Thursday, March 25, 2010

Koeksister Mentality

I’ve been raving about the Koeksister mentality for a little while now. I may even have changed my thinking around it- but no doubt…. The Koeksister Mentality exists people.

Definition: Koeksister Mentality (subjective): – stunted thinking found in people who are too lazy to take responsibility for themselves.

I read some article a little while ago reporting results of men who are victims of domestic abuse (wifie or partner bitchslaps the dude). The report broke it down to the various races and found that coloured men in South Africa have the highest rates of being victims of domestic abuse. Not just that, they faaaaaaar outweigh other races and these are just the reported cases. So how did we get here?

My philosophy attributed the cause to the mommy’s boy-syndrome, commonly found in local communities. Mommy and daddy spoils dude rotten, giving them almost anything they wish at the drop of a hat. Why? “Cos my boy will carry the family name” of course… the family legacy if you will. And well, I’m sure a host of other reasons. Problem. Dude grows up, starts a family of his own, but mommy and daddy is still around to catch you if you fall. Problem. When is dude going to learn to take responsibility for himself? Pressure mounts as responsibilities add up. At some point, mommy and daddy may leave you to your devices. Eventually, with the lack of proper coping mechanisms and/or life skills, it just becomes easier to resort to alcohol, drugs and affairs when things don’t exactly go your way. Jeez, apparently life can be tough.

Close knit families are both great and often a curse. Yes, I can understand parents wanting to give their kids the best. At some point though, they’ll need to make their own decisions and learn to take responsibility should they wish to survive the big bad world.

In my dealings with various cultures, particularly from other African counties, I found that often these communities consider it the norm to send kids to boarding school. I think this is a great societal model. Kids learn to take responsibility for themselves outside the confines of the comfortable and secure surroundings that mommy and daddy’s home offers.

Often we find refugees, coming from unimaginable circumstances, arriving with practically nothing, and within no time they’re either employed or have created some means of making a living and providing for themselves and their families. And locals contend “they’re stealing our jobs”. Paleeez.

So the Koeksister Mentality sits back… waiting patiently for that promised opportunity to miraculously come their way. Gets retrenched, sits at home and expects wifie to fulfil all household chores, care for the kids and bring in the dough. The result, she’s waking up and resorts to bitchslapping the dude out of frustration. Yes yes – it’s a generalisation, my grossly subjective view and is not the case in all circumstances. However, I do feel I’m onto something here, particularly where coloured communities are concerned.

Problem with the Koeksister Mentality is that kids are reared to sustain the family it seems, as opposed to being reared for the world, taking an active role in it and fending for themselves. And, in this regard, the Koeksister Mentality does not exclusively apply to the dudes, but includes women too- thus anyone too lazy to take responsibility for themselves. Also, blaming your circumstances is nothing but a cheap copout. Parents always do the best with whatever they have available to them in terms of knowledge and resources. By now, you should be old enough to think for yourself and at least attempt to make the best of your circumstances.

Yes, life can be tough, but with the abundant opportunities out there - the Koeksister Mentality can only hold you back if you allow it to.


  1. Some deep truth Girla...

    You now had me thinking about my son, who is so lasy you have
    to beg him to clean his room. OMG...He HAS the Koeksister
    Mentality..And who may I ask is to blame for this.. Mwah...IS there a
    cure for this. Probably turning back time hey..

    There is seriously no way that I can confidently say I have reared a
    child who can even fend for himself in the outside world..Y might that
    be.. Because I was reared this way, and still go back there
    Mentally...Why do we end up making excuses and passing the BUCK
    ?????.. Cos we can....

    You do NOT realise until it's Mentally too late that you ...altho You
    promise yourself not to spoil but you do..This is where the saying"
    You have to be cruel to be kind" comes in..Subconciously altho we have
    not been given all on a platter we end up in our comfort zones and we
    all at one point or the other get bitten by this bug...But we can
    change our mindset and not Allow it to hold us there...Also for how
    long..Probably for a few minutes..And then we go back..

    This was an awesome read.

  2. Hey, give the guys a break! Sitting with a TV remote and flipping channels is hard enough work #@$%&.Now you want 'em to cook and make the bed! Would you trust these guys on a braai, they will taste the meat until it is finished. I note the new trend is that the braaing is also being done by the parents, specifically mothers. Perhaps we ought to take parents for some training but then again where the heck are the boarding schools around here? Business opportunity in the Cape! On second thought, thats so unfair...let's get to the race card quickly....why are you sterotyping coloureds? (This is RSA, we must duck the issue here?). I have a 15 pager why there are no jobs out left out there, top of the list are the fugees and the gvt. Who cares anyway, the parents had opportunities in their time and are quite happy to support - haven't heard any compaining. Muneera, don't rock the boat too much else word will get around and it might well be time to let go that remote.

  3. Hey I agree. And then they think the world owes them too! Male and female alike, but mostly the male. Agh shame.

  4. First time I heard this expression, good going girl! Someone has gotta tell these people no-one owes them anything.