A random conversation with a complete stranger about why she left her second husband prompted this write up. It was her experience that even though the man was Nigerian and had lived in the United Kingdom, UK, for over 25 years, the man was a bully and the Western world had made no impact on him whatsoever.
This is an unfortunate outcome. Many people think that men who live in the UK are more domestic than their Nigerian counterparts. A domesticated man who lives in Canning town is not more liberated than his colleague in Nigeria who pays a cook and a cleaner to do his household chores. Whilst it is every girl’s dream to have her man help in the kitchen, domestication does not equal liberation. Liberation in this sense is mental: it is the freedom to allow a partner exist without abuse, shame or pain.
Why would a lawyer refuse to let his wife work? Why would a pastor refuse to give his wife his share of household bills because she has a part-time job and he believes all her money should go towards bills? There are no answers to these questions as both situations need to be examined individually. Another man in Lagos locked the generator house preventing its use when he was away on a business trip. A colleague’s husband refuses to let his wife get a mobile phone because he insists she does not need one. The ultimate question is why do women allow their men to treat them like this?
There are all sorts of men who behave in unreasonable ways. Another man lost his wife at the divorce court, as he genuinely believed that every time his wife went out, she was going to see another man. When a man believes out of his own sheer ignorance that every conversation with a male is an appointment to have sex, that man is a bully and perhaps more. Living in the West does not necessarily liberate African men as some men think that women who have lived in the UK longer than they have no sense of cultural values. More often than not, their African wives rebel when they experience the harshness of their husbands’ grips.
The question is what liberates men? Why are we even talking about this because not all men are bullies? Some men suffer from severe insecurities, which lie undetected until they get married and their true colours come out. Please don’t bring education and religion into it, as the pastor outlined above has a church with a thriving congregation. A liberated man is simply a man who is secure in himself and who allows his woman to be all that she wants to be without putting any barriers or restrictions upon her. This is a hard thing for some Nigerian men who upon securing the hands of their wives in marriage turn into tyrants and illogical beasts.
Another man required his wife to show her panties each time she stepped out of the house and he was not making sure that she was wearing fresh underwear. She could have gone to the market or the store. It did not matter. It is wrong to subject a partner to such degrading treatment.
Readers might be thinking that these women must have acted in suspicious ways to make their husbands these ludicrous. A man who lacks confidence in himself and a man whose worldview is limiting are bound to find fault and create reasonable believable situations, which only exist in their minds. These men unfortunately have small minds and did not deserve the women they got. Think about it though, when was the last time you heard that a woman asked her husband to submit his underwear when he has been out with his friends. Women don’t do things like that. Can we help such men? Is there a drug or therapy that can help small-minded men?
How do you know a man with a small mind? A man with a small mind talks in limiting ways. He would shower his woman with all his love and affection, but prevent her from having a life of her own. He would dog her with accusations and belittle her as many times till he wears down her self confidence. He might even allow her get a job as long as she does not earn up to him. A man with a small mind is an abuser who is always looking for ways to prove that his woman has faults or that she is sleeping around.
Those who have dated men with small minds would agree that prayers can’t change such men. It is usually best to leave such men with their delusions than to attempt to change them or win them over. It is just too demanding emotionally and psychologically. Life is too short.
On the other hand, the beauty of a liberated man shows in the success of his wife. Men who allow their women the grace to pursue their business and academic inclinations enjoy and profit from their wife’s endeavours as all the money she makes, helps the household. The liberated man is not necessarily the one who washes the dishes, reads bedtime stories to the kids or who goes dancing with his wife, he is the one that pays for his wife to train or re-train to whatever she desires to be. It is the man that accepts that when his wife says the plane/train was cancelled and she would be late, then, that is the situation. It is a man who would never spend his spare time looking through his wife’s text messages trying to decode and encode stuff that does not concern him. It is the man who is at peace within himself and his world to make space for his woman. It is the man who respects himself well enough to allow his wife the grace to be happy and fulfilled discovering her mission in life.
With downturn in economic fortunes, many men are stressed out beyond comprehension and as such difficult to communicate or live with. Most relationships are successful because there is an element of liberation in the man. With liberation comes maturity. Are you a liberated man?
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