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Chinazo Okaro: ‘Only Girl’ Problems



Being the only girl in a family of guys can be amazing; but, it also has its share of problems.

This realisation for me was heightened (again) during the festive season. I remember being so exhausted from chores, I could barely think, let alone do anything else. You know when you get so tired, you lie down and can’t even sleep? Yeah, that feeling.

We all know how busy it gets on the home front during celebrations and holidays. Not that women have to do everything but truth be told, we do so much to keep things running and in place.

In most African homes, you don’t expect the men to do much when it comes to domestic chores, and doing it all alone, sometimes, can be very daunting!

You’re up and about tidying and generally fussing while the boys are ‘chilling.’ Then you have to clean up after them, because, these grown-ass men also act like babies. As macho as they are, they like to be pampered and looked after especially during holidays when they don’t have to go to work or do any kind of ‘hustling’.

If you have brothers like mine that love good food, then let’s just say the kitchen is your lot.
My brothers are sweet, don’t get me wrong; but boys will always be boys and it isn’t always pretty.

When I was much younger, I used to wish I had a sister. I’d imagine how much easier it would be to have someone share the burden of chores and how much fun it would be to have company while cooking or just someone who could understand my frustrations and emotional outbursts. I wanted a girl like me to talk about stuff I wouldn’t dare discuss with my brothers – things even my Mum might not understand.

Anyway, I’m grown now and although it has taken getting used to, things are much easier to handle. I still have that longing for a sister on some days and other days I’m like, “such bliss!”

In summary, it isn’t all fun and games when you’re an only girl. So, the next time you meet one, don’t think only about how fabulous her life must be because as beautiful as it may seem, being an old girl comes with a load of responsibilities and is definitely not for the faint-hearted.

Photo Credit: Nolte Lourens |

I’m all about positivity and the use of words to inspire creativity, a lover of innovation and aesthetics, with a passion for excellence. I hold degrees in Radiography and Public Health. I own a website and a blackberry messenger channel (Shana’s diary), my slogan is “think creative, live creative”.


  1. Tired Of "ThisWomansJob" Crap

    February 1, 2017 at 4:31 am

    Sorry after reading your post, you make it sound like cleaning up after your brothers who are grown men I’m guessing is acceptable.

  2. Anon

    February 1, 2017 at 4:58 am

    Guys will soon start with their “what of when we wash the car, turn on the generator for 2 minutes a day, bring 50% of the earnings and replace the bulb twice a year”. Asif girls don’t do that too. Oh well, things are changing.

  3. thegirl

    February 1, 2017 at 6:01 am

    I understand you, especially their loving good food part. Do your brothers bring friends home to eat as well? OMG! I thought my life was hell until we all grew up. I am loving my life right now, I am 38 but they still treat me like a baby. My husband has to constantly compete with them because they spoil me silly. Their wives too! They treat me so well because they have to be in their husband good book or I am lucky to have 3 good sisters in law. If Your brothers are anything like mine, you will definitely reap the fruits of your labour.

    • Chinazo Shana

      February 2, 2017 at 3:28 pm

      Absolutely! Their friends come around to eat sometimes and most times they’re gracious enough to wash their plates after eating which is good. I really can’t wait to start reaping the fruits of my labour. lol

  4. Kosi

    February 1, 2017 at 8:58 am

    Your article just heightened my resolve to teach my son’s to cook, clean, go to the market and do even more than their sister. I’m not raising any misogynistic men, no sir. They’ll be in the kitchen while my daughter paints my nails in the parlour.

    • Chinazo Shana

      February 2, 2017 at 3:33 pm

      Hahaha you’re definitely my soul sister!

  5. Nneoma

    February 1, 2017 at 9:47 am

    Hang in there! The wives are coming! I am an only girl too and many years ago festive season meant a lot of work. My brothers though are the responsible kind who are able to do many things from killing chicken to dressing it to roasting it! Good people – my brothers. Then they started to get married and the wives started to arrive. Suffice it to say that I lounged A LOT this Christmas as we had plenty wives doing stuff, add my brothers who don’t slack themselves and see I had absolutely almost no chore except what I chose to do!

  6. mz_danielz

    February 1, 2017 at 12:47 pm

    Your own only girl is different oh. There are only girls who do nothing. Their mothers taught all her children house chores and so their brothers shield them from chores and even cover them up. They are spoiled princesses. Infact, their mothers are forced to send them to boarding school.

    I grew up sandwiched between 2 boys as big sis was away in boarding school and I enjoyed the experience, made me a tomboy in my teen years though.

    PS; Let’s quit with this only the girls cook, wash, etc. My grandmother had 8 children; 6 boys and 2 girls and they all did house chores; cooking, washing, etc. There was no dichotomy except in the chores considered in my village as masculine chores; (pounding yam and washing bitter leaf).

  7. nammy

    February 1, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    If you had mentioned being a tomboy, playing football and video games etc then i could have been able to relate but cooking and cleaning up after them is a big no no. When we were younger we all did house chores and now that we are all grown up they won’t leave the chores for only me. Holiday means rest, chilling, visiting friends, doing chores and cooking also but not as if il carry the whole world on my head cos I have brothers.

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