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Broken Marriages and the Trend of Irreconcilable Differences

Broken Marriages and the Trend of Irreconcilable Differences

Marriage, they say, was ordained by divinity, but lately, I am sure that does not hold water, as the divinity part has since been replaced with humanity, considering the way divorces and divorce cases have become a normal trend.

In Hollywood and now in Naija, It is more like a celebrity fashion must-have- an emotional triangle, let’s say date, wed and get divorced, Ouch!

We hear of spouses suing for half of everything, unsettled alimonies, you name it. Whoever invited pre-nuptial agreements had foresight. Well, if for nothing, that takes care of marriages contracted for the sole reason of material benefits.

But seriously, why do most marriages fail?

Comically, they always cite “irreconcilable differences”, yeah right! Like we didn’t know any better!

There’s a name for it, a phrase that fits. Call it, “not wanting to do dirty linens in public”, but I have chosen to call it Secrets- dirty little secrets.

In a society like ours, most spouses are afraid to really explain why their unions fail.

Take Zainab, 35, for instance. She had been married to Ibrahim for seven years and never for once had an orgasm, sex to her was becoming boring and monotonous, (wahala dey O!). She hearkened to Bilkis advice and opted for an “away-match” and unfortunately for her, she got pregnant. As tactful as she was, she opened up to her husband. Ibrahim was not so forgiven. He settled for a divorce.

He (Ibrahim) could not explain to concerned family members that his “inactions” pushed his wife away into another man’s arms and neither would Zainab.

There you have it—irreconcilable difference.

Emem’s case was even more traumatizing and surreal. She had come back home unannounced as her flight had been cancelled, only to find out that Ubong, she had been married to for 10 years, and the father of her kids, preferred men.

Nothing was left to the imagination nor was she spared any graphic.  She came home to find her husband doing ‘dirty stuff” with another man. It was like watching a live porn movie and she was playing voyeur. Her whole life was torn apart after then.

She was distraught as she couldn’t understand where she had gone wrong. Did Ubong suddenly decided to like men or had he always been like that. It hurt her that it wasn’t a woman she was competing with but a man.

So, how does she begin to explain to her 9-year-old son that she was leaving her father because he was bisexual or does she say gay? So once again, they divorced and cited “irreconcilable differences”.

Bright’s case was that of financial reasons. He had just lost his job of 10 years at Shell and had been reduced to waiting tables at a hotel lounge.

Before now, he was the sole benefactor of his family. The wife wouldn’t help him realize his dream, but when the tables had turned around,( as she suddenly hit a windfall, na wa o!) of owning her own business.

Can you imagine the wife saying that “my money is my money and yours, ours”?

He still goes on to fend for his family as the material girl of a wife keeps a separate account and never cared to contribute to the family’s welfare.

All she was concerned with was the latest “Aso-Ebi” and jewellery.

Bright recalls those wasted years of wanton spending and give-aways. Most of his earnings were spent on his wife. She had always wanted to keep up with the Joneses, the best of apartment, tastefully furnished with chandeliers, HD decoders; flats screen TVs and the whole lot. She had always nagged about wardrobe updates.

 Now all that is gone.

He came home on a certain evening and discovered that the wife had left him. Nosy neighbours confirmed that she left in some bourgeoisie’s car.

You tell me, was there ever a marriage?

We could go on and on about dirty little scuffles, blackmails etc. I still believe that the union of marriage is “for better for worse”, So, I’d rather we went into it with our eyes wide open. That way we won’t end up singing Toni Braxton’s “How could an angel break my heart” or Madonna’s “secrets”


Written by Justin Akadonye

Broken Marriages and the Trend of Irreconcilable Differences

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