A couple of years ago while I was driving taxi in the city of Dallas as an indigent student, I had just received a call from the yellow cab company to go to a building on Ross Avenue to pick a passenger. Immediately I pulled in, a young lady in furious and agitated mood ran into my cab and ordered me, “please driver, move out quickly before my husband caught me. Damn it, I should not have entered into this self inflicted mess.” She uttered with deep anger and frustration.
After moving away from the building, perhaps to a safe distance, she heaved deep sigh of relief. Having observed that she had relaxed, I asked rather very reluctantly, “lady, what is the problem?” Surprisingly, like every American, she opened up. “I wedded on Saturday two days ago, and I have just found out that I entered into a hell called marriage. Let me get out of it immediately before I am trapped.” “Do you mean you wedded last Saturday and you are leaving just only two days?” I inquired. She replied, “yes, you are correct, let me run out of the situation called marriage.” She affirmed.
As we drove towards her chosen destination on the Eastern part of Dallas called Oak Cliff, the conversation stopped for a while. When we pulled at the building, a reasonably older woman came out of the house and hugged her with excitement as she uttered, “thank God you made it home safely.”
After collecting my fare without any tip, I drove off wondering what type of a society is this America where somebody who wedded just two days ago could simply run away from her new home. But then, little did I know that what I witnessed was just a tip of the ice berg. As I continued to live and study in the US for 71/2 years, I observed a lot of anti-social behaviours of many Americans. Indeed, great country with a great social and economic buoyancy but punctuated with all manner of criminality including the highest divorce rate in the world and murder, arson and street car accidents. America indeed!
Ever since I returned from America, here in our society, I have inadvertently observed that our society has gradually mature into what I can term “Epidemic of Divorce” and broken marriages among young couples in our society.
One of the privileges I derived working as a Public Opinion Analyst and Public Relations Consultant is the privilege of people of different ages and status coming to us for different types of stories, complaints and requests for various advice to help solve their myriad of domestic or personal problems of unimaginable proportion.
Recently, I encountered a similar case like the one I experienced in the United State several years ago. A lady in her middle 20s walked into our office to seek counseling on a very pathetic situation she was facing in her marriage, just to know the way out of what she called, “my most costly mistake in life.” Indeed her voice and mood radiated frustration, dejection and utter disappointment. Her marriage has just lasted for 6 months but she was at the verge of leaving the marriage. Having listened to her story, I told her that it was the same mistake of failure to understand whom her husband is before they got married.
Today, without our knowing it, divorce among young couples has become too rampant for societal comfort.
If one drops one’s ears on the ground, one would hear so many tales of broken marriages among young couples.
From my experience and interactions, 3 things are seriously responsible for this emerging western culture behaviour.
One, our young men and women don’t know their partners enough before entering into a very serious relationship called, “marriage.” Marriage is not a child’s play, it is a serious affair which encompasses a lot of challenges and inconveniences including both surrendering their usual lifestyles which they have gotten used to. Surrendering a little of the freedom they have enjoyed as bachelors and spinsters including requirements that each must disclose to the other, “where he or she is going to and for what purpose.” Therefore, lack of reasonable courting will eventually result in numerous challenges at the early period of marriage.
Secondly, the issue of incompatibility between the couple is another thing that causes divorce in young couples’ marriages. Of course, this is linked to lack of reasonable courting during which period