June 12, 2016

From ‘for better for worse’ vow, to death sentence

By Chioma Gabriel, Editor, Special Features

You do, don’t you?   Yes, I do .
And you said so in the presence of a hundred or more people as witnesses. Then you hosted an Owambe to drive home your point. You are sentenced to ‘ death’.

Till death do you part.

Then things begin to fall apart.

But should you kill each other with your bare hands?

Are men really made that way? To kick things around? Blame her mouth. Of course, everybody knows she talks too much. But you should have known that her mouth runs like tap water and she would never stop offending you with her words and, indeed, that’s why you should learn to be partially deaf.

Little things are breaking homes.

wife-beaterMen are killing their wives over flimsiest reasons. Everyday, people are fighting with their significant other over insignificant matters . You now begin to hate the one you love. You were not really sure initially. Or how can one love and hate the same person at the same time? Love can be a good thing though, but it can also turn a seemingly stable person into a flimsy bridge holding a lot of weight.

Love is very powerful and anything with power can destroy, including love.

Your love story was not ending well. You started well. Your love for each other was blind, deaf and dumb. You were both warned but you were meant for each other. It was the most amazing thing you’ve ever felt in your entire life. Your love story was almost like a movie—everything wasn’t perfect but you loved each other so intensely.

Then the problems started to creep in. He’s more carefree and just go with the flow, and you suspect he has commitment issues. Or, you have a lot of anxiety and some attachment issues and ended up pushing him away.

Fast forward the next few years.

Things started deteriorating. What he did or you did or failed to do became a big deal. A bag of sour cream and onions.

How he/she was pressing the toothpaste became a big deal. Many don’t like the toothpaste being pressed in the middle.

A lawyer recently had to reconcile a couple who couldn’t stand each other because the wife didn’t like how her husband was pressing the toothpaste. Her complaints and insults led to a fight that saw the husband heading to the divorce court. But the good lawyer was able to patch things up between them.

And who would have believed that a man’s peaceful sleep could irritate his wife? That peaceful sleep was causing her sleeplessness. He was snoring and that alone could bring down the roof.

She decided that she could not take it and so did not. She walked away and both found other people.


Don’t make a joke of checking your man’s phone and reading his text messages. He could kill you for doing so and if he didn’t, you could just land yourself in trouble. You could see what you ought not to see that could break your heart and who would you blame?

A marriage counselor and lawyer, Mrs Kaine revealed that one of the cases she handled in a divorce court was started by the wife who flipped through her husband’s phone and saw what she ought not to see.

“Ordinarily, they were a happy couple until that weekend. The husband stayed at home and while he tried to fix a lot of things around the house, his loving wife grabbed his phone and began to flip through. Then she saw the recording of her husband making it out with another woman.”

All hell was let loose.

And yet, this was a man who never stayed out late or hanged out with the boys at weekends. The entire episode ended in the divorce court and that was after a huge fight that left the man with a broken head and his wife with blood-shot eyes.

And the other woman? Her business place was left in ruins.

Checking his phone could spell suicide because that would be tantamount to invading his privacy and most men wouldn’t take it.

wife-beater“ Check through my phone? That’s rubbish because I don’t check through hers. What would my wife or my girlfriend doing, checking through my phone? I am not a saint when it comes to women and I have never pretended about it. So, why would she go looking for trouble?” asked Ade, a lawyer.

“ There are many things a man cannot stomach. Some men would not mind but I mind. If my wife is chatting with another man, I don’t know because I trust her and I expect her to trust me. If she sees me discussing with a woman, I expect her to understand that I have that freedom to talk with other women about other issues because they are not emotionally attached to me. I have the freedom to talk business and discuss other issues. If she complains, its her business.”

In another divorce case, a simple thing as little as social etiquette caused a huge fight between an urbane husband and his wife.

“She asked to be given ‘mineral’ in a party and the husband flew up. Mineral, how can an educated woman request for a bottle of ‘mineral? Doesn’t she know whether it is coke, Fanta, Malt or juice that she wants? Does she have to call it ‘mineral’ like local women? Doesn’t she even have the grace to say she wants something soft or non-alcoholic? Mineral? After all the years she spent in the university, she comes to a high-class party here to rub mud on my face by requesting for ‘ mineral.”

The couple fought all the way home and eventually ended up in the divorce court after she said something that made him to slap her several times and bruised her mouth..

