By Ibukun Busari
It is often said ‘Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned’ but I bet it is yet to meet ‘the fury of a man rejected’. In life, we make decisions and choices regarding what we think is best for us. We say Yes to some, and No to some which is not a crime but in recent times we have seen that saying No is a crime with consequences.
Rejecting male advances is now a scary thing to do because of the fear of the man’s reaction. It is said that men react to rejection differently and we should be sensitive of their feelings, but does this mean their reaction is a fault of ours and we should bear the ‘consequences’ of their reaction.
According to WHO, about 1 in 3 (30%) women have been subjected to either physical and/or sexual violence in their lifetime. Any form of violence is a crime and must be punished according to the law.
According to The Observers, a man broke into the home of a 16 year old fine arts student Maryam Rukabi on the 16th of December, and covered her with acid, burning and disfiguring her face- all because she turned down his marriage proposal. That man is a criminal for firstly initiating marriage with an underage girl, then harming her for refusing his proposal.
According to Jessica Valenti, an Iowa college student Mallie Tibbets was killed by a man she told to leave her alone when he approached her while she was jogging. Another heartbreaking story is that of a Detroit mother of three who was killed because she refused to give a stranger her phone number. A New York woman had her neck slashed when she declined her attacker’s offer for a date
Women are constantly on their toes, scared for their lives because a simple No can lead to death. Most men are of the opinion that they are of the superior gender therefore women are inferior to them and they are entitled to certain privileges which include a Yes from a woman.
Some men who do not physically harm women who reject their advances try to tarnish the reputation of the woman by concocting false narratives about the woman just to ridicule her. Women move with teasers and pepper spray just to defend themselves against any attack, this shows how unsafe the world is for women.
A recent story of an Afghan woman who was harmed by her brother-in-law for refusing to marry him after the demise of her husband is simply madness -scaring the woman for life to ensure she doesn’t have any other suitor is beyond me. No woman is safe- young or old.
It is not physically and mentally healthy to keep walking on eggshells, constant panic because you do not know if the person you say No to will harm you or not. Any form or type of assault and violence against women must STOP.