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Diaspora Chronicles: Being Married is Sweeter… Outside Nigeria

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I got married to my best friend in Nigeria about 10 years ago and we started building our home in Nigeria. We had good jobs but had busy lives. We were out in the morning and were so tired by the time we got back from work. The strange thing was that my husband, who was also as busy as me, would expect me to then enter the kitchen and make his food… like I didn’t have a long day too.

I did not mind making the food, but the least I would expect was for him to sit with me in the kitchen, while I work; possibly share the meal with me while we discuss our day.  However, the opposite was the case. He would take his food to the living room eat and pass out in front of the TV. I would then clear the table, wash-up and still perform my “nightly duties” in the bedroom.

These are different times after all; I am contributing half of all house-hold bills. It is therefore no longer the age where the man would expect you to do all at home, as if he is the only one carrying more or all of the financial load.

I, therefore, do not think that I am expecting too much if I ask that he pulls his weight with house work. When I suggested we get a maid, he refused and said we were a new couple and that this is the time to enjoy the bonding and togetherness before the children come. I wasn’t enjoying any togetherness and resentment was building but before I could slap him and walk out of the marriage, we won the visa lottery and relocated.

When we relocated to the US, it was like the switch was turned on in my husband’s head.  He went back to the same man who courted me.  When I subsequently visited Nigeria, it became clear to me that there was a difference in marriages between Nigerians in the US and those living back home and even those who relocated back to Nigeria after a sojourn abroad displayed a marked difference.

The difference, I noticed were what made me realize that I was enjoying married life in the US better,  and these are my reasons.

Full disclosure of finances
In the US, my husband discusses most things with me, especially when it comes to finances.
While we were living in Nigeria, I did not know how much he earned, if he was saving or what our financial plans were.

It was not like I didn’t ask and even tell him what I was earning but as far as he was concerned, my knowing what he earned was a way of controlling him, so he kept me in the dark.

However, in the US, we need to file our taxes together, take a mortgage together – both parties know what the other person is earning, especially if you are in paid employment.
I am not saying that they are no men in Nigeria discussing and sharing most information with their spouses, but from discussions with my friends back home I can still see that it is more of an anomaly than a norm.

Joint responsibility for domestic chores
My husband helps around the house.
I know that in Nigeria with all its multiple helps, it means that men do not have to lift a finger. However, does that mean that even if he removes his shoes and shirts that he can’t hang them or keep them away?

There is that joy that comes from doing things together, and I do not mean just in hanging out or going places but it could be sitting together and making a meal or even tidying or re-painting a room. For me, the endorphins that come after the accomplishment of a project with my spouse is better than the one that comes from hanging out and drinking – especially as our children are learning something meaningful from watching us work as a team.
This weekend we both cleaned out the shed and garage while the kids rode their bicycles in circles around us!

Close involvement in parenting
My husband is closely involved with raising the children. In Nigeria where lesson teachers are the norm, mum liaises with the lesson teacher, while the dad just pays the school fees.

I have had the opportunities to go for parent conference with friends to their children’s  schools when I am around and I am amazed that attendance by dads are less than 30% and forums are typically dominated by the moms.

Of course, the dads are not seen attending or chauffeuring the children to after school activities. I also see in homes that the dad sits in his own world especially during La Liga or UEFA season and the mom is running around teaching the children house work and more. I know that helps – teachers, drivers and all that are affordable in Nigeria, but do you have to out-source your parenting responsibilities too?

Some of the issues we are seeing in our Nigerian society now is stemming from this as children will mimic who they spend the most time with. Here in the US, my husband takes the kids to after-school activities, at least twice a week. There is so much emphasis here on dads playing their role and they take joy in it.

Healthy Distance from The INLAWS!
You can see that I put them in capital letters and it is not by mistake. If you have read my other articles you must have figured out by now that in-laws are a pet peeve of mine.  If I was living in Nigeria, they can visit at any time and stay from Easter till Christmas after all it their brother or son’s house. Now in the US, before they come, my husband and I will discuss who is coming why they are coming, how long they will stay with us and the rules of engagement during their visit.

It is not that things still don’t happen, (in-laws will always be in-laws) but because my husband knows I have the veto power and can say when or if Mama must go today, he makes sure that he gets Mama to behave, too.

