February 22, 2011 – Divorce and breakups are big choices which need big reasons to justify.
It has to be the other woman/man (Infidelity), finances (mostly the abundance of it) or the now so common interference from the in-laws.
We call it quits because of mega reasons. Pick out any breakup (I’m not talking about the pick and drop relationships but serious relationships on the verge of marriage) or divorce and it will all go back to either of these.
But if you ask me these things are overrated. They are so far off that before we reach at them we have ignored a million and one bumps that could have sobered us up. Ask them why they cheated and they will tell you it is either he was never home or she never looked good enough. The children replaced him as the center of attention so he sought recognition elsewhere or by default he got it in the office or in church.
We take all the signs for granted and wait for that big reason to move out. Some women wait for valentines to dress in that sexy red dress yet they keep complaining that their husbands have a roving eye. Making every meal special will definitely make him crave to come home to you, yet we often leave the house girl to make a lousy meal as we watch the soap operas.
A piece of jewellery, flowers or a coffee date may not cost us much yet we sacrifice that for a drink with the boys. We want to leave our relationships to run by fate, directed by nature while we “so” work hard for our other parts of lives.
A friend of mine recently got a new job, one that he enjoys. This was after making close to a hundred applications and securing up to 14 interviews (13 of which he failed). This is the kind of determination that I am talking about.
We sacrifice our money, time and even family time to advance our education and secure a better job. We wake up as early as 4am to get to the gym and keep fit. We spend up to 4 hours in the salon to ‘look good.’ Too sad that after all these we put little or no efforts to make our relationships work.
Sadly though we get the big job, more money, good looks and a super body… we will have no one to go home to!
The big three motivations of walking out on those we love are the fruits of rather small but accumulated omissions and commissions over time. Think about consulting your mum when buying a plot, or entertaining that sms from a crush, entertain that office flirting, joining the boys in the bar daily instead of going home to your wife and kids, all these are what am talking about.
The moment he starts coming home later than normal is when you should get the cue. The day you find new seats in the house without your ‘consultation’ but tells you they were recommended by the mother is when you should perceive where you are headed.
Whereas I agree that in laws have been accused of interfering with their sons families but I ask who allows them?
Too sad that mothers are running their sons’ homes by proxy while Fathers are running the finances of their daughters. We all blame the in-laws but I disagree. Why do you consult your mum (at the expense of your wife) when buying a piece of plot? Why in the world would you tell your mum how much you earn?
It pains me when we wash our dirty linen in public and try to seek support from our friends against our spouses. Your friends and family should be the last mediators in your relationship. Adopting a ‘if it has to be then it has to be me’ attitude puts us at the driving seat of our destiny.
If we are to make our relationships work we have to push everyone outside our ‘circle of trust’ and take charge of both fruits and liabilities.
Continuous monitoring and evaluation (like we do in projects and programs at work) could go a long way in saving us from getting to the big three. Just like we give warning letters to our juniors at work when we feel they are missing the point is the same way we should issue alerts to our partners when we notice things are not going on well.
I have adapted the principle of regularly calling ‘a family’ meeting’ with my wife to discuss where we are and where we would want to be in our relationship. These moments are usually not so rosy. Tears are shed, painful truths told, blame shifted but in the end resolutions adapted. It is from such meetings that we grow.
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