“I got married three years ago at the age of 22 years. My husband is 11 years older than I am and I sometimes feel as if I am missing out on a particular stage of my life. I am really not getting the fun I hoped I would get from the marriage as he is not the romantic type. Sometimes, I guess it’s because of the age difference. Maybe he’s grown past the things that excite me. The problem is that there is this guy who loves me and we seem to be made for each other so well. He is ready to marry me even though I have a child. Would it be wise and fair if I call it quits with my husband?” Anne (Not real name) narrates.
Responding to the above poser, Maryam Ahmed, a 45-year-old secondary school head teacher, says: “If at 22 and married you think you are not having fun, whose fault is it? What were you doing till you turned 22? What stage in life did you skip between age 22 and 25? The thing is that you think a man is there to make you happy. If you aren’t happy on your own and are living life on your own terms, nobody can do it for you. Your husband probably hoped marrying someone like you would make his life more exciting since you are the fun loving type but what difference has that made to him? Instead, you sit and think you have missed out a stage. Bottom line is that you are still childish, you need to grow up and fast.”
And Lara Quadry, a 38-year-old accountant, advises Anne to be careful. “I tell my fun and club loving friends that if they choose a guy that clubs most days and can’t do without parties, when they get married, have kids and need support at home, they will be all alone because the man will be elsewhere grooving,” she says.
“You may settle for this fun guy only to realise he is unstable. He isn’t as hard working as your husband, he doesn’t care about providing for the family, and he may have tonnes of babes that he has fun with besides you. If the only crime your husband has committed is not being the fun type, then please come up with fun ideas and activities that both of you can enjoy. My point is your fun and your happiness is mostly your responsibility. If you can’t get it right now, you can’t get it right anywhere,” Lara added.
Funmi Olatunde, a 42-year-old civil servant, suspects Anne may already be having an affair. “Affairs are sweet because they are in secret. Do you think this guy will still ‘compliment’ you when you live with him and have to deal with the issues of life? Will he compliment you without a job, in sickness and in health? Or he commends you for the few stolen hours you have with him every week,” Funmi wonders.
“Marriage isn’t just about going out and having fun like you used to when dating. It involves that and much more. If you want another man, go about it the right way. Sign divorce papers first and stop blaming your husband unnecessarily. Really, he is not the fun loving type, what if he was the type that beats you, what would you have done? You are just looking for an excuse. Your fun is your obligation, not necessarily any man’s, so make your homework,” she offered.
Marriage counsellor Mrs. Chika Emma concludes that: “No good man will ever tell another man’s wife to leave her husband and marry him. That alone should tell you the kind of guy he is. My mother would say when someone is dancing there is certainly someone drumming. Don’t be a fool. Some things are not as they seem. That man you are contemplating leaving your husband for does not respect you and might likely treat you worse when you go for him.”
She asks rhetorically that: “Does your husband meet your emotional needs? Does he beat you; comes home drunk or flirts with other women to your face?” and advises that: “If he doesn’t do any of these then I see no reason why you should look outside. The problem is with you. It’s up to you to love your husband regardless of his flaws.”