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I insist?

He calls me up at 5pm and asks, "Where are you?"
My answer, "I'm in a meeting with my boss. We have an urgent office meeting."
"At this time?"
His tone is not a friendly one and I am not sure what his problem is. Then he blurts out, "Look here. I insist that you come home this minute!"

Insist? You insist? Never in my life has anyone insisted that I come home this minute. The closest I came to this statement was my 31st birthday, when three military officers - close friends of mine - bundled me into their car and took me dancing. My dad thought I was coming home to spend my birthday with the family. He had waited up for a long time and was getting concerned that his "little girl" was in some kind of trouble. He called my cell phone and found out that I was out dancing and having fun. He laughed, hang up and went to bed. The next morning, he wished me Happy Birthday, asked why I had gone out to a night club - a place that is far too noisy for me - without calling to tell him to go to bed. It was out of genuine parental concern.

Well, this man is now insisting that I come home this minute. My reaction is, "You insist? You insist that I come home this minute? Who on Holy earth are you to insist that I come home this minute? You get off my phone before I throw tantrums!" Let me explain. He is not my husband, not my brother, my boyfriend, my neighbor or my babysitter. He is the man who is proposing to me through his mother! Before I have said the magic "yes", he is insisting that I come home this minute. I don't even live with him; I live in my own house - alone. He only comes to visit occasionally. And he wants me to be home at any time he desires to come to my house. If I am not at home, he asks me to come home to attend to him, and I have to explain that I cannot just leave the office. See, he is self employed - at least that's what he says - so he has no idea what office ethics are. He usually asks politey. Now he is insisting that I come home this minute.

I did not go home that minute. I closed from work at 8pm and I went home. He called at 8:30pm to tell me to quit my job. "A woman should be at home by 5pm to make dinner and take care of her household. This job is not good for me. I will make a kiosk for you to run so that you will have time for domestic affairs." Do people still say this to women with Masters' Degrees? It is all about what he wants, not what I want or need. If I marry this man, it will be because he insists that I marry him. He will insist that I give him my body (and he won't even bath before taking it!), my salary, my property, my time, my career, my religion. He will insist that I move into his mother's house and serve her and his sisters like a slave. He will insist that I give birth to 6 children when I want only 2. He would be the sole beneficiary of this unholy union. Before I know it, other people might describe me as a dutiful wife - a dutiful wife with no life. Yet, he would be living comfortably, insisting that I do not contribute anything to the home!

Does this sound familiar to you? I insist it does.

Comments

Welcome, Patti;

I read your story.

My question is: what are YOU, Patti, going to "insist" on?

I do not know of your national, or so-called cultural norms and mores, but I will conclude that you are part of an overtly patriarchal society; unlike the so-called "Developed" Western world, which conducts its patriarchy as it does it espionage: covertly.

Notwithstanding any national/cultural militating effects, I deliberately did not ask you what you "COULD" insist on, but rather what you WILL be insisting on, even within this relationship - as planned for you by your parents.

Why? Simply becuse the Patti who was BOLD, SMART, BRAVE, SELF-ENLIGHTENING & therefore SELF-LOVING enough to pursue - and gain, her Master's Degree, sounds like a person who not only KNOWS, but will ACT UPON THE KNOWLEDGE THAT SHE DESERVES BETTER than a puny-souled, bullying, primitive-minded "Insistor!"

And by the way, Patti: you asked if your story sounded familiar to your readers. My answer is this: Women must STOP paying so much attention to all that is supposed to "BE," or to "SOUND" FAMILIAR, USUAL and CUSTOMARY in what is IN-TRUTH and IN-FACT: the MALE-CONSTRUCTED PARODY OF HUMAN LIVELIHOOD that Men have - DELIBERATELY FOR MAN'S OWN GAIN - made of Women's Lives around the World.

Look at it this way: if you as a Woman, instead of bringing - say, a PUPPY into your home to Love, Care and Enjoy its company in the NORMAL, HUMANE manner of HUMAN BEINGS, but INSTEAD decided to Think/Act like a Man, and captured the PUPPY, forced it into your home, treated it "worse than a Dog," etc. HOW DO YOU EXPECT THAT PUPPY TO REGARD YOU?

Would it not be "NORMAL" for this animal to run away from you, whenever you approached it, sensing more abuse? Would it not be "CUSTOMARY" for this animal to fear, each time it sees another Human Being that looks/smells/sounds like you raise their hand, that this Human-Hand will be brought down savagely, painfully and IN-HUMANLY upon its small body? Admittedly, Patti: ALL OF THESE REACTIONS BY THIS PUPPY - BASED ON ITS IN-HUMANE EXPERIENCES AT THE HANDS OF A HUMAN BEING....ARE "FAMILIAR," ARE "USUAL," ARE "CUSTOMARY."

What they ARE NOT, however: are DESTINED TO BE PERPETUATED BY THIS PUPPY FOR EVER!!

So, too - must WOMEN make every attempt to MENTALLY and PHYSICALLY STOP REACTING IN "FAMILIAR," AND "USUAL," AND "CUSTOMARY" MANNERS TO THE "HUMAN-ABNORMALITY" THAT MEN HAVE MADE WOMEN'S LIVES TO BE!! TO THE "SOCIAL-ODDITY" THAT MEN HAVE MADE WOMEN'S LIVES TO BE!! TO THE "ECONOMIC-FREAKISHNESS" THAT MAN HAVE MADE WOMEN'S LIVES TO BE!!

When you "SEE" Women's Lives in its REAL PERSPECTIVE - however BAD that may be, it is only then that you, as a Woman, will similarly "SEE" how TRULY STRANGE IT WOULD BE FOR YOU TO CONTINUE TO RE-ACT IN A "FAMILIAR," OR A "USUAL" OR A "CUSTOMARY" MANNER TO WHATEVER A MAN REQUESTS OR DEMANDS OF YOU AS THE PERSON THAT WOULD HAVE SELFISHLY, CALLOUSLY, BRUTALLY AND RELENTLESSLY DEGENERATED YOUR LIFE TO THIS HELLISH STATE...IN THE FIRST PLACE.

Patti's picture

Re: I insist ....

You are absolutely right. I always say we reap what we sow. If we sow the seeds of insistence and having our own way, we reap the fruits of being a frightening entity that has her/his own way and no-one gets in their way (it's called loneliness). Our African society has both overt and covert patriarchal practices, neither of which enhances the lives of women. What our traditional leaders do not realize is that if women are happy and able to function as full human entities, our entire society would be transformed for the better. Yet, because of selfishness and the desire for 'supremacy', men INSIST on having their own way.

Thankfully, it's not all men that INSIST on having their way. There are quite a number of men who negotiate with their partners and agree on options that benefit both of them. My point in this journal is that if a man starts by INSISTING on anything, know that he is not likely to change. He will continue to INSIST on having his way forever, knowing that you, the woman, will let him do it. The day you stand against him is likely to be the day he begins to abuse you.

So what am I going to INSIST on doing? I INSIST that he quits INSISTING right from Day One. I won't quit my job, move out of the city where I live, sell my car, toss my dreams up in the air, move in with his mother to be her servant, leave my faith ........ I INSIST on being who I am. If he wants me, he should love and accept me for who I am.

By the way, it's been about seven months since I last heard from him. He has realized that he cannot INSIST his way into my life and he obviously does not like that. All the better for me ----- I INSIST on not waiting for him. Life goes on happily.

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