On Thursday's episode of Mzansi Magic's polygamy show, "Uthando Nes'thembu", polygamist Musa Mseleku sat his four wives down to let them know about his intentions to take a fifth wife, chiefly because he wants more sons.
He admitted to them that if there were more male children among the four wives, he'd have no reason to want more wives.
The fourth wife, MaNgwabe, asked pertinent questions that some of us wanted clarity over.
- "Whose responsibility is it to give me a son?"
- "I've been pregnant twice with girls, is it my fault that I conceive girls?"
What Mseleku was doing was placing a burden on his wives to bear him sons, as if he has no "say" in it. So we felt a little education was needed on such matters, because it is really tiring and frustrating to have men in 2018 utter such careless statements.
So Mseleku, here's a short biology refresher lesson for you, succintly expressed by your wife MaNgwabe, the nurse, and tweep, Meek Rhapsody. Summarily, it is your sperm that determines the sex of the child, not the woman.
Meek Rhapsody broke it down even better on Twitter:
Its a biological process. Men don't choose which sex the baby will be but their sperm has the chromosomes that determine the sex.— Shuri's fave cousin (@Meek_Rhapsody) April 5, 2018
@GoodyGGM @ceehlemaseko There are sex cells. X chrimosomes are coding for "female". Y chromosomes are coding for "male". Women have 2 'X' chromosomes and men have both Y and X sex chromosomes.— Shuri's fave cousin (@Meek_Rhapsody) April 5, 2018
During fertilization, the man will contribute a sperm cell with either the Y chromosome OR the X chromosome, and penetrates an egg (with an X chromosome). So the foetus is either going to be XY (boy) OR XX(girl).— Shuri's fave cousin (@Meek_Rhapsody) April 5, 2018
The reason why a woman can't determine the baby's sex is because women don't have eggs with Y chromosomes.— Shuri's fave cousin (@Meek_Rhapsody) April 5, 2018
Isn't it enough that women carry and bear children? Isn't it enough that they are mostly and sometimes unfairly the primary caregiver? Isn't it enough that when there are infertility issues, women generally carry the blame? And now women must be production factories until they produce a son? It's insulting, actually.
I hope people see how toxic African cultures are. Especially when it concerns gender.The girl child is seen as somehow inferior. Then we wonder why women are treated the way they are in this country. #UthandoNesthembu— Shuri's fave cousin (@Meek_Rhapsody) April 5, 2018
"Even if she gives you 100 sons, I won't like her," said Mseleku's second wife, MaYeni, in response.
And do you know what Mseleku's plan is, now that his wives have not agreed to wife number five?
"I've got a plan. I'm going to get someone and then that person is going to give me more children outside of marriage. While I'm negotiating, I'll be making babies outside," he said in a video posted on Twitter that has since been deleted.
Clearly, however, inde lendlela (long is the journey), judging by the responses from men on social media.
1. It's the "boy-for-extending-family-surname" obsession
2. Girl children's value equated to cows
yes i agree.i wnt a son 4de surname,my wife knws bt if i dnt hav 1 & its all gals its ok, either way i stay wining (mor cows 4me). I have a daughter, i love her to bits...im already enjoying reality shows...Marvel will have to take a backseat. I will do guy things with my gals— Ma2m3 (@_Ma2me) April 5, 2018
3. Man's insatiable appetite for children
But I understand Musa. For a man with 4 wives only to have 10 children, I know someone with one wife and 11 children #Uthandonesthembu— Karabo Thelele (@Karabo_Thelele) April 6, 2018
MaYeni just said "unless Musa is pushing iretrenchment pha endlini because he is obviously running a factory"?— IssA sanda (@pseudonym_0) April 5, 2018
He's complaining about production capacity kaloku! #Uthandonesthembu pic.twitter.com/zp2vjzCRMQ