The first shocker of my marriage journey started on the 2nd of July. My husband came home moody, unlike him.
“What is the matter dear, you are moody? Talk to me, I am your wife,” I pleaded with him.
He raised his voice at me, “You are not my wife, you are your father’s wife.”
I tried to understand his grievances but couldn’t place it.
“What is the matter, why did you say I am my father’s wife? What did I do wrong?”
“You are also single, yet to be married,” he said.
His words got me more confused. “Dayo, can you just tell me in plain language what I have done wrong?” I requested.
It took me almost an hour to get him to voice out what my offence was.
“We’ve been married for almost two months and your status on Facebook is still showing your father’s name and not mine. Your marital status also is still showing single.” Is that all, I asked him. “I am changing them right away.”
I picked my phone and began making an attempt to update my Facebook status but the network that evening was terrible.
I promised him I will do that when the network is restored. That evening at dinner, he was not that jovial Dayo I have been married to. At night I attempted like twice to make the change but the network was still not good. We slept off and I forgot to revisit it again.
It was when he came back again with a long face the following day I remembered I had not been able to change my status on Facebook.
I quickly rushed in to try it again. He came after me, collected my phone and smashed it against the wall. The phone he bought with his own money. My eyes were red seeing my phone scattered on the ground. I didn’t say a word, I just walked out on him.
He began to shout at the top of his voice.
“marriage? You are not proud of me, that’s why you left your status the way it is after one month of marriage. You don’t want your boyfriends to know you are married so you can still be seeing them. You will return back to your father’s house since he is your husband.”
Those words were like arrows in my heart. I was really disappointed with Dayo’s attitudes.
When I could no longer take his insults, I moved away.
“You are walking out of me?” He asked while following me.
“I can no longer take your insults again, and I wouldn’t want to talk back at you. Leave me now and let me be alone.”
He dragged me by my left arm, “you can’t be alone while we are in this house. I tried to snatch my arm from his grip and my hand hit him in the face. By the time I realised what happened, my husband had beaten me blue and back.
I laid down there and wept.
In the night I couldn’t sleep. Mama’s proverb kept ringing in my mind “oun ton be leyin efa oju meje lo”, “what is after six is more than seven”. I kept hearing that every now and then while my husband was deeply asleep as if nothing had happened.
What had happened to Dayo the lover boy? Why was he able to deceive me with his mantra of “a changed man”? Has he really changed? Did he pretend all this while just to get me? Could it be that mama was right? I hope I have not made an eternal mistake?
I was in the dark because Dayo had destroyed my phone. I have everything saved on my phone.
If you are a married woman reading this and you haven’t changed your status on Facebook after marriage, I beg you to do that before you continue reading my story. This innocent mistake had stolen my joy.
Don’t say “my husband understands.”
It won’t cost you anything to change it. Some men are not as aggressive like Dayo but they are not happy seeing their wife’s status still showing single or their father’s name.
This is Africa, my dear sisters. If you have not done your change of name after marriage, go ahead and do it without wasting time.
Dayo began to keep malice with me even after I changed my status on Facebook. I begged him to forgive me for not changing the status on time but he claimed he had forgiven me but his attitude never showed that.
I became fed up with his malice because of my condition, so I moved in with mama to look after me. Before I left, I dropped a note telling him I had gone to mama’s place.
When he got home and he didn’t see me, he sent me a text, “come home before I come there to force you out”.
I didn’t reply to his message. I dared him to come and carry out his threat. Mama knew I had a problem with Dayo but she didn’t talk to me about it. I lied to her that he is not always around hence I want her to look after me.
I forgot to tell you that mama didn’t go for her medical trip again. Dayo cancelled it because I made him angry. I had to tell a lot of lies to mama on why she couldn’t go for her medical trip again.
Our moment of joy was cut short. The Facebook status seemed to be the mistake that triggered the slumbering giant of anger in Dayo. All my attempts to make the giant go back to sleep or die never yielded any result.
Dayo’s anger and aggression increased by the day.
And true to his words, he stormed mama’s house three days after.
“Mama, why did you keep my wife with you for three days against my wish? If you are a good woman, you should have asked Kemi to go back to her husband. It is either she follows me now or be forever married to you. Like mother like daughter,” he insulted mama with foul words.
I couldn’t take his insults against my mother anymore. I didn’t know when my hand went to his cheeks. I landed him a dirty slap. I bet you if you were in my shoes, you will do worse.
I thought he will respect mama and not slap me back in her presence but I was wrong. He rushed me back with some slaps on both cheeks. Mama stood and was speechless.
“You monster, leave my house now,” mama ordered him out but he will not.
Mama called on the security man to come and take Dayo out of the house. It became a battle between the security man and Dayo. Our neighbour called on the police and Dayo was arrested and locked up in police custody.
