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Nellie Onwuchekwa

Raped and Impregnated by Armed Robbers

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What would you do as a Pastor if armed robber invaded your December 31st Cross-Over Service and in the process raped your daughter?

The mystery involved in making children is beyond human comprehension. Man’s infinite dimensions cannot measure it, no matter how gifted you are. It has become a universal principle that every family yearns to have numeric increment via natural procreative process. Those not inclined to have children due to personal preferences opt for child adoption in line with approved processes.

 

While Science attempts to describe the egg fertilization through to eventual birthing processes, there are limitations in explaining HOW the mix of spermatozoon and egg co-join and how the liquid dropped for fertilization. Conversely, Science has not conclusively explained how infertility sets in and the true state of the internal system of the woman. I love how Dr. Randy J. Guliuzza’s submission in “Made in His Image: Human Reproduction” to Institute for Creation Research:

“Actually, the detail could go far beyond this simple description. As seen, the level of coordinated interaction to get any viable offspring exceeds the cellular level, extends past the reproductive system, pulls in the neurologic, hormonal, and circulatory systems, and demands substances that are produced independently by the male to modify the actions of the female body or the materials made by her–and vice versa. Evolutionary literature is rife with speculative stories about the origination of these processes, but devoid of any real scientific evidence to explain them. The only viable explanation is that GOD placed these processes in the first parents, Adam and Eve, fully functional right from the beginning.”

Truly, bringing forth a child into the world is indeed an awesome experience!

Within the last five years, two very challenging emotional conflicts situations revolved around “accidental procreation”. I want to operationally define accidental procreation circumstances as “birthing children as a result of forceful entry leading to pregnancy”. The need for this definition is because some women have had to deal with pregnancies resulting from birth control mechanisms failure.

What would you do as a Pastor if armed robber invaded your December 31st Cross-Over Service and in the process raped your daughter? What would you do if you find out two months on, that your daughter is pregnant? How can a Pastor’s daughter overcome the pain and shame of being violated, and, pregnant for an unknown criminal? How would she cope to full term? How would the Pastor and his wife explain their daughter’s pregnancy out of wedlock? Would the Pastor and his wife accept their first ‘grandchild’ as a blessing? What is the way out… Many unanswered questions!

Again, what would you do if after 19 years of ‘searching for the fruit of the womb’, hoodlums invaded your home, gang-raped you. Four months down the line, you realize that the gang rape experience resulted in multiple pregnancy – triplet? What would a loving husband do under this circumstance? Would this couple welcome these ‘innocent children’ as ‘Divine Intervention? How would the man react under this trying situation?

After over 10 years of working emotional cases, one lesson that reverberates is the fact that primary colours do not define emotional conflicts and entanglements. There are underlying and extenuating circumstances, enveloped by actions and reactions. These realities challenge the Emotional Counselor beyond rationality and simple logic. Incidents sometimes challenge fundamental beliefs and mores. Thus, the best counsel is offered from a painful impassioned pedestal, having identified variables holistically and individualistically.

Negative emotions must be extricated and flushed for the delivery of, sometimes, painful path towards emotional crisis resolution. These two unfortunate incidents, at some stage led to victims’ doubt of the Omnipotent, Omniscient and Eternal God Factor! However, the story of the Okes is very significant because of its emotional complexities.

Twenty-two year old Sandra was a Year 2 Bio-Medical Sciences student of a reputable institution. On December 23, she returned home for the Christmas holiday season full of expectations and plans. Her father, Pastor Oke is a well-known and respected preacher, who lives and walks the Word, bringing his children up in alignment with the Word of God. Pastor Oke’s children were love by neighbours and church members for their cultured manner. Mrs. Oke is a paragon of beauty and humility; she runs a foundation that caters for the girl child. In addition to supporting her husband, Mrs. Oke runs one of the cheapest Nursery/Primary Schools in the State.

The Okes look forward to December 31st every year with excitement and expectations – new resolutions, family plans and programs for the following year and a host of wish lists. The most important part of the period was the opportunity for January 1st Family Feedback Hour, when family members provide feedback Mom and Dad on parenting style. For Sandra, she always enjoyed the opportunity to tell her parents things she did not like and what her parents needed to refrain from doing ‘going forward’. So, coming home every December was not negotiable, because it was critical for family bonding.

The Okes had a great day – last minute year-end shopping and general preparation for the New Year. There was an air of spirituality amid sober reflection of the ending year. After dinner, they drove to the hired venue of the Cross-Over Service, an open area less than 10 minutes drive from their residence. A cheery congregation welcomed Pastor Oke and his family; as they step in, the environment electrified with praise and worship. It was an excited Minister that stepped up to the podium at precisely 2330hrs to commence the Crossover and Testimony Night program.

Thirty minutes into the Praise and Adoration, the “Happy New Year” was announced amid shouts of exultation and adoration. Fireworks outside the service environment added to the already electrified worship center as the congregation danced to ‘sow into the new year’. Then the unexpected happened, as armed men in masks, who ordered every worshipper to lie flat on their face, surrounded Pastor Oke at the podium. They made away with the collections, and dispossessed the congregation of their valuables. The gang also escorted some members identified as ‘wealthy’ out into their vehicles. At the protest of the Pastor, the four men descended on him, beating him to a stupor.

Sandra could no longer lie still. She got up to fight one of the hoodlums in defense of her father. Sandra’s martial arts training came handy as he rescued her dad from the villain. Unfortunately, two of the gang pinned her to the ground, beat her up really bad; it was under this tensed circumstance that the leader of the gang tore off her clothes and decided to ‘teach her the lesson of her life’. He violated her mercilessly to the point of losing consciousness. It was the longest nightmare of her life as Sandra floated between the pain of being raped and violently beaten.

Time stood still as Sandra and her father regained consciousness at the private hospital of a church member, her father’s bosom friend of many years, Dr. Umez, who had called for his hospital’s Ambulance. Pastor Oke was in pains when he came to, asked after his family, to which the doctor professionally responded: “everyone is fine”. Mrs. Oke did not leave her daughter’s side, and appealed to the doctor and key staff to maintain professional confidentiality by not telling her husband that Sandra was raped and severely beaten. Dr. Umez ordered several tests and treatments for Sandra; all members of the medical team worked frantically to ensure that all was well with Sandra and her father.

Mrs. Oke was treated for shock because witnessing her daughter violated and husband almost killed, was too much to bear. However, she managed to appeal for utmost confidentiality in matters regarding Sandra. After two weeks of hospitalization, father and daughter were discharged to the joy of the family and Pastor Oke’s congregation, many of whom were not very sure of ‘what really happened to Sandra’.

Through the efforts of a ‘protective mother’ who was guarding against stigmatization, there were conflicting stories concerning the incident. Some believed that Sandra was beaten to a pulp for “trying to be heroic”; others were sure that she was “attempting to call the Police” while another group said Sandra was “taking pictures of the invaders”. Yet, another group were convinced that Sandra “recognized some members of the gang” hence, the ‘serious beating’ she got. However, everyone empathized with her and thanked God for making sure ‘no life was lost’.

