I grew up in a community where the marriage of a girl child is valued over her education. As soon as a young girl gets her first period, the women in her family start preparing her for marriage. This is done to discourage girls from getting pregnant out of wedlock. To people who grew up in the cities, our practices may seem absurd but to us it is normal.
I am the last born of my parents. Due to this, I was not expected to marry at an early age. My parents supported me to go to school and I didn’t let them down. I met men in my village who promised to marry me on the condition that I quit school. I thought about how much my parents were investing in my education, and I turned these men down. I strived to be different in my family by pursuing higher education. By God’s grace, I managed to complete tertiary school. I am currently thirty years old with no husband or child I call my own.
Whenever I visit my parents in the village, I face a lot of pressure from people. Women my age are married with kids. My childhood friend who married when she was a teenager currently has five children. When I saw her my thoughts were, “Compared to her, I’m an old spinster, or maybe she is the one moving too fast.” I started wondering when it would be my turn to get married and have kids.
When I walk by a group of married women or young girls, they whisper among themselves and laugh. I always know I’m the subject of their ridicule. Some of them point fingers at me and act as if I am beneath them, just because I’m not married. It’s always a horrible experience when I go to my village. The annoying part is that most of these girls are suffering in their marriages. They don’t have the financial stability to take care of themselves, not to talk of their numerous children, yet I am the laughing stock.
One Sunday, I went to the village to give some items to one of my aunts. I spent a lot of time talking to her and my parents. One of the questions they asked me was, “When are you bringing a man home?” I told them that in God’s time, I will meet someone. We were so engrossed in the conversation that I left there later than I expected. I couldn’t get a car at the bus station. I decided to try my luck at the roadside. As I stood there, a private car stopped by me and offered me a lift. He was going in my direction and I was a little desperate so I accepted his offer. The car smelled nice and the driver looked good. He tried to engage me in a conversation but I was shy. We drove in awkward silence. While we were on our way I prayed in my heart, “God please let this man be single and let him collect my number so we can stay in touch.”
When we got to my stop, I thanked him and opened the door. Before I stepped out he said, “Can I get your number? I will like to call and ask if you’ve gotten home safely?” I readily gave my number to him whiles thinking, “God, thank you. That was really fast.” When I got home he called me. I told him I was home, and he said he was still on the road. About an hour later I also called him. He had gotten home by then. We stayed on the phone talking deep into the night. From that day we spoke almost every day. From our conversation, he told me he was in the process of getting a divorce. I asked what happened and he explained everything to me.
According to him, his parents chose his wife for him. Initially, he didn’t want to accept her because he was in love with someone else. His parents insisted he had to marry her and so he did. A few months into the marriage, his wife said she didn’t love him. She was also forced into the marriage and it was taking a toll on her. According to his wife, she tried to love him but it wasn’t working so she asked for a divorce.
In the process of the divorce, it came to light that she was pregnant. Both families pleaded with her to consider the baby and make the marriage work. She refused so they agreed that the divorce would be finalized once the baby arrives. He told me, “I have fallen in love with you and I want to marry you. If you accept to be my girlfriend, we will date until my divorce is settled. After that, we will meet both our families and make things official.”
I thought about what he said and found it reasonable. He was a perfect gentleman and I wanted to be with him. I said yes and we started our relationship. I was so happy to finally find a man I can call my own. I had someone I could take home to my family. If we got married after his divorce, my village girls would stop laughing at me.
We made plans to visit my family. Everything was going as planned when one day his dad called him. He was told that his wife had given birth and she was currently in his family’s house with the baby. I was with him when he called his mother; “Why is she not with her parents? She left me and asked for a divorce so she shouldn’t be with my family.” His mother told him, “Your wife has changed her mind about the divorce. She came with her family to beg us. She wants to give the marriage another try.”
My boyfriend was angry about what was going on. They accepted the woman’s apology and took her in without consulting him. He felt like they were forcing her on him for a second time. He told me, “This time I will not back down. I love you and I will fight for you.” He told his mother about me. I haven’t met her in person but we spoke on the phone. She was nice and warm towards me.
My problem now is his father. I’m worried he may not accept me the way his mother did. He is the one insisting that my boyfriend reconciles with his wife. He is the same person who chose her for him and pushed him to marry her. I don’t think he will give up so easily and embrace me.
My boyfriend told me he was going to go through with the divorce after the baby’s naming ceremony. The naming ceremony has been done now so I believe he has started the process. I love him and I want to be with him but my mind is telling me to let him go. I keep wondering, “What if there’s a chance for their marriage to work?” .
I don’t want to be the one to come between them. I also don’t want to be tagged as a ‘husband snatcher.’ I want to get married but not at the expense of another woman’s marriage. It will break his heart if I leave him and it will break mine too but I feel it has to be done. Please I need your advice on this. Am I giving up too easily? Should I stay and fight for the man I love? Am I doing the right thing by letting him go? Please advice.
Pray to God to lead
That is a good idea. If I will be sincere with you, please endure to let him go. Your own man will soon find you.That relationship is a pointer to the fact that your breakthrough is near
Let girl find another man this kind of love doesn’t last,the Man will still look out side