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Love Makes All the Difference

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Love is what makes all the difference, and you’ll be doing yourself a lot of harm marrying someone who doesn’t love you. What’s the point really? What’s the point of a marriage without love or affection? Why go into such? Without love marriage becomes a dry fig. There’s a harshness about it. It’s a coarse grainy dryness. Such dryness has the micro rough quality of a harmattan haze. It’s dusty and wheezy. A marriage without love is unimaginable yet imaginable. Each party will withdraw to his or her section of the marriage. Interactions will be contractual. The interactions will be based on obligations – children, rent, events, neighbours, etc. If you don’t love someone it’s better not to marry the someone. The marriage will float above the lives of the individuals. There’ll be no connectedness. Oh, you’ll go through all the marital ablutions including sex, but the sex will be dissociative. It will amount to no more than a relief system for you as a man. And the sexual congress may turn into the claiming of “your right” since you know the woman doesn’t love you. A marriage without love soon becomes a contest of rights. It will escalate to divorce eventually, or a state of conjugal stalemate. The parties will be married but not married. The parties will do stuff separately, create different lives. The only commonality will be they occupy the same space. It’s a matter of time before they move to separate bedrooms if the context permits. That’s usually progressive, say someone locks herself there after a particularly harsh quarrel. The lady (or man) will move out for the night, and stay the next night, and the next night, and the next night…Pride and irreconcilability will keep her there. What started as a protest gesture becomes permanent. Soon sexual intimacy will obey a prescribed routine. In tone it’ll be like a drawn timetable. The sex will be obligatory – an emotionless duty. Of course you can never be satisfied as a man.

A marriage without love invariably descends into resentment, or even hatred. If not full-blown hatred, civil hatred. And soon the PR segment begins. The parties will begin to wash each other down in the public square. Frustration. Each party will create an audience. As usual there’ll be a team of advisors. They’ll advice the parties against each other. Truth is, such a couple had no business marrying each other in the first place. One married out of, it’s time to marry. The other married out of, if I don’t marry him I may not get another man…And he has a good job; he’s responsible, he’ll take care of me… From that woman’s perspective the marriage was nothing but a welfare ticket. If things get a bit rough economically the basis of the marriage is gone! There’ll never be satisfaction in such a marriage. It’s a sleight of hand that coincided with legitimate basis of marriage. It’s a one-sided contract drawn up by one party with another party who chose to over-write the truth for extant reasons. Why put yourself through such? Why marry someone you don’t love? Now, I know some say love doesn’t really matter in a marriage and you can make it work… But how can love not matter in marriage? There are things people say that are just so… I’m restraining myself from indecorous expression. When people come up with terrible advices on marriage check their lives and/or motivation. You’re going to put yourself in a windowless concrete prison made of harshen walls going into a loveless marriage. And you suffer the more as a man going into a loveless marriage. The sad thing about it is that it can create justification for affairs. And we justify our justification with “justification.” And anyway the equation of life is that we tend to go searching for missing bits of our incompleteness.

Sometimes we THINK we NEED to make a choice out of two non-attractive alternatives. That’s so untrue. You don’t have to choose from two terrible options. You can abstain. That’s a third option. Don’t put yourself under non-existent pressure – pressure created by yourself in your cranium. The line of delineation of the point at which we HAVE to marry is a virtual line created by us to put ourselves under pressure. Life does not work with those artificialities. They’re not natural to life. It ignores them, which is why we force things. When you meet the right person you just know. It just “fits”. It’ll be so simple and natural, uncomplicated. The part at which you have to start creating justifications as to why you want to marry someone…That is you arguing against yourself trying to convince yourself about a non-advisable course of life. If she’s not right for you, you know. And if you’re not right for her she knows. If you get into sex in that kind of situation it will cloud your judgment. Sex takes us into another decision compartment. Of course the haze will lift shortly after the wedding, when the enormity of what you have gotten yourself into hits you. And there are those who know they’re going into a bad marriage but feel compelled to do so. That’s not wisdom. You don’t have to say I do. You can always say I won’t! All that parental pressure… those things can be selfish. Sometimes parents are only considering themselves. Sometimes parents, especially African parents just want their daughter married, irrespective of happiness. The pressure mounted of course cartwheels forward, with the lady wanting to marry whatever looks like a husband. And that’s how marital tragedies are created. Many are pressure results. Marriages forged by compulsion and pressure are tragedies in the making. Someone’s going to pay. If you marry someone you don’t love you practically married a stranger. May God help you.


Your mentor, LA

© Leke Alder |

Tags : Affection, love in marriage
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