Sandra returned to school with the trauma as all rape victims, and thrust herself into the academic workload to distract her from the nightmares she experienced. She became a hermit and made conscious efforts to avoid male classmates. Efforts by close friends who knew she was ‘beaten by invading robbers’ paled into insignificance as Sandra rebuffed entreaties for group studies and campus fellowships.

Early February, Sandra fainted during a lecture session; her best friend, Pamela called Mrs. Oke who flew down to see her daughter at the university clinic. She immediately arranged for her transfer to Dr. Umez’s private hospital, the family hospital. Different tests were conducted: HIV/AIDS, Pneumonia, Diabetes, Malaria, Typhoid, Pap smear, Appendicitis, Low sugar, PCV, etc. Nothing significant was found.

After one week of hospitalization, Dr. Umez, Medical Director decided to indulge his ‘whim’; he took a blood sample to three outside laboratories for pregnancy test. Results came back positive. He was devastated, asking himself repeatedly: How would he tell Sandra’s mother that the real nightmare had begun? How would he face Pastor Oke, his dear friend of many years, to explain that Sandra was raped the same night he (Pastor) nearly died in the hands of the violent gang – resulting in pregnancy? How do you tell this to a mother who is yet to recover from the trauma of witnessing her daughter raped and husband beaten close to death?

Finally, he decided that there was no time to waste; Mrs. Oke needed to the situation to enable to family decide on what to do. Adopting reverse psychology, Mrs. Oke was asked what she honestly thought could be wrong with her daughter. She suggested it could be depression and fear that people knew she was raped. Dr. Umez reminded her that the personnel with the highest level of integrity coordinated post-rape treatment for Sandra. At the suggestion that Pregnancy Test would be done the next day, Mrs. Oke went berserk: “No. No. No. Don’t even think or suggest that Sandra could be pregnant. Do you know what that means? My husband’s Ministry will be finished! Have you considered what a pregnancy will mean to my daughter? Please perish the thought…”

Moved with compassion, Dr. Umez prayed for Divine Wisdom on how to communicate the ‘bad news’, fully aware that it was more dangerous to delay the information further. He needed to alter the Sarah’s medications to pregnancy-friendly ones decision on the pregnancy, but decided to update Pastor Oke on the situation to get a steer on the matter. Unaware of the pregnancy, but knew that it was expedient that her husband knew about the rape. At last, the secret of those fateful early hours of January 1 was going to be revealed. Would her husband feel disappointed and betrayed in her? Would he ever trust her again? How will Sandra feel IF the test proved positive…. Many disturbing questions…

Pastor agreed to create time Sunday evening to meet with his friend and chat over dinner. Ahead of the dinner meeting, Pastor Oke and his wife checked on their daughter, Pastor insisting that Sarah needed deliverance since nothing is medically wrong with her. Dr. Umez was glad to see his friend in high spirit, wondering how the day would end after delivering the sad message. He hated being the harbinger of bad news, and, it was the first time they were meeting socially, besides church services, since the unfortunate incident.

They had dinner in silence amid palpable tension; Dr. Umez ate mechanically, his mind pre-occupied, mentally joggling one possible strategy after the other. Walking with Pastor Oke and his wife in tow to the study, he knew that the die was cast and silently prayed for divine strength. “I want to begin with apologies. I have failed you as a friend and failed God as His child…” he began. A surprised Pastor Oke looked to his wife who sat with head bowed, believing Dr. Umez was about to reveal Sarah’s ordeal that fateful night.

“As you know, Sandra has been in the hospital for about two weeks…I just found out that she is pregnant…” Dr. Umez dropped the bombshell. Pastor Oke gave his wife a questioning look, “What…what did you just say? Sandra, my daughter is pregnant? How?” Turning to his wife, “Is this true? Are you aware of this? Speak, woman…” Dr. Umez interrupted, “My brother, mummy does not know that she is pregnant; that is why I decided to come to the house. We did not tell you everything about that night…. Those hoodlums raped Sandra, our dear daughter. Unfortunately, it has resulted in a pregnancy. I thought it wise to discuss with both of you. Something needs to be done, and, fast too…. My apologies Mummy; this burden has been too much for me…” he concluded with visible relief.

Mrs. Oke wept uncontrollably, while her husband stared unseeingly and motionless. When he spoke, it was to no one; he soliloquized: “Lord, what is my crime? Who has sinned in this family? What are you trying to tell me, Lord? Have I not served you faithfully? Are you visiting our sins on my beloved daughter? What kind of shame is this, Lord…?” Dr. Umez quietly left to the home of the Okes, making a mental note to return first thing the next morning. There are key issues that need to be resolved and the earlier the better.

For the Okes, it was the longest night of their lives. Painfully, Mrs. Oke narrated what took place that fateful night and how everything was done to clean up and treat their traumatized daughter who was violently raped. She pleaded with her husband to persuade Dr. Umez not to disclose to Sandra that she was with child – and to secretly abort the baby. Pastor Oke was indeed in dire straits – he could neither pray nor reason with his wife. He lamented all night.

Dr. Umez had invited me earlier to provide my perspective – a ‘third eye’ angle, but I dithered. He got to his friends’ residence the next morning only to discover that they never left the study. Husband and wife sat down in deep thought with confused expressions. Dr. Umez was concerned and checked their blood pressures; the results were so alarming that he gave them medication to relax them. He left with instructions to the housekeeper that the couple should neither be disturbed nor allowed to receive any visitors. He knew his friends would need their strength to deal with the issue at hand. Sandra had been requesting for a private session with the doctor to understand her ‘ailment’.

The meeting with Sandra’s parents was one of the most emotionally tense sessions I have ever dealt with. Discussions focused on “How to manage the information”; “Is abortion the answer?” “How will the church perceive their Pastor in view of the Sandra’s pregnancy? “Would the Pastor approve abortion as a necessity under the circumstance?” “Will Pastor accept that his first grandchild is seared by a criminal?” So many questions…

This couple was crestfallen. They needed a shock treatment that would kick-start them back to reality. I empathized with the Pastor Oke, who is one of the few ‘true men of God’ with the highest level of ethics and integrity I have met. He was loved for his stance on Christian discipline, piety and morality. Clearly, in this circumstance, Pastor Oke and his daughter, Sandra, are most impacted. Aware that they had not had anything to eat in almost 24 hours, Dr. Umez called on the housekeeper to get some green tea and freshly made juice, for it was going to be a long evening. Introductions and exchanges were made while waiting for refreshment.

We took refreshment in silence, but the tension was palpable as Dr. Umez gave me a nudge. One of the most trying periods for even the most experienced and talented professional is rationally surfing through entanglements. The need to explain real situations and their implications is usually a tough call. Dr. Umez and I had worked through the issues – all night and day – till the point of meeting – until he, too became very emotional.