I know of a lady who once had to call the cops on her in-laws and the cops told them they had to leave as their name was not on the lease of the property. I know many people’s cases are not that bad, but as least if they drive you mad, that visit could very well be the last.

Consequences for Domestic Violence
Please don’t get me wrong that domestic violence is not happening in the US but the Nigerians there knowing that the law will go after them are forced to behave. First, if you beat your wife or children and it is reported to the authorities, you will be asked to leave your home…before any other discussion.  The state will appoint a counsel for the abused and they are so many organizations that will rise to support you. This keeps all those “Emeka Mayweather” or “Akin Mayweather” in check!

It is not that they don’t have the same issues that cause the ones in Nigeria to turn their spouses to punching bags but the fear of PDs (Police Departments) and the orange suits is enough warning to keep their arms down.

I am amazed when the reverse is the case in Nigeria, where the woman is told that her sharp tongue is what is making her husband beat her. Sometimes she is told by the church to keep praying for God to touch his heart as marriage is for better for worse. If she eventually cries out about domestic violence, her church and family members may turn against her. She could be kicked out of her home and her children taken from her without any intervention from the law.

Minimal Interference from Outsiders
With the busy lives we live in the US, we barely have enough time to listen to people who adjudicate issues we may have in our marriage. When my husband and I have issues, we are forced to sit-down and resolve it ourselves, as there is no one around that has time to come and hear “she said and he did” talk.

Of course some people in America have time to burn the phone and calling cards reporting their cases to whomever can listen but the person is still oceans away and cannot show up at your door step to tell you “I heard so and so”.

This, therefore, forces us to discuss issues and resolve them especially as beating and getting the other thrown out is not an option. From my experience, the interference of 3rd and 4th parties actually make things worse no matter where you live.

Marriages in the US just like marriages everywhere have their challenges but the societal, cultural and traditional norms of Nigeria helps exacerbate an already trying venture so in the meantime as the ocean divide is helping ameliorate those issues for me; I can only say for me, my marriage is sweeter in the US. Feel free to share if your case is different. See you next month.

For more articles like this see our blog – www.diasporachronicles.com; Instagram – @diasporachr; Facebook – diaspora chronicles.
Written by Kiki Daniels.

Photo Credit: .shock | Dreamstime.com

Diaspora Chronicles specialises in insightful stories, articles and news that will help the newbie settle abroad. On the occasion we do write stories that border on entertainment. Our differentiating factor is that we will not share gossip hence our tag line "gossip is so last year"! Check us out on our blog www.diasporachronicles.com, [email protected], Facebook -Diaspora Chronicles and [email protected]

51 Comments

  1. Deleke

    July 4, 2017 at 7:40 pm

    Happy 4th of July to you writer. Which state you from? If you are in the Tri-state area swing by Staten Island. I totally agree with all your points

  2. Ay

    July 4, 2017 at 7:48 pm

    True and well said

  3. Cindy

    July 4, 2017 at 7:49 pm

    Very interesting article. Marriages can and do fail anywhere in the world. What’s most important is the two people putting in effort to make it work.

    Please if you are a christian and a single father of one, 34yrs and above looking for a genuine friendship, you can get across to me. I am also a single mom of one and a christian.
    If you are not yet a father but you feel your heart is large enough for two, you can also reach me. Thanks.
    Bb pin 79b20842

    • Mahka

      July 5, 2017 at 12:54 pm

      I admire your courage…God bless.

  4. Ekwu

    July 4, 2017 at 7:54 pm

    My spouse is wonderful human being all round, but I have to admit that married life abroad is so much more sweeter. It’s truly like it’s 2 of you in it TOGETHER…

  5. Frida

    July 4, 2017 at 7:56 pm

    I get all your points but I just want to point something out.
    I live in Nigeria. Married with 2 kids. My husband and I work full time and we have 2 helps at home. And he still pulls his weight at home. He’s very hands-on with our kids. I don’t have hypertensiin when traveling cos I know he can take care of our 2 kids singlehandedly… Help or no help. For example… Last weekend he went to the market to shop for foodstuff cos I was neck deep with extra work at the office. No history of marital violence in our 5yr marriage. Our marriage is not perfect but there’s great communication. Oh… He earns more than I do…. But we’re very open with finances… We know what each person earns and at the beginning of every month we have a spreadsheet showing who pays for what.
    He’s the way he is Bcos he was brought up by a woman who raised her children well….. GOD BLESS my mother in law.

