Is marriage a reward for good behavior?



Many people, certainly parents, seem to put marriage on the level of something earned, deserved, if you have been a great child, a well-behaved daughter.

Maybe because they don’t know better or probably because it is in some child-raising manual they only know about, these folks (and other agents of socialisation) drum all forms of moral advise and special behavioural patterns in the ears of female kids in a bid to make them marriable.

Having grown in a South Africa home, you surely must have heard one or both of your parents telling a sister that some certain behaviour will not be accepted “at your husband’s house.”

This and other variants of it are said almost solely with the intention of straightening such girl-child and setting her on the path to being a moral, chaste, marriable young woman. You have to be well-behaved as a young woman so that you’ll get someone to marry you, they say.

People have grown up and believed this all their lives so it needs to be mentioned that marriage is not a reward for these good behaviours being instilled in girl children from a young age.

While it is not bad in any way that our parents taught kids to be morally upright, to fear the Lord and all the other things a typical South African parent instills in their kids, the record still needs to be set straight on this issue and that’s exactly what Jola Sotubo has to say in one of her Instagram posts.

‘Jola is the author of “Love Letters to My Ex,” a book on finding love, light and shedding all layers of breakup hurt and post-breakup depression.

She writes for the gram, saying:

“I hear people ask “Why are bad girls getting married easier and quicker than decent girls? Is there any point in remaining a virgin?” My question is “Who were you being good for?”

Is the virginity merely a bargaining chip so you can show a man you’re worthy? Sorry but sensible men don’t pick virgins out of village lineups anymore. Whatever you’re doing, do because you believe it’s the best thing. Not because someone told you it will qualify you for marriage.

I’m no expert on marriage but I know that there’s no Santa Claus sharing it as a reward for being a good boy or a good girl. People marry other people regardless of flaws and misconceptions because they get along and not because anybody’s perfect so please let’s hear word.”

The more people realise this, women especially, the better it really would be for everyone.

Good behaviour is expected of every decent human, and while attraction may come as a result of it, it is certainly not something that automatically fetches anyone a husband.

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