Rationality is often impacted by uncoordinated feelings; this happens to be best of us, no matter your profession or vocation- including yours truly. “Pastor, I understand how you feel right now, but I believe that a prayer to kick off discussions will be good…. Please, lead us in a short prayer”. That was an unkind cut, but it had to be done; it was the beginning the process of venting and healing for the family whose trust is in God. Initially, Pastor Oke looked at me with an inexplicable emotion, shaking his head, he knelt down and said a very short, but powerful prayer under the circumstance. His prayer cleared the path to emotional recovery: “Lord Jesus, I thank you for everything; please, grant me the Grace to bear this great burden. Amen”

That simple but powerful prayer changed the mood in the room. There seemed to be an entrance of Power that encapsulated the room with PEACE. Internal peace aids positive reasoning, and we needed a surplus dose of that for the discussion. Also, the wordings and tone of the prayer was a signal that everyone in the room was ready to accept the worst-case scenario. Above all, I was strengthened and more confident to deliver painful but critical perspective to the ‘issues’ at hand. It was brief, without sentiments and straight to the point:

“Thank you for allowing me to participate in this very intimate family matter. I am glad that we are all positively disposed to deal with the fact of the tough problem before us. This family is a high profile and well-respected family, and Pastor Oke is a revered minister of the Word. Therefore, we need to carefully consider the situation and take decisions towards remediation. We need to consider that Sandra is an adult who must be carried along in this matter that affects her directly. Yes, the situation if not well articulated and handled, will impact the family’s reputation, Ministry, and most importantly, Sandra.

“While the seemingly easiest option is ‘quiet abortion’, Dr. Umez knows that he cannot wheel Sandra to the theatre without an explanation. She already suspects that she might be pregnant and has requested for a pregnancy test. When Dr. Umez and I playfully asked her what she would do if she were pregnant, Sandra shook her head and faced the wall. That is denial! The clock is ticking; the damage has been done, and I think we might consider the following steps:

1. ZERO consideration for Abortion
2. Relocate Sandra outside the country (preferably, the United States of America or United Kingdom) to have the baby and continue her education there
3. When the baby comes, send the baby to a Motherless Baby Home for possible adoption; OR, return the baby ‘home’ and be adopted into the Oke Family.”

“No way”, Mrs. Oke shouted. How can my first grandchild be a bastard, and, a product of rape? God forbid. Please Dr. Umez take out that thing…that bastard…. Oh God, why? Why? Why me? What did we do to deserve this? Who did we offend….”she sobbed uncontrollably. Her husband moved over to her side and held her tightly muttering “It is well; it is well; it will end in praise. Like Job, we will triumph. What else can we do? Abortion is against the Will of God. The shame is unimaginable, but I think they have thought this out well. It is a temporary option until things cool down. Please, my darling. Be strong…”

Pastor Oke decided to go with us to the hospital to see her daughter immediately. It was an apprehensive and confused Sandra who greeted us. Mrs. Oke wore a very sad and depressing countenance that increased Sandra’s anxiety, “Daddy, Mummy, what is the problem? Is everything okay? Am I dying?” Pastor Oke moved to the bed, reassuring his daughter that “All is well”, however, he had ‘unfortunate news’ to tell her. Sandra became hysterical: “Did I contact HIV/AIDS from the rape? Is it cancer? Oh, please, Mummy tell me that I am not dying. I have seen the way the some of staff have been looking at me with so much pity…like I have limited days to live…Can someone tell me what I am suffering from…”

“God is Faithful; He is Merciful and Gracious. You do not have any ‘Egyptian Disease’. We thank God for that; but you are pregnant…” Pastor Oke dropped the bomb! Minutes that seemed like an eternity passed, with a now uncontrollably hysterical Sandra pulled away from her father, tore off the drip and attempted to run away from the room without success. Dr. Umez tried to calm her down, overcoming his desire to sedate her. When she became calm, Sandra asked her mother, “Mummy, what am I going to do? How will I be able to face my friends in school and the church? Oh, Daddy, how will your members look at you – a minister whose daughter is pregnant out of wedlock…made pregnant by an armed robber? What kind of destiny is this…?” Sandra went on and on… Mrs. Oke held her daughter tight and the two women wept in tensed confusion.

One week later, the family adopted the “Emotionally Yours Model”, as Pastor Oke christened the advice provided that evening of crisis. Sandra spent some time with the Emotionally Yours Team to enable her vent and come to terms with the challenges of ‘accidental motherhood’, as she called it. Within three weeks, Emotionally Yours Team worked with its international network to get a Christian couple in Europe where Sandra was to live, school and have her baby – all with the support of her parents.

Emotional Piggy Bank

Rape victims experience emotional and psychological consequences beyond the constantly harped ‘stigmatization’. Being raped by a criminal with the resultant consequence of pregnancy introduces another dimension in emotional distress. While victims fall back to self-blame as ‘avoidance tool’, ‘spiritualizing’ the incident further impacts the healing process. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, flashbacks, sleep and disorders, guilt, anger and suicidal inclinations are recurring emotional pools in which victims swim.

Love, patience and understanding help victims rebuild their self-confidence, while crawling gradually from the stupor of depression through the rungs of self-awareness. It is Love’s influence via expression of positive emotion and rational behaviour that help victims overcome, as well as come to terms with any other fall outs impacting on other parties. The constant reference to the word ‘bastard’ during pregnancy arising from a rape incident naturally reopens the wounds to a never-healing state. The incident is mentally relived and the cycle could be unending.

Therefore, Love is the BALM that soothes emotionally traumatized victim. Thus, the next time you meet a rape victim, show empathy, understanding and LOVE.

God bless you. Yours Emotionally’, Nellie Onwuchekwa

Send your QUESTIONS and CONCERNS to NELLIE directly, click >>>

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“Help Me, I Need My Wife Back” – 63-year old Willie takes marital anguishes to Nellie’s ‘Emotional Court’

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Life is filled with twists and turns. One day it is so perfect and the next, it is all gloomy. But these valleys, cliffs and mountains make life exciting. For some, what I call ‘excitement’ is emotional stress.

Shortly after Anne’s ‘MUTUAL POLYGAMY’ story was published, (read Anne’s Story) a 63-year old Willie called us requesting assistance to get his wife back. Willie loves and dotes at his wife. He should, because Constance, a paradigm of beauty and brains, is 47 years old – 16 years younger than her husband. For the purpose of this expose, I want to first submit Willie’s perspective in this emotional tango.

 

Willie, a widower, met ‘delectable’ Constance who was a Product Marketing Professional. Willie is cut out of the old stock of money and style. Willie is from a ‘Wealthy’ family – wealthy from every perspective and consideration. Left with four (4) children by his first love, Monique, who died after ‘a brief illness’, Willie was excited when Constance accepted to marry him.

