Granny Story: A woman's virtue is never for salePublished Oct 24, 2011
Many people say that everyone has a price. However, I find that statement to be disconcerting because it insinuates that people can be bought. It extinguishes the hope that individuals are integrable and cannot be discounted by anyone or circumstances.
My Granny Gheeta and I often discussed the matter of women selling themselves short. Sometimes the women in question are not even aware that they are not living up to their true potential. They sort of glide into a situation that is not edifying to their intellect and the person they wish to become.
As a young girl growing up, my Granny Gheets often prompted me to choose well when it came to a mate. She often stressed that a young girl could fall in love easily with a rich man as she would a poor man. Granny felt it was necessary for a young woman to pick a sensible life partner and a good provider. Although, she always urged us to be good scholars, she knew that a woman is only held in high regard in society by the partner she chooses. She emphasized, it rarely mattered that a woman is accomplished in her own right.
When I approached adulthood, Granny and I had an abridged talk about the birds and the bees, however her version was primarily concentrated on choosing a good husband.
Granny would say, " You are at the age where many guys are going to want to squire you about town, however, just remember that a fire fizzles as quickly as it starts."
I would say to her, "Granny what do you mean by that?"
She would reply matter-of-factly, "Well my dear, if a relationship starts fast it usually ends fast. You also have to pick and choose the places where you meet fellas. Don't think for one second that you will meet anyone of substance on a dance floor. In the glare of the bright lights and the whiff of alcohol, both men and women will say anything just to pass the time."
I listened intently because bits and pieces of what Granny was saying seemed so appropriate to the times we were living in. I had friends who were frequenting clubs to meet Mrs. Right and Mr. Right, however, they seemed to be harboring more heartache than good times.
Granny also spoke to me about "Greeks bearing Gifts".....She would say, "Oh, and always be wary of men bearing gifts ,especially if they have not declared their intentions or defined your relationship. If you are not serious about them, DO NOT accept presents from them. They will think you are an easy step over, and it will lead to them taking certain liberties with you."
It was funny that Granny chose certain topics to discuss, because it always seemed appropriate for the time in my life. As it happened, there was a love interest that was always bringing me presents, and it made me uncomfortable because I did not know him very well, and I thought he was going much too fast with the relationship. This was a perfect example to use what Granny had taught me. I told him I could not accept his gifts because I really was not interested. However, the more I rejected him, the more he kept pursuing with more expensive presents. With each present he brought, I kept telling him no.
I told Granny Gheeta about the situation and she said, "That boy is setting you up for something. Any man who comes on too smoothe has plenty of tricks up his sleeves, if you accept his presents he will think that you can be bought, just tell him no thank you."
Granny urged, that a woman should only accept gifts from someone that she is truly interested in and that one should define the terms of the gift. She felt it was important to clarify if strings are attached or not. Men and women alike, will use gifts and money to buy love, but it never lasts, and it only sets up a relationship for failure because the giver of the gifts expects more of everything and sometimes we are not prepared to deliver.
As I grew older, I realized that Granny was right about her assessment of relationships. Although it is nice to receive presents from paramours, there is always a feeling of discomfort that looms, because if you accept a gift naively you never really know what ill conceived notions the other person might be harboring.
Granny always promoted self reliance and independence. When I was going on dates she often reminded me, "Make sure you carry your "Fresh" money that way, if he carries on with anything foolish, just kindly excuse yourself and leave."
I cannot count how many horror stories I have heard from friends who went out on dinner dates and their date expected them to be compliant with their desires because they bought them a drink or dinner. Even when your wishes and desires are outlined, men never get the hint. They usually become more persistent declaring that there is no symbolism behind the gifts. However, once their affections are spurned, they have no problem painting a ghastly picture of you.
Granny constantly reminded me, "In this world there are young women who will revel in the fact that they are able to use their feminine wiles to coerce a suitor into buying their affections. However, the days of pampering and gifts are short lived because the women soon become aware that there are "NO FREE LUNCHES" in life. The people who give something for nothing are a rare breed and don't come along everyday. These girls soon find out their admirers were getting far more out of the relationship than they could ever imagine."
I thought about what Granny had said, and it made a whole lot of sense to me. As I reflected on folks I had known over the years and thought of their relationships, I realized, that most were superficial, and contained feelings that were meaningless.
Therefore, as per Granny Gheeta's teachings, I always found it best to declare, that although I find gift giving charming, thoughtful and flattering, there can never be any hidden agendas associated with their gestures.
Granny's conversations lingered in my mind, "When you go out with the opposite sex, they are getting a rare gift. A gift of your company, so don't let any man put a price tag on you or throw around his money to dazzle you. Men who feel they can buy women will never put out the time and energy to capture the woman's heart, because the trinkets will do the work for them. There are plenty of women who will go for that sort of treatment, but, stand your ground. The most important virtues a man or woman should seek from relationships are Integrity, Honour, Respect and genuine kindness and sincerity. If your love interests possess these traits, love will come eventually. No one wants to be just another man or woman who can be bought or sold to the highest bidder."
Granny's words resonated with truth and reason. A man will string along a girl by impressing her with all sorts of distractions. Meanwhile, a healthy relationship never gets developed because he gets bored with his game and moves along to greener pastures. While you were busy nursing your rewards and trinkets, he was looking out for a better bargain. A woman of high standards and morals. Some individuals use material objects to compensate for personality deficits. They would much rather give a present instead of being a better person by displaying true affection, love, admiration, compassion and appreciation.
Eventhough Granny wanted her female grand children to have solid futures with mates that were enterprising and successful, she dinned into our minds that we should never get overtaken by a man's wealth or status in life. We may think that we don't have much to offer, but our virtues are priceless. More valuable than rubies or pearls.
A man always gets a prize when he acquires a virtuous woman possessing self esteem and confidence because he knows that no matter what happens in life she will never discredit herself or the relationship. He never has to look over his shoulders thinking that if another man with a bigger wallet comes along that she will be lured away.
Granny Gheeta insisted on many occasions, "A kind word, deed or gesture lasts in one's portfolio of lifetime memories, while gifts get broken, misplaced or fade away."
People always remember the way you made them feel. If there were good memories, they will always cherish the person, if there were horrible memories,they will feel relieved when that person is out of their lives.
The male population usually misconstrues when a woman declares that she wants a person of substance and means. They intrepret her remarks to define her as a gold-digger. They rarely associate her pattern of thinking with upbringing and family status. The truth is, women do their selves a disservice when they dig for gold, because the stakes are higher and there are lots of risks in the big leagues.
Even wives know, that when their husbands are endowing them with expensive treasures, sometimes they are meaningless acts or it could be consolation prizes for recent or past indiscretions.
Granny Gheeta once told me, "If you marry a man with plenty zeros behind his name, you will have to earn every penny that is given to you. It is never an easy coup."
Therefore, as life progressed and maturity evolved, I have found it is always best to use discernment in matters of the heart.
Granny Gheet's words have never been more accurate, "The heart can be misleading, and all that glitters is not gold. Things are never the way they appear, so your best tools are your intellect and good old fashioned intuition."