I think it is too soon to discuss the harrowing experiences of some warring couples who were rather unlucky to be locked down at home ‘forcefully’ courtesy of COVID-19 pandemic. I received some ‘save-our-souls’ (SOS) calls and messages like I got those of reconciliation, peace and renewed affection from those who willingly shared their happy stories.
There’s nothing new about disagreements among couples. It is part of human relational experiences. Provided the faceoff does not degenerate to physical assault, the tumultuous situation can be brought under control and amicable settlement will ensue.
I will abridge a couple of the cases because of space constraint and I want readers to please counsel the concerned people. I will publish the responses next week for the benefit of those in the challenging situation and their ilk. The names used here are fictitious as I won’t like to disclose their real identities for security and in order to protect their privacy.
Mr. George Amarni
“I am one of the unlucky men in this part of the world because of the woman I married. I wish I could reverse the years I have wasted in this thorny relationship. All through the years, I managed to cope because my working hours gave me a breather from the suffocating and nagging presence of my troublesome wife. I rather wish she is into something serious to divert her attention so I could have a respite. “Since we married in 2012, it has been one problem after another.
She likes socialising. She attends parties a lot but I have no problem with that; anyway, that was how we met. We actually met at the birthday party of a mutual friend and it was love at first encounter. My offence, according to her, is that I am too reserved, conservative and quiet for her liking.
She wrongly accused me of nursing some secret agenda because “quiet men like you are too difficult to predict.” She said a distant relation of hers had a quiet husband like me only for two other women to show up with strikingly identical children that defy iota of doubt when he died.
“We were all surprised because the man hardly socialise. He stayed in-door when he returned from work. He hardly went out at weekends. When and how he had the time to date and put two women in the family way is still a mystery to everybody.”
“Why I now need your advice, Michael West, is that she insists I must own up for an offence or indulgence I didn’t get involved in. She wants me to “confess my secret affairs now” so she could deal with it while I’m still alive and save her from public embarrassment after my death. At some point I asked if she’s planning to kill me but she said “Never! God forbid evil.”
All these attained crescendo during the lockdown. Things got so bad that I became provoked and taunted that I almost beat her. “Sir, it is not infidelity or poverty alone that breaks homes, nagging, suspicion, lack of trust, provocation and unfounded accusation like I currently encounter with my wife are making me to think of separation. If she fails to change, I will quit. Please advise me on how best to deal with this situation. God bless you.”
Mrs. Clara Lawal
“I am in a position to confirm that some men have no business venturing into family life; unfortunately, I married one of them. We have been tolerating each other over the years just because of our children. I don’t ask or care to know about his movements since he assaulted me and I sustained injuries all over my body simply because I dared to ask what condoms were doing in his car. His friends intervened, reprimanded him and begged me.
I then resolved never to question his wrongdoings. I won’t be surprised if he has another family elsewhere. “Being confined together at home throughout the COVID-19 lockdown was hellish. I now appreciate the role girlfriends play to stabilise many homes.
Those women are more of “helpers” than rivals in my own case while it may not be so for other women. My husband became excessively hostile because he couldn’t go out. Even our children were treading carefully to avoid his outburst. His temperament became untamed. He kept to himself, stayed glued to his phone and mobile devices most of the time. At some point, he couldn’t hide it again, he started making and receiving calls from his girlfriends.
He went out last weekend, he’s yet to return four days after. “I’m getting fed up with the marriage and I want to quit. I can’t continue to observe “social distancing” in the bedroom indefinitely. Marriage is not a do or die. I need peace and good health to cater for my children.
I look much older than my age because of depressive mood. It will be a tragedy if I die prematurely because of a man. Sir, how to handle this daunting situation is my challenge. I believe your wise counsel would navigate my path to a good end. I don’t want to misbehave but I’m tired.
Thank you, sir.” I actually purposed to share more stories but they have similar experiences and situations to share. I picked these two because they summarised what most of the other messages contain. I believe that readers’ responses or counsel will go a long way in addressing their situation. You may send your comments, opinions and pieces of advice through email, SMS or WhatsApp. Do have a healthy weekend.
Re: The Man, His Queen and the ‘Girls’
Uncle Ajimobi can never forgive his wife if she cheated on him. This is simply because of African patriarchy mentality which promotes men as superior to women. – Mrs. Kenny O, Lagos
Ajimobi, like any other man, can do those things. Side chicks are always available. But he was rather careless and that’s why he got caught on those occasions. Possibly he may have indulged in such pleasure more than the two occasions but he was lucky not to be caught.
You seem to imply that men go scot-free with more infringements against women while women are helpless. I believe both sexes are culpable in extra marital indulgences. What about the ‘side dicks’ that women also enjoy secretly? They use contraceptives to cover up their own unfaithful acts. And until DNA tests reveal otherwise, women are usually clever in concealing their extra marital affairs.
In a conversation with a doctor nine years ago, she told me that if DNA was routinely done, about 40 per cent of the first born and 20 per cent of the second born would be discovered that they do not belong to their nominated fathers.
Today, things have gone worse. I think it is Zambia (not so sure) that has recorded over 70 per cent paternity tests failure. Lagos, I was told, is currently above 50 per cent failure of paternity tests. There you go; these are the consequences of “side chicks” and “side dicks”. – Mr. Anonymous.