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LofeMide: These Are Things Nobody Tells the Bride

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dreamstime_l_24001127You know how politicians and politically aware people eagerly await a new government’s 100 days in office? Publications highlighting the government’s achievements in the time frame, bearing assurances and fresh promises to silence wailing wailers flood the media. 100 days in office is usually a big deal. Since my husband is so into politics and so not into anniversaries, I decided to ignore our 3 months month-niversary and celebrate 100 days in marriage instead. Well, it didn’t quite work.

And that’s perhaps where I should start. There are several things the bride does not hear before she becomes a wife. There are many things she is outrightly not told; others she is too happy or too busy to understand. Then she gets married and after the long awaited event, her ‘eyes clear’.  Sometimes, the giddy feeling lasts till the honeymoon is over, but when she returns home with her husband, reality hits.

Even when the new wife has the most understanding husband and uninterested far-away in-laws, marriage is still a huge adjustment. Everything is different, maybe not everything, but many important things.  She can no longer be the lady who eats take-out on week nights or sleeps Saturday away. The state of her house is no longer dependent on her. The love of her life might forget his half-drunk coke on her freshly mopped tiles. Her favourite TV show might co-incide with his favourite team’s match.  Or the in-laws might pop in while she is lighting scented candles and she morphs from sexy wife to caterer. Of all these things, the part that will daze her the most is how easily her doting darling occasionally transforms into Hitler demanding compliance and refusing to reason.

No one tells the bride that money arguments will end romantic nights. No one tells her she will feel insecure if her husband is not obviously thrilled by her meals. No one tells her she can no longer just up and decide to hang with the girls after work, that’s if the girls don’t even ‘free’ her to ‘cement’ her marriage. No one tells her she will hate him and love him all at once; that her plans might not work out and her hopes might be dashed a lot. No one tells her that in spite of all these, she will experience many moments of exhilarating joy and contentment when her husband smiles and says ‘thank you’. When family and friends comment on how well taken care of he looks, when her husband ascribes the credit to her, when she realises that there’s one person in the world who always has her back even if his eyes are glued to Merci’s feet.

So let’s talk about it. You married this man eyes wide open and you have to make it work. There is no more storming out of his house and refusing to pick his calls. His house is your house now so the best you can do is storm into the guest room if you have one. If you don’t, storm into the toilet or kitchen. The kitchen is your best bet though.

In the last 100 days, I have discovered three key things that have kept me sane, happy and in-love. First is the fact that I am still me. Yes, my last name changed, my address too, even my weekend to-do list, but I am ultimately still me and that shouldn’t change. I must ensure that I retain my drive, my dreams, and the core of my person. My values must not get lost amidst used plates or piling laundry. Annoying in-laws must not rid me of my good upbringing. My husband’s moods, actions or reactions must not eradicate my self-worth. My time with God must survive our early morning rumps or late night pillow talk. I must never get so busy being a wife that I forget to be me. If I don’t preserve my essence, one day I will burn out from trying too hard, I will look in the mirror and wonder who this is. And it will hurt more than a husband’s insult or a boss’s disdain.

Next, I realised I am not alone, my husband is adjusting too. Yes, my culture shock is degrees above his own but his life changed too. He might not be talking about it, but he sometimes misses leaving his trousers on the couch or throwing his socks on the TV divider. He loves my cooking but there are days when he just wants to chew gum and play Football Manager. Sometimes when he doesn’t talk to me about stuff: not because he wants to shut me out, he’s just really afraid of making a mistake. The realisation that his mistakes affect me and our home is often times a heavy cross to bear.

My welcome home hug is warm and nice, may be the highlight of his day but there are times when he is just not in the mood to hear the long details of how my day went. This new accountability is strange to him too. And everything is heightened by the fact that he does not understand me many times. Things tend to go from simple to complicated when he involves me so he can’t even find the words to express his feelings without getting in trouble. This realisation greatly relaxed me.