    Moral of the story: it’s about the person… Not the geography. You have assholes everywhere.

    • aunty

      July 5, 2017 at 12:33 am

      *rme* theres always that one person who thinks she is a unicorn.
      madam, she said what is norm in Nigeria. the fact that your husband is an exception doesnt invalidate her point.

    • Baker

      July 5, 2017 at 3:03 am

      Hello sis, I am actually a man. I am married man here in Europe; before I moved to Europe all my friends are married and I quite understand how they run their homes, so I understand. I also agree with your side of the issue but the story above is entirely different from what you are saying. The author is perfect and very objective in all points mentioned. Just last weekend I told my wife that I have usually prayed to be a loving and helping husband but I think Europe makes it possible because I do quite understand that if we are living in Nigeria, I will actually not be doing 30% of what am doing now is my marriage. Marriage in western world is entirely different from what happens in Nigeria. PERIOD

    • Frida

      July 5, 2017 at 8:29 am

      @aunty. I just had to reply you.

      No I don’t ‘feel I’m a unicorn’. Infact I think there are many marriages like mine in Nigeria…it’s a matter of the couple and not geography. In her case I might admit geography helped but some things disturbed me about her post.

      No 1….how can a couple not know how much they both earn. I’m all for full financial disclosure in a marriage and I’m not alone. So many Nigerian couples have joint bank accounts and access to each other’s pins. It’s just a matter of trust…which is very important in a marriage. Geography won’t change this.

      2. About helping around the house. It’s not a big deal. I shouldn’t even use the word helping cos it’s also his house. A husband should lend a hand around the house to reduce stress on the wife cos he loves her. Isn’t that what marriage is about? Love?

      3. Parenting. Also depends on the couple. Aren’t the kids also his? I don’t understand o.

    • mee

      July 5, 2017 at 2:49 pm

      I agree with Frida though.

      I am married in Nigeria and i have almost everything she says she has abroad.

      i. Hubby helps with house chores

      ii. We make investment plans together ( my parents also did)

      iii. We keep healthy distance from in laws
      (we live in Lagos they live outside Lagos and we are all busy people and maybe proud people too bcoz even when we are in their vicinity we don’t bunk in their houses neither do they. when my mother in law was ill before she passed, i genuinely wanted to house her and take care of her using a nursing i intended too hire by my sister in laws refused and said they will rather do that)

      iv. No outsider has ever interfered in our marriage

      …and generally i think this is what is now obtainable in most marriages. its different from our parents’. People are now very busy and civilized too. Not to say there are no exceptions and I do not appreciate that civilized cities will help better but its not always so bad in Nigeria either

    • Nigerian Child

      July 5, 2017 at 4:00 pm

      An exception to the rule. everyone knows you get arseholes everywhere., Asians, Arabs and Afr icans take the biscuit when they are in their own land.

  6. Professor X

    July 4, 2017 at 8:03 pm

    Nigerian men truly have to learn that marriage is a partnership. Nigerian women need to also learn to speak up. How can you be married to a man and you do NOT know how much he makes or his financial plans for your family? Heavens forbid, your husband dies, the wife has entered one chance as she is absolutely in the dark with her husband finances.

    • Baby gurl

      July 4, 2017 at 8:14 pm

      Gold comment!!! Thank you. Nuff said.

    • Peaches

      July 4, 2017 at 8:42 pm

      It’s because as Nigerians we are expected to NEVER talk about money, which to me is very insane and unrealistic. Notice people look at you funny when you’re asking how much something is in a restaurant (where it’s not clear) or when you are clear that you have a budget for something and some people act like that’s unheard of. It’s the same thing. We are expected to never talk about finances – don’t you even dare discuss about finances with a man you’re going to be with for the rest of your life. Only when you marry him and see there are inconsistencies and things don’t add up, then you have to foot the bill for everything including the kids, it’s okay to start talking money. I’ve seen this happen so many times that it’s become something I intend to discuss pretty much on the second date with any guy I intend to take seriously. I can’t come and die.

  7. Ec

    July 4, 2017 at 8:33 pm

    With nigeria there is something in the water.

