A motivational speaker and author, Mrs. Chiamaka Juliet Ugoo has been visiting girls secondary schools in Anambra State to inspire them to avoid pitfalls that could ruin their lives. She said as a young girl, she made a lot of mistakes which made her first marriage to crash and she learnt about life the hard way.
Chiamaka, a mother and now happily married, said her experience inspired her to write a book titled ‘Helping Her Win’, which is currently being distributed in the various secondary schools in Anambra State to enable girls understand that pride could ruin them if they were carried away by the things of life.
She said: “Helping Her Win is an inspiring lesson and experience of a mother passionate about mentoring young girls of 15 years and above to be in firm control of their lives. What motivated me to write the book was the kind of mistakes I made when I was growing up. In this country, many girls are not very close to their mothers to be able to learn how to avoid a situation whereby boys would deceive them to do what is not good for them. There are certain things the teenagers should do to avoid falling into wrong hands while growing up.
“So what motivated me was that having made mistakes in my life, I should help other girls to learn from my mistakes.
“In fact 90% of the book contains my true life experiences and those of other girls I have interacted with in the course of mentoring them. I must say that I still regret some of the mistakes I made in life and I would not have made those mistakes if I had a book like the one I have just written.
“Because of naivety, I felt that my ex husband was not good enough for me and this caused so much rift between us and my desire was to leave him and go for another man out there because I was very beautiful, tall and fair. Without genuine reason, I left the marriage and went into another relationship only to discover that there is no perfect man out there. I have therefore learnt that as long as there is no physical abuse in any marriage, the couple can also cope by sorting out their differences. We must make our marriages work. Anyone who claims that her marriage is perfect is a liar.
“When I learnt the true situation as I grew older, I regretted my action, although I thank God that I have overcome that situation. Actually, my ex husband was not maltreating me except that I was expecting so much from the marriage without understanding how marriage works. I left my marriage to look for that perfect man that would worship and pamper me. When I remarried, I realized that my first husband was not actually that bad, but then the mistake had been made.
“I also recall that before I left my marriage, my mother would call me to advise me to stay in my marriage because there is no perfect man, but I would stubbornly tell her that my mind was made up to leave the marriage. When I came out, it dawned on me that my mother was telling me the truth.
“The major issue I had in my first marriage was my expectation that my husband should be worshipping me all the time, without realizing that marriage is give and take. When I started expecting a different attitude from my second relationship, I realized that it was the same thing that was happening in my first marriage and I had to change my attitude towards men and everything, became okay. Because I was a bit mature at the time I entered into the second marriage, I knew the fault was from me. That was when I decided to make young women know that there is no perfect marriage and then decided to write this motivational book”.
Ugoo said she has been visiting schools to talk to girls and relating her experiences, adding that the number of calls she receives from the girls after such visits shows that many girls are falling into wrong hands out of peer group influence.
She added: “There is this 15-year old girl in a secondary school who narrated how fellow girls were luring her into joining their gang to solicit and accept gifts from men so she could live big in school. In many secondary schools, because of poverty, some girls cannot maintain good hygiene like buying under wears and sanitary pads and even clothes and when they see other girls of the same poverty level living big in school, their friends try to convince them to get boyfriends, like them so they could take proper care of themselves.
“What I have discovered is that many girls in the secondary schools are bowing to the pressure of life and some of them have through such actions, undermined their academic programmes. In fact, many girls’ ambition these days is to just leave the secondary school and get married, thinking that life will be good, not knowing that it is the beginning of trouble in their lives.
Life does not work that way. The thing is that once such mistakes are made, it takes a long time to correct and by then, many of them would have missed their track”.
She explained that her present husband is her greatest motivator, noting that he encouraged her to write the book even when she almost gave up the idea. Chiamaka said that because of her experience in life, she is making the necessary effort to ensure that her daughter, Chimdiuto Ugoo is brought up in a proper way to avoid the kind of mistakes she made.