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African housewife: Coping with body & intimate issues

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Last week, I was away on a grassroot  women workshop somewhere in the country to educate mostly house wives on being good wives, mothers and also contributing to the society with their talents and skills.  It was sure an eye opener and has widened my knowledge on what lots of our housewives go through in their various communities and culture.  Usually when I speak in conferences, seminars and workshops or any forum, I try as much as possible to make my speech very interractive and not some kind of a lecture where I do all talking and after we go for coffee and snacks break and participants will go home.  My sitting arrangement will be made in a way that the participants will feel free , relaxed and not some kind of –‘’who is who’’ and all those “I am the upper class’’ stuff. This has enabled me to extract the raw truth and expressions from participants and I enjoy it so much.

During this particular forum, i met women who came with their new born babies, women who have not even read or heard about me so they were at their ‘original best’...they bare and said it all. No-holds barred!!


The theme of the forum was all about exploring their hidden skills, talents and aspirations as they do their wifey roles competently and these women turned it into  an all round women affair.  Most of them when asked what they would love to be self employed to help their husbands financially, and also make their husbands happy. They focused mostly on looking attractive for their husbands and performing their wife duties intimately very well. One of them now threw the floor open for the rest of the shy ones who could not be specific on their body image grooming search on what to do  to satisfy their husbands sexually. You get my drift folks....these women were really planned to ‘’tear’’ Jacqui into different parts and luckly for them, Iwas ready...fully prepared for them as well and we all had so much fun. I was expecting to meet some quiet and withdrawn set of women but they were nothing of such but rather turned out to be very  intelligent and coyly sazzy. If their husbands were there, they would have been opening their mouths wide without the strenght to utter any words due to the way the women carefully and articulately addressed their needs and desires.  Next time I have such forums, the husbands must be there so they also understand that housewives have special needs. Did I hear you say, then the women will not speak out and bare their minds? That is a good shot too but I have my ways of getting them to open up, and I love the smile, brightness and confidence I notice on such women  each time they do. It is like..they feel so light, unburdened and most of all ..happy!!  Happiness, joy, fullfilment ..these are  what Jacqui is after!!

Now, I keep telling people especially husbands that being a housewife is a job of its own, the only difference from the corporate job is that the woman does her house jobs in her own terms and pace without being bossed by some kind of beaureaucracy. Infact, most times, the corporate women have more time of their own than the house wives.

  Tell me why a housewive should decide to neglect her entire body grooming after giving birth to one child thinking that the husband will feel she is seeking intimate compliments from other men? Does being married and having kids mean that you must now grow fatter and fatter, looking shapeless, growing older than your age, with your skin unkept and you wearing all kinds of dowdy clothings? . The same man you claim that frowns at you pampering your body, keeping good body hygiene, keeping fit will still be the same person that will get appalled by your new dowdy appearance and that is, when he will start gunning for fresh and attractive women to satisfy his sexual needs. Listen...listen ....the African man will not be qucik to tell you that you are no more attracted to him and also help you out. He will notice your ugly transformation and keep quiet.  One man out of ten men will be honest with you on this and also help...meaning that is not in our culture. That does not mean he hates you or stop loving you but he prefer to look outside for something new rather than fix what he already have. 

This total neglect of housewives bodyimage has actually destroyed many homes. By the time, I finished with these women, I saw some of them scrutinizing themselves right there in the meeting arena(as if they were asking did I turn out this baddddd?) One actually said that each time her husband comes home and she served him dinner, the man will hardly eat no matter how good the food looks. Then when she finally joins him to sleep, the man will be snoring already and she dare not wake him up for any thing like love making or even cuddling.  I asked her, -what do you wear most times when your husband comes back home? She was quick to say- ofcourse usual house wrapper!! Grrrrrr!! (to be continued next time)


Jacqui IWU is a BodyImage. Life & Career  Coach

A Stress Management Expert &Conference Speaker

A media Relations Personnel




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