Don’t Tell Me How To Dress

By Vivienne Amijee

Being an African girl is a challenge from the onset of life’s journey. We are born into a society that requires us to prove our worth from time to time. Education, if it comes your way, has to be combined with hard work just to beat the boy child, you have to be careful not to get pregnant before completion of formal schooling, you have to balance school work and house work. At times, all these really feel like a huge burden.

I am an African girl, note, I am a girl, I need to dress in attires that complement my body, those that make me feel good, pretty and comfortable. Does society allow me to be who I really want to be? If I choose mini skirts and dresses as my preferred mode of dressing, why then should others condemn me, why should I be warned against passing through certain aisles and streets for the fear of being stripped or raped. Why can’t I pass comfortably in front of a group of men, without them shouting obscenities at me.

Modesty, decency and being conservative is what most choose to call it. I think those are ambiguous words and everyone curves their own definition. If I am going to the office I shall choose an outfit that is presentable, but over the weekend, society should cut us some slack and let us be.

Say I dress in long skirts and dresses here in Africa, move to the USA when I am about forty and have the liberty to wear short things, that is what we call, midlife crisis. Such a person cannot be blamed, they are a victim of circumstance. But for how long?, it seems this is a man’s world where we are just supposed to accept and move on.

I am not advocating for nudity, but freedom. Our fore fathers fought for the independence of all, not a few selected males. We should be left to be us and excel.

About Teakisi 305 Articles
Teakisi (formerly ElleAfrique) is an English and French blogzine dedicated to challenging and changing the perceptions of African girls and women in the world today.

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