  8. KPOMKWEM

    July 4, 2017 at 8:45 pm

    SPEAK FOR YOURSELF! THE ISSUES YOU RAISED REVOLVE MOSTLY AROUND FINANCIAL WELL-BEING. A LOT OF COUPLES IN NIGERIA ARE VERY FINANCIAL, AND THEREFORE, DO NOT EXPERIENCE ANY OF THESE ISSUES. BY THE WAY, ITS A LOT EASIER TO MAKE MONEY HERE IN NIGERIA THAN ANYWHERE ELSE IN THE WORLD. JS…

    • Ec

      July 4, 2017 at 9:07 pm

      Over exaggeration much!!! How are most Nigerians very financial as you put it. indeed speak for yourself on this one, making money abroad is not as difficult. Plus you don’t need to earn a large salary to enjoy basic amenities

    • Micah

      July 4, 2017 at 9:51 pm

      Must you shout..lol

  9. Chacha

    July 4, 2017 at 8:51 pm

    This write up is spot on. It’s like you have more of a partner abroad due to the way of life here. When my sis came to the US to have her baby, I saw her hubby doing things I had never seen him do before…laundry, cooking, cleaning etc…it was heart warming……the excessive use of “help” or “middlemen” in the form of nannies, drivers etc really take away from the partnership that is intended for marriage in Nigeria. You really get to bond with your spouse abroad due to the busy work schedules, absence of helpers and general simple way of life.

  10. Lacey

    July 4, 2017 at 9:32 pm

    In America the men become mumus, because any kpim, they will hear whin! because the law favors women!!! So you find women in the US cheating on their husbands and making it difficult for the single Nigerian women in America to find a decent husband because of the nasty controlling precedent, this nasty women have put in place, especially those ones that now end up becoming Lpn or Cna certified,that their fake lousy nursing qualifications they now acquire and forming I am a nurse!!! The ones that got there during the era of green card!!! People enjoy marriages in Nigeria more, as far as I am concerned, because a good man is a good man , anywhere!!!

    • Harry

      July 5, 2017 at 8:36 am

      You are right. Most of the men there have completely been turned to zombies. They better not say shit or else….most of them even pretend to enjoy it.

    • Bil

      July 5, 2017 at 9:50 pm

      Law favours women? Yet maternity leave is 2 weeks

  11. john

    July 4, 2017 at 10:47 pm

    one good thing I have observed is that nowadays Nigerian men are not taking their wives overseas as before to live with them, the rate at which nigerian men kill their wives abroad especially in USA is just wow especially the so called nurses in them..I am not saying I support it but I understand and truly feel for them

    • john

      July 4, 2017 at 11:50 pm

      and also knowing how women like to talk a big game and behave, I wont be suprised if tomorrow ,I hear the writer and husband don divorce

    • Stef

      July 5, 2017 at 3:41 am

      You really are a dolt.

  12. ada

    July 4, 2017 at 11:02 pm

    God bless you couldn’t have been said better especially for the in-laws part as I noticed men find it harder or rather take longer to practice cleaving to your wife vow. It is a struggle but easier abroad to make it work than if we were in Nigeria.

    Of course couples bond better when there are no much friends and activities to attend to rather than in Nigeria here.
    By God’s Grace my marriage of a year would stand test of time cause of abroad living o Amen!

  13. Anne

    July 4, 2017 at 11:10 pm

    Only Baba God can lead absolutely with no sorrow added. Just make sure you are in God’s will location wise. Enjoying each other has a lot to do with your personal relationships with God o. Some men are very firm and maintain a very close bond with wife and children even in Nigeria. My youth Pastor was so secretive when his wife travelled to South Africa for a course so much that his wife automatically knew that her husband simply told people that she is fine. A firm man is firm everywhere. In fact we all know that my uncle’s wife knows when he gives us money and how much he gives us. You can’t get in between them at all, you can’t even show up at my uncle’s without letting his wife know. They are just too close and guess what? They live in a part of Lagos where you can’t go in a hurry. Therefore, she is my friend, got no choice. When I did not have money to travel, she told my uncle about it even though I did not ask her for money. She just wondered why I had not travel because I should have. On the other hand, some men are extremely weak, with minds clogged up. They are people pleasers. Such men may need to stay abroad so their wives can at least enjoy them. Finally, it is easier to discover infidelity in Niger. Somebody must know somebody that knows somebody sha. If a man is cheating abroad, you may not know until 5yrs later. May God guide and keep us.

    • Gina

      July 6, 2017 at 11:24 am

      “Just make sure you are in God’s will location wise.”

