I am not your ATM

“A busy, vibrant, goal-oriented #woman is so much more attractive than a woman who waits around for a man to validate her existence”, stated Mandy Hale and I couldn’t agree less when a cherished #friend asked me about what I thought. The girl who does not wait to be validated calls her shots with self-confidence. Such a girl would not have any man talk down at her, labelling her a liability, drain, or failure. The same man would not dare to tell her that he is not her Automated Teller Machine (ATM)! In a partnership where mutual love and understanding thrives, one looks out for and after the other, but when that becomes a burden or cumbersome routine, things are bound to fall apart.

Every #girl needs to own her voice and should be able to raise it wherever and whenever the need arises. More often than not, especially in #Africa, the society and culture is #patriarchal, which encourages #gender discrimination and abuse. Most #girls sacrifice their financial independence on the altar of marriage or a partnership because they take up the responsibility of other salient matters in the home that can not be cash-quantified, which is often taken for granted. Several #women are the breadwinners of their families though. A handful of #men appreciate this kind of woman and become involved in other domestic duties or gender-stereotyped roles, in addition to investing ample emotional support in such a relationship. However, many men run down a woman like this instead, neither giving cash, nor kind in the relationship. Some men would even find every excuse under the sun not to work, hiding under the patriarchy…specifically religion, hence such relationships sit on a time-bomb, heading for the rocks eventually, should we not want to dance around the truth.

For a girl not to be trampled on, each girl should work towards her material wealth, intellectual prowess, and self-confidence. That way, no one would think she is a drain, failure, or liability.

Everything except change has either changed or is changing. Hence, I would admonish every girl to be economically empowered and independent. It is a saving grace from #gender-based abuse and being treated as the ‘insignificant other’. It also helps with #mental stability. A girl who is busy being a change-maker has no time to mope or wail, waiting for a man. We can, we should, and are enough. The bible, in Amos 3: 3 says “can two walk together, except they agree”? If both parties can not respect or celebrate one another, appreciating the sacrificial roles they each play in the lives of one another, then they are not practising the love advocated in 1 Corinthians 13.

No one should feel like a drain, ATM, failure, or liability in any relationship. No one should be intimidated or threatened by the success or otherwise of the other. They can and should complement one another. Nonetheless, for a girl not to be trampled on, each girl should work towards her material wealth, intellectual prowess, and self-confidence. That way, no one would think she is a drain, failure, or liability because no man has the wand to be any woman’s ATM, except the one who holds the universe in the hollow of His hands and is the ultimate provider- Jehovah Jireh or ‘ATM’.

This piece was first published on World Pulse to celebrate the 2020 #International Day of the Girl (IDOG).

12 thoughts on “I am not your ATM

  1. I wonder what is happening in the world today. Our men has actually turned the ladies into ATM , imagine a younger guy lazy around the house all day while the lady fetch the daily living. In the evening same guy cruising in the lady’s exotic car, cruising his life around,you just said in circular world. It is worst in Christiandom so many brother are being called and so they don’t work and yet live on hard earned currencies of the lady, even to help in the household chores is a problem. My sis the Islamic is far worst their wives is the. Slave they bought with their money,
    Their should be mutual understanding, the girl child should be well train , so that she is autonomous. She need not to be a man ATM,need not depend on a man for her survivor.

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    1. Thanks a lot, Sis. The situation is actually challenging. This is because a woman who is economically empowered could be abused as well, due to the value society places on marriage. The desire to be a “Mrs” could eventually enslave a girl, but as soon as she realises she does not need to be validated by a man to exist, she can then tap into divine joy, because the initiator of marriage which is God, did not design marriage as a shackle, but a family unit of love and worship to the Father, hence mutual love and understanding, built with communication, sacrifice and trust should sustain a partnership or marriage through the storms.

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  2. Olubunmi Adebanjo October 12, 2020 — 5:35 pm

    Each individual in a marriage should live to compliment each another,while trying to live a life of self fulfilment by investing in their individual life. However,there would always be need to shift ground on some issues from time to time in order to strike a balance if indeed the marriage is based on true love……my take.

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    1. Thanks, Sis. I totally agree with you that two are better than one, but since wisdom is profitable always, every woman or girl should accelerate with divine wisdom as the paradigm shifts.

      God bless you and all yours!:)

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  3. Hmmmmmm, how very true. And unfortunately the society we live in has not made things any easier for the African girl child as it is believed that she is inferior to a boy and must be totally submissive even unto death.
    This mentality has so affected the female gender that she is most times compelled to suffer in silence.
    It is high time the girl child is adequately empowered to blossom into her full potential, while bearing the mind the adage train a girl child and you train a nation.

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    1. Sure, Sis. We can…together, we can! 🙂

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  4. This is a very commendable article ma!!! I think husband n wife should be ATM to eachoda. It shouldn’t be a one sided thing ma. Rub my back today n I rub your back tomorrow😁😁😁. And no girl child should be made to go through any pain whatsoever because of any position she finds herself.

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    1. Exactly so. That’s the ideal. That’s how God planned it.

      If women sold ALL services, who can really pay?🤷🏽‍♂️ 🙂

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  5. I’m sorry that my response is coming a bit late. A beautiful write up. No one can be the ATM of their spouse as you rightly said. It is wrong for the man to depend on the wife without doing anything. It is also not really right for a woman to seek to have her own for reasons that hinge on the man not taking advantage of her. That sounds like engaging a competitive spirit in the marriage. She should however have her own because no man has the financial muzzle to be a woman’s ATM. Furthermore a woman should have her own to increase the income in the home. The two are one. This is bible marriage.

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    1. Thanks a lot ma. 

      I think many women do a lot in the home that isn’t cash-quantified, hence taken for granted by their narcissistic partners. For too long, women and girls have been constrained and confined to the 3 Cs…cooking, caring and cleaning. While we enjoy and flourish in our divine roles, it isn’t divine to be oppressed and suppressed. Hence, couples ought to respect one another and see each other as partners, instead of one being inferior to the other. Then, biblical love would prevail.

      ‘Appreciate your input ma.

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  6. You are right my dearest sister. Every ladies should learn from this and work .. Make a good living…

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    1. …Very correct and thank you for your comment, Sis! Many women actually work, but since they multitask as home-keepers, their careers suffer and they end up making much less income than their partners who enslave them in very subtle ways, more often. So,like you rightly wrote, good living is it!

      ‘Bless you always, Sis! 🙂

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