Sunday, May 22, 2011

Marriage Is Not A Trophy

Recently I have gotten this impression from people, especially single ones acting like their friends are now married so they can't talk any longer or she's so lucky her life is complete now. 
I see why people may think this, as a child growing up in Nigeria, I was taught that you learned to cook and do other domestic things, and you finished school, so that eventually an eligible suitor will find you suitable for marriage (or you can become a nun).  It didn't matter if you found a job because your husband may want you to stay home (nothing wrong with this especially if it is what you want).
Because of this a number of young girls and guys found it sad when a young girl claimed not to know how to cook; you began to question what type of wife or mother she will be especially if hubby wants her at home? (I changed my mind after I saw good mothers that are not domestic); Then if you met a woman who had completed her education, and attained a great job, independence but without her husband or parent's help, she may be seen as a lady who has multiple sugar daddy's.  One example is my sister who is a pharmacist and is very independent, many men are intimidated by her success as a single woman, living by herself.  Some of her friends the hubby will not allow their wives near her because she must not be good for her not to have found a lifetime partner ...
So for women definitely it seems like once you get married you have cut out some of your issues.  For men, they are not truly men until they are married with children.  So whether a man is mentally prepared (as in I am ready to settle down and be a family man) at some point he is hassled to get married.  Once he starts making money either from being educationally or business trained, he begins to get those questions when will you settle down; and when his mother becomes scared that he may obtain some illness from the cheeks he is sleeping with (as if marriage will end her son's bad habits) or that she may bring home the cheeck she may not get along with, she runs off and finds him the good girl and tries to convince her son that she is the right one.  It is usually the well behaved neighborhood girl that greets her well and cooked her meals when she was ill; the girl that watched her son bring home the hoes when she was at work.  The men were always taught to select a woman with little to no baggage so that you will have children and she is less likely to cheat. And the women are thought that men have slept with a lot of women but he chose you to be his woman forever so forget those past flings.  Then they get married to their "trophy" and everyone stops working on their relationship, they show up at functions together and so is a message from Linda's blog:

Hello Linda,
I need a female perspective on an issue. I'm 37 and my wife is 35, we've been married 8 years and have 2 kids. We both have good jobs, home and a good life..on the surface that is.

Emotionally we have no connection. I feel her focus is the kids, the home, job, and friends in that order. She is a perfect mother to our kids and our home is amazing.

However we rarely have adult conversations, or spend alone time, and sex is 'ok', nothing wow! only go out to 'functions' and really live separate lives. I travel internationally for work, she travels for summer hols with the kids. There just isn't a connection between us. it's like we are 2 strangers who like each other and love our kids. if I went away for 3 months, I doubt I'd miss her, and vice versa.

For the kids sake divorce isn't on the table, but what happens when our kids are grown and i'm in my 50's? living alone in a big empty house with a woman I barely know???

I recently met someone who is vibrant, funny, intelligent, stunning, so so intelligent, that I fear I may cheat and it will be more than just far nothing has happened, but I can see the difference between my marriage and what could make me happy.

The question is, what's the best way to tell my wife she bores me? without coming across as a bastard? I need a female perspective from people who don't know both of us.

I am not claiming to be an expert on marriage but I hope to raise my children to think differently.  Marriage is hard work and you have to be mentally, emotionally ... ready for this lifetime commitment.  It is not enough for my son or daughter to finish school to feel ready for this process.  This young man in the above letter has reasons to be frustrated, but if you inquire he probably stopped courting his wife once they were married and vice versa. 
Once two become married, it is normal for us to become comfortable with each other; we all of a sudden relax and all of our annoying attributes becomes noticeable so that each day you choose to love and live with this person.  This is the reason why you are more in love with each other than the day you said I do or yes to a proposal.  After marriage, then the pressure becomes kids sometimes they throw in the man's face the other woman they suggested to him- "see Nkoli is so fertile, she is married with three kids, had it been you married her instead of Nenyenwa"
Many couples forget why they got married in the first place and allow too many people to inquire about their marriage.  Then you pop out the kids and you both have that pressure to maintain your job(s) since you now realize the pressure that comes with raising a family.
Before you know it everyone is doing their own thing as if marriage is a bunch of chores. 
Because of what me and my husband have seen and learned from engagement and marriage encounter weekends, we decided to wait one year before trying to have children.  It ended up being 3 beautiful years of good health where we expanded on our love, traveled, shared dreams, prayed together and sometimes reminisce on our 5 year courtship.  We are now expecting our first child and we have plans for date nights at least once a week; we both don't want too many children so that we can focus on raising them well in the way of God and that way we don't loose what we have.
We've both decided when intercourse in our marriage becomes boring, we will learn together and discuss what areas needs improvement.  We've also decided that we do not discuss our marital problems with the opposite colleagues at work, it is unnecessary and you never know that person's intention. 
We have also established that God comes first in our home, and then us, before anything else and when one feels that this order is altered then we talk about it.  We also agreed to always spend as much time in marriage retreats and whenever we need to talk to someone, we start with our pastor and if we feel we need more, then we both search for a christian based counselor (we are yet to need this). 
Like I said, I am not an expert in marriage but if your reasons for wanting to get married are not for your partner then don't torture yourselves.  Children and building a future maybe important but are secondary things that you both might want but never should come first in your marriage.
  That is why some of my cousins back home find their virgin wife and keep them at home with their beautiful children and goes off sleeping around with useless girls, spending money on them at hotels.  One of them told me my wife would not like to leave the kids and come to a hotel? have you asked her and she said no? then there was silence.  He has provided for his family, who cares whether he is with someone else and some women will actually say as long as he comes home to me I am not worried. 
So don't think you have it worst because you are single and distant yourself from your married friends because they've got the trophy that you don't have.  And married people don't get it in your head that you are better than the single person and it is because you did something right that you are married, because I am sure if you think hard you did not have a perfect life. It is not about whether you can find a husband, it is about whether you can keep your love going.  God bless you all!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

catch up with us

So baby is still in the womb, which is ok by me because it still has some developing to do and his/her daddy isn't here.  The Navy has decided to send daddy home to us but 3 days to delivery date.  I pray for his safe return.  Every day is getting harder in completing tasks, the baby has dropped.  My sisters and mom through me a beautiful shower last two weeks and I was so excited to see my friends.
Flying to Florida was quite painful; my feet were swollen; there were men who watched me try to place my carry on in the overhead compartment and offered no help.  I am glad I am done with flying for now.  Then my four beautiful friends from medical school came last weekend for our yearly trip/ my fourth baby shower.  I was so glad we got to catch up, though it was not as exciting as our yearly NewYork trip but I made it up to them since I was too pregnant to fly.
I have done all the laundry for the baby and I've done the best I can in terms of preparing for the baby.  I cannot believe we are almost here.  I look forward to daddy coming home because I need his help and because we miss him.
Daddy has so much to do including moving his family back home and deciding what to do with the house here since I will be completing residency next month.  Everything is happening so fast.  I will catch up with you guys soon.