      There we go again…and pray tell, how do we “make sure” we are in God’s will? Do we have enough power to do something as huge as changing His will?

      If His will is for me to be in Nairobi, can I possibly go against what my Creator planned from before my parents even met?

      You people should stop already with this ridiculous doctrine and making people seem like when issues happen in their lives, it’s because they were not in the location or with the husband or wife or school that was “God’s will”. We all have issues one way or another and that’s never going to end in the circle of life.

      ENOUGH!

  14. Minie

    July 5, 2017 at 12:42 am

    Lacey and john, why are you both beefing nurses?

  15. The real dee

    July 5, 2017 at 1:35 am

    I never experienced living in Nigeria as a married woman so I can’t really compare what it’s like.

    But using my parents as an example, my dad did most of the chores in the house, my mum is a spoilt first born so she doesn’t know how to do house chores, she only cooks. They handle finances together, work on projects together. In their almost 30 years of marriage, he has never lifted his hand to hit her and my mum is as blunt and annoying as they come. However, my dad is not a saint, he had (and may still have) girlfriends and my mum was aware but she developed a coping mechanism. I know this may not be the norm in 9ja. So maybe its an exception to the general rule.

    Comparing them to my in laws who live here in the US, my mother in law does everything from cooking to chores in the house, my father in law does not lift a finger. Sometimes I even pity her when we visit them, my father in law talks down on her, and asserts his ‘headship’ in the house. They both work so it’s not like he’s feeding her, hence the reason for his behavior. There was a time we wanted to travel out of state together, she said she needed to get permission from my father in law first. And of course, we didn’t go because he refused. This is a couple living abroad. Well, maybe this is also not the norm. I don’t know.

  16. Theimmigrantsjourney

    July 5, 2017 at 4:43 am

    Lol. Anne’s comment -“Finally, it is easier to discover infidelity in Niger. Somebody must know somebody that knows somebody sha. If a man is cheating abroad, you may not know until 5yrs later. ”
    But really, lot easier to stay happy in marriages where the distractions are minimal, and societal value system is totally different!
    Again, a good man is a good man anywhere! The “Environment” also helps one appreciate good men!

    Theimmigrantsjourney.WordPress.com

  17. Deji

    July 5, 2017 at 7:02 am

    This article doesnt make sense at all. The writer is assuming that all nigerian couples who relocate have better married loves. This is not true. In fact, a man is tempted with the different races of women esp in the US; from hispanic, white, asian, biracial (different combinations). All those women you see in foreign magazines.

  18. Ngozi

    July 5, 2017 at 8:16 am

    @Deji i think you need to read the article again.The writer didn’t assume that All Nigerian couples who relocate have better marriages.
    Read it again please.

  19. Harry

    July 5, 2017 at 8:31 am

    Looking at it from a female point of view, it favors women a lot. That’s why most men abroad look like defeated beings and very unhappy. I see them whenever I travel and feel nothing but pity for them. Most women take advantage of the laws and abuse these men and have no single respect for them. This is a very selfish write up and if it’s really better in the long run, I don’t think the level of divorces coming out of America will be on the increase. Moreover the level of divorces in Nigeria is also on the increase because of this same thing of trying to copy another man’s culture that is different from yours while living in Nigeria.

    • Zeeebby

      July 5, 2017 at 12:51 pm

      And anything that makes life easy for women or favours them is a problem for you…..agent of Pain

    • Ngozi

      July 5, 2017 at 8:36 pm

      @Harry the reason for the increase in divorce rate in Nigeria may not be due to the points you made above.
      My late grandmother once said that the current divorce rate in Nigeria would have been higher during their time if women of those days were as financially independent as women of today.Those days women had no other option than to marry and remain married.

      For your information,Most Nigerian men want to marry a woman like their mother but only few Nigerian women want to marry a man like their father or be treated like their mother. That should tell you something.

    • Bimbo

      July 6, 2017 at 1:25 am

      I don’t understand why a man should look defeated because the law doesn’t let him cheat or bully his wife !

