The Girl Child

The Girl Child

I’m a girl child and as such I’m seen as inferior
In my society, they tell my younger sibling that he’s superior because he’s a boy
They let him beat me during a fight
At eight, I’m made to do all chores while they let my thirteen-year old brother does nothing and plays all day long
They tell me I’m a girl that will later get married, they say they’re preparing me for marriage
After meals, they let him take the bigger piece of fish because he’s a boy and I’m not
My father dies, they say I can’t have a share in his property because I belong to another man and won’t carry the family name
In my village, I’m at risk for being a virgin because they need my blood for sacrifices, and at the same time, I’m treated like an outcast once I drop the virgin tag
I and my lover decide to do it and I’m put in the family way
They put the blame on me because I’m a girl and treat him like a king like I forced him
I’m afraid to walk the streets by 8pm for fear of my male counterparts that stay out till the late hours to assault girls
I get raped by a male, I get the blame and I’m called a slut
They say, ”Why did you wear this? Why did you go there?” They forget to teach the males consent
They hesitate to send me to college because my education will later end in the kitchen and I need to marry quickly so that my bride price will be used to send my brothers to school
I say I want to get a Masters Degree or a PhD, they tell me I’m too proud, they say no man will marry me
Because I’m a girl child, I’m seen as less human
I committed no crime just that I’m a girl child.

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