...how can he do that, does he not know that I am a married woman?
I heard these words and allowed them segue in my head for a bit, willing myself to ignore them. I lost. Turning to my colleague, I asked her what the offence was. I had only heard the last few words but I was willing to wager that her indignation stemmed from something trivial.
‘What did he do?”
“He took a sip of my drink from my mug”
You could have knocked me down with a feather. Another battle to ignore this played out in my head. Again, I lost. Stop! I begged myself, but my mouth spoke the words of their own accord.
“So are you saying that as a single girl, it would be less insulting, unhygienic to have a guy sip from my cup?”
She had no answer.
I hear this all the time. “Don’t you know that I am married?’’
I don’t know if you’ve heard, but apparently, there’s a respect that is to come automatically with being married. Once the ring is put on a chic's finger, there is a supposed to be some sign/stamp put on her that says "Hey! treat me with respect because I'm married". Maybe a halo around the head.
Am I less respectable because I am single?
To be truthful, our society is structured in such a way that a married woman is treated with more respect than a single one. A temper trauma by a married woman is explained away as “exertions of having to keep a home” whilst that of a single woman is sneered at and it is usually declared that the woman is frustrated because she is not married or she does not have a man.
Not too long ago, a friend of mine came to me with a bemused expression on her face. Apparently, she had witnessed a heated verbal war of words between two girls and when it appeared that no-one was winning, the married one said “ How dare you talk to me like that, don’t you know that I am married.” And that to Mrs Married was the ultimate rub-your-nose-in-the-dirt, I-have-won-this-battle move.Sheew. That means that women are not exempt from this give-me-respect move.
Recently, another colleague told me of an altercation that was supposed to have occured between her and some other female colleagues in another unit. I only half listened until she said " ...if they look for my trouble, I will give it back to them. After all, they are married and I am married. Yes, ke!"
My reaction to this state of affairs?
"Sorry, I did not see the halo around your head" I will treat everyone the same way.