Thursday, January 21, 2010

Marriage & Relationships : 21st Century Battlefields??

Donald & Omolara Ayoola is a young Nigerian couple living in Lagos. They are a middle class family that is well recognized within the Lagos social circle, and have the cars, lovely house and the ‘right’ people on speed dial to back up their acclaimed status.

Donald & Omolara are each other’s worst nightmare.

They are constantly at war against each other; bickering and screaming at each other with any slight opportunity. Each of them is always on the look-out for ways in which they can affirm their superiority over the other.

Yes, Donald & Omolara are husband and wife, just in case you wanted to check again to make sure.

Let me give you an instance: Omolara is praying to God in front of her husband, and her prayer goes thus: “God make me richer than my husband; Make me more powerful than my husband; do not ever let me become a slave to him”

In another instance, Donald returns home celebrating a huge deal he has just closed. He begins to beckon on his enemies announcing that they have finally been put to shame. Even Omolara had no doubt as to which enemies he was referring to.

The irony is that in the midst of all this, they were both very broke but were only united in the keeping together of the public façade.

Okay you can stop trying to figure out this couple’s identity now; they are characters from a Yoruba movie titled, ‘Modupe Temi’, and are played by Saheed Balogun and Doris Simeon. Gotcha didn’t I?!

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Ever since I saw that movie, I haven’t been able to stop thinking about this couple. This is because I’ve heard that pathetic as their situation was, they represent the realities of many married and even unmarried couples.

This totally confuses me because, correct me if I’m wrong, I was of the opinion that marriage was supposed to be a union of two people becoming one. I thought those vows made at altars were a commitment to spend the rest of their lives uplifting the interests and well-being of the other person.

I thought the primary function of marriage and relationships in general, was to completely eradicate that deadly term ‘I’ and establish the more functional ‘We’, as the prefix to anything regarding the couple.

I thought that the competitive nature that is necessary for survival in today’s Capitalist societies, was dropped off at the gate of the house, and exchanged for a loving and sacrificial nature, which is what is to be acceptable at home.

The definition of Enemy is ‘a person who hates or wishes to harm one’. How on earth is it possible that a spouse, girlfriend, boyfriend, lover or even a ‘friend with benefit’ can also be an Enemy?

So do you understand my confusion when I hear true-life situations that mirror the Ayoola’s experience? Or am I just naïve or/and desperate to hold on to my seemingly unrealistic expectations about what a relationship or Marriage should be?

I recently heard that people have begun to celebrate Divorce by throwing Divorce parties, and even going as far as having Divorce ‘Wish Lists’ that state the presents people should get them as they are getting divorced.

Depressing as this is, I can’t even blame them, because these days, with the alarming Divorce statistics, it’s blatantly obvious that people are more successful at Divorce than Marriage!!

But really now, What is the problem??

Why have Marriage and Relationships become the 21st Century Battlefields?

Is Love merely a myth like Santa Claus that we have been conditioned since Childhood to expect?

Please share your comments below...


  1. I'm about to watch Modupe Temi!

    Anyway, I'm 20 and no where near marriage. But it seems like getting divorced is the current trend. Way to many on the news every week like people don't marry for love but for the title.

  2. Hi Ladi, hope you enjoyed the movie!!

    Ahhh the coveted 'Mrs' title eh...well for girls that is. But seriously, I have soooo many recently married friends, who've told me about how people's reactions to them changed as soon as they added 'Mrs' to their names!!

    Wonder what difference that 3letter title makes in people's minds...

  3. I think marriage as become a fashion accesory more than a lifetime commitment. Pple r getting into it for all the wrong reasons, so when dy get into it and reality sets in, they suddenly wake up from their unrealistic expectations but unfortunately have nothing to fall back on as they had no plans nor ideas of how to deal with it in d first place. It really is sad though cos marriage is such a beautiful thing if u decide to make it work. It is a choice of two.

  4. I completely agree.

    Still wondering what the RIGHT reasons to get married are though...

  5. Getting married for the wrong reasons is nothing new. Marriage is still what it has always been, a union of 2 people ready to dedicate their lives together, there are still some stories out there that that are unbelievable and positive. I believe in Love, I think its true but i dont think its perfect.

    First time I got a clear understanding of what love was, I was sitting at a busstop watching all the people walking by. We were all strangers, but we were all people just trying to survive, Now picture 2 of you taking that Journey through life, with everyone else as strangers. Thats love, thats marriage