He was released on bail a few hours later. And right from the police station, he came in with two men.
“Where is the car I bought for you?” He stretched out his hand towards me. I quickly went in and brought the car key and threw it at him.
He took the key and drove my car away. With all that happened, mama never said: “I told you never to marry this boy”. She kept encouraging me everything will be alright.
His brother who came to pick us up at the airport called me to hear my own side of the story.
I told him everything that happened and he began to apologize on behalf of his brother.
“Timmy, this is beyond me. My uncle is already involved and there is nothing I can do about it until further instruction from my uncle.”
My uncle is a no-nonsense man who retired from the Nigeria Police Force four years earlier. Without our notice, he had written to Dayo’s family to come for the bride price they paid on me.
He was ready to refund back their bride price and keep me back.
A meeting was scheduled for the two families. They reconciled us, asked Dayo to apologize to me and mama. He did and I returned back home. Unfortunately, he had sold my car before I returned home.
When I returned home, I became aggressive and hot too. I needed to put on that nature to defend myself from the venom of Dayo’s anger. He taught me how to shout back at him. I lost my gentility and meekness.
It was a tooth for tooth thereafter. We fought almost every day. No moment of peace again in the house. We no longer talked like husband and wife. It was all insults on insults on a daily basis.
As my pregnancy advanced, I stopped giving him unnecessary attention. I focused on the arrival of my baby.
He stopped eating my food nor coming close to me. That never bothered me because I was relieved. He also stopped giving me money for upkeep. I reported him to our pastor and he invited both of us for a counselling session with him.
I didn’t tell pastor the details of what Dayo had been doing, I only reported him for not giving me money again. The pastor scolded him very hard and mandated him to make a transfer into my account in his presence.
He picked his phone and credited my account with N 55,000.
We got home that day and hell was let loose.
“I will make life unbearable for you in this house,” he threatened. “You have the guts to report me to the pastor, you slut of a woman.”
“Only a foolish man will call his wife a slut, I stylishly returned his insult.
“Who is a foolish man?” he asked and was moving toward my direction.
I moved back and picked a scissor to scared him away. And in rage, he went inside and brought out all my credentials and set them on fire. I tried hard to put the fire off but he pushed me away and made me watch all my years of academic sacrifices burn in a jiffy.
“Dayo, you are wicked, I regret ever marrying you,” I wept.
As I tried to come to the realization of what Dayo just did, it dawned on me that all my certificates from primary school to the university were gone.
He won’t get away with this, I promised.
I began to target his own credentials too. He must experience the pain of losing a lifetime credentials just in a moment. For two weeks I searched for his credentials but I couldn’t lay my hand on them.
After much search, I laid my hands on them. He hid them after he burnt mine. The heart of man is so wicked, it took diligent search to be able to discover where he hid them.
At this time my conscience had been locked up in hate and vengeance. I took all including the photocopied ones and burnt them one by one.
You are free to judge me, Dayo taught me to be this wicked. He didn’t discover until two weeks later.
“Where are my credentials?” He screamed at me.
This time I was ready for anything, my heart was hardened and cruel. I pretended as if I didn’t hear him. He came close and grabbed me, as usual, to start beating me. Then I rushed to the kitchen to pick a knife to defend myself.
His anger this time was like that of Simeon and Levi.
He overpowered me and took the knife from me. Beat the hell out of me, stabbed me on my neck twice. He only stopped when he saw me bleeding.
He left me in my pool of blood and fled. I managed to call on one of our neighbours who came and rushed me to the hospital. I was wheeled to the emergency ward but it was too late. I lost my pregnancy.
From the hospital, my uncle came to pick me to his house. That was the end of my marriage with Dayo. He would have killed me if not for God who saved my life.
My uncle tried to get him arrested but he was nowhere to be found. He abandoned everything and ran to only God knows where. Mama could not bear the agony of my predicaments.
She died a few months later. As I write this story, I live with my uncle and his family.
I haven’t seen or heard from Dayo now for five years. I will be 39 next month and I want to move on with my life. There is this guy that has been coming around, will you advise me to give him a try or just live my life in peace without marriage again?
For my sisters out there yet to be married, I beg you to listen to the voice of elders. Love does not cure bad character. Before you walk onto the aisle, subject yourself to deliverance if you have a negative inheritance.
Dayo never did anything serious to break the jinx of his grandfather’s excessive anger. I was nonchalant about mama’s warning. Mama, please forgive me from your grave. I should have listened to you.
For my sisters living with a hot-tempered man, I understand what you’ve been through. Don’t take it lightly, go on your knees and remould him or else he will kill you someday.
If he is not willing to change, don’t stay in an abusive marriage at the expense of your life. Your life means more to Christ than your marriage. The price he paid on your soul was too expensive to give it away at the altar of uncontrollable anger.
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