Constance, a First Class graduate of Economics ‘worships’ as well as ‘fears’ her husband. She is not allowed to contradict him, otherwise, face financial sanctions or have some privileges denied. They have been married for about seven (7) years and have a five-year-old son, Brian who Willie loves very much. Willie’s other children from Monique are adults and live on their own. His daughter Yvonne (35) never supported her father’s choice, as she wanted her father to either marry a widow or a divorcee with children. Yvonne believes Constance married her father for his money and could not be trusted.

According to Willie, “I know she is having an affair with a younger man. I know because she no longer spends time at home with us (myself and Brian). She comes home late from work daily. When I was very sick and hospitalized, she refused to visit me at the hospital, but travelled to another state for some ‘urgent and critical official’ work. She does not come into our bedroom anymore, but complains she needs to stay up late to work…I am not a small boy, I know something is wrong. I love my wife, and I need help to get her back”.

Willie was really moist speaking with us. To show his desire to get to the bottom of this crisis of confidence and resolve issues with his wife, he gave us a number we could reach Constance on…. And we did speak with her.

Constance confessed she has emotional interests outside her matrimonial home due to “emotional abuse”. According to her, Willie always makes reference to “how much he bought the car; how much he bought my hair; how much my allowances are costing him and why I should be glad he married me in spite of pressures from his children.”

“My husband makes veiled references to my background. Yes, I come from a very humble background. Call us poor. Yes, I wanted my family to benefit from the relationship. And, Willie has been good to my family. However, constantly reminding me of these things is harassing me emotionally… I am not happy about the situation. I am not thinking divorce because my son is attached to my husband. I am an emotional wreck right now and really confused.

“I care deeply about Willie, but I am not sure I love him in the real sense of the word LOVE. For me love died with my first love, Victor, who left me for another woman. I just wanted to have a companion who was older than me and could pamper me like my late father. Willie fitted the bill, but his daily disrespect and abuse is driving me mad. I am not an illiterate…his daughter is also not helping in this regard. I had to look for ‘sanity’ elsewhere’ – my work.”

Constance decided to focus on her career and was assigned a Mentor/Coach at her office – as part of Personnel Development program by the Human Resources Department. Her Mentor/Coach, Michael (52) is divorced and lives with his three children. Michael has been a source of encouragement to Constance. Between them, personal confidences have been shared – and something ‘BIG’ is growing gradually…

Constance spoke with candor about her ‘involvement’ with Michael, but believes that she was ‘driven into another man’s arms by her husband.

In her own words: “There is no denying the fact that I find Michael attractive and fun to be with. He respects me and does not judge me. I don’t walk or stand on edge when I am with him. He is very supportive professionally and my productivity at work has really improved. He gives me a sense of emotional stability and professional confidence…. Do I love him? I don’t know…but he is definitely not a ‘fling’. I am looking at a deep friendship. One thing I am sure about is, I don’t want to stay with a man who sees me as an ACQUISITION. I thought he could change, but he gets worse each day…”

Could lack of sex be the issue? Constance says “Not really…but it is contributory. When you marry, it is for “better” or “worse”. If lack of sex is the ‘worse’ part of your marriage vows due to his health challenge, there are other ways to make up…. Sex is not everything”. However, Willie believes that his inability to make love to his wife regularly, and gradual loss of libido is a major factor…

Critical Questions: How can we help Willie and Constance regain an emotional balance? Is Michael playing a negative role in this Marriage?

Two things are clear: Willie wants his Wife back; but Constance wants her Dignity back!!!

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Dear Constance,

Sessions with you were emotion-laden. We appreciate your openness and honesty as you opened up on the “emotional entrapment called marriage”. We agree you have had a ‘frightful’ marriage, but it was a relationship you entered willingly.

You submitted that you did NOT MARRY FOR LOVE. That is truly sad for a well-educated young woman of 40 (when you married Willie). An African proverb says: “he who gathers ant-infested firewood should be ready for the dance’. You further admitted that you married for the money in order to help your family. These reasons led to how you were perceived by Willie and her children. You sacrificed love on the altar of self-aggrandizement and ‘family pressure’.

These reasons are enough reasons for Willie’s family members to be apprehensive of your ‘interest in poor Willie who had recently lost his beloved Monique.

Understandably, Yvonne, your stepdaughter is sensitive about the situation. Daughters have the natural tendency to be over protective of their parents – especially, their father. Thus, you need to understand Yvonne and make an effort reassure her that you truly love and care for her father (if you have eventually grown to love Willie) – to the best of you ability. This is not to suggest that you have to grovel and beg her to be on your side. Always steer the path of PEACE as there is never a bad peace.

Another issue is Communication. Despite your faulty entry into marriage with Willie, it is expected that communication channels be open. No desperate desire to be married to a wealthy man should make a wife unable to discuss issues with her husband.

Without sentiments, I hold you responsible for the accepting years of emotional abuse, emotional battery and, sometimes, physical abuse you suffered in your marriage. Your quest for ‘the elegant lifestyle of the wealthy and famous’ kept you encapsulated. Rather than make effort to free yourself via counseling, you found an ‘escape in work and Michael…” You return daily to a “mansion of agony” to traumatize Willie with jealousy. You are using Michael to satisfy your sexual needs; this is not fair to Michael who is ignorant of the situation, as you do not love him.

You cannot solve a problem by creating another. Thus, you need to:

  • Introspect and tell yourself the hard truth about your situation;
  • A marriage without love is COHABITATION. If that is what you want, accept all the abuses meted out to you because everything has a price;
  • Define your relationship with Michael to save him from your emotional tango. If you love Michael and wish to continue your undefined relationship, please be kind enough to progress dissolution of your union with Willie

When you take the right steps towards integrity, you will naturally regain your DIGNITY.

Whatever your choice, here is wishing you the best.

Yours Emotionally, Nellie Onwuchekwa

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Dear Willie,

Thank you for your patience and understanding throughout the ‘intrusive’ discourse on a matter so sensitive. We only wanted to get facts of the case in order to provide feedback without sentiments.

There is no doubt that you ‘love’ your wife ‘very much’ – and you want your wife back. It is, however, unfortunate that you seem to speak about your wife like a lost piece of furniture. During the sessions, you talked about “how much it cost me to marry her”, “how I have attended to all here needs, without sparing costs’, I give her anything she asks for, no matter how much it costs’, “how I have loved and taken care of her family”, etc. Little is however said to demonstrate emotional connection, commitment and attention to ensuring emotional stability of your marriage.

You admitted that Constance is ‘expected to fear’ you as a husband. You also expect her to align with you on EVERY ISSUE – irrespective of her opinion or perspective. Again, and disappointingly, three (3) years ago, you refused Constance (who has a MBA from a reputable University), not be involved in the running of your business when she offered her services – to give you the reassurance of her faithfulness. This led to her seeking paid employment elsewhere. Despite the aforementioned, you want her to be open about her official work-life.

