Why I don’t have a househelp…and why you shouldn’t

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I hate sterotypes, strongly, maybe because I am a victim myself. There is a sport I cannot play, the sport of generalising, of using a one-size-fits-all approach to matters.

I have been seriously referred to as Mammywater, kudos to my Mtn complexion, also all lightskinned females bleach, all pretty females are harlots, add your own. It hurts, stop eeet!

So you must have heard, all househelps are wicked, possessed, lazy, dirty, will snatch your husband, *insert yours here*.

Now, lets kill this sterotype –  the ‘I have a househelp sterotype’, I dont, you shouldn’t.  Let us replace it with the ‘I have a domestic staff’ one. See? Easy, now we both do not have househelps anymore.

I happen to make up my mind on the kind of person you are, based on the way you treat a domestic staff and (shoot me) nomenclature is a big deal to me. So here is one top reason you should not have a househelp;

1. Because the young girl living with you is a human being and has a name, and it is not ‘househelp’. If any amibo insists on knowing the role anyone plays in your house, kindly refer to her as your domestic staff. Sounds nicer.

and here are a bit of popular misbehaviours some madams should repent of; (using an hypothetic relationship between a mother of the house and a young domestic staff, herein after referred to as DS)

2. Your DS is not your child’s mother. Do not hand over a 100% to her and be answering mommy for mouth.

3. Your DS is not your husband’s wife. Do not leave her to run all the wifely errands then wake up tomorrow and be looking for who slept with your husband.  When last did you make your man a meal? You really cannot be that busy darling.

3. Your DS is not a robot. ‘Ngozi! Wash the plates’ ‘Ngozi! Wash those clothes’ ‘Ngozi! Run to the market’ all under two minutes. Ngozi na person o

4. Your DS is not a punching bag. Please stop beating other people’s children unneccessarily. Half of the people guilty would bring down the roof of a school if their child were to be tapped small with toy cane.

5. Your DS dont have to look like a somalian refugee, go shopping for her, it wont kill you! You look like crap when your kids come out looking nice and their minder looks like spoilt egusi.

6. Your DS needs to be constantly learning, whether formal or informal, and if they are below 16, please ensure that they are getting secondary school education.

7. Your DS wont die from eating freshly served food, quit the leftover food behaviour. Never starve her as punishment

8. Your DS deserves some dignity, do not put her down in front of your guests or children. Do not allow anyone talk rudely to her. Do not allow anyone make her run errands in their own houses.

9. Your DS is not allergic to icecreams, cakes and the likes you get for your kids too. Go ahead, buy for her. When you visit places, insist on refreshment for her if anyone wants to sideline her.

10. Do not talk about her. Chances are that people want to tell you how and how to search for signs of witchcraft, husband snatching, rudeness, etc. Feed on positivity.

I believe in an equal opportunity world, I believe that all things being equal, people who are treated well respond with equal amounts of goodness. 

Do not tell me ‘Achalugo, you cant understand, you have not seen the bad ones’

Oh baby, I have.

I have seen the bad ones, but most importantly, I declare most solemnly today,  that I have seen the good ones being illtreated.

End domestic staff violence today.

Achalugo.

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19 thoughts on “Why I don’t have a househelp…and why you shouldn’t

  1. You too much Jor. God bless you dear. If we promote the dignity of the human person even in upholding the rights of the seemingly helpless, we are building the edifice of trust that will assure harmony among different classes of people in the future. This is not immediately apparent. But it is true.

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  2. Amazing, amazing post! People laugh at me when I say “My Domestic Assistant” because they think I’m trying to be posh. But it’s not about that. I put her at the level that matches the behaviour I want to reinforce because that’s what it should be. When my DA misbehaved and left, people blamed me saying I was petting her, putting her in her own room ensuite, with a big bed and air conditioning; why won’t she be rude and saucy?

    However, hubby and I discussed and agreed that we won’t change who we are because of some bad eggs. The right one will come, we are searching patiently.

    Young girls who run errands and handle cleaning in offices are called Office Assistants. Executives at the office have Personal Assistants/Executive Assistants. So why can’t I as a working mum have my own DA?

    Well done, this is a post that should be shared far and wide. I’ve shared on Twitter and I’m going to put it on FB right now, and share on BBM as well.

    Please give me permission to reblog it on my own blog. Cheers!

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    1. By all means do darling.

      I get the same comments sometimes and rightfully, we will not change because of a few bad eggs. People take young girls and keep at home, no formal education, no skill acquisition plan, downright inhumane. They see the way you treat yours and warn you “to stop being good”.

      I really need to have a conference on this sef 😅

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  3. Totally agree. Especially on the point of judging people by how they treat their staff is treated. It also seems like the richer the household the worse the staff is treated. Considering female domestic staff can operate like revolving doors I understand not rushing to enroll them in school or buy a new wardrobe. That however doesn’t mean you engage in the other behaviours you have listed. Good job

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  4. My respect for you keeps growing…the way people treat their DS is nauseating. Some even sew uniforms for them so as long as they live in their houses, they will be wearing those with apron and cap. And every Fridays and Sundays mosques and churches will be filled with all roads leading to all religious camps? God help us

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    1. Uniforms are not necessarily inhumane. Lots of people in advanced countries who work as cleaners for commercial companies have to wear uniforms while working in peoples homes. Hotel staff cleaners wear uniforms. Security guards wear uniforms. Drivers wear uniforms. Nurses, Doctors, Law students, all have to wear uniforms.

      I don’t think anything is wrong with the preference that a DS wear a uniform while on duty i.e during working hours. As long as this is stated clearly as terms of the employment prior to engagement and the individual has the right to choose or refuse such terms if inconvenient.

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  5. I wil not change my behavior bcos of some bad eggs. Rather I trust God to vindicate me.
    @Joy, I’ve solved d mystery of why they leave despite air conditioning and big beds. Boys outside be calling n pinging them. The one I have confesed that a guy asked her to quit n move in wt him. What does he do? O na-aru ebe a na e he okuko! Lol.
    By d time we got her a private tutor to coach her for WAEC n Xmas goodies, she posted d guy.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Every human being deserves the best things in life and it is a privilege if we’re in a position to give that “best things in life” treatment to another human; and the domestic staff is no exception. And no one knows tomorrow: reminds me of Barbara on Shark Tank reality show who used to scrub floors and so on in restaurants then, but today is a multimillionaire who has built a billion dollar business in real estate. Your domestic staff could be the next Barbara; and what an achievement if her steps to becoming Barbara started from your nice treatment to her. Great article.

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