Home Features Ordeal of the left-handed in the hands of superstitious people

Ordeal of the left-handed in the hands of superstitious people

by Church Times

By Mariam Bello


Mariam Bello

Many times, as a left-handed person, I have always thought of the segregation placed on those who are my ilk. I was brought up with the notion that those who use their right hand are superior while those who use the left hand are inferior and that they need to constantly fight for recognition and acceptance among people.

The left hand has always been superstitiously linked to bad luck, unclean, weak, clumsy, insult, and sometimes evil. This is why some children that are left-handed have been forced to write and even perform other activities with the right hand. This is the reason people consider touching or giving something with the left hand an insult.

I remember growing up and my own school teacher would beat and abuse me for eating with my left hand. Then I would constantly try to eat with my right hand but half of the food will ultimately fall off because I am not used to the use of my right. I would get so tired of even eating in school or try to avoid the teacher whenever I want to eat. Also whenever I give something to the elderly with my left hand and they would immediately complain” this girl is spoilt o, you want to give me something with your left hand. Oya change it right now”.

My mom would try to protect me and say  “she uses left that is why” and the same elder would be like “oh no wonder, but another day, don’t give anyone anything with your left hand. I get so irritated and I just go in my mind” what exactly is wrong with this left hand”.

This attitude I get from people constantly make me feel like I use an inferior hand.

Most time you will hear people say left-handed people are naturally brilliant but these same people do not want to associate or receive anything when it is with the left hand. There are many stories I have heard about parents beating their own children to make them stop the use of their left hands and that is why they are not brilliant anymore.

I don’t know if it is the change in the use of the hand that made the boy become dull but it is totally wrong that children are subjected to abuse just because they are naturally left-handed.

This seeming hatred for the left hand that people don’t realize makes me constantly want to defend left-handed people in general. I say something like” left-handed people are rare because we are special” or when I see lefties doing good at what they do, I go” hmm, that is right, we are just naturally better and good”.

The truth is that everyone is good not just because of the dominant hand we use. But the segregation placed on the use of the hand has made me constantly want to protect or defend  left-handed people

The elderly rebuff us


I remember having an argument with a person I handed something to with my left hand. The moment he noticed this, he said “even my younger sister that uses left won’t dare  give me anything with her left hand” Immediately I asked him” please sir, what exactly is wrong with the use of left hand” and he said “it is not good at all” and I am like “what exactly is not good about it”

I then told him” Sir, I use a special hand but people make me feel otherwise with their constant reminder that I should use the right hand rather than the left hand as it is an insult to elders. When I hand something to you, I don’t think of anything disrespectful so why feel like I am I’m insulting you”

But during my argument with him, I just realized that he had no good reason at all for telling me not to use my left hand”

The worst of all is when I misplaced something and people are asking me” did you drop it with your left hand” and I really get confused there. Anybody can misplace anything why should it be attributed to just left hand again.

Sometimes I feel that somethings are wrong with me because I use the left hand. When I throw something and it goes off. I am like “oh, this left hand”.

This places a negative effect on those of us who use the left hand as our dominant hand. It makes us sometimes think differently from right-handers especially. We see the abused, rejected, and insulted side of a phenomenon and we sometimes feel our inadequacy is due to our use of the left hand.

Certain things are already feeling ‘unright’ to a left-handed person. Like the fact that most things we use were created and intended for the right-handed person. Things like scissors, knife musical instruments, computer mouse making it hard for use by a left-handed person, which I feel is normal since the world consists of mostly right-handed people.

Having people comment either positively or negatively because of your left-handedness can be exasperating.  Also, the feeling of being odd or different among the horde of right-hand users. The fact that some people make left-handers feel inferior due to some superstitious belief is totally wrong.

Though the rejection of left-handed people has reduced over the years, there is a need for us to examine things that are naturally odd and rare. Parents and teachers should not subject children to beating or abuse all because of the wrong notion about the left hand.

Obama a left-handed person

left handed people


Considering the many benefits that have been attributed to left hand and the great leaders including Barrack Obama and Oprah Winfrey that have achieved though they are left-handed people, there is need to begin to explore the phenomenon.

And also, since there are only groundless reasons for the rejection of the left hand, I believe left-handers should be encouraged rather than discouraged.

Mariam Bello is a Part 1 Law Student of Olabisi Onabanjo University

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Ogunfowora Amos January 17, 2021 - 8:01 pm

Wow! Great write up ma’am. I’m still affected till date because I was forced to use my right hand to write.
More insight Ma.

Yemi Aanu January 18, 2021 - 8:12 am

Nothing wrong fundamentally with using Left hands. It’s where their brain is shifted and heavier on that side.

The advantage of Left hand is in games love the Boxing where the opponent is more used to defend against the fight hand. But this one comes surprisingly hardeith the Left hand to deal a damaging blow.

Another is in games using bats such as Table tennis, lawn Tenis, badminton etc. The left handed is able to come hard on the side which the opponent is not used to defend best.

Two disadvantages:
1. Children are generally trained to eat with the right hand especially where cutleries are not usually used in Africa. They are thus expected to clean up with the Left when they use the toilet. When you use the left hand before people therefore they think you also use it to clean up at toilet and for eating.

2. Secondly, SECRET CULTS in Africa use it as membersgip signs. They greet and exchange things with the Left hands. They do not want non-members, especially young children to fall victim of being supposed to be Cultists.


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