It is important that you remember that marriage is a partnership between two people that love themselves and have committed to live together in love, respect and harmony for the rest of their God-given lives. Regardless of your claim of love for Constance, you did not show an ounce of respect for her. You repeatedly judged Constance using your late wife’s standard… “Monique would never do that” reverberated throughout the sessions with you. You cannot slaughter Constance on the altar of Monique. This is totally unacceptable and puts your wife constantly under pressure

Husbands are expected to support and encourage their wives to achieve their God-given potential. You see in Constance, your wife, a Competitor – instead of a HELP-MEET. Also, your daughter, Yvonne has a degree of influence on you. It is pertinent to point out that Constance is YOUR WIFE. Monique, no matter the virtues, is dead.

Action Steps:

  • Invite your wife and have a discussion (heart to heart); apologize in areas you know you are wrong. Accepting your mistakes is NOT as sign of weakness, rather, a show of strength.
  • Ask your wife honestly if your marriage has future – and show willingness to repair broken bridges/ridges. Listen to Constance with an OPEN HEART & MIND
  • Have a session with your daughter, Yvonne. She needs to understand you need Constance. Encourage her to focus on her marriage, while you work things out with Constance.
  • Work on the ‘challenges’ in your sexual relationship with your wife. There are ways to satisfy you both sexually – feel free to ask.
  • Upon reconciliation with Constance (God Willing), create a harmonious environment in your home and ensure your children respect YOUR WIFE!!!

NOTE: You are well aware of the age gap between you and your wife. Age, they say, is a number. However, when there are health challenges, you require love, attention, respect and understanding from your spouse to carry on. Communication is key. Do not stop communicating.

Dear Willie, separate FAMILY from your marriage. Pursue peace and tread the path of reconciliation. At 63, you need emotional stability, not crisis. You want your wife back – however, she wants her DIGNITY back!!!

All the best …and stay blessed.

Yours Emotionally,

Nellie Onwuchekwa

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Send your QUESTIONS and CONCERNS to NELLIE directly, click >>>

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Nellie Onwuchekwa

Is fidelity gone? …let us walk fidelity back home!

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One of my most satisfying past time is organizing motivational talks for young people in colleges. I love the refreshing perspectives that the Youth bring to issues – from sheer innocence to the lethargic. Sometimes discussions delve into frightening emotional depths that cast gloomy picture of their emotional lives from a futuristic perspective.

While the word ‘Fidelity’ has various connotations and operational definitions, I refer to the ‘ability to be faithful and committed – emotionally and sexually – to ONE person (your spouse or partner) throughout the period of your relationship.

Recently, I worked with a group of 80 final year students (21 – 26 years old) of a reputable tertiary institution on a special research project. Part of my objectives was to test their degree of fidelity or faithfulness and commitment to relationships. In turn, they were to test their parents/guardians (55 – 70 years old). My interest was to establish a behavioral cycle and determine if there is a correlation between the emotional patterns of the young people with that of their parents.

This piece is not about the research but some interesting variables arising therefrom. Fidelity or Faithfulness was not a strong feature in relationships x-rayed. Over 55% of the students believe “faithfulness” or “fidelity” is old fashioned and has zero effect on their current relationships. About 73% of parents/guardians had been ‘overtly unfaithful’; 9% had left their spouses for another ‘love’, while 14% had constantly been ‘mentally unfaithful’. Only 4% percent have been totally faithful to their spouses. Interestingly, the ‘faithful bunch’ were clergy and those ‘survived’ bitter divorces.

Five team members later met with me to share an emotional fear based on findings after group discussions. Their collective question is simple: Does that mean that Fidelity or Faithfulness should no longer be an expectation in modern day relationships?

Is virtue of faithfulness truly gone?

Of course, NO! Some people still believe that fidelity in relationships should be the woman’s call… Men expect women to be faithful because it is an obligation. Truth is faithfulness is an issue of integrity. It is a personal decision that individuals make in spite of wedding vows and verbal assurances. A man or woman DECIDES to be faithful regardless of his/her partner’s lifestyle. The decision to be committed to your spouse/partner is predominantly dependent and propelled by the behavior of the other party.

Last week, after deep meditation on the issue of faithfulness or fidelity going out of fashion, I held a soul-searching and dangerous discussion with the love of my life. Here’s a snap shot:

Me: Darling, can you be TRULY faithful?

Response: Yes

Me: Can a man be faithful to ONE WOMAN?

Response: Yes

Me: What keeps a man faithful to his wife for the rest of his life?

Response: The Woman

Me: How? Why?

Response: The woman holds the key to the longevity of any relationship. She is supposed to be the mother, the confident, the nurse and the nurturer of any relationship….

Me: (Cut in) That, is not fair!!! What role does the man now play? Are you blaming women for all acts of infidelity?

Response: No, my dear. A good woman pays attention. She knows when her son/daughter is straying or has emotional issues. It is the same in relationships. The woman has the GPS to keep the relationship on course.

Me: Have you been faithful to this relationship?

Response: Yes. I am TOTALLY emotionally wrapped, why should I stray? Most importantly, I cannot hurt someone I love so deeply…

Above reflection is interesting and an innocent perspective on the issue. It may not be agreeable by modern women in relationships, as the quest for ‘EQUALITY’ has driven GOD-GIVEN roles of women to the background. However, it is noteworthy that there are elements of truth in the responses to the questions, thus, providing a unique element on the subject of fidelity in relationships.

I have no plan to open a discourse on whether a woman has more critical roles to play in navigating her spouse towards faithfulness. A peep into Men’sHealth Magazine provides helpful insight to a man’s tendency to ‘stray’. A 2008 Gallup Poll indicated 54 percent of Americans know someone who has an unfaithful spouse. Also, the University of Chicago’s General Social Survey “consistently finds that 20 percent of men cheat in their lifetimes, compared with 12 percent of women…” Today, the statistics are much more depressing.

If women can play a significant role in ensuring faithfulness of their spouses/partners, do they really understand WHY MEN CHEAT? Is it all about sex? No! According to Gary Neuman book, “The Truth about Cheating” out of 100 cheating men interviewed, only eight percent cited sex as the major reason for infidelity. Interestingly, 48 percent of them admitted that emotional issues led them to cheat. Thus, it can be safely established that it is not “just sex”.

To Men: Beware of these signs

I am positive that before you entered into your current relations, love was at the foundation that grew the bonding into a pledge of loyalty and promise to stay faithful. However, temptations abound out there. Scott M. Bea, PsyD, a clinical psychologist provided the helpful professional perspectives below:

Beware When:

  • You are increasingly interested in flirting with someone new in order to gauge the possibility of establishing a more intimate relationship.
  • You have persistent sexual and romantic fantasies about a particular ‘potential partner’.
  • You find yourself inviting or agreeing to meet or dine alone with a person with whom you feel a sexual or romantic attraction.
  • You are beginning to confide in an individual with whom you feel sexual or romantic attraction.
  • You have a history of infidelity coupled with a new opportunity to cheat.

