This is a message that I received from someone who was a potential date. The first word I saw was business and I got excited. Here I am thinking he wanted to talk about an actual business venture and then I read the entire message.
Let me give a little background story. I met this guy in July and instantly he was “interested” in me. He told my friends and sister that he wanted something serious with me. Being the picky person that I am, I decided to take my time and get to know this guy. Fast forward to December, after a lot of thoughts, I decided it was time to give him a chance. Just as I was about to send him a message, I got a notification on whatsapp and the message above appeared on my screen. “No, Sorry.” was my reply to him. He sent another message about it and I shut it down and that was the last time we ever had a conversation.
I am not new to the whole “let’s get married for papers” story; but there are a few reasons why my reply was what it was. The first thought that came to my mind was the story of my family friend. Olivia got married to a family friend to help him out. Everything was going great until Olivia was knocking on 30 and met a guy and marriage talks began. Olivia started pressuring the family friend to end the marriage immediately, because she needed to get married “for real”. Mind you the papers were not yet processed. After months, our family friend could not deal with the pressure anymore and also he could not live with knowing that he was the reason why her marriage was delayed. So he decided to go ahead with the divorce.
The second thought that came to my mind is another story of a friend of mine. Let’s call him Ola. Ola was hoping to get married to his girlfriend for “papers” a long time ago. However, her family wanted the couple to get married for real. He was not ready to get married so one of his friends decided to get married to him. The girlfriend ended up breaking up with him. Ola and his “wife” started liking each other and started dating. After about 6 years of dating, there were blurred lines in their relationship because the girl wanted to get married but Ola did not think a ring was necessary because they were already “married”. Ola was blinded by love that he forgot to file for his papers. I kept advising Ola about it until one day their relationship ended and it was crunch time to get the papers filed before the break-up ends bad. Long story short, the girl was nice enough to let Ola get his papers before she went ahead with the divorce.
So those were the two stories that took over my mind the moment I received that email and it took me about 30 seconds to go through those scenarios before sending my reply. With the first story, I saw myself being Olivia. The thought that I will meet someone and want to make wedding plans but that would have to be put on hold because I got into a business deal does not sit right by me. Who wants to delay their wedding because of a few bucks from the past? Not me!
The second scenario also came to my mind because my friend obviously had feelings for me for a long time (or maybe he just wanted passport business all along and decided to speak his mind). Well let’s pretend he was honest about his feelings. My brain will not know how or where to draw the line between we are dating and we are married for papers. Isn’t one of the rules about business not to mix business with pleasure?
Getting married for papers is very common and people are always on the lookout for someone they can pay for the arrangement. I am guessing it works out for most people but I also know it gets complicated. I believe that it would probably work better if the people that get into the situation are strangers. I say this because strangers are most likely to get together, get it done, follow up on the process and keep it moving. I think it gets complicated when the two parties come from the same circle. And can you picture yourself getting close to filing for the citizenship just for someone to present you with divorce papers? That is what Olivia did to our family friend. When she met her man, the business deal completely went out the window. I wish anyone in this situation the best of luck and a smooth path until the end. Also my advice is that, if this is something you are thinking about, make sure that the person you choose to do this with is credible and knows what the process is and how long it will take. Some people might say yes to the deal because of the money but make sure you understand that it is not just a process that takes one or two years. And also do you know this is also considered marriage fraud?
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