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Marriage and Tradition: How mothers prepare their daughters sexually before marriage?

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By Ebunoluwa Sessou & Florence Amagiya

Mary and Bode, are newly wedded couple. Both  were virgins before they got married. There was no clue of what to do when it comes to having sexual intercourse with each other. Neither was there anyone to guide them on what to do.

File: Igbo Traditional Marriage

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For them, it was a difficult task. They were agitated. The expression was almost a hopeless one. Who would bail them out of this mess, how would they get help? All these and more were agitations on their minds.

The reality was that the couple knew not what to do sexually. And for two weeks they made several attempts, after which they were able to make headway.

According to Mary, “It was a big thing.  We were devastated and much more when we saw blood on our bedspread”, she lamented.

Mary’s case is one out of the many Nigerian ladies that are passing through this hassle.

Unfortunately, several homes have been shattered due to this singular challenge. Couples have been forced to go their separate ways because they cannot satisfy themselves sexually.

In some cases, most marriages break up for the fact that either of the couple is not able to discharge his or her duties or perform his or her role sexually.

Ebere and Ndoka were married for five years yet could not have children until their pastor in the local church found out that they were yet to be deflowered.

It got to the notice of the pastor-in-charge of the church who was forced to organize a class on sex and intimacy for the couple. Fortunately, other members of the church who felt the class was useful also participated in the relationship class.

The big question therefore is, is it ideal to tutor the girl-child on what to know or what to do when it comes to her sexual life especially when she finally gets married? Is it ideal to tell your daughters how to make love with her husband and what to do to lure the husband to have sex with her?

If the popular saying of the Itsekiri people in Delta state; ‘egbele kukumiyo’  meaning ‘fowl does not  reject corn’! is anything to write home about; then it is no wonder that  mothers teach their daughters before sending them to matrimony.

Another question is whether the training they acquire would serve as deterent to enaging in promiscious acts or it will expose them to extra marital affairs.

Weekend Woman went round the cosmopolis to feel the pulse of Nigerian women from different tribes, cultures and traditions. And the stories told by these women were not the same as some of them opined that there are no special lessons given to the girl-child on how to make love with ther husband while others were of the opinion that the girl-child is being tutored on steps to take to make love with her husband.

According to them, preparing the girl-child to be sexually active for her husband begins from the cradle. From the North to the South, East and West, the stories were not the same. In Hausa and Calabar culture, the story is the same compared to other tribes including Yoruba, Igbo, Rivers among other have different stories to share.

Hausa Land

Musa, who hails from Kano state told Weekend Woman that, “Some Hausa ladies who are Muslims especially the ones that cover their heads (Eleha) are trained on how to have sex with their husbands with different styles.

According to him, “These girls are kept in a place for some weeks with other women to train them on how to make love with their husbands. These women are trained by elderly married women who have also gone through the same training.

“The ladies go through this training because it is a taboo for them to be engaged in immorality or not able to satisfy their husbands sexually. The period of training is important so that these ladies will be able to satisfy their husbands sexually after they are married”, he revealed.


Speaking with Uduak, from Calabar, WW gathered that, ladies are trained by their mothers on how to be ready whenever their husbands want to make love with them. According to her, “I learnt from my mother to be ready at all times and not starve him his food. The good thing is that no woman can take your husband and the woman cannot engage in immorality”, she said.

Igbo Land

Unfortunately, the story is different in Igbo land . Speaking with an Igbo woman who spoke on the condition of anonymity with Weekend Woman, there is no specific lesson given to the girl-child especially from Igbo land on what to do when it comes to sex. “I must confess, I do not know of anything regarding teaching your girl-child on how to have sex with her husband but as a woman, that has two girls and also got married in Igbo land. Normally, as a growing girl child, you are warned against sex before marriage. Then, when you are getting married, you are advised not to starve your husband of sex. That is all I know. No special thing regarding it that I know”, she said.


In Yoruba land, every lady is advised to keep her virginity until she gets married. This was revealed by one Mrs Adejumo. The mother of four girls told WW that, “There is no special lesson given to the girl-child on how to make love with her husband when she get married. I have four girls, one of them is in Level 3 in one of the Higher Institutions in Nigeria.

“What I know is that my mother told me the importance of keeping our virginity until we get married and that the joy of every parent especially mothers in Yoruba tradition is to hear and see your daughter stays as virgin until she get married.

“It will interest you to know that my mother promised every daughter of hers tangible gift if she remains a virgin until she is married and she fulfilled her promise. She gave us gifts except the only one who disregarded the instruction. I have learnt that from my mother and I have also given my daughters the same advice.

Keeping your virginity does not say, you should not know how to make love with your husband. It does not say your daughter should not be taught how to be responsible and keep her home as a wife.

“Ultimately, parents want their daughters to have loving, intimate sex that’s satisfying with their hubands.” And that can only be achieved once you and your partner reaches an understanding and know all the dos and don’ts of intimate relationship.

“It’s important for mothers to discuss all the reproductive organs not only with their daughters but all their children and advise them strictly on the need to stay off sex before marriage. I will also advise mothers to always tell their daughters their roles and responsibilities when they are married. They should do everything possible positively to retain and manage their homes. No marriage should break up because of their inability to satisfy themselves”, she said.

Akwa Ibom

In Akwa Ibom, the story told by Madam Gift was that a woman is married only to sexually satisfy her husband. According to her, “Growing up, I learnt all what it takes to manage my marriage and not lose it to another woman. “Growing up, my mother told me to always obey and be prepared for my husband whenever he wants to have sex with me. That a woman is only married to take care of her husband sexually. We were taught not to lose our marriage because we cannot satifsy our husbands sexually”, she revealed.

Kalabari, Rivers state

Washing of private part was what the Kalabari ladies in Rivers State learnt from their mother. Favour a Kalabari explained to WW that, “While she was growing up as a child, she learnt that the first thing a woman takes care of after waking up is to wash her private part. This is done as a ritual by the woman because the husband might demand for sex anytime and she must not deny him.

“I also learnt that the virgina is second to the man’s best food. I was taught to dress nicely and know how to satisfy my husband; even when l was still a virgin.

“I was taught on time never to use tissue to clean my private part but l should have a clean cloth specially kept to clean my private part. I was taught specially to cook for my husband and never starve him. Although l am not yet married but l have kept all l have been taught and l am happy l was taught”, she said.

Delta State

Jolomi, from Itsekiri land, said a man is treated with care and respect. “My mother taught me to give him special care both in the bedroom and in the dining room. I was taught to be clean both inside and out. I was taught that the best way to a man’s heart is through his stomach and also to give him all attention and the rest of him is history because l would have won his heart.

“An Itsekiri woman doesn’t have to have money to look beautiful but she would use what she has and make something beautiful out of it. My mother told me to learn to cook different delicacies very well in order for me to stand out amongst women and to always remain humble and loyal to my would- be husband. She taught me to be clean always incase my husband needs the other kind of food”, she said.



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