To Women: Help Our Men

Of a truth, I am yet to meet a man who sets out to be unfaithful in a loving relationship. Temptations, emotional stressors and other inexplicable circumstances drive them to seek ‘solace’ in the wrong barn. These ‘temporary solutions’ eventually end badly due to faulty foundations.

As earlier established, women are naturally gifted with emotional intelligence and always have a ‘feeling’ that something is wrong in a relationship. Women have God-given instincts for sensing when their men are in trouble. Women who truly love their spouses ALWAYS KNOW when their men begin to drift and can propel them lovingly back to the right track – without angst or vituperation. Please…

Discuss With Him. We have established that it is NOT all about SEX. Communication is the livewire of any true relationship. Effective Communication is the outcome of a deep friendship between the two people. Humour him and do not exasperate him with jealous remarks. Establish that you both have a problem and work it via a heart to heart talk. So, talk without being opinionated.

Ensure Intimacy. Intimacy is the result of a strong bond between people who truly love each other. Intimacy does not denote sexual contact. Physical contact between lovers is more than sex. Relationship experts say: “Intimate touch – from stroking hair to massaging to simply holding each other, is key to keeping those bonds strong. “Kiss, massage, and keep those loving hands on each other: This works on basic biological levels to keep people literally connected and respond to one another, to anticipate each other’s needs, to look to each other rather than new, unknown partners.”

Do you feel emotionally connected when you touch your partner?

Help Him Avoid potential cheating traps. Dr. Scott Bea established that most men know when they are faced with potential traps. Sometimes, steering clear of these situations may be difficult, especially when emotionally stressed. Do you encourage him to discuss personal challenges – or does he have someone else he is comfortable discussing with? Being open, and, understanding the frailties of your spouse/partner will help him avoid emotional booby traps that could lead to unfaithfulness.

You must understand the need to intimately discuss the dangers of meeting alone with anyone that he might feel attracted to sexually or romantically. Confiding personal details to anyone that he might feel attracted to sexually or romantically is a dangerous signal. “It’s also a good idea to avoid or eliminate ‘friendly’ hugs and kisses.” The same goes for new avenues of cheating, such as online chat rooms and other forms of social media communication.

Note: Avoid making him feel cornered. Approach discussions of potential infidelity tactfully with clear display of love and concern. He must understand that both of you have an invaluable emotional investment, and, your desire/commitment to make it work.

Fidelity in spousal and romantic relationships establishes the basis of emotional stability and general wellness. It assures peace of mind and confidence in children. While it has been noted that both men and women have individual roles to play, the woman continues to hold the key and emotional GPS in keeping the man on course.

Women, let us get off from heights that hurt relationships. Let us invest emotionally in our relationships. Let us forgive mistakes and lovingly navigate our spouses and partners to the path of fidelity, loyalty and integrity. Stop impugning the reputation of the man before the children. “…And the two shall be one…” means that when you repudiate your spouse before the children, you inadvertently drag yourself into the mud too.

So, Let us WALK Fidelity back into our relationships…

I remain…

Emotionally Yours,

Nellie Onwuchekwa

Note: Any emotional issues or thoughts? Please share with me. Click to email me >>

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Nellie Onwuchekwa

Emotional Conflict: Is She Toying with Me?

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Growing up, my father was my BEST friend and my WALL of Gibraltar. He was an easy-going sea-faring gentleman, who knew how to take care of ONE Woman – my mother. He was strong-willed and a disciplinarian and gave no room for excuses for failure. He was admired as he was revered by young and old. We never saw our father betray any form of emotion. We all called him a “Man of Steel”.  Each time we idolized my father, my mother would silently shake her head, and smile to herself.

One day, I returned home from school to learn that Mom was very sick and had been hospitalized. I accompanied Dad to pay her a visit, observed my father was visibly shaken, as he looked her over – with all the equipment connections. After the doctor’s routine examination, my father knelt down beside my unconscious mother to pray for Divine Healing. Rather than say a prayer, my father sobbed uncontrollably – to my utmost embarrassment.

I rushed out of the room confused and devastated. To the best of my naïve mind, “real men do not cry; real men are made of steel’. Why would my father, an ex-soldier and an experienced seaman crumble needlessly? As the theatre of life moved me from one stage to the other, I realized that a man is as weak as he is strong. The strongest of men are known to be deeply emotional. In their love, men are also very weak.

This mental picture sets the scene for Emotionally Yours encounter with Kizito three decades later. A man of humble background, Kizito’s education was made possible by a special scholarship contest. Kizito beat 1069 others to clinch the scholarship award when he was 21 years old. His sponsors, a multinational oil corporation, created additional requirement as key consideration for employment: students on scholarship consistently maintain an A Grade on at least 80% of his subjects throughout the four years of study. Kizito shocked the Corporation by sustaining a 100% A Grade throughout his study. Kizito, at 25, became an employee of one of the most prestigious multinational oil corporations in the country. Today, 20 years later, Kizito, a very successful Chemical Engineer is emotionally troubled and conflicted.

When the multinational oil and gas corporation hired Kizito as a Star Employee. This placed him under immense pressure – loved and admired by some and ‘loathed’ by those who felt he was simply an opportunist. Some of the older colleagues felt Kizito was a product of ‘favouritsm’. Irrespective of the faction, Kizito was a Controversy on Arrival. This misperception created a hostile environment and had an emotional impact on his ability to interact or socialize within the organization. He became a hermit and workaholic. His supervisors only admired him because he was productive and dependable. However, his social life suffered as he put in an average of 12 hours at work.

When turned 30, his friends from the university organized a birthday party for him at an expensive restaurant. He met Veronica, a Senior Sales Executive in one of the major Telecommunications Companies. They hit it off and got married within six months. They were in love and inseparable. Within five years of marriage, Kizito and Veronica were blessed with the arrival of three children – Vera, Kosi and Michael.

During their 10th wedding anniversary, Veronica suddenly became gravely ill and was rushed to the hospital for emergency surgery due to badly ruptured appendicitis.  She died 48 hours after the surgery due to complications. Naturally, Kizito was grief-stricken and suicidal, but the awareness of the impact of the loss on the children held him back. Family and friends rallied round him to condole with him as well as provide domestic support. However, to help him overcome or numb his grief, Kizito applied for transfer out of his current station and was obliged. He was relocated abroad with his children.

After seven (7) years, he returned to the in-country headquarters of his company as Engineering Manager. He continued his holistic focus on his job and children – with zero hour for personal life. He admitted to his best friend, Frank, that he had not been with any woman since he became a widower. His parents were worried and pressured him to remarry, but he would not even consider the thought – until he met Adesuwa, who is about five years older than Kizito.

