Monday, October 19, 2009

Wetin Wives Dey Do...Sef?

Have you ever wondered what makes one wife a “good wife” and another a “bad wife”? Parents, The Bible, the church, society and Nollywood have all done their part in creating the impressions we have of what a wife should and shouldn’t be. Yet I can’t help but wonder at times what a wife is required to be and do, and what she isn’t, especially when I hear certain stories, or come across certain things, like this excerpt from a book I read almost a decade ago, which I have posted below. Here goes.

“But I do not know any wives; I have always been with my father. If I marry him, what shall I have to do?”
“You must love him, honour him and obey him; you must study his interests, do all you can to help him, be patient with his faults, kind and gentle to him; you must see that his meals are ready at the proper time- that his clothes are nicely kept.”
“I see; it is just like being a kind of housekeeper.”
“No, Miss Diane, it is not exactly like that; you should try to keep his nooks, write his letters, read to him when he is tired.”
“Then it is like being a kind of secretary or clerk”, she said.
“Not exactly that,” said Mrs. Hopeton. “When he is dull you must cheer him; if he is downhearted amuse him; if any trouble comes you must teach him where to look for comfort; if he is tempted to do wrong you must guide him.”
“Then it is something like being a curate”, said Diane.
“A curate? No, not that.”
“But Mrs. Hopeton, do you mean that a wife has all that to do?! In that case it is useless for me to attempt to be a wife. I could not get through one-half of it.”
“Then”, said Mrs. Hopeton, “Content yourself with loving him. If you learn to do that, everything else will be well.”
- Married for Her Beauty (Bertha M Clay)

Am I the only one feeling the poor girl? Guys, what exactly do you think you are getting when you decide to make someone your wife? Girls, what do you think you are getting yourself into when you agree to become someone’s wife? For those “lucky” ones who are married, is it what you bargained for? I’d appreciate your honesty, cos I’m not getting any younger, and I’d really love to know, wetin wives dey do…sef?

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