the younger generation.