The title of this article will be like a slap on the face for some people.

“What is this world turning into?” they’d exclaim. “They have gone from asking for equality to requiring the man to submit to his wife?”

But why would the idea of a man who submits to his wife be so unsettling? Don’t be surprised that the ladies may be equally or even more upset than the guys by this title. You are probably perplexed because this goes against what you have been groomed and conditioned to think by the society of your birth. And shamefully, we have imbibed this nauseating ideology concerning gender role like robots, and without question.

Why have we not questioned it? That’s easy to answer. We were groomed not to question the sacred cows. Remember how your mother would say, “Why did you do that? Don’t you know you are a girl?” “Don’t you know you are a boy?”

Any attempt to say anything that begins with “But mummy…” elicits a “shut up!” if you are lucky, and a hard knock, if you are not. That inquisitive part of us that should ask questions that have been begging to be asked for centuries is silenced in the cradle. This is how we are primed to be obedient, unquestioning, compliant zombies that show not the slightest hint of resistance while getting dragged along in the mud of outmoded, odious ideologies by society.

Now let me tell you why the idea of a submissive husband is giving you a headache. Society paints the image of an ideal man and woman to children as they grow up. Parents are the unwitting primary agents of this indoctrination process. The seed is sown right from the cradle, even before the child can speak or is aware of itself. Methods employed in this undertaking are both overt and covert.

For instance, the girl always gets sent to the kitchen while the boy always gets sent out of the kitchen. A “real man” is one who is lord over his wife and can control her, as if she is some domesticated animal that needs to be kept in check and monitored continuously.

While the ideal man is a conqueror, the ideal woman is one who allows herself to be conquered. Her duty is to cook and clean, be respectful, spread her legs on demand, and God help her if she doesn’t bear him children. The man may be an unthinking idiot but he is still a man and must be obeyed. The extent to which she can swallow and stomach crap is a reflection of her virtue, while the extent to which a man can rule or control her is the proof of his strength.

This is an idea that strips the female gender of human dignity. It does not take into cognizance the fact that WOMAN is also Homo sapiens, and therefore intelligent, with something to offer. The woman is treated as if she is a defective product, existing only for the man’s satisfaction; giving him food, sex, children and then massaging his ego to ensure he always feels like a man (oh this is very important).

As a result of this indoctrination process, the males in our society grow up with oversized egos and therefore they must have a submissive woman who understands their need to keep it massaged. Watch how some guys will react to this article. Please forgive them. It’s their ego talking. Having being placed on a “gender throne” not by merit or any personal enterprise, but solely by virtue of accidentally having the “proper” genitialia, they feel that their kingdom is threatened by ideas such as this. They will bark and bite in their desperation to cling to their exalted status.

Some ladies will even disagree with my perspective. This only goes to demonstrate how scarily effective the societal indoctrination process is. Womenfolk have been indoctrinated to be willing slaves and could go so far as to commend a woman who allows herself to be a silent victim to the excesses of a physically abusive man. Not only have they been cultured to be submissive, they have been taught to teach and expect same from their own daughters and take sides with a culture that obviously puts them at a disadvantage. I don’t know about you, but on behalf of my grandmother, I am annoyed. I must give kudos to the women of my generation because things are changing.

Dissenters will remind me about the sacredness of our culture and how it must be preserved. Oh that’s fine but please don’t be selective in your quest to preserve culture. If you want to, preserve it fully… Let’s go back to killing of twins, worship of local deities, treatment of sickness with herbs, sacredness of evil forests, to mention but a few. Notice how people only bring up the “it’s our culture” defence selectively, as a cover for bias and plain ignorance. Well in our culture, it was the man’s duty to provide for the woman. These days the woman goes to school and contributes financially to the upkeep of the home. Sometimes she is even the breadwinner. That departure from culture is not a problem bah? When she should be lying down to rest after the kids go to school (since the man is the “provider”), she has to go to work, come back to cook and care for the kids while the man sits in front of the TV with a newspaper to fulfil his manly role. She may be tired but that’s her role, so it’s fine. Society grooms the man to not notice her weariness or to notice, do nothing about it and feel justified. Not only that, he even demands that she fulfils her role. If she is too tired to respond to him sexually at night, he will cheat oh! And she will get blamed.

With the change in structure of society, the woman is expected to work. This means she gets extra in addition to her traditional role. Please what extra has the man gotten? The woman bears so much yet we call her the weaker sex. Abeg I laugh in Aramaic Chinese!  And the man who claims to be the reasonable one, who accuses the woman of being sentimental, is not able to see this culturally sanctioned exploitation of our grandmothers, mothers, sisters and daughters. If it is the duty of the man to defend the woman, it is imperative that we kill this ideology forever.

