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My dear Jack, there is such a thing as sad truth and you’ve stepped into one. We step into sad truth when we ignore wisdom. Then when calamity comes, wisdom sticks out her tongue. I did warn you not to go into marriage without a job, a source of livelihood or income. Now you see why.You allowed yourself to be railroaded into an unrealistic Snow White timetable based on a self-serving editorialised Bible text. Yes, God said you shouldn’t worry about a thing, but he wasn’t encouraging foolishness or joblessness. When you talk wisdom to a young man and he counters with religious techno-babble, you let him be. Life will teach him. It’s amazing how people fail to see practical truths in Holy Writ. Yet the Bible is full of practical teachings. The Bible is totally against the idea of a man not working. How can it support the idea of going into marriage with no job? Didn’t Apostle Paul say he that does not work should not eat, so what “favour” chimera are you talking about? And Apostle Paul went further to state that the man who wouldn’t provide for his family is worse than an infidel!

You and your then girlfriend now wife convinced yourselves it’s an exercise of faith to go into marriage without livelihood. I did ask you how exactly you intend to take care of your family without a job or income, remember? But you wanted to marry! A job need not be white-collar job. It can be blue collar or orange collar, but please get a collar before you marry. I told you that. But you countered with so called “confessions,” quoting the word of God out of context. Some came up with fables about successful marriages in which the bridegroom had no job but things magically worked out! That’s a gambler’s interpretation of, “He that finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favour from God.” Only they couldn’t be telling full truth. They don’t have access to all the information. They’re not in those marriages. They can’t tell you if there were fights. And they can’t tell you about the anxieties and fears, or loss of manhood. There’s all that gabble about marrying a visionary and hardworking guy… But tell me, how can a man be visionary and hardworking yet have nothing doing? What vision?!

I warned you that your wife’s narrative about willingness to suffer will change after sleeping on the floor for one week. Money plays a very, very major role in marriage. And that’s a fact no religious techno-babble can wish away. What if there are no jobs? Create one for yourself! Become an entrepreneur! Only be willing to start small. All those problems between you and your wife, all the things you listed – they’re all denominated in MONEY! If you earn some income, bring home money at the end of the month, the marital problems will disappear. You can’t be in a marriage and for a whole year bring no income home. How does that make you a man? Unless of course she married you for your sexual virility or as a sperm donor, in which case you’re working. But even you must admit the idea of house husband is a new sociology. It’s so kind of novel your wife is confused.

So your wife goes to work but you stay home playing video games in the name of expecting a job? You’ll lose respect. How is unemployment a profession? Without earning an income, you can’t hope to gain respect at home. Truth is hard. All that techno-religious babble about “exercising faith,” is it not directed at the same God who commands you to work? There’s faith and there’s foolishness and there’s presumption. A man marrying without a means of livelihood is presumptuous. When your wife goes to market and wants to purchase stuff, is she going to spend religious quotes? The market woman does not want to know whether you’re a man of faith, she just wants to see money. It’s amazing religious folk are the ones supporting marriage without source of income. (Or may be it’s not surprising). There are practical realities in life. The need for money is a very practical realism in marriage. When there’s no money in a marriage, colourful stuff get dredged up from depths. It’s why you’re surprised at your wife. You can’t believe the things she’s said to you. But what do you expect? Want and lack are like a mirror. They help us see the hidden side of us in true light.

If you want to save your marriage you’ve got to get a job. If you can’t, start something entrepreneurial…which means you have to be humble. If you’re not humble, you won’t see the business opportunities. And you can’t be poor and proud. That’s double tragedy. Do something to earn a living. Start a laundry service, a cleaning service, grass mowing service… Just do something! It’s not so much about how much you earn at this stage but trying to convince your wife things are going to change. That little business… If you’re diligent with it, faithful with it, it’ll grow. Exponentially. Before the job you hope for eventually comes, you’ve got to get your hands dirty. You’ve got to be a man. Do something. Many of the successes you see around started small. Even Bill Gates started small. Dangote wasn’t always big. You can’t turn yourself into a victim. Start something small. Anything is better than nothing. And please get out of all that religious mumbo jumbo that discountenance the practical books in scriptures. All that religious babble is nothing but laziness or lack of clarity in thinking. You can’t be jobless and wanting to marry.

I do hope you and your wife are on birth control. It will be disastrous if you birth a child in these hungry circumstances. You can’t be a liability to yourself and then take on more liability. You’re hardly coping on your own…and please you can’t be jobless and go around claiming you’re a man of faith. Show me your faith by your work. And all those guys saying if the woman loves me she’ll suffer with me so when my kingdom comes… Let’s see the kingdom! How can marriage be the first priority of a man without income or job? Isn’t that incredulous! Anything can happen, they say – you can catch a lucky break after marriage. No need to be employed before marriage… Really?! Then there’s the “what if he loses his job after marriage” argument… But at least he had a job to lose! The worst thing you can do to yourself is to persist in that line of thinking. Go and get a job! I pray irreparable damage has not been done to your marriage, that you guys can somehow pull together. Write me as soon as you get a job or when you start something.

Of course I know this letter won’t be popular in some quarters, but that’s okay. Truth can be bitter.

Your mentor, LA

© Leke Alder |

For related letters, please search for Money Matters 2, Should He Get A Job Before Marriage, He Lost His Job at


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Tags : Marriage, Money, Employment

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