I’ve been off the grid for a while, doing exams, writing for Cosmopolitan magazine, working my butt off, losing some weight, starting my natural hair journey and well life in general, doing every thing but writing posts on my beloved blog. Many of you have moved on, others have found new online love interests while the rest of you are so disappointed you wanna konk my head but I ask sincerely that you accept my apology. Really missed writing chutzpah stuff honestly!
Now to the matter at hand, I was gisting with my friend S who is happily single– I know you’d roll your eyes at the phrase but there are some babes who are content with their lives and don’t feel the pressure to hook up with a random man for the rest of their lives! Anyway S was filling me on all the offline and online man related gist I had missed and another friend joined the conversation. J was appalled by all the crazy stories out there which involved Yoruba demons, Igbo terrorists, Benin Jazz men and Hausa guerrillas married and single alike. She felt anybody getting married was doomed but didn’t wanna join the happily single club. It was starting to feel like she had to choose between the devil (remaining single) and the deep blue sea (a horrible marriage) so even though I am no expert, I decided to share a couple of tips a wise woman once shared with me and they are absolutely important things every single girl should know to minimize casualties (shine your eyes).
1) A bad boyfriend will make a worse husband
Never manage a boyfriend, if you absolutely cannot stand a fault of his, it will not get better after marriage. In fact it will be amplified and you will be unable to stand it and sincerely it’s unfair to the guy because he expected you loved all of him enough to marry him in the first place.
2) People don’t change but they can mature, you cannot predict future change or maturity so don’t bank on it
Marry a man the same way you shop online, what you see is what you get (or worse) and the return policy is usually a scam, remember all na packaging and he is most likely putting his best foot forward already so anticipating more is asking for too much in his opinion.
3) Don’t smell what you can’t eat
This applies to in-laws, marital roles and duties, bad behaviour and your relationship in general. Oju aye (eye service) doesn’t work in marriage. Enduring something for the sake of a ring would backfire once mission is accomplished and you’d be accused of changing (for the worse) and suffer the backlash.
4) Have your own money
This is important for three reasons. First of all you need to be able to bring something to the table regardless of how comfortable your man is (think power couple), secondly he knows money is not a reason for you to remain in a bad marriage since you can fend for yourself and finally, nothing beats financial freedom.
5) Name that one thing you could never endure in a marriage and let it guide your mate-picking decision
Every woman is different, your one thing may be infidelity or violence or maybe even poverty! Whatever it is, look for the man who is most unlikely to cross this line and make sure he understands that it is a line that cannot be crossed before you jump right in. Knowing your deal-breaker is an unspoken agreement that every thing else is forgivable within reasonable limits.
6) If he has baggage make sure he sorts it out before marriage
Baggage in the form of clingy exes, baby mamas, addictions or bros before hos pacts, anything that makes you feel insecure has to be handled before you become the Mrs because marriage amplifies insecurities.
7) Keeping your marriage private is not just about social media, the people you provide intel matter more
Choose to be accountable to one person (singular not plural) that you absolutely trust where your marital issues are concerned. Whether it’s to report your husband or confess your indiscretions or complain about your life, having more than one person know your story is like an episode of Keeping up with the Kardashians! (the whole world gets to discuss your life for free!)
8) Don’t throw in the towel till you are 110% sure it cannot be saved
Many people get in and get out, the wedding day becomes just another owambe. It could be because they jumped in without knowing what they were getting into (what’s the hurry? Look before you leap!) or have a low threshold for bullshit (tho’ enduring is not the same as becoming a martyr abeg!). Whatever the case, you need to fight the hardest to save your marriage before you abandon ship or you’ll have regrets when the dust settles.
9) Don’t compare your behind the scenes to someone else’s Hollywood reel!
Social media and public gatherings thrive on PDA, perfection and grand romantic gestures but before you start comparing your man to the prince charming on Instagram, remember your man has no filter, is not photo-shopped and is not borrow-posing! A healthy marriage is a great blend of peace, drama, fun, boredom, grand gestures, sacrifices and a lot of ordinary days in between. If the negatives are always lacking then you are viewing a Hollywood reel!
10) There’s no secret ingredient for a great marriage, find a formula that works for you
You think a man won’t cheat if you stay sexy, give great sex and cook delicious meals or not nag, well about a thousand women in the world are doing that flawlessly and he still can’t keep his thing in his pants. What works for your friend will most likely not work for you so do you and make it work. A lot of women credit a great marriage to prayers but faith without works is dead so work it girl!