In Adesuwa, Kizito found a mother, sister, confidant and guardian. Adesuwa, a divorcee with two adult children from her first marriage is set on ensuring Kizito makes “commitment to holy matrimony”. However, Kizito is emotionally unsettled and clearly conflicted. After two sessions with him, Kizito agreed to organize his emotional conflicts into a communication to Emotionally Yours. His letter provided the foundational basis for his internal conflict which is currently affecting his work, relationship with his children and Adesuwa who is set on marrying Kizito.

“Dear Emotionally Yours,

I want to thank you for your patience during our previous face-to-face discussion on my peculiar problem. Initially, I felt awkward, but was surprised by how you gently guided the discussions and made me discuss very painful episodes of my life from a comic stance. I am really encouraged to table my conflicts to enable you analyze independently.

I will not repeat the painful circumstances that made me lose my first true love and the mother of my priceless jewels. When Veronica said she wanted children in quick succession to free her from secondary infertility possibilities, I was worried; little did I know that a Divine Hand was propelling it. Today, Vera 16, Kosi 14 and Michael 13, are my greatest joy and fulfillment. Vera is a 100% ‘reincarnation’ of Veronica – a High Definition Scan Version – only prettier due to innocence.

Since Veronica’s death seven years ago, I have taken care of my children alone. How I have been able to cope with three teenagers is still baffling, but I give thanks to God. At 47 – approaching 48 years, I am very fulfilled. Incidentally, I have also come to the point where the children are focused on their education. I refused a Boarding School for them, as I need to come home and go over their assignments – as well monitoring their school challenges. My weekends are dedicated to mentoring and counseling them – and they look forward to weekends because I am able to give them quality time.

I met Adesuwa and fell in love with her maturity, knowledge and faith. Her commitment to church programs and non-for-profit organizations is inspiring. Her two sons (26 and 22 years old) display a high level of discipline. She is also admired and respected by her friends. Notwithstanding that she is five years older than me, she shows me respect. However, there are areas of slight disagreement and misalignment of thoughts that have kept me uneasy about moving to the next level of expectation – marriage.

Adesuwa insists that OUR children could be an impediment to our happiness in marriage. There is no reasoning with her on this matter as she states that she has ‘brought up two grown men’ to know that my teenage children ‘would be in the way’. According to Adesuwa, we should “restart our life without impediment of children.” Incidentally, Adesuwa’s children have completed their university education, while mine are in secondary school.

Another source of discomfort is her desire for us to relocate to another city without work consideration. She wants me to retire, get my benefits and join her in business, and have enough time for each other – and have a baby of our own. According to Adesuwa, she had a ‘vision and revelation’ that the Company will soon collapse.

I love Adesuwa – not the way I loved my wife. Adesuwa gives me a sense of security and peace. She is not beautiful in the ways of the world, but she is charming and intelligent. I get the chilly feeling whenever she talks about having “our baby”. Between Adesuwa and I there are five children – two adults and three teenage children. Medically, at 54, she is past childbearing age and at 47, I am not looking forward to changing diapers and day care center regime. If we didn’t have children that consideration could have been logical.

I have lost count of how many times I tried to have meaningful discussion on these issues with her, but every effort ends in a major disagreement and tempestuous quarrels. My family believes that I am’ under some sought of influence’. My children are not comfortable with the relationship because Adesuwa seems set on ‘ostracizing’ me from my children. Vera, my 17 year old is very outspoken and threatened to run away. Vera is the split image of Veronica, my late wife. Unfortunately, Adesuwa has not done much to win the love of the children; she tells me that I ought to have trained my children to be emotionally independent – whatever that means.

I love Adesuwa deeply and adore my children very much. I cannot imagine a life without my children. We have a bond/connection that is unimaginable. I am torn between love for my children and Adesuwa. Is Adesuwa toying with my emotions by making impossible demands?”

At this time, Kizito’s emotional problems have been impacting on his productivity at the company. His performance rating has gone down to below average – to the amazement of his Supervisor and Mentor. Also his relationship with his children, especially Vera, has gone frosty. Kizito’s emotions stand on a TRIPOD – Work, Children and Adesuwa. The conflict is further deepened, as neither Adesuwa nor the children are ready to shift ground.

To understand the perspective of Kizito’s children, an appointment was scheduled with Vera, the oldest of his children. An intelligent, smart but unassuming Vera posited:

“Madam Adesuwa is using foul powers to lure our father from his work and family. He is an excellent Engineer and has several Excellence Awards to show – including one for ‘Breakthrough Invention’. He is far from retirement and has no health challenges that could be given as the reason for retirement. I am about to start my university education later in the year. My brothers are still in secondary school; why would he consider retiring and relocating to some remote town. It is incredible that people can be that selfish…”

Furthermore, Vera stated they don’t have good relationship with Adesuwa.

“She is uppity and self-centered.  Marrying my father will mean enslavement for us. I already told my grand parents (Maternal and Paternal), that the day my father legalizes his relationship with Madam Adesuwa, he ceases to be our father. He is all we have since Mom died. Our grandparents have told my father that Madam Adesuwa is evil and has an agenda that could cost his life. They have also been good to us, but no one can take over the role of your true parents. Our father has been the one taking care of us since Mom died over seven years ago.

“Did my father tell you that the her son tried to rape me in my own home? My brothers saved me from the beast. I reported the incident to my father, and, for the first time in my life, I didn’t recognize him. Madam Adesuwa told him that I wore sexy lingerie to entice her son…Can you imagine that my father bought it – hook, line and sinker! You know what? Growing up, my mother forbade me from wearing nighties except pajamas (top and trouser). I have never worn any lingerie in my life. My father has lost it… I and my brothers are praying for him as marrying that woman will only spell doom for my brothers and I. Worst case scenario for me would be early marriage, but, what about my brothers? God is not sleeping. He will intervene…”

Discussions with Vera ended with an emotional note with Emotionally Yours Team. Everyone was moist and battling to hold the tears from coming down our cheeks. The battle for Kizito by Adesuwa has had an immeasurable emotional impact on his children, as they no longer speak to their father.

Emotionally Yours Program Counselor advised on the need to speak with Adesuwa. Adesuwa refused to meet with us; however, during the brief telephone discussion, I asked her “How do you plan to live with Kizito’s children if you marry him eventually?” She quipped “Hell No. I am marrying the man with no baggage allowance on this trip. Bye.”