Still on this submission matter oh! It amazes me how mechanically it has been applied so far. If the man is an imbecile, Nne, submit. It doesn’t matter if his decision-making ability is poor. Just sit tight on that ship, Honey. Let Captain Imbecile navigate the family ship off course. If that’s the best he can do, don’t complain. It’s okay. After all he is the man of the house. Just arm yourself with handkerchiefs, ready to cry, when trouble arises as a result of his foolishness. And of course it is your duty to pray for him so that God will make him a better leader. Haha! The joke of centuries! What did God put you in the same boat with him for? Sit down there and wait for God to come and talk to him.

But I don’t blame you, my dear woman. You talk and talk but will he listen? He has been raised to think that when you have your way, he is less a man. Such manhood must be very fragile since it is so easily chinked. If it is true that the two shall become one, it means that any decision taken must be taken as ONE. Half-decisions taken by only one party all the time will definitely lead the family to chaos.

And there are those who will quote the bible, twisting it to protect their egoist perspectives. “Wives, submit to your husbands”, they remind us. But they will not tell you that the bible verse just before it says “Submit to one another in the fear of the Lord”. Another verse in the same passage says, “The husband is the head of the wife”. I’m sure this verse will give men misogynistic orgasms but only when it is wrongly interpreted. Before you pop that can of beer in celebration of your scripture-gifted superiority, lets us examine the matter closely.

There arose an occasion or two when the disciples contended among themselves about who was the greatest and Christ seized the moment to deliver the recipe for greatness.

“But it shall not be so among you” he warned. “Whosoever wishes to be the greatest among you, let him be the slave. And whosoever wishes to be head among you let him be the servant”. Since we have forced the woman into submission and servitude, it appears that we have also forced the crown of greatness upon her head, if we interpret this by the rule of Christ. That’s what it seems to me oh! Bible scholars, feel free to interpret and misinterpret for us.

The only possible argument against my application of Christ’s principle of greatness is that this verse does not apply to man and wife. To settle this, we return to the book of Ephesians from which the verse that says “Wives, submit to your husbands” is quoted. It also says, “Husbands, love your wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself for it”.

What men don’t realise is that their own part of the deal is even harder. When you are asked to love your wife as Christ loved the church and gave his life for it, can you even begin to conceive what a tall order that is? If you understood, you for choose to jejely submit to your wife and end this matter than attempt to replicate the love Christ has for the church with her.

Christ was submissive, even to the point of death. “He was led as a sheep to slaughter; and as a lamb before its shearer is silent, so he does not open his mouth.” Christ set the standard on how he loved the church by washing the feet of his disciples. Peter resisted when it was his turn to get his feet washed. You know why? Let me give us some context. I got the following from an online source.

“Walking in sandals on the filthy roads of Palestine in the first century made it imperative that feet be washed before a communal meal, especially since people reclined at a low table and feet were very much in evidence. When Jesus rose from the table and began to wash the feet of the disciples, He was doing the work of the lowliest of servants.”

Now we can correctly interpret the symbolic meaning of the washing the feet. Peter was horrified by the condescension of the Christ but Jesus insisted because he knew this message was crucial and had to be communicated. When he was done he told his disciples, “I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you”. This, my dear friends, is how Christ loved the church; by humility, submission and servitude. This was a man who lacked an iota of ego unlike us ten kobo men of this generation. Any ideology that encourages a person to rule another or demand submission from another is totally alien to the teachings of Christ. And let me finally spoil it for you, according to the teaching of Christ, if anyone slaps you, turn the other cheek. That includes your wife. Oh my! This is so precious. Next time, when you want to use the bible to sell your misogynist wares, think twice.

Fellow men, make una no vex oh! Please forgive my sarcastic, unforgiving tone. It was deliberately employed because it takes a rough shove to rouse a person from deep slumber. I am just sick and tired of the endless bickering between the sexes regarding superiority. The man is not of more value than the woman, neither is the woman of more value than the man. They are two sides of the same coin and it is beautiful as it is. The question of superiority would never arise in perfect love. When love reigns supreme, man and woman would be competing to see who would be more submissive. The idea of submission arises when there is a party that desires to be lord, encumbered by an oversized ego. People only struggle for superiority because they are incomplete and insecure. She that is down fears no fall.

To be honest, I have not come to ask husbands to submit to their wives or to encourage wives not to submit to their husbands. Sorry if I had you fooled. My true perspective is this: let us kill this argument of who should submit to whom. The root of this feud is pride, egotism and insecurity. When love is perfect, the question of submission will never arise. If anything, man and woman will submit to each other naturally, without request, without coercion, without compulsion and in love.

Now that you have finished reading, there is only one thing left to do. SHARE THIS ARTICLE.

Written by Manny

About shakespeareanwalter

Walt Shakes(@Walt_Shakes) is an award-winning Nigerian writer, poet and veteran blogger. He is a lover of the written word. the faint whiff of nature, the flashing vista of movies, the warmth of companionship and the happy sound of laughter.

