noun Offensive. Derogatory.
a woman deemed ‘sexually promiscuous’ or ‘loose’: “everyday we see her with a different man. na Ashewo she be.”
a female sex worker: “how will he give her half a million naira to spend a night with him? which kine premium Ashewo be that?”
see also: olosho, hoe, whore, community pussy, prostitute, runs girl.
If you are a Nigerian woman reading this, you have most likely been called an Ashewo before. If you are yet to be bestowed this badge of honor that marks your transition from girlhood to womanhood, be patient. A frustrated or bitter Nigerian (man) will be with you shortly.
I can relate to your feelings of indignation when you first lost your Ashewo virginity. In all likelihood, you didn’t even do anything scandalous but there you were being called this demeaning name. You probably thought in anger and irritation, how dare this person I don’t know from anywhere just call me a sex worker.
Use this opportunity to examine your prejudice against sex workers and to be more conscious of the purity culture hyper focused on Nigerian women. These two factors presumably prompts your vehement response when someone refers to you as an Ashewo.
Let go of these biases and be comfortable in whatever way you’ve chosen to express your sexuality, because at the end of the day, you, me, all of us, na Ashewo we be.
Here are 11 things you must do to be granted a full access ticket to Ashewo Kingdom:
Fun fact: Spreading your legs isn’t a must.
1/ Travel to Lagos, go to Ilashe Beach House or any fancy restaurant. Easy peasy. A young man will tweet about your newly acquired status immediately.
2/ Agree to have sex on the fifth day after meeting a man. If you have sex on the first, second, third, fourth or any day after the fifth, you might not be knighted as an Ashewo.
3/ Hm, it seems like gaining knowledge of contraceptives and using them automatically makes you an Ashewo. No one told me that Ashewo-ism is one of the pros of sex education and safe sex?
4/ Contest for An Electoral Position. If you win, you get two brand new titles: ‘Ashewo’ and the position you ran for.
5/ Walk. Take a Stroll. Move your Two legs. It doesn’t matter the direction, you are almost at Ashewo Metropolis.
Sorry guys apparently you can’t just arrive at the Ashewo metropolis like that oh. You must use a special walking style called “Proud And Unaware of My Inferiority To Men”. Please, who will teach me this bounce?
6/ Protect yourself from sexual assault/ harassment.
7/ Refuse to kiss your sexual partner.
8/ Remind your friend or acquaintance that your birthday is coming up. I’m triggered because I always broadcast my birthday Wishlist to family, friends and enemies.
9/ Wahala for woman who be entrepreneur oh.
10/ Divorce your cheating partner and strive. If you don’t know, your divorce certificate comes with a complimentary Ashewo membership card which will only be renewed as often as possible depending on how much you are chopping life.
11/ Get your heart broken on reality tv and express your sorrow like a normal human that is in touch with their feelings 🙁
In case you have not gotten the memo, no woman is safe from being slut shamed. It doesn’t matter who you are or what you do.
There’s no better time to reclaim this word that has been used to demean women, Nigerian women especially, for ages. Next time someone calls you an Ashewo (because there is always a next time), as a baby girl, don’t even stress yourself. They are just battling with deep insecurities and sexism.
Ladies, tell us instances where you were called an Ashewo, Olosho or Prostitute in the comments.