Adesuwa’s answer, taken at face value, confirmed Vera’s fears that Adesuwa did not mean well. A barrage of questions coursed through my head: Why is Adesuwa doing this? Does she really love Kizito? Why is Adesuwa insensitive to the feelings of the children? Why is she not surrendering any grounds at all? Why is she bent of making the lives of these children an eternal misery…

Many Questions and postulations without answers…

It is pertinent to state that Adesuwa’s response provided zero sentiments in responding to Kizito’s emotionally torn mail on the problem. ‘Love’ sometimes can cause behavioural disharmony. ‘Love’ expressed by emotional twists and turn, hills and valleys and general disorientation. Whenever our emotional state begins to affect commonsensical reasoning, it becomes dangerous, and, sometimes, lethal. Many deadly mistakes have been made in defense of ‘love’ or emotions. The intertwined nature of ‘love’ and ‘emotion’ make some to blind-side the truth. For, true love is RATIONAL and BENEFICIAL.

Based on the foregoing, response to Kizito was crisp and straight to the point devoid of sentiments.

My Dear Kizito,

Your communication on above subject matter a month ago here refers.

Your emotional disposition at this time is unfortunate; clearly you are conflicted and dithering about where the pendulum should fitfully swing. The question that comes to mind is “Can true love evoke these negative emotions and conflicts?” The answer is clearly ‘NO’.  Therefore permit us to take components of this basket of confusion separately to enable you reach rational conclusion

Adesuwa:

The woman at the center of your confusion is a successful, self-assured woman with a very independent spirit. She seems dictatorial in determining the structure of your relationship by ‘directing’ you retire from work, invest your gratuity into a joint business, run a joint account and send your children away – either Boarding Houses or ‘abroad’. Your voice seems lost, as you did not raise a differing opinion.

True love is not designed to cause pain or confusion. True love causes harmony by gathering all discordant variables into a collective rhythm and dance. True love has inbuilt welding and sieving mechanism for the collective good. Your ‘love’ for Adesuwa seems far removed from all elements of true love. It has brought you mental and emotional instability – having negative effect on your performance at work. It is also affecting the harmony you have enjoyed at home with your children.

If Adesuwa truly loves you, she will be sensitive to matters that affect you. She knows that you love your children; she knows that you cannot be at peace if you are suddenly separated from them. Above all, as a mother, she knows that the children are at the most critical stage of their emotional and mental development – they are teenagers. Anyone who loves you unconditionally will value the things or issues that will negatively affect you.

Adesuwa’s ‘love’ for you is questionable. A love that leaves you an emotional wreck and crippled is not a recommended entanglement or liaison.  You need to re-evaluate that ‘feeling’ and put it to test, using time tested values and variables  – some of which have been earlier outline.

Adesuwa’s Quest for Early Retirement:

Adesuwa made your early retirement one of the conditions for marrying you. From her perspective, your terminal benefits will be invested in her current business, expand her current ‘profitable’ business and have you as Executive Chairman. From our discussion, it was deduced that you are not ‘inclined to doing business’. You have job satisfaction and fulfillment; therefore, do not desire to quit, especially, with company’s children educational benefits included in your current remuneration.  Again, though your performance appraisal is wanting, there is no threat to your job security.

Kizito, it is clear that Adesuwa does not have your best interest at heart by suggesting early retirement – for the sole reason of expanding a business you know absolutely nothing about.

Furthermore, her plan for relocation to a new city is generally disturbing; a sentiment shared by you parents, close friends, associates and most importantly, your children. Clearly, Adesuwa’s desire is to ‘uproot’ you from everyone you love because you have neither visited the intended location, nor have any friend or associate there.  This kind of ‘love’ is very suspicious.

Kizito, please listen to your inner man.

Your children:

During our sessions, you described your children as your jewels. Jewels need to be cared for and appreciated. Vera was nearly raped under your roof by Adesuwa’s son, Frank; rather than berate him, you believed Adesuwa’s submission that your daughter was romantically enticing her son. Vera is hurt and does with Adesuwa who judged, rather than empathize with her. She also did not reproach her son, which is an indication that she is weak disciplining her children.

It is evident that Adesuwa does not have a motherly instinct, as she has not made any efforts to initiate the process for harmonious living among the children (hers and yours). 

Also, Adesuwa’s plan to send your children to some ‘far away institution’ is very disturbing. There is nothing wrong with your children going to a Boarding School, but it becomes suspicious if it is condition precedent for your marriage. As a mother, she ought to know that teenage years are the most critical in a child’s development. It can be deduced that Adesuwa’s seeming dictatorial directive on the children is making them rebellious.

Kizito, your children love you very much, so, carefully think through issues concerning your children; make an effort to discuss with them in order to understand their perspective(s). A vacation alone with the children will provide the enabling environment for them to vent and table their charter of demands and needs with regard to Adesuwa and your good self.

We are optimistic that you will make the right decision.

Yours Emotionally,

Nellie Onwuchekwa

Emotionally Yours

Five months later, an excited Kizito visited our office with a big thank you cake. According to Kizito, Adesuwa had insisted on being part of the vacation schedule. “I told her that I needed to spend some quality time with the children. Since Adesuwa came into my life, I suddenly realized that I didn’t have time for my Vera, Kosi and Mike. Hell was let loose and Adesuwa went berserk insisting she must come with us. Vera challenged her and during the heated exchange, Adesuwa said “My feet have been planted in this house and nothing, absolutely nothing, nobody can uproot me.” I was taken aback because there was no competition for my heart. I am a straightforward man, and I don’t believe in having multiple partners. She swore that she would make sure I lost my job if she is left behind. She was like someone deranged – a total stranger. I couldn’t help but wonder what the problem was. I took the decision right there to get Adesuwa out of our lives for good. Oh, how she toyed with my emotions. She is very desperate. Men ought to be careful of such desperados.”

During the trip, Kizito and the children met Antoinette, his late wife’s friend who is now widowed. Vera and her brothers connected with Antoinette’s two adorable teenage daughters, making the vacation fun-filled.  Antoinette, a medical doctor was thrilled to meet with Veronica’s children and bonded easily, telling them stories of their late mother.

Since their return, Antoinette and her daughters have been spending long hours and weekends with Kizito’s family. Kizito says, “I am truly at peace. Antoinette is great with the children. She is a disciplinarian, but she also offers prices for good behaviour. She is firm and fair in her dealings with all the children. The future is in God’s hands, but I am free…”

Emotional Piggy Bank

Love is the greatest gift from God. Without love, our lives would be colourless and meaningless. To love is to live and to connect physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually and materially. Love means enduring the worst habit and helping your beloved navigate through a variety of painful emotions to overcome that bad habit. The joy that comes from triumphing over negative habits (hand-in-hand with the person you love) is overwhelming.

True Love gives life the Rainbow-Effect. However, it is important to understand HOW your ‘love’ evolves. True love influences behaviour positively, and it is rational and sensible. Blind? No! True love INFLUENCES and REINFORCES positive attitude in us. True love refines and modifies our behaviour and overall disposition to life’s challenges with our partners. Thus, It is pertinent to keep emotions on the rational plane whenever conflicts arise. Conflicts help us to get the cobwebs of our emotions out and enables us experience the beauty of love in all its ramifications as enshrined in the Good Book – I Corinthians 13.

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