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  1. Manny, they coming for you Bro!! 😉 😉

  2. My standing ovation to you Manny.

    Very articulate.

    A very long read, but worth every tiny teeny moment spent on each letter.

    I am so happy, I read this. Thus, I conclude that Abikoye, you are not weird.

    Have a great day everyone.

  3. You just spoke my mind. I woke up with these thoughts on the subject of submission and how myopic people blinded by religion who won’t sit down to study the Bible shout submission submission everywhere.

    Thanks Manny. You made my morning!
    *hits share button*

  4. Total delight.. Bravo

  5. All correct, sir! 😀

  6. “When love love is perfect, the question of submission will never arise.”
    That sums it all.

  7. When loveis perfect the issue of submission will not arise.man and woman will submit to each other naturally without coercion , request or compulsion and in love. You see, this sentence actually caps it all for me, you really nailed it .

  8. Oh manny manny manny!!oya take this one *kisses*

  9. This is a process…a long process and not an event. Even you Manny has in you plenty to unlearn due to the many indoctrination we grew up with. In tandem with changing trends and modern thinking, change is desired, necessary even but IT IS A PROCESS.
    And then, no everyone is cut out for all these. We are all wired with different materials. Loving the right way in all forms of relationship is quite tasking. We all gotta learn it.

  10. I equally think women shld change from ‘she’ and ‘her’ to ‘he’ and ‘him’. I mean, there is still gender inequality in that.

  11. We’ll get the message, eventually

  12. Manny, you are awesome! This is what I have been preaching for years but some guys i know just get stucked on that part of the scripture that says “Wives, submit to yourselves to your husband”. You’ve said it all in this one line…when love is perfect, the question of submission will never arise…

  13. This has got to be one of the most beautiful thing I’ve ever read. Well done Manny, you always know how to sarcastically speak the truth.

  14. Well done for the time spent in thinking and putting up this piece, but I see it as a message of destruction capable of putting more family in a state of disharmony
    As an unbiased judge watching from a distance, it is obvious that you did not understand whatever you where thinking that your parents and the churches/religion as you said spent a long time trying to inculcate in you. Those are the basic principles upon which any successful marriage/family is built. Those teachings were in two folds ; 1. Husbands love your wives, 2. Wives be submissive to your husbands. If you understood these two lines, then all you have written must have been written to cause confusion.
    I wish to remind you that a family is an institution, and institutions have heads. That is to say that a family must have a head. I believe that the family from where you came has/had a head who I believe is/was your father. Your father as the head of the family was not meant to oppress your mother but to love and protect her and provide for the family. Like every other institution, the decision making in the family is seen to be made by the head/ owner of the family irrespective of whether it was suggested by the wife or not. This is because if it turns out good/bad, it is the head of the family thst will bear the weight of it.
    The word submission only tells to what extent a wife ought to respect her husband. According to your writeup, an imbecile husband should not be respected, the woman should disregard him and disrespect him, however, I am sure you will still support this woman when she starts crying that her husband is not providing food for the family, you will not remember that he is an imbecile and should not be bothered.
    You also forgot that marriage is never by force, if she saw an imbecile and decided to marry him, she should learn to respect him. I wonder why you are not advocating for women to start approaching men, ask for their hands in marriage and pay the dowry since in you opinion, the society is unfair because this is the real injustice. I am even more suprised that you forgot tell women to take up the duty of being the bread-winners of their homes and never to complain when their husbands fail to provide afterall they are equal and should have equal responsibilities.
    I do not support any man who will treat his wife unfairly, but I must make it aboundantly clear that writeups such as yours should not be replicated in its form because it is capable of destroying homes especially when read by those who do not understand what marriage means.

    • pls go and pick stones or beans.

    • Chinedu… pls read the post again, look honestly at our society and then remind me again why you think the head of the home- the Man is the one that bears the weight of bad decisions in the home not the wife?

    • Well said…

    • Do not be hasty to comment in the contrary, and do not make assumptions that does who read this are dumb and do not know how to analyse things they read. Thank you.

    • I knew people like you would be here. The message in this article is love, love as God intended it. Service, love those are two things important in marriage and any relationship. How did you not see that??? You have to be really myopic if all you picked from this is how it will put family in a state of disharmony, like the family isn’t in that state already .Jesus whom the writer referred to as an example of love and life of service is the HEAD of the church,he did not and still does not lord it over anyone. Please have several seats Mr man.

  15. Manny I don’t know you but I love you!! Long but precise. You nailed it. *thumbsup* meanwhile the title has caused commotion on platforms I posted it oo. They are coming for you Hahahaha

  16. So beautifully written. I was going to write an article like this but the fact that women are more destructive these days kind of is still leaving me speechless and so I left it for another day when I could find the strength. This is beautiful,educative,straight to the point. I hope the masses read this and learn from it.

