Reactions I received on a word-picture I broadcasted on WhatsApp yesterday prompted this write-up. I had to dig a little bit more to see what the general bias is on the left hand, and I have to say I am quite appalled!
It Is A Cultural Thing:
I know many cultures especially mine (Yoruba); have a negative connotation about the left hand, but to find out that it spreads across the globe leaves me speechless. For instance, in Yoruba Land, it is considered to be a sign of disrespect, if you use your left hand when greeting or passing something to others especially adults. Many adults and teachers will even attempt to force a left-handed child to change to using his/her right hand.
Personally, I have an issue with such adults and actions because it hits too close to home. My son is left-handed, and I have seen nothing but positivity from him being left-handed. I remember seeing him struggle to use his right hand at age two while he was attending a Creche in Nigeria. One of my visits home to see him made me notice his confusion on the dining table as he tried to use his right hand to eat. I could see the frustration, which I did not like, as he struggled with using his right hand. I remember immediately asking my parents who was trying to change the usage of his left hand, and they were both shocked. On asking him, he told us “aunty at school says my left hand is bad!” For real? It was a new discovery for me that “left hands are bad!”
Trust yours truly! I made a swift move to the school to find out who appealed to this “aunty” to change my son’s destined way of life! The Proprietress was apologetic and was unaware, so she claimed! The teacher went further to explain to me why we needed to encourage him to use his right hand instead of his left hand! I calmly (really did) gave her a lecture on how I do NOT appreciate her gesture, and see no “disability” in my son. Furthermore, I gave Dimples a stern instruction NEVER to listen to ANYONE on changing the use of his hands. In addition, I explained to him that God had created him to be left-handed for a purpose, and that being left-handed is NOT a bad thing.
Fast-forward to age six! We were visiting my late dad’s bosom friend at one of his hospitals in Lagos and his Medical Director had the effrontery to challenge my son on extending his left hand to shake him AFTER the poor boy had prostrated to greet him! I explained to him that he is left-handed, and does practically EVERYTHING with his left hand. This man took his time to give me some unsolicited advice on WHY we should change him from using his left hand! I was livid! To think a “learned” person engaged in such superstitious beliefs was beyond me. I firmly told him there was and is nothing wrong with my son and I do not appreciate all the negative things he had said in the presence of a minor. On our way back, my son asked me if truly being left-handed would bring all he heard to him. I again had to do some pep-talk and told him to ignore such people who are simply backwards!
Now, at the age of seven, we taught him on the “Nigerian cultural aspect” of using one’s left hand to hand something to someone. We went a step further to let him know to make the effort to use his right hand, but if he forgets, apologize and let the person know it is not a sign of disrespect but that he is left-handed. So far, it has worked out well for him.
Back to the word-picture that got a lot of reactions which made me laugh so much, and at the same time kept my mouth wide-open! I still cannot believe many are still backward! This is 2017 for crying out loud! Below is the picture and some of the comments I received…..
- Passing a drink to someone with your left hand will not bring you (the leftie) good luck!
- When you give a toast using your left hand, it is as good as placing a curse on the person(s) you are toasting to! (For real?)
- When getting out of bed, if you step on the floor with your left foot first, it will result in a bad day! (What if I slept on the left side of the bed?)
- If you have a twitch in your left eye you will see an adversary, however if it is in your right eye, expect a friend! (Imagine!)
- Eating with your left hand is UNHOLY! (Okay! I have had it!)
Now, I find all the above interesting as well as superstitious. I hope I have not succeeded in scaring you 🙂
The good part 🙂 These are facts about lefties!
- It is interesting to know that we celebrate “International Left Handers Day” on August 13th 🙂
- Out of the most eight most recent U.S. Presidents, four have been left-handed. Check out the most handsome and gifted one out of them – Barrack Obama! 🙂
- On a QWERTY keyboard, 1447 English words typed solely with the left hand, whilst only 187 are typed with the right hand! – I am sure some will try and research this 🙂
- Lefties draw figures facing to the right.
- Nails grow faster on the left hand than the right hand!
- There are pens made for lefties! – Trust me on this, I know 🙂
- Lefties make up extremely gifted and talented people. – Soooo true! 🙂
- The world is beautiful for lefties because my awesome son is left-handed! – FACT! 🙂 🙂
Being a leftie after all is NOT a negative thing. I know that for a fact, because I brought forth a leftie to this world and raising one.
If you have any myth or fact about lefties, please feel free to scroll down and drop a line in the comment box. It will be nice to read more 🙂