We all deserve a chance – #BreaktheBias

This article was written by Atinuke Adamolekun

Growing up, my dad made sure I could do every kind of chore, including those chores tagged by society as “male chores”. I never felt limited or incapable of doing anything I wanted; I could connect wires, change lightbulbs, replace fuses and sockets, unscrew appliances and even fix faulty electrical appliances provided I had all the necessary parts and tools. 

Now the eye-opener; I was visiting a friend who had not had power supply for days but had a generator. The weather that day was really hot and I needed to charge my mobile phone so I requested that the generator be turned on. To my surprise, she told me the generator was faulty  – a fuse was not properly connected and that even if it were not faulty, she did not know how to power on the generator.

I was shocked. How can you not know how to turn on a generator you use personally?

I immediately went to where the generator was kept and after checking to know the problem, I realized all I needed to do was tighten the screw connecting some wires. She was amazed at how I could fix and turn on a generator as a woman.

More often than not, we limit our abilities to gender-typed roles and associate some activities with a particular gender. In our society, when we hear of a CEO or a Pilot, we automatically assume it is a man and when we hear of nurses or caregivers, we assume it has to be a woman. Some people even become visibly uncomfortable when certain services are rendered by women, a popular example being female drivers.

While I understand that certain activities or roles are better suited to a particular gender due to certain features, this shouldn’t be an absolute bar for the counterpart gender.

We all deserve the chance to be what we want, and this can only be achieved if there is a shift in people’s mindsets about gender roles and abilities. Our mindset is the mirror through which we view the world; it shapes our understanding of situations and shifts our view of the environment to a more inclusive, diverse and equitable one. 

Until we respect and see things from an angle of equality, breaking the bias would remain a myth.


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