  17. Perfect! You said it all,Manny.
    You said it….

  18. Apparently, the writter was brought up in a distorted home and thinks so of everyother person… Cos every single line paints the wrong picture of what truly the ideal husband was… Yes, it was far from what I hv come to understand after years of close observation of my role model (my father). He was totally different from every description of a husband u made in this article. It wud hv made sense to me if u did not generalize on ur concept of the “husband or man of the house”. So, when next u pple try to draw up stories from ur upbringing, do not generalize, cos some of us were brought up in homes were there was so much love.

    • Lexi, I sincerely doubt that you read and understood this article dear…the message was clear and simple for all to see. However I am glad that the writer decided to air his opinions knowing fully well that there would be reactions/responses such as yours.

      kudos Manny. A beautifully penned piece.

  19. I’m not alone, I guess.

  20. Zi, in all honesty tell me who bears the responsibility of providing for the family including yours. Is it your father or your mother? If you are a man and you are married, is it your wife that puts the food on the table while you take care of the domestic activities? If you are a lady and married, are you the one that does the hardwork to provide the family with food while your husband carry out domestic responsibilities. When there is a problem in the family, whose responsibility is it to sort it out.

  21. Long but lovely read. I was a bit confused about where the writer was headed at first but as I read on it got clearer.
    What’s most amazing is that this piece was written by a man… Wow!!

  22. I don’t normally comment on blogs but I just had to. This is one of the most intelligent , honest post that I have ever come across. We are getting somewhere.

  23. Hmm…
    I’m just happy this came from a man.

  24. Una doh! Walter!!! abeg where are my boys and housewives eh?!
    *readies the bullets

  25. Beautifully captured. Kudos!

  26. My sentiments exactly Manny. Chinedu, Lexi take your time and read the whole thing again he didn’t imply women are equal to men. In most cases issues arise as a result of our own misinterpretations.

  27. the last time I tried that equality and submissive thing with a girl, she tried aiming for control and superiority…

    I quickly revert.

    not worth it.

  28. Indeed, much ado about the article. Only one point I wish to make. The battle of the sexes in borne out of everything other than genuine love. Love is perfect. Imperfection is the root cause of all this inequality and superiority ‘palava’. And so sad, the perfect example Manny used is more of an exception: Jesus was a perfect man. Most husbands aren’t. Basic truth–basic challenge. Just like husbands should strive to continue to love their wives, wives should also strive to play their part: submit to their husbands.

    Let me quickly make my point. I think despite the fine and logical argument made by Manny, there is a truth that must be recognized. No two human can be equal in life! And these applies to men and women. Hence a system of hierarchy must be established for things to go smoothly and orderly. God serves humans. Jesus serves humans. But it doesn’t make us equal or superior to him. The choice of words used by Apostle Paul and the clear statement of the position–God is head of Christ, Christ is the head of the church and the head of man, and man is the head of the woman–as expressed in the scriptures is what should be. The ideal, in an environment of love. Saying that “Husbands should submit to their wives”, as your title shows, is a clear negation of that scripture. So if I reacted the way you rightly guessed, it’s because you are doing the obvious: negating a scriptural expression. God knew what he was saying when he specifically inspired Paul to use LOVE for the man and SUBMIT for the woman.

    Truth be told, even if things were to happen the other way round, it won’t make for any justice. Women, as imperfect humans, will definitely abuse the power too. And they all shall be begging God to just end it all by himself. Corruption is a wo/man predicament! And let many of those who like the article not forget that most men now find it hard to show genuine love because most women now find it hard to genuinely submit, and vice-versa. We are in the mess together. And we must always remember that Eve brought both women and, technically, men in the first place to this predicament.

    Nice writ Manny. But let’s resolve this outta the scripture. If we must play by the rule of scripture, it has clearly stated it’s position: Husbands, continue to love your wives as Christ loves the church. Wives, submit to your husbands. Implying that, like Jesus is the head of the man, the man is ideally the head of the woman. And other things being equal, both should be able to fulfil their part in the grand scheme of God.

    The errors of man should not be a justification to truncate an ideal system. It is not the scripture that is the problem, it is the failure of both men and women to uphold it.

    • Nice long post. But you simply omitted to consider the section of the article where I took pains to explain that according to the teaching of Christ, the submission is inherent in love. Christ loved the church and not only submitted, also died for the church.

      Rightly interpreted, Love therefore = submission plus extra.
      This simply means the man in addition to submission, have extra duties. This also means that the submission aspect goes both ways which is in keeping with the scripture that says “submit to one another”.
      People somehow thing that to say the head should submit somehow takes headship from him. We have obviously failed to learn the biggest lesson of the birth, life and death of the Christ. Submission unto death didn’t take NOTHING from his GODHOOD.

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