As an Arts student, I had to endure several Christian Religious Knowledge (CRK) classes in my senior secondary school years. One would think that as a Christian, I would come to define the period as one of the most edifying moments of my life, but actually, if I could turn back the hands of time, I would still sleep through most of the classes again… with joy. I won’t deny that some of the classes were quite illuminating, though. One of the lessons that I found very revealing was the one on Ruth and Boaz.
As the teacher rambled on with the story on the day, I remember how astonished I was at Ruth’s audacity. A young girl who had lost the love of her life and dedicated the rest of her life in service of her mother-in-law, Ruth knew she needed stability and security for herself and the older lady (Naomi). She built up her reputation, made sure she was seen by the right people, and the moment she realized that Boaz- possibly the wealthiest man around in the area and also kind- had noticed her, she took the bull by the horns and initiated a relationship with him. In fact, theology explains that by lying down next to Boaz that night, Ruth was “symbolically proposing marriage to him.”
Although not the most iconic of stories in the Bible, I think I found the tale particularly interesting as it applied to the situation around me at the time. I was in SS3, and during that time, I was battling with feelings I had for a boy who was in SS2. I liked him and I knew he liked me too. The problem, however, was that the dude was too shy to approach me as he was not sure how I would react to the idea of “dating” a junior. In my teenage head, I thought: dating a younger guy would certainly be a case of me settling for less, but then…he was super popular and that was what really mattered. Though Ruth knew she was going to be settling, she did not wait for the guy to woo her. She went for what she wanted, opinions be damned. Initiating the romance my heart sought just made sense!
Of course, I didn’t give in to the temporary insanity. I never approached the boy, and basically, stolen glances were all I amassed in the end. My fear of being considered “too brazen” or “easy to get” was just too strong, and again, though I was only 14 then, I already knew I was the kind of woman who just had to be wooed.
A number of Nigerian women today, either out of desperation, superiority complex, feminist beliefs, or just plain obsession initiate romantic relationships and even propose to their men. I am not judging, but apparently, the era when such behavior was considered inappropriate for the women folk is far gone. The night I raised this issue with one of my very feminist friends, she said “ The worst that could happen when a girl asks a guy out is he’ll say no. And if he says no, nne, dudes have been told “no” since the establishment of dating social norms. Just like those dudes, the girl will be alright! There is no difference between the guy and the girl and even more, there is no rule that says the guy has to make the first move.”
Call me old-fashioned, but…I believe that deep down, even the most passionate feminist would rather be wooed than woo a man.
Let’s face it, all a girl has to do is drop a few hints and if the guy likes her back, he’ll most likely declare his feelings or pop the question before she blinks. Honestly, it is a safer and easier way to get to know if a guy likes you, and it cuts out the embarrassment that comes with a guy turning you down.It has nothing to do with feminism or self-confidence.
It is what it is.
Being flirty and sending signals to try to get the man to make that move surely beats a girl literally making the first move. What do you think? What is your opinion on a girl asking a guy out and/or making the first move? Is it generally a good idea or just not okay?