  20. Uloma Ezirim

    Uloma Ezirim

    July 5, 2017 at 8:38 am

    BN thank you for your fine editing. We have noted your changes and will do better next time.
    Readers thanking you all so much. When Kiki and I catch-up to agree on stories, our main focus is a topic that will drive conversation. Fortunately, we both are lousy at fiction and identify more with our personal stories or observations. Please remember it is our version of events, your views could be different and we welcome it 100% as one gets to learn till death. Deleke, Kiki might be in Nigeria for all of summer but email us and we can take it from there. Cindy, God almighty will grant you the second chance that he gave me. That lovely guy is out there, drop us an email and I might have a hook up. Only thing is I live in the UK and that’s where those I know reside. Frida you are right some husbands in Nigeria are lovely it does not matter where they live. Lacey you harsh oh but you do have a point. In fact read this story written by Kiki diasporachronicles.com/tale-states-pt-2-killer-husband-hall-infamy/ – follow the link when you go in for the part one. Then you will see that indeed Kiki knows the good and bad sides of marriages even in “the abroad”. Anne I agree only God can help us. The real Dee, Thank God for your parents. Deji, na wa, this your temptation story is serious but it is well. Finally the Immigrants Journey, going to follow you straight away. I love to read blogs that have similar patterns so we can steal some ideas lol! Enjoy everyone. love and peace!

    • Frida

      July 5, 2017 at 12:39 pm

      Thank you for replying Uloma. I’m an avid reader of your blog and I do understand the points she raised.

      I think the young generation of Nigerian husbands are stepping up their game hence my experience in my own marriage….upbringing also matters a lot. My husband grew up in a home where sons weren’t made to feel entitled.
      It’s very difficult getting help in Nigeria now and a lot of wives have full time jobs and are co-bread winners now…given the harsh economic climate in Nigeria.
      In my daughter’s school for instance, it’s mostly dads who do school run….a lot of dads also attend school events.
      This was not my experience growing up as a child as my parents had a very traditional marriage…I still had friends whose dads were very handson.

  21. Temi

    July 5, 2017 at 8:43 am

    This argument/article is flawed. It is not Nigeria that was the problem..it was how you chose to live as a Nigerian in Nigeria. The constant need for people to validate their abroad living as superior as become tiring. Just enjoy your damn abroad life…NO some of you insist eating the food, keeping mainly nigerian friends, staying on Nigerian social media blogs etc and still on a constant bash Nigeria roll. Back to the point of the article how come divorce rate are so high in the US if it is so much sweeter? I am married with a child in Nigeria, I and my husband do most of house chores ourselves. He drives to the grocery store on the way back from work and gets weekly groceries etc. We know exactly how much we each earn even though (luckily) for us we dont have mortgages. Also no this not an attack on the writer I have lived a larger portion of my adult life in two different countries apart from Nigeria so I get the seeming ease. However in the end let us take responsibility for ourselves and the behaviours we are/were too weak to reject and quit lumping Nigeria/Nigerians into personal battles.

  22. Paul Agim

    July 5, 2017 at 9:00 am

    That Emeka May weather and Akin May weather lines is sooo hilarious. May GOD bless and keep our marriages peaceful

  23. ijebu Khaleesi

    July 5, 2017 at 9:07 am

    Harry… Harry… Harry.
    You sound like an abuser. JS.

  24. Everything's rosie

    July 5, 2017 at 9:14 am

    Moral of this story, it is better to marry and LIVE abroad, preferably the US, because the men behave better there! What a lame writeup!

  25. Yellow sun

    July 5, 2017 at 9:20 am

    Yaaaay…this article is for me oh
    We are moving abroad and I just can’t wait to get away from inlaw drama and for hubby to be hands on..instead of leaving everything to me
    It is so tiring …we barely even have time to date in the marriage
    Bills bills bills.. .Jesus.. I can’t wait

    • OJ

      July 5, 2017 at 10:57 am

      My sista, bills bills bills are waiting for you to start paying when you land in america

  26. Mum of Two

    July 5, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    I get the poster’s point, and its probably her reality but mehn I absolutely and completely disagree.

    I live in Nigeria with my husband and 2 kids, We moved back in 2014 after living in Europe for a couple of years. I have experienced both and i make bold to say I prefer my marriage in Nigeria ooo! We both work (8-5 jobs) and we have a driver, a nanny and a house keeper, so we fit the typical Naija family narrative but all this story of nil financial disclosure, inlaw wahala, not helping etc, i cannot relate o. We both know what each other earns, we have always known and no we dont file joint tax returns or have a mortgage. We simply COMMUNICATE and trust each other. We would do this either we live in Nigeria or Cambodia.

