When I was younger I was taught that if a guy liked me I must make him work for my affection. I believe the actual translation would be making him “suffer”. Courtship I was told was for him to want me, and for me to test him at length to prove his affection. It was said that the man who suffered the most for you would be the most deserving. Yesterday riding along with my boyfriend we were talking about how he had “suffered” chasing girls in his teens. I told him I had made many a men suffer too. When we got together there was no suffering at all, well except that I lived an hour away from civilization on a really bad road, and he would argue that was suffering enough.
Before I met Mr Right, I used to take plenty pleasure is making obscene requests of men I wasn’t the least bit interested in. I just wanted to see how much power I really had. Those were the days when I thought my power as a woman was invested in my sex. If you were so unfortunate as to like me then woe be unto you.
“Send me fuel for my generator”
“I want a weekly allowance”
“If you want me to kiss you then kneel in this pohtoh pohtoh right now”.
The worst I think I ever did was that a guy bought me a plane ticket to visit him, but when I got there all I did was give him a “thank you, I got in safe” phone call and I never even cared to see him again, nor did I feel bad for doing so. Why would I? My job was to make them suffer, and theirs to take it.
On the other hand, the men that liked me that I liked back, I never wanted anything from them. I didn’t want them to suffer for my love. In fact I just wanted to speed up the courtship so that I would know if they were really who they said they were.
I have several girlfriends who grew up believing the same about making men suffer. The only difference is that unlike me some let a man’s long suffering wear them down. They get to a point in the courtship where they start to believe that any many who would do “x” or “buy x” is a man who loves you.
I had a friend once who met a man within months of moving back home from the US. The man she told me would come over and even wash her underwear. She was really touched by this, while I having watched my share of Nigerian movies wondered if he wasn’t doing this to juju her. I kept my thoughts to myself. They ended up getting married. Now he cheats on her openly, except she’s the only one who doesn’t know it. I don’t believe she would have ended up with him had she not felt that he had suffered to win her, but African men have evolved.
They too are masters of the game. They know you want them to suffer, and that is what it is going to cost to close the deal. So some will do what ever you say, and whatever it takes (Or you’ll meet a decent guy who wasn’t taught that he should suffer for love, and you’ll miss out on him because he wont be up for the hunger games, and you’ll think he doesn’t like you). At some point you’ll even think the guy suffering for your love is a fool, you might even call him so to his face. He’ll just brush it off and say yes, for you I am. Don’t smile chale na true ah di tok. African men will do anything for a woman they want to win. And while you’re thinking he is giving you his everything, he is doing the exact same for 2 or 3 other women. They are built to go the distance. An African man would chase you for 10 years even, “soaking your corn” for one fine day when you’ll ask, and he’ll beat it.
So this is my advice to my sisters out there. Just because he suffers for you doesn’t mean he loves you, it doesn’t mean he’ll treat you right, nor does it mean that he’ll commit to a relationship. And to my brothers out there, if you have to suffer for it, maybe its just not worth it. If she really liked you, and wanted you, you wouldn’t need to do acrobats for her or spend your money on her, her friends, her cousins, her aunty, and the whole village.