Choose what is best for you

How I said no to marriage

Choose what is best for you

I was only 13 years old when a boy in my community asked me to marry him. Who would have imagined that?

This happened a few years ago, after I ran into Musa a former senior student in my school.

That day, he had come to pick up his WAEC and NECO result when we ran into each other. We got talking and even exchanged numbers.

Long story short we became friends. We spoke to each other almost every day on the phone.

Things were really cool between us until one day when he said;

* “Halima, you are a very good girl. A girl like you should not be single or have to wait till she attends university before she gets married. You know I am done with secondary school and ready to marry. I think we should get married”

At first I thought he was joking. I mean I was just 13 and he was 17. How on earth did he expect kids like us to get married? Plus I thought we were only friends hence didn’t understand were this marriage talk was coming from.

I told him marriage was the last thing on my mind. As far as I was concerned my focus was to attend the university.

But he wasn’t happy with my response. He tried to make me feel bad by telling me to be grateful that a graduate like him wanted to marry me.

His comment didn’t move me. All I knew was that I wasn’t going to change my mind.

He started putting pressure on me.

And when I asked him to stop he got really upset with me. It was at this point I knew I had to confide in someone. I spoke to my elder sister and she was really helpful. She advised me;

“Halima, marriage is a big deal. It is meant to be something you get into because you want to and not because you are forced to.*

It is good to see that you have a plan for your life at this young age. And, I advise you to focus on your plan. You are still young, marriage can wait.

As for Musa, he needs to know where you stand. You need to let him know that you will cut him off if he keeps trying to pressure you to marry him.

Remember, it is your decision to make. You need to look out for yourself and future. Anyone who doesn’t support it needs to go.”

Just like my sister advised, I spoke to him. But he still insisted on marriage. And so, I threatened to report him if he pressured me anymore. I noticed he stopped calling and texting me regularly afterwards.

That’s how he stopped disturbing me.

Thanks to this experience, I have learnt the importance of standing your ground.

This is why I want to advise girls who might find themselves in the same situation. Please seek help from a trusted adult. Speak to an uncle, aunty, cousin, cleric, or sister.

Talk to someone with experience. Someone who can help you make the right decision.

Also learn to speak up. Let the boy or man know where you stand.

No one has the power over your life and decisions.

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  • love
  • friendship
  • relationship