By Maria Famakinwa
Since Yinka Kogun (not real names), a former banker was sacked along other staff members five years ago, things have not been the same in his family which was the toast of many. Every attempt by his wife, Gift, who is also a banker to calm him was like adding petrol to fire as he constantly blame her for being responsible for his predicament.
According to the wife: “Since Yinka was laid off five years ago, I have been responsible for the family’s financial needs. I care for my husband and our three children for peace to reign in my marriage. Yet, my husband and his family are pointing accusing fingers at me that my evil power was the reason my husband was sacked despite the fact that it was a general retrenchment that affected over 3000 staff of the bank. They asked me, why was I not sacked since we are both bankers? If it was possible for me to be sacked and retain my husband, I would have done it but we work in different banks. I don’t understand why I should be blamed for what I did not know,” she said.
Gift is not the only woman facing this kind of challenge as other women in her shoes narrated their ordeals to The Hope.
Mrs Felicia Austin, who sells second hand clothes (Okrika) in Akure, during an emotive encounter with our reporter said: “Ever since my husband lost his job as a site supervisor with a private company in Ogun State, due to COVID-19 three years ago, everything has been on me. I clothe him, feed him and our two children including paying for the house rent. All I could get in return is regrets.
“Sincerely speaking, I am dying slowly. My greatest mistake was advising my husband to join me in the business. He told his family and they called to warn me to leave their son alone so that he could get his bearing right instead of trying to manipulate his destiny further. I was shocked when I heard this and reported to my husband who also responded that whatever power I was using to destroy his destiny would fail and backfire. How was I responsible for his sack when it was the decision of the company to close down? Was he the only one affected?”
When asked if she was not submissive, she said: Being submissive depends on how individuals define it. At least I can tell you that the only female among my husband’s siblings still support me. She is the only reason I am still with my husband. Thank God she is also married and understand better. My husband also turned down her advice to join me in selling second hand clothes last year. I am being overwhelmed with the family responsibility. The burden would have been lighter if my husband agree to join me in the business but he is sitting at home waiting for a big offer. Some husbands and wives are doing this business together and making it. That is why the Bible says that two are better than one but my husband refused to see things in that perspective. I still tell anyone who cares to listen that my husband is the architect of his own misfortune because he is lazy.”
Also facing similar challenge, a civil servant, Mrs Jisolade Omoremi, while lamenting her ordeal blamed African culture especially Nigeria culture for most problems facing womenfolk across the country. The woman who observed that the popular saying “Behind a successful man, there must be a woman” has been misinterpreted to mean that if a man is not successful, the wife should be blamed argued that it was a pointer to the obvious that Nigeria culture favour menfolk and warned that our culture should not turn to vulture that will devour us.
Her words: “When my husband was promoted to the position of a branch manager in a private company in Lagos State, things were working well. I was praised as a good wife but since the company closed down and relocated to Uganda due to electricity problem in Nigeria, I have suddenly become a witch. All I hear now from my husband is that he regrets marrying me.
“I am responsible for his upkeep and that of his aged father living with us including our three children. But the sad part is that there is nothing I do that he ever appreciate. Instead, at the slightest opportunity, he call me names and accuse me of using his ‘star’ to my benefit. His family members also think that I have charmed him and used his destiny. As a salary earner with many dependents, I do catering and events planning just to augment my income and support the family because the entire bills is on me. Instead of commending my efforts, my husband’s family say I am happy that he is jobless. All my husband does is to surf through the internet claim to be looking for jobs. At times, he would claimed to have seen my image where he went for prayers and started cursing me. Yet, I am innocent. I am just 38 years and too young to be facing all these. I just pray God takes control because I am tired of the marriage,” she said bitterly.
The story was not different from that a beautician, Adeola, whose husband, an artisan, has been blaming her for his failures. She said: “Despite the fact that my husband is enjoying more patronage as a block seller more than some of his colleagues, he still accuse me of bringing bad luck to him. He said he ought to be making more sales if not for my bad luck. He even threatened to abandon me and our two children and marry another wife. What actually endeared me to him was the fact that he was hard working and full of great ideas. But it seems that I made the wrong choice”.
Asked when did the problem started, she said: “Two years ago after a contract promised to him failed. I told him to spiritually attack anyone responsible for his failed contract but he keeps raining curses on me comparing himself with some of his friends who are richer than him. His mother is another problem I am contending with because she only listens to her son. I lent him N50,000 last year to support his business. After promising to pay back November of the same year, anytime I asked him of the money, he would say that until I lift my evil embargo on his business he would not pay. Despite my efforts to support him, he still call me a witch alleging that I am behind his lack of progress. How can a wife’s efforts at supporting her husband be tagged evil?” she lamented.
The Hope spoke with a marriage counselor, Mr Ajiboye Olanrewaju, who blamed the economic situation on most challenges confronting marriages today and maintained that there is nothing like wives using their husbands stars or destinies. He advised men not to allow the harsh economic situation of the country to ruin their homes.
His words: “ These are comments that are a products of frustration or when people just can’t understand why they are going through what they are going through. But if anybody believes that someone is afflicting him,, let him pray.
However, the question you would ask is that, when the man was doing well and everything was going on fine, why wasn’t the wife accused of using his star at that time? Why is it that it is when things go sour that the issue of using somebody’s star or witch craft would come up? Couples must be wise,” he warned.
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