And how could a fairly successful businessman, Emeka have thought that by marrying a daughter of a rich transporter, all his problems would be solved?

“ I was the cause of everything ,” said Emeka’s best man, Fred. “When the first daughter of this wealthy transporter from the South East got married, her father settled her and her new husband and made her husband stupendously rich. I was related to the man and I shared their experience with my best friend and on learning that the man still had another daughter, he decided to go for her.

“That was a huge mistake. Emeka wooed Nkiru and she agreed to marry him. A wedding date was set and preparations began. Emeka sold two of his cars and left one with the hope that after the marriage, what the inlaws would give their daughter would buy him better cars. But he was wrong.

“It was the mother-in-law that perceived him as a gold-digger and told her husband. And at the reception, his father-in-law told the guests that Nkiru was his best child and he spent millions to train her to become a qualified medical doctor and a gynecologist. He said |Nkiru was an oil-well to her husband and the best gift any man could have. No special gift was given the couple like the man gave t his first daughter.

“ Then on the way home after the reception, Emeka began to complain that the bride’s family did not make any contribution to the wedding and the reception and that no special gift was given to them by the wife’s family. When the complaint became too much, the wife asked him whether he married her for love or for her father’s money and right there on their way home, a fight ensued. Emeka beat his new wife to a pulp and her cousin who was a bridesmaid at the wedding and who was also in the car called her father with her mobile phone. The big man came with armed policemen to arrest the groom when the couple were just a few metres to their matrimonial home. The transporter took his daughter back to his house and that marked the end of the marriage. They were never reconciled. In fact, Nkiru never went to Emeka’s house. It was at that point that Nkiru collected all the presents given to her at the wedding by her own family and their friends while she left those given by Emeka’s friends. Today, they are both married to other people.”

There are endless stories of woe leading to marital problems and in some cases, death.

Sometimes, the problem could be his family or hers. It could be the way she carried herself and as John Mento, a public relations practctioner said, his wife always tied wrapper across her breasts at home and he didn’t like that. He has complained several times and her response had always been that she was not looking for another husband. She apparently didn’t know she was on the verge of losing the one she has.

Or it could be his drinking too much and always smelling like a brewery. Then he would stagger home every night and left his clothings and shoes all over the sitting room.

Nothing could be more nauseating to a woman than messing up the home she strived so hard to keep. She’d arrange the house and he would scatter them.

Men don’t like dirty homes but he was the one scattering everything. Did he want to kill her?

Then, she’d give him food and forget to give him water. Didn’t her mother train her well?

The argument over money never stopped. She would bring up the issue of money when he was feeling cozy. What kind of woman would do that? Was she trying to hold him to ransom?

And there were the kids.

Ohhhh. Those brats. He’s too strict and wouldn’t take nonsense from the kids. But she didn’t want him to touch her kids. Of course, he called them brats but they were her brats. Has he ever been pregnant? Would he rather the children run into hiding when they heard the horn of his car?

His own mum spoiled him too. Bought him football and toy guns as a child and that’s why he was kicking her around anyway.

Her friends! Gosh! Those gossips. He could never stand them. All they talked about were clothes, jewelry and shoes and they were putting ideas into her head.

He liked football. She preferred Telemundo. He was a Chelsea fan. She was Arsenal or Man U. She could never stop getting on his nerves. Too many things.

And you were boring her!


You could never hear the last of what they were capable of doing to a man and so, you had to cut the long story short. So, you killed her. Not that you meant to but she was annoying you, calling you unprintable names and you got so mad and pushed her and she fell and hit her head on something.

You are a murderer.

Or you suddenly became the world wrestling champion because of her and your kids were watching?

Are you a kid? Didn’t you know before you embarked on the business of marriage?

Just take a few things and walk.

Serious. As simple as that and you’d keep your soul from trouble. And she would come back begging for forgiveness. She would definitely do. Infact, her entire family would come and beg and you must forgive. She would say she was sorry even though from her heart of hearts, she didn’t mean it.

Just look into her eyes. Were those eyes sorry? But she has asked and that was the most important thing.

So forgive.

Or would you want the kids to be called ‘children from broken home’ in school? That way, they would never forgive you.

Marriage. Indeed, it would eventually kill you because it has been a death sentence all the while.

Till death do you part.