By Yetunnde Arebi
Hi, Who is your confidant? Is it a friend or your spouse? How much of your secrets can you share with your spouse?
Love, they say is about giving and sharing, which can only thrive where there is mutual trust, understanding and effective communication between the partners. So, who better can you share your secrets with other than the one you claim to love, cherish and share your body with? The one who is supposed to know you inside out.
However, this appears not to be the case with a lot of couples, young and old. In this narratives from some of our respondents, reasons, ranging from traditional to moral grounds were attributed as part of the barriers militating against sharing of secrets between partners.
Beginning from this edition and as our special package for the holidays, you will be reading what these people had to say. If you or someone you know of, have been through a similar experience, or you have an interesting story to share with us on this issue, please write and send your contributions/opinions to The human Angle, Vanguard, P.M.B. 1007, Apapa, Lagos. Or our e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org we look forward to reading from you. Cheers!
For Taiwo, (49), business woman, a man will determine how his wife will treat him:
There are some men that cannot be trusted, just as there are women that cannot be trusted. Most of the time, when you see a man who is very chauvinistic, then, you should suspect that he might have the tendencies to want to dominate and manipulate his wife.
A man who sees nothing else in a woman except her wifely and motherly roles, is likely to be secretive about his activities and will also want to monitor the wifeâ€™s every movement.
In this situation, a wife must device how she wants to deal with her husband. She has to be careful about how she deals with him because these things too have a way of backfiring.
You must have tested him a few times with serious secrets or projects that you intend to carry out. His actions or reactions to such things will determine how you will deal with him in future.
Now, if his action was negative, or he failed the tests, there is no need for you to quarrel over anything because no man is predictable. If he sees that you have stopped telling him things too, he might start making fresh troubles from that.
So, the woman must know that she is now on her own and take more measures to take care of her interests.
Just recently, an incident happened between my friendâ€™s daughter and her husband. Both of them are graduates but the girl works with a good bank while the boyâ€™s job is not so glamorous orÂ rosy.
Nobody suspected that the boy did not like the little successes his wife was making. They have one child, a boy who is still very young, she pays the house help and even the fees for the playgroup that the boy attends. According to the arrangement between them, she feeds the family and this she does very well, at least, as testified to by the boyâ€™s parents when the whole matter blew open.
It was during the scuffle that we found out that the girl owned most of the things in the house and all these she was doing without even letting her parents into the secret between herself and her husband.
Anyway, a few months ago, the girl bought a new car and there began her problems. The husband too had a car, but not as good as the wifeâ€™s own and was naturally going old. He did not like the idea and even refused to drive his wifeâ€™s car.
Then, he began torturing her. He complained about her coming home late from work and whenever anything went wrong in the house, it was because she was not devoted enough as a wife or mother. The poor girl became troubled but kept quiet.
But one day, she came back as usual from work to meet the doors locked. All entreaties that he should at least hear her out, fell on deaf ears and she had to go and spend the night with her parents where she was forced to voice out her ordeal.
When her mother informed me, I told her everything was still at a manageable level because they only have one child between them.
You see, the joy of every parentÂ who has suffered to give a child a good education is to see the child succeed in whatever he/she does. So, she cannot just meet a man who will now spoil her parents dreams. The matter was settled and she returned home.
But a few days later, she ran back to inform her parents that her husband had decreed that she must resign from her job because it is not giving her enough time to attend to other things. As her parents, we decided to take action. We went to meet the boyâ€™s parents in their home town and narrated all that had been going on to them.
In all honesty, the parents were shocked. They apologised on behalf of the boy and subsequently called a family meeting where the matter was discussed. They told the boy that he ought to be grateful to have a wife who is ready to assist him with the housekeep, adding that a thousand and one men out there are looking for women who will do just half of what the girl was doing.
What if she has the money and was keeping it to herself and her parents, what would he do about it? So you see that if that matter was not solved, it is the man that will force his wife to start keeping secrets from him because he did not wish her well.
When I first got married, I worked in the Civil Service. ItÂ was such a stressful job, so I decided to be doing some petty things on the side.
I had some money which I got from a monthly contribution I was doing with some colleagues at the office, and with the assistance of a neighbour who worked at the Ports, I got a deep freezer.
Naturally, I had already informed my husband about the money and my intentions for it, but when I brought home the freezer, he was not happy. He kept quiet all through the night and the next morning, he told me to get rid of the freezer before his return from work.
He accused me of trying to turn him into a fool, demanding to know where I even got the money to engage in monthly contributions when I was always taking money from him for everything. He accused me of saving my own money while I spend his.
It was quite a surprise for me because I never expected such outburst from him. Here is someone that did not know how the children got clothes on their backs or how much they take to school every morning for transportation and feeding. I was really troubled.