My phone rang. It was Caro. First there was a squeal, so loud I thought my ears would burst, then: “He proposed!! He proposed!!! Ugo, Dennis proposed yesterday! If you see the size of this rock ehn, my dear you’ll just faint!” After my ears had adjusted to normal, I finally could make out what…
My phone rang. It was Caro. First there was a squeal, so loud I thought my ears would burst, then:
“He proposed!! He proposed!!! Ugo, Dennis proposed yesterday! If you see the size of this rock ehn, my dear you’ll just faint!”
After my ears had adjusted to normal, I finally could make out what she was saying. Her boyfriend had asked her to marry him and she was ecstatic. I was indeed happy for her but also had reservations.
“Wow, so Dennis finally proposed? And what did you say?”
I was deliberately teasing, trying to draw out some reaction from her.
“I said yes na! Haba, what else? Husband no dey easy to find ooo!”
I laughed at her response but sobered up immediately, wondering if laughter was the best thing to do at that point. Caro and Dennis had been in a relationship for four years and, as with all relationships, they had had their own fair share of ups and downs. In their case, though, I’d rather say they had more downs than ups. Dennis was a good looking dude with a bank account that flowed like the river Nile and Caro was still a student with one surviving parent and four siblings. She had spent most of her life struggling to meet her basic needs, so Dennis had been like an answer to her prayers. He not only provided for her but for her mum and four younger siblings.
Initially, I thought their relationship was cute. I absolutely loved the fact that he was taking care of her. The only issue I had was how condescending he could be about my friend’s family. He ridiculed her family even in front of me, causing me to speak up for Caro sometimes. I also noticed how he wished to control every part of her life. She couldn’t miss his calls without being accused of being with someone else. She couldn’t visit anyone or go anywhere without him being aware of every place and every person she planned to visit. Once, when she forgot to tell him that she’d gone to a male student’s apartment to enquire about school stuff, he found out and threatened to beat her up. He even told her she’d be nothing without him.
I had tried to voice my concerns to her but I didn’t want to come across as a bad belle friend. I just hoped that maybe she’d realize later and leave him. Well, I couldn’t have been more wrong because now they were getting married. A million thoughts ran through my head that day. What was I to say?
“Erm Caro… Are you sure?”
“Sure about what? Abeg abeg please don’t start. Dennis has done a lot for me and my family and I really love him. Do you think I would be graduating now if not for him? Please please leave all that your woman empowerment stuff for you single ladies, as for me I’m already Dennis’ wife.”
Ignoring the slight shade on my single lady status, I still tried to reason with her. My reasoning earned me a permanent exit from the bridal train, as well as the aso ebi. I attended her wedding as a well-wisher and really hoped that all would be well in her marriage.
That was all three years ago. I recently ran into Caro at a supermarket in PH. To say she had changed would be an understatement. Caro had undergone a complete transformation. Her bubbly, always grinning, larger than life personality had completely disappeared only to be replaced by a woman who viewed the world as a prison. I hadn’t been in contact with Caro since her wedding which took place some months after our graduation, so I didn’t even know what her life had been like. We sat down and reminisced about school days but when I asked after her husband, I noticed her withdrawn look and then as if she couldn’t hold it in anymore, she said:
“Ugo, I regret my marriage.”
Those words shattered me, not just because I had tried my best to warn her of the impending doom she was heading into but because Caro did not deserve what she was going through. She had already gone through a lot in her life. Now, it was being compounded by a bad marriage.
This describes the lot of some women in this world. One of my mentors once said there are some women who start going through hell here on earth, even before they die, because they fail to notice some major flaws in their partner before they tie the knot.
We, as ladies, need to start asking ourselves serious questions before we consider marriage. What exactly are your reasons? Are they mainly financial? Do you feel you can’t survive or afford a certain lifestyle without that particular person? Age may be another reason. Reaching one’s thirties as a single lady may not bother some, but our society will definitely have something to say about it. I’ve also heard stories of ladies who got married because of family issues. They leave their parents’ home because there is no peace there so they jump into a marriage without thinking, hoping it would be better than their present situation. This really describes a case of going from the frying pan to the fire, doesn’t it?
Sometimes love even hinders us from seeing someone’s true character. Yes, love. It’s a beautiful thing to fall in love with someone but that love may also blind you to the fact that your partner may not be as true to you as you think. Then, add mind-blowing sex to the equation and that just ruins everything. Many women start focusing on the guy’s prowess in bed and less on his other characteristics.This is why I always try to advocate for abstinence in relationships, not just because of the spiritual aspect but because introducing sex early on in a relationship can make both partners focus on the physical aspect of that relationship, at the expense of developing other important parts.
Don’t get me wrong, this is not a one-size-fits-all kind of situation. There are relationships where the partners don’t abstain but are still waxing strong. Still, I think it’s best that ladies hold on to their cookie so as to avoid the usual stories that touch the heart.
At the end of the day, marriage is a union of two best friends and lovers becoming one. It is not a bed of roses; it is hard work. Don’t rush in head first for the wrong reasons. Look before you leap. Seek the face of God and try to live a good life. If God was able to give you that job, or university admission you prayed for, then he’ll definitely give you a wonderful spouse that you’ll grow old with. Love will find you at the right time, at the right place and with the right person.