    On IN LAWS, I have been absolutely blessed to live close to my neighbours. My mother in law helps me buy foodstuff in the open market (because stores around my house are too expensive in ger opinion) and is always willing to watch the kids when we go out of town. My sisters and brothers in law absolutely respect themselves and I get zero drama in that space. In fact Im the leech constantly needing their nanny, driver, tailor, hairdresser, mechanic etc. They are my support system.

    On domestic violence. I think the key thing is to marry a man that wouldnt require the fear of Police department to not beat you.

    On chores, neither of us does that anyway and i consider it a huge positive of living in Naija to be able to outsource chores.

    On Parenting, I believe my husband handles the kids better. I am more available for school events due to my work location and flexibility but my husband tries. and he does a very good job.

    I felt very strongly about droppiong my message so that young Bella Naija ladies dont start aspiring to go abroad to marry or move abroad to have “better marriages”. Marry a good person, Dont take what you wont take. Your location doesnt affect your marital success! xxx

  27. Miss Ndi

    July 5, 2017 at 1:53 pm

    It is true that not all Nigerian marriages are as bad as the writer painted, and it is also true that some marriages here in Nigeria are better than elsewhere. But do these points negate the writers experience? absolutely not.

    The fact that her husband changed (for the better) when they moved to the U.S does not also mean that he’s pretending and when they move back he’ll change again (or whatever else).

    This article simply brings to life the knowledge that nurture and nature are what make a person. Your experiences and your environment play a huge role in defining how you behave, and this is why it is important to understand how/under what circumstances a person grew up in order to understand why they behave the way they do.

    That said, the Nigerian society generally, does not promote the kind of (better) life you would have elsewhere, there’s no pretending about it. The point of this article, I believe, is not to get spouses to defend the ‘Nigerian marriage’ but to highlight that sometimes, the experiences you have are as a result of the environment you are in.

  28. Mz Socially Awkward....

    July 5, 2017 at 11:17 pm

    I feel as though the writer of this article stole the topic straight out of my ever-wondering mind….. because, this is a topic I’ve often pondered on.

    When you’re part of a mainly Nigerian community “in the abroad” in any way, there’s plenty of watching and observing to do. And especially when that community is largely made of married folk.

    Sometimes I think being away from the country seems to be great for certain relationships and sometimes I’m not so sure. I think there are so many variables involved – after all, I know of men who still demand fresh soup every day, in this abroad.

    Will definitely agree that there’s more opportunity for bonding within the family unit….. but I’ve also noticed some couples start to age quite quickly. I mean, the hustle is really real. You’ll work full time jobs, care for the kids, cook, clean, do school runs, do homework (and a big twale to all parents of children in primary school…. when my friends explained this homework business to me, ehnnnn….. hian! After brain don cook for office, make I reach house begin solve wetin? Una dey TRY). Where does that energy come from?

    I know big cities like Lagos are also bustling but it feels like some people enjoy better family time there. However, on the other hand, the distance helps you avoid some kain 3rd party meddling and we can all agree that peace of mind is invaluable…….

    And the widespread cheating and beating and all of that rubbish, without consequence can also make building a family abroad seem more ideal.

    Na wa. E no easy in any location, das all.

  29. labake

    July 6, 2017 at 4:18 am

    I totally support this write up, in my 5 yrs of marriage in the uk, I have seen my hubby so involved in every aspect of our home front, from laundry, to school run, shopping for d home, cooking and cleaning ,babysitting so involved with the kids etc and he constantly tells me that if we were in Nigeria he will never think of doing any of these things, so am all for the writer’s point of view ,d cold weather even makes the men stay out less unlike naija where there friends will not let them be, but my inlaws n my own folks will not just give us breathing space, despite d fact that we are ocean apart, I still feel their presence due unending phone calls and request for money n more money every now n then………..stalking u on watsapp and instagram, despite the family interference I still prefer It here

  30. Lol

    July 6, 2017 at 4:57 am

    I pity the man that married this crazy writer. Your pet peeve is your inlaws. Imagine if your own DIL said that about you and your husband. Anyway, no man serious about a lifetime with a woman will end up with a woman like you. You have deep issues you should address.

  31. @lol

    July 8, 2017 at 10:19 pm

    And you yourself need to get manners apparently you don’t only lack manners, you also can’t read and comprehend.

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