“The idea that sex is something a woman gives a man, and she loses something when she does that, which again for me is nonsense. I want us to raise girls differently where boys and girls start to see sexuality as something that they own, rather than something that a boy takes from a girl.”
— Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Monday, January 4, 2010
Jamaican Men Money and Relationships
Yesterday I sat with my girlfriends at lunch and listen as they mooned over the latest drama that developed in their relationships. I stood up and asked my girlfriends if they thought true love existed anymore. I knew that this topic would generate a plethora of idea. My conjectures were right as my girlfriends became frenzy with opinions. Their face etched with disdain and disgust as they spouted the notable irritable qualities and numerous character flaws that Jamaican men evince. Every commented ended with the fact that Jamaican men were irresponsible fathers, lousy companions and gaudy creatures. My girlfriends conceded that Jamaican men were not interested in family and relationship. My friends said that love was lost and that men only wanted to have sex. My friends said that “is why we no fraid fi nyam dem out”
Jamaican men have come a far way with regards to familial precepts and values. My grandmother told me that men during her time, men were more involved in the upbringing of children than today. My grandmother stated that irreverence for Jamaican men aroused when males lost their powers in the home by refusing to seek knowledge and choosing the prison over the university.
Ignorance is partially responsible for the frustrations and heartaches that are plaguing relationships with Jamaican men. Seventy percent of Jamaican men are semiliterate or illiterate. Females far outnumber their male counterparts in the universities and in corporate Jamaica. Successful Women are finding it increasingly frustrating to find a partner, who is on her financial and intellectual level. The few perceivably accomplished men are very unavailable when it comes to any form of meaningful relationships. Financially stable men are not quick to form a relationship with one woman since there are many women in the streets with similar good qualities and characteristics. Therefore there are many women around for the picking, why settle for one when you can have five.
Additionally women are discovering that men of every stratum in Jamaica exude the same values and embrace corresponding relational philosophies. Women realized that men were not interested in the formation of solid relational unions but more of a serial monogamy and polyandric relationships. Men visit women and have sexual relations with her in exchange for money. The woman and man are allowed to maintain their single status.
Many women have found this form of relationship satisfying as her economical needs are being satisfied and the relational strings are not attached, offering her freedom to copulate with as many men as possible. This is what I refer to as sanitized prostitution. This lifestyle has lead to a rise in promiscuity among Jamaican young women as they attempt to have sex with as many men as possible to cover the bills.
Men embraced this notion and have begun to regard every woman in the same light. Jamaican men believe that every woman that pursues a relationship with him wants some form of financial return for it. Jamaican women asserted that if you exude love for the man, he will not support you financially but if you pretend to be indifferent you will coerce financial support from him. The idea is that men do not respond to expressions of genuine love because most women do not want affection, they only want money. Women who sincerely want a meaningful relationship find it difficult to convince a man of sincerity. The man will naturally assume that she is pretending, and when she gets into his system, she will unveil her mercenary character. Many women have maintained the stance that most Jamaican men are only interested in sex. Women contended that men do not want affection and resort to using men as financial institution whose only purpose is to improve their economical standings.
I sat down and presented the same questions to an accomplished, financially stabled Mr. Callen. Mr Callen claimed that men have become protective of their hearts because women have been corrupted by other women and a good woman is hard to find. Mr. Callen states that “Women are some of the most, manipulative, selfish, and dangerous people I know”. Mr. Callen attributes women’s power over men due to the fact that women weaken men “it’s not just Jamaica...all over the world....men are stupid when it comes to women”. Mr Callen went on to state that the idea of being married or feeling wholesome with another person is losing its credence. “The danger is when people believe that they need someone to complete them...make them whole”. Another male asserted that Jamaican men need to be cognizant of their needs and wants instead of sexual intemperance. Mr Callen claimed that” very few are enlightened as I am”.
Some social scientists claim that the harsh economical condition of the Jamaican society has caused a shift in relational values. Women are seeking men who will be able to support their children; men are taking advantage of the plenitude of available accomplished women by being promiscuous and unattached. Anthropologically, when resources are scarce, in this case women, the most desirable traits that are portrayed by a woman will win her a partner with equivalent characteristics. There are many women in Jamaica with desirable characteristics, men can choose, play, mislead and refused because there are many more fishes in the sea. Women have to be fighting other women for men. The competitions between females have become intense because so-called good men are few in numbers.
Others have asserted that Jamaican men are anthropogically promiscuous and polygamic based on the ethos that was taught to them via their ancestral African lineage. Jamaican men are culturally inclined to have more than one woman in their life. The capacity to have a myriad of women and to be able to take care of them connotes that a man is financial stable, communally revered by his peers and emulated by younger males. Jamaican men are simply acting out an ancestral trait that is found among Africans and men of African descent.
Jamaican men claim women are only interested in procuring money and not in any form of meaningful, committed profound relationships. Men will force a relationship with a man who is not fervently interested in him by offering her money in return for relations. It is also a shared opinion that a Jamaican man will not spend his money on one woman while he has another woman draining his pocket. At the end of the day, it is not just Jamaican women that gave rise to the validation of money before copulation but equally Jamaican men. Men have contributed to the relational canon by offering women money for relationship. There are young men who are pursuing a car or any apparent artifact that communicates wealth in order to ensnare women into their bedrooms.
Conclusively, what role money plays in a relationship between a Jamaican man and woman? Recently there has been a rise in Jamaican men insisting that in order for them to establish any concrete relationship with any woman she has bring some form of money to the table. There are some men who refuse to have a relationship with a woman, who does not have a job. In other words, women are not the only ones who are saying “no dough, no looove”. There has been a rise in the demand for a woman to bring economical independence to the relationship. To be honest, I think that is an excellent idea for both partners to satisfy the financial needs of the relationship. But should this be the premier criterion for having a relationship? Should money determine what level of relational or sexual interaction, one has with a prospective partner? I would like you to answer that for me!