Of chivalry and opening car doors.

So, on our way home from our LG (lifegroup) meeting yesterday, we arrived at my lady friend’s stop (she happened to be one of our guests at LG that day), and one of my other friends who was driving quickly (semi-jokingly) quipped that I should already be out of the car and on the other side opening the car door for her. She asked if I really had to and I responded saying, “I could,” but she was easy,Ā  & so she opened the door and left.


The 3 of us, gentlemen, that were now left in the car then began having a conversation around that. “Is it really necessary to seek to be a gentleman to the point of looking weird? I mean, yes I’ll hold out the door for a lady as we walk into a building, or assist her in carrying a heavy load, but aii, sometimes you just need to be practical,” commented my friend who was seating on co-driver’s seat.

My driving friend shared with us an example about how the main boss at their company is such a gentleman, always opening car doors for ladies and closing them once they are in (and by the way, all these ladies are junior to him), & opening for them once they get to their destination. He also shared that whenever he is with him, he is always admonished to do the same.

This whole discussion got me thinking: to what end is all this chivalry? Is it just to prove that one is a gentleman? I was then reminded of a sermon by Andy Stanley titled “The Gentleman’s Club”, where he admonished men to bestow honour upon the women in their lives, regardless of their social status, age, etc. We live in a society where women are looked down upon many times, as being inferior to men, and the conclusion I came to was that such acts of chivalry not only raise the esteem of the woman, but also act as a reminder to the gentleman that she is of great value and worth, just as much as he is.

That said, I’m still a bit hesitant about extending my gentleman traits towards now opening and closing car doors, especially when the lady is in the car and I have to get out and open the door for her. Once I start, I don’t want to stop, so the jury is still out on that so…we’ll wait and see šŸ™‚

I’d love to know what you think though. As a lady, what do you make of such acts by men? Do you feel honoured by them? Do you think it’s necessary?

For the guys, are these chivalrous acts things that you do/don’t do? Why/why not?



5 Comments Add yours

  1. lady says:

    Imonje, this one, I’m not letting it pass. Got to respond.

    We all want to change the world. And that’s not an easy feat to accomplish.

    My limited knowledge of a man’s world tells me a gentleman is kind, thoughtful and best of all, caring! That’s what comes to mind when I look at that boss’s behaviour. Is that weird? No. We need more men like that.

    People who changed the world had to go against the grain, often alone and I highly suspect they were labelled weird! Now that boss you talked about is on his way to changing the world. His actions are so foreign to us Kenyans, and I’m hoping they spread like a bushfire. And it’s a good thing that we are even talking about this.

    Now, the other day I was at an event and at some point we had to use a flight of stairs to access a certain part of the room. There was this gentleman who stood near the stairs and I kept asking myself why he was there. Found out soon enough. My turn to go up the stairs came, and there he was, holding out his hand to take mine and help me up. Sadly I declined. Let me tell you what was going through my mind at that moment. ‘Kwani he thinks I can’t walk? I’m not wearing high heels today so I can hack it? Only four or five stairs to go up? ‘ And the worst thought of all ‘I don’t need his help. Don’t want to bother him.’

    Wrong thinking, wrong response. The lady after me (now the real one) gracefully accepted his help, put her hand in his and proceeded down the stairs. Looked so nice. Me? Revelation hit me right then, left right and centre. That kind gentleman got to serve mankind that day, I lost the chance to receive a little kindness. With his action,he was saying men and women need each and its ok to admit it and play that out in real life. (Me? Clearly I’m still in denial but God is sorting me out). That gentleman also recognized that ladies wear cute heels and outfits (the long type) that calls for extra care and diligence when manoveuring stairs and other unflat surfaces. So this student of life got some real education that day. Mind shifted too. Thinking back on his gentle actions, I now appreciate him. But that’s not the norm, hence my response. And who knows, maybe I’m not the only one who declined his kind gesture… (Poor guy). Sometimes good intentions are misunderstood simply because they are very rare and come up when least expected.

    I could go on n on but I’m stopping now.


    1. Imonje says:

      Thanks for sharing so openly and honestly. That guy at your event is quite something; I’ve been challenged, not just by him but by your words as well. It’s quite often that the “weird” people end changing the world.



  2. ED says:

    I wish I knew how to say something semi-jokingly šŸ™‚

    Seriously though, I do chivalrous acts…subconsciously though nowadays. When I was a young man, I noticed that ladies dig that kind of thing. It does get you major bonga points. And being the entrepreneur that I am I invested in opening doors. I used to practice saying the phrase “can I help you with that?” in front of a mirror..*semi-jokingly*. Now most of my chivalry is poured on my girlfriend, relatives and ladies I know. Occasionally I let a stranger get on the bus before me…not during rush hour though…I don’t play those games…I’d shamelessly elbow ANYONE in the eye if it’s raining.*semi-jokingly*

    I limit acts chivalry to strange women. Dunia siku hizi imepasuka msamba bro. Plus I don’t need bonga points. Got myself a landline.


  3. Another lady says:

    I think of chilvary as great. Although I feel like it’s abit embarrassing because of the attention it brings. That is just a personal thing. I however cannot belittle the importance of it. I think women should be treated well. When Christ saw women, the bible he had mercy and understanding. I think chilvary is one way to do so.


    1. Imonje says:

      Hmm…I actually hadn’t thought of that, the aspect of it being embarrassing. That surprised me. Interesting.


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