Bless my Bank Account

Written by Sandisiwe (Yogi) Shoba in Senior Editorial

As a teenager, I remember being warned about Sugar Daddies. It was such a hot topic that the KZN Department of Health launched a ‘Sugar Daddy’ Campaign to protect little girls like me from this urban villan. Across the province, giant billboards lining the highways read, ‘Beware, Sugar Daddies Destroy Lives!’ 

They were classified as creepy old men with flashy cars and wads of cash. The Sugar daddy preyed on young innocent girls, luring them in with gifts and pocket money. The danger of the Sugar daddy came when young girls got more than they bargained for: namely an unwanted pregnancy and an STD. 

But this small-time pimp is nothing compared to the latest breed of moneyed man: the Blesser. Social media has been abuzz with images of beautiful young women, either in exotic locations or standing next to luxury cars with the caption ‘blessed.’ The Blesser is seen as some form of deity, bestowing the ‘Blessee’ with things that only a god could provide. This Sugar Daddy 2.0 has less ‘creep’, more money, more status and even greater generosity. 

The Blesser phenomenon is said to be most prominent in black urban circles. The idea is that the economically, politically and socially liberated black male has sought an outlet for his new-found success: women.

Some Blessers are more giving than others, hence there are ‘levels’ to blessership, with level-one blessers being the most desirable. A level-one blesser could set you up with a house, a car and even a job. Blessers can be young or old and their prey of choice is young, beautiful, educated women, so you, yes you can have  blesser too. 

Despite the supposed glitz and glamour of the blessed lifestyle, I personally could never partake in this ‘partnership.’ For some, it is seen as a legitimate business transaction, where the Blesser provides material upliftment whilst the Blessee provides her beauty, charm and sexual prowess. In my mind it’s like pseudo-prostitution, (you know, cash for sex) and though it doesn’t float my boat it certainly does the trick for others. 

I recently read an article where a Blessee was quoted as saying ‘why should I pay for anything when I can get a Blesser to bankroll my lifestyle for me,’ and indeed there are two sides to the coin. On one side, women do it out of necessity. So for example, a university student who can’t afford her fees will benefit from a Blesser who can pay for her studies. On the other side, however, people do it opportunistically. So a woman who is trying to get ahead in her career, may use the Blesser’s connections to climb both the social and corporate ladder. 

The downside to Blessership is that women often aren’t quite aware of what they’re getting themselves into. Posts have been circulating on Facebook where ‘blessed’ women have confessed to being physically and emotionally abused by their Blessers. One Blesser allegedly beat his pregnant Blessee so forcefully that she had a miscarriage. 

This behaviour probably stems from the fact that Blessers see their women as possessions. They are arm candy for corporate functions and business deals, and oftentimes, women can’t ditch the men because they won’t forfeit the blessings.  It’s even worse when Blessers are married men who cheat on their wives and expose both women to STDs. 

So is the blessed life worth it? Are the flashy cars and the diamond rings worth the emotional and physical detriments that come with this partnership? Are women denying their self-worth for pseudo-blessings that will dissipate in the long run? In my opinion its time to erect billboards against the Blesser, before young black women find themselves irreversably cursed.

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