When a man’s manhood is threatened, By Funke Egbemode
Whether he is giving sperm or money, a man’s manhood feels rock solid only when he is the giver. All normal men are divinely wired to give. I hope you noticed the emphasis on normal men because not all men are normal. Forget the six-pack abdomen and rippling biceps, many of today’s men don’t mind being humped and getting paid for it. The Yoruba call them, alabodo’. Kept men. Gigolos. Men for hire. Toy boys. They are all over the place, dangling their sugar sticks, hoping to net the highest bidder. But their day will come.
Today is about the hard task of living with men who are ‘financially under the weather’ if you get my drift. Yes, broke-ass men. Don’t tell me you haven’t noticed that one of the most difficult men to live with are those without jobs or those who are broke. If you don’t, wait until your man loses out in a business deal and has to depend on what you earn to keep body and soul going; then, you‘ll see how he will start behaving like a man whose third leg has just been cut off.
You know, men generally believe that the purse strings should and must always be controlled and held by them. It is the way God created them. Giving is what validates a man’s manhood. No matter how things change or what current trends say, the natural order of things begin and ends with men giving.
Once a man is out of a job or even temporarily broke, he believes that heaven is about to cave in.
However, they should go around and see how nicely women are getting on, with or without financial support from men. These are the days when women are holding their own. But unfortunately instead of the men being proud of their women’s achievements, many think they must do something to stem the rise of the women.
They should check the number of cars, and I mean elegant cars, being driven by women. They should take statistics of the women between the ages of 24 and 35 and the kind of mouth-watering packages their jobs offer them. Let’s not even start a list of women who own and run flourishing businesses, from Automobile Workshops to Event Planning. If you compare the number of men in that same age bracket and what they earn. I guess one will be able to see that women are certainly giving them a run for their macho image.
Of course, they are ready to tell me off that all those successful women got to where they are riding on men’s shoulders. Well, they should tell me a better story because it is stale news.
How much weight can a cockroach’s shoulder carry? You can only help a woman get a job (and women help men get jobs too) but you don’t do it for her. She’s the one who proves her worth and earns her promotions and raises. So why do men get jealous when their women start climbing the success ladder? Or more importantly, why do men take their frustrations out on their women when they are broke or unemployed? It’s really a shame when a man takes your sympathy for pity or your support for handouts.
Labake, a chartered accountant found out this mean side of her husband after nine years of marriage. “I still can’t believe that he had that sort of thing in him. All this while, he supported my career and never insinuated any rubbish about how fast things were moving for me. He is, or was, a businessman and he imported all sorts of things from men’s wear to cars. Then against all my warnings, he decided to go into partnership with somebody. “I warned him that partnerships are risky and he could lose all he had worked for over the years but he was sure that any man worth this salt should be ready to take risks. So, he went into it believing he’d be a millionaire in a few months.
Then things started south. The other guy happened to be a crook and they almost came to blows before the letter of credit was even opened. He tried to keep it away from me and when eventually their ship arrived; my husband found out that all they imported were not worth what they paid for. Obviously, the guy kept some money back and paid for the low-quality cars and drugs that had almost expired. My husband had borrowed heavily for the transaction and had to sell one of his two cars to pay his creditors.
“Then he went into depression and started taking it out on me. He even went as far as accusing me of predicting the loss, you know, something quite close to calling me a witch or something like that. He started complaining about how late I worked, how I was turning him into a house-husband because he helped pick up the kids from school once in a while. He took to drinking and nothing I do these days seem to satisfy him. He’s even beginning to suspect I’m having an affair with one of my clients who is an American; and with whom I had to work extra hours because he has to go back to the States. It’s now so bad that if we are watching TV and I tell him there’s a programme I want to watch on another channel, he’ll just pick up his car keys, storm, out muttering that you can’t be a man in your own house once you don’t have money. It’s that frustrating”.
Keirah is not even married to the man who’s making her life miserable. They are just on a boyfriend-girlfriend, albeit steady level. ‘We both applied for jobs in one of these big conglomerates and I got the job while he didn’t. A few months later, he resigned from his job because of a misunderstanding and since then things have fallen apart. He became so mean, suspecting my every move, especially when I work late. Things came to a head when he came to visit me one Saturday and found one of my colleagues in the legal department and I working over a project we were supposed to send deliver the following week. He started insulting the poor guy, calling me names, and that he now understood why my weekends were no longer his. I was so pissed that I told him to get out of my life. And that was it.’
Why do men lose their cool when their fortunes take a nose-dive and they have to depend on their wives for some time? Aren’t couples supposed to help and understand each other’s plights?
Seriously, must men act like little boys whose toys were taken away by bigger boys each time they are broke?
▪Funke Egbemode can be reached on firstname.lastname@example.org