Lastly, I realised that nothing is cast in stone. There is no rule book, no Unbreakable Marriage Tenets. This is not an employment where I must abide by the office manual; this is my life and its mine to live. It’s ok to draw up new patterns, create new routines, do things in ways that won’t have occurred to my mother. The only person that needs to agree is my husband. And that’s the key in marriage as I have come to know. There is only one task- be this man’s wife, I can devise easier and more enjoyable ways to do it as long as he is adequately ‘wifed’.

Oh, there’s an addendum, it is disruptive to measure his ‘husbanding’ skills by your ‘wifing’ skills. That is the way to heartbreak and disappointment. Focus on doing your part and enjoying the dividends that come with it. Your first reward is a happy thriving husband. If you can achieve that, the other things you desire will follow. Love always gives before it thinks of taking, if your marriage won’t be frustrating, you must become a master giver of your time and your love. What if he hurts me, you ask. Well, he will hurt you as you are bound to hurt him too but love is a risk as is all of life. Hearts open, no blocks, no shields, sometimes bleeding, sometimes crying, that’s how to love. That’s how God loves.

Photo Credit: Dreamstime

Lofemide is a deep-thinker, detail-finder and word-smith‎. She is particular about details, hence her writings are mostly musings and conversations. Especially conversations with herself and her God who she loves to no end. Read more of her musings at bunmilofe.blogspot.com or tweet at her @lofemide.

45 Comments

  1. ugo

    April 18, 2016 at 10:53 am

    What a sensible write up unlike the other one about marriage just recently. Realistic expectations. Well done.

  2. Tee for Tea

    April 18, 2016 at 11:04 am

    I love this write up especially the part of ” Annoying in-laws must not rid me of my good upbringing.” At times some people make you want to act out and you have to constantly remind yourself of where you come from. May God help us all

    • ugo

      April 18, 2016 at 11:21 am

      Exactly!

  3. lily

    April 18, 2016 at 11:06 am

    this is a beautiful piece,btw the thought of marriage scares me……God help us all

  4. Gracie

    April 18, 2016 at 11:07 am

    lolzzzzz. funny but very true. i am still mad at my fiance though but this piece got me smiling at some memories .nicely written

  5. Anonymous honey

    April 18, 2016 at 11:31 am

    Really good read Lofemide! Would head over to your blog in a bit for more. 😉
    PS: your name is lovely, what does it mean?

    • Another Anon

      April 18, 2016 at 1:35 pm

      Can I be cheeky and say that the name sounds like a prescription med to my ears??. But I’m sure it means something lovely though.

    • LofeMide

      April 26, 2016 at 1:25 pm

      LofeMide is a combination of my first name and my maiden name. To translate it literally, it means ‘Freely I have come’. Thanks for the kind comments.

  6. Adenike

    April 18, 2016 at 11:50 am

    Hello Author, the word for monthly celebration is LUNIVERSARY. Always wanting to be grammar correct I searched online, when I wanted to celebrate my relationship monthly (the day I said yes to the girlfriend proposal)…LOL.

  7. adedire busola

    April 18, 2016 at 11:52 am

    ‘What if he hurts me, you ask. Well, he will hurt you as you are bound to hurt him too but love is a risk as is all of life. Hearts open, no blocks, no shields, sometimes bleeding, sometimes crying, that’s how to love. That’s how God loves’. These words!!

  8. miss a

    April 18, 2016 at 12:01 pm

    Very enlightening and educating read. Yes i still struggle with some of them, good to know that so many other young ‘wives’ are going through same too.

  9. skits

    April 18, 2016 at 12:05 pm

    Tell me about it!!!! They should have a hand book on this.

  10. Ginger

    April 18, 2016 at 12:29 pm

    You should have mentioned “know your boundaries”
    Because we as women are always taught to love and endure and tolerate and be understanding, often blurring out the lines of gross disrespect and even abuse from the husband and his family.
    This was a nice article, but I’d like more about how women should love themselves in marriage and STILL not settle for less, even though they want to put in their best shot. Tolerating or pretending to overlook his cheating or abuse or ill treatment from his family won’t make you an angel or increase your chances of making heaven, seriously. You’re NOT more likely to make heaven than a divorcee. God is the ultimate judge but he’s not judgemental.
    Divorce is an option, even in the Bible it’s permitted on the grounds of adultery, because the heart of man is wicked (or something like that)
    I just want to learn more about how we women can TRULY love ourselves and uphold our self-worth. Being married can’t be better than being happy, can it?

  11. AANUOLUWAPO OYEDELE

    April 18, 2016 at 12:37 pm

    I luv this article a million times
    There is only one task- be this man’s wife, this is a reminder to me

  12. Merci.

    April 18, 2016 at 1:00 pm

    An uinashamed God-lover! Wonderful! Thank you!

    Grrrrreat article!

    Was wondering who “”Merci”” (french for thank you) was, then figured out spellcheck ‘helped’ you ”correct’ it from Messi.

  13. ada

    April 18, 2016 at 1:20 pm

    It looks like this was written just for me. I’m a little over 100 days and boy have I been burnt by this shock!!!! The doting darling literally turned into hitler, I didn’t “hesperedit”. So recently we get back from work and I head to the kitchen to make a meal and unlike him, he leaves me in the kitchen and goes to lie down; perhaps if there was light and he was watching tv I wouldn’t have felt bad. So perhaps because of my reaction, he decides to do the same thing the next day and so I start frowning. After his meal, he moves around a bit and then seeing I still had my plate in my hand, brings his and says please help me and I said no. That is how I became a non-bible wife. I’m like waaaooo. It is well.

    • Tosin

      April 18, 2016 at 3:14 pm

      you didn’t ask but here’s my feeling:
      i wish i could talk to you one on one to explain that
      you need to talk and tell the unvarnished truth about what you want. i do not know what you want. (let me tell you what i want for example, i want my husband to feed me 90% of the time otherwise he can get the f out, i don’t need him. there is no boju-boju about it. )
      you want what?
      can you tell the truth or are you always indirect and imagining that people read your mind or just know? like now, i have read your comment but i don’t know. Do you want to cook? Do you want to rotate cooking? Do you want a massage while cooking? Do you want to move the kitchen into the living room or move a couch and TV into the kitchen? ( bit.ly/1XEChBM it may be cheaper to remodel than to keep being upset ) Do you want to get a caterer and say screw cooking? Do you want him to get a caterer and say screw cooking? Do you love cooking? Do you love cooking after work? Does your guy love cooking? Do you need to stretch out on the couch too instead of cooking?
      I just feel like you’re inconveniencing yourself and then bellyaching because the other person is not matching your level of discomfort. and trust me, guys don’t play that game. they would rather maximise happiness than maximize unhappiness (which i think many women are in the habit of doing. i’m suffering/sacrificing why can’t he/they also see my sacrifice and join me and sacrifice so we can all be sad together.)
      If you have a brother, talk to your brother and get tips, or as you’re Ada you may be able to get honest with your father. If you don’t learn this trick, you will be ‘franking’ your face for many decades to come, and I pray that won’t be your portion.
      Basically, dare to ask for and get what you want in a clear and direct manner. Maximise happiness for yourself (first) as well as your guy. #WinningTeam 😀

    • Na Wah

      April 18, 2016 at 5:13 pm

      I swear Tosin I tire for you.

      “I just feel like you’re inconveniencing yourself and then bellyaching because the other person is not matching your level of discomfort. and trust me, guys don’t play that game. they would rather maximise happiness than maximize unhappiness (which i think many women are in the habit of doing. i’m suffering/sacrificing why can’t he/they also see my sacrifice and join me and sacrifice so we can all be sad together.)”

      Most Guys nor like wahala at all :).

    • Sisi

      April 19, 2016 at 12:44 pm

      THIS! Hmmmm it’s hard, especially for the passive aggressive like myself but I know it’s a problem. Not communicating what you want and expecting everyone to be a mind reader. Ultimately you shouldn’t have this problem with your other half, that should be a part of the reason they are your other half. You can tell them anything, express your wants and ‘not-wants’. That’s what I am praying for a least. Great write up x

  14. ifeoma

    April 18, 2016 at 1:21 pm

    I love the addendum, Its very key….
    Thanks

  15. Wendy

    April 18, 2016 at 1:27 pm

    Great article! Love it.

  16. Abs

    April 18, 2016 at 1:41 pm

    I’m only a few weeks into this institution and I remember calling my mum just last week to rant about how much is demanded of me as a wife, I wasn’t coherent and she simply told me off, its expected of me as a woman and reminded me I’m no longer in my father’s house.
    The truth is, I have the most considerate husband, he hates to impose and manages his expectation but I’m sick of everyone calling in to check if I’m cooking for him if he’s well taken care of blah blah. Who looks after me ehn? It’s bad enough that I have to wake up earlier than I usually would to cook, tidy the house on weekends and still go to work like it’s nothing. No kids yet oh, and btw, these chores don’t stop cos you’re pregnant. Women give up everything in a marriage, just make sure it’s for a deserving spouse, at least that would warm your heart up often.

    • red pill male

      April 18, 2016 at 8:53 pm

      Lol. You suddenly realized that marriage is more than a bunch of instagram photos and hash tags eh?

    • Abby Scuito

      April 18, 2016 at 10:18 pm

      ????????????????? ^ this right here hahahahahahahahaha

    • Tunmi

      April 18, 2016 at 11:40 pm

      “Who looks after me ehn?” this almost broke my heart
      @Abs, how are you doing? Is he taking care of you ????

  17. Ttt

    April 18, 2016 at 2:50 pm

    Incredibly rich article. I am going to paste this extract below somewhere. It is so so key. Thanks for writing Lofemide.

    In the last 100 days, I have discovered three key things that have kept me sane, happy and in-love. First is the fact that I am still me. Yes, my last name changed, my address too, even my weekend to-do list, but I am ultimately still me and that shouldn’t change. I must ensure that I retain my drive, my dreams, and the core of my person. My values must not get lost amidst used plates or piling laundry. Annoying in-laws must not rid me of my good upbringing. My husband’s moods, actions or reactions must not eradicate my self-worth. My time with God must survive our early morning rumps or late night pillow talk.

  18. Nickless Linus

    April 18, 2016 at 3:10 pm

    Nice one

  19. Osaretin

    April 18, 2016 at 4:24 pm

    Applauds for this one !

  20. Ro

    April 18, 2016 at 4:44 pm

    This is a very nice post, went through similar things when Igot married, especially in the bedmatics area, dude thought he could now get sex, whenever he wanted it after waiting for so long., so he was disappointed to see that my libido didn’t match his, it took a while for us to work that out. Even with the most considerate of husbands they have the ability to pull your hair out.
    I’m also glad all the comments, are positive, no one saying how long have you been married?

  21. Mary Jane

    April 18, 2016 at 5:59 pm

    hmmmmm, my darling Tosin, sometimes, saying what you want means you want things done YOUR way and you are not appreciative of ALLLLLLLLL he’s doing. It means you don consider him a good partner hence, he doesn’t understand why you are with him…Telling him what you want gives room for him to ignore you for weeks, because he feels you are trying to say he is worthless even though you stated your concerns in the most understanding and loving way possible.,,or is this just my fiance, i’m so confused?

    • i

      April 18, 2016 at 6:49 pm

      You need to say what you want with diplomacy and wisdom. I think what Tosin is trying to say is that Men are not mind readers, we are not as intuitive as women are, So we appreciate when we are guided clearly on what to do. The way in which it is presented is also key for both men and women. When asking also take into consideration that men love respect.

    • RUN GIRL RUN

      April 18, 2016 at 8:04 pm

      @MaryJane he’s emotionally manipulating you. He’s an emotional bully. 8/10 people like that know EXACTLY what they’re doing.
      1) He does something wrong. You correct him, he acts like he never did such. Beefs you. You apologise.
      2) You want him to do something right. You correct him, he acts like he never did such. Beefs you. You apologise.
      3) You do something wrong, he beefs you. You apologise.
      And ALLLLL these come with silent treatment,
      So you walk on egg shells
      And you will NEVER be happy, especially because he will make you feel like you’re crazy and you’re imaginig everything. Plus everyone out there loves him. The day you’re in the wrong, he tells EVERYONE. You look like the bad guy, He will even make your friends like him more.

      I was in such a relationship, it almost ruined me. It was my mum’s prayers that saw me out. If not I’d have died by now. You better run girl. He isn’t someone you can change. And don’t say ‘it’s not a big deal’ cause it is. Goodluck xx

    • Maguim

      April 18, 2016 at 10:38 pm

      Ooooohhhh this looks like my ex….
      I dont believe in assumptions, silence and all… I believe in saying things and asking questions…. I.d reather have you telling me what the problem is, and us findibg a solution together, than having to figure ir out myself and having it all wrong…..
      No matter what i said, it was never good…..”my” ideas were only good enough when he was the one saying (like i say something today, he says neverrrrr, and comes back tomorrow with my idea, like Eureka…… Ah mister man why nawwww….lol)
      Never mind… I left once, because i felt we were not on the same page (maturity, life goals…..) he called crying, begged for days, saying he didn’t realise what he was doing…..went back to him…….2years later, finally told him this is not working….. I dont see myself with someone who is not opened to discussion , know it all , and never do anything wrong…… Its been 2 weeks now, and i just feel like i got my life back…… Yayyyyyyyy…… And mister man has been crying,writing 3-pages letter, sending tons of text msg, updating his whatsapp dp with pics of us together ( someone who never had pics of us)….. I told him i am at peace now…..alone….. Like …..sorry peeps i had to rant…..

  22. Busola I

    April 18, 2016 at 7:18 pm

    This article speaks to me. Need to always refresh my memory about being a good wife and also expecting same from hubs. Thanks to ‘mide

  23. red pill male

    April 18, 2016 at 9:19 pm

    Men work to provide food, shelter and protection for their families, you don’t hear them complaining. Trust a woman to complain about having to cook and clean for her HUSBAND. Imagine if men constantly complained about having to pay rent, school fees etc? You entitled little girls need to grow. Married life is about sacrifice, deal with it.

  24. Zaina

    April 18, 2016 at 10:02 pm

    Marriage is Work Work Work Work Work Work!!!!

    For women and MEN. Soooo he works to provide food, shelter and protection hence should not support his wife who:

    1) has to wake up earlier than he does to make breakfast and possibly lunch and still make it in time for WORK because ooooh, she works too!

    2) goes work, to maintain support system for family, comes back possibly same time he gets back and still goes into the kitchen to make dinner.

    3) have SEX with her newly beloved because oooooo it is almost unimaginable to deny brotherly of his “entitlement” And then continue the cycle the following day.

    4) Get pregnant from all the love making and still be concerned with taking care of the household aka her husband the great provider (who by the way has suddenly forgotten how to compliment her, massage her swollen feet, ask about her highs and lows for the day etc) , cook for him even when the aroma makes her puke every 10mins, have SEX with him and still have insecurities about her pregnancy weight gain…

    I could go on, but does it really matter? He husband doesn’t complain When he pays rent and blah blah. So how dare the woman!

    *hisssssssssss*

    • Ginger

      April 18, 2016 at 10:37 pm

      lol Zaina I don’t get why they’re complaining. When feminists are fighting for equal rights, we’re called evil. You both work but ONLY you does all the housework, waking up EARLIER even though you both struggle to pay bills. You knew a man was like this, you married him. You don’t ask him to help you, you enable him to be absolved of housework, then you come here to complain. Please, enough of the lamenting, cant even bother to care again. If you can’t tell your HUSBAND to help out in the work and in his presence you act like you don’t mind, don’t come to BN to complain cause its actually two-faced of you.

    • red pill male

      April 19, 2016 at 7:19 am

      Like I said, marriage is about sacrifice. Constantly. This is something you can’t seem to understand. Stop complaining and stop reading Cosmo. Btw I like how you pretend that sex is only for the man’s benefit, the wife derives no joy whatsoever.

      The irony is that if you had a husband who was at your beck and call, so appreciative 24/7, helped in the kitchen and all that, you would detest him. A woman dislikes a man who doesn’t give her what she wants but absolutely DETESTS a man who gives her all she asks without question.

    • Venus vs Mars

      April 19, 2016 at 9:22 am

      Zaina truth is both men and women sacrifice a lot for each other at different times. Men are not of the habit of being vocally expressive when doing what is expected of them and expect women to also do same. I understand that women are not built this way as they are naturally more vocally expressive. If you are OK with cooking after both of you come back from work then its better to do it without complaining. Also with Child bearing and Sex lol, but who am I kidding? Some things are just natural to both men and women. Emotions and logic. Men need to learn emotional intelligence while Women to be more logical.

      PS. Bearing Children is for the Both of you and I am certain that most men would have taken up the responsibility of bearing children with out complaining if they could.

  25. Zaina

    April 18, 2016 at 10:04 pm

    2) goes to work, to maintain a support system for her family, comes back possibly same time he gets back and still goes into the kitchen to make dinner.

  26. pwetymie

    April 18, 2016 at 11:18 pm

    oga …[email protected] pill male, these days which man solely pay rent, fees & bills? for your info, most women carry or share these burdens and still do their wifely/home obligations. its not out of place for them to complain at times, especially when they get the impression from their hubby that they are not appreciated. #my2cents

  27. Rayva

    April 19, 2016 at 7:52 am

    @Tosin your head is screwed right……………..your words are giving me life.

  28. Aristotle

    April 19, 2016 at 9:54 am

    Hmmmm…..all these blah blah ends up blah.
    I have not seen any one who can deny having basic knowledge abt these marriage stuffs at least b4 getting into it, but what baffles me is the complain…my hubby did this, my sweet pie did that…crazy, all crazy! One candid advice is this…if u know u can’t take the shits in marriage then stay single and gain all the happiness ever as u wish, trust me that will do u a great deal but to complain i detest it.
    Marriage is all abt sacrifice from the both sides. .. u let go of who u re and what u used to be and adjust to make a better life with ur partner….trust God and do ur best. We re all imperfect beings, God made it so. It is only one who has no fear of God would say i, i and i…. Sometimes u need to create moments of reflection….take a walk, visit some places wonderful places, sometimes hospitals and even mortuary then when u re back u take a sit and ask urself….Who is this i? i think u can find a better answer. So what’s the best thing, 1. enter into marriage with a positive mindset. 2. let go of ur pride, ego and all that…they will do u no good. 3. Decide on giving-in ur best. 4. Let ur LOVE be natural. Learn to sacrifice…it is a virtue. 5. Then let pray lead….give God a large space in ur hrt and that will give u wisdom and make u humble and diligent……… Enjoy!!!!!!!!!!
    To be continued…….

  29. ada

    April 19, 2016 at 2:05 pm

    @Tosin no be today I know say e get as e dey you but I would try to be saying what I want oh. I was going to respond to @red pill male but I see it has been responded to hence these men say we are always making noise about our own contributions to the home; financial I mean.

  30. Marian

    April 20, 2016 at 6:34 am

    What goes on during counseling? My pastor brought all these up and more with real life examples. Money, finance, bills, joint account or no joint account were topics we did in church for a month. Talk about money before you get married and have a plan you are both happy with. Don’t try to copy another couple Cuz their way may not work for you. I’m team joint and personal account that we both have access to. Don’t have a secret account your spouse is not aware of. It’s toxic! One lady in yankee built a house in naija behind her husband’s back. They are divorced now. Saddest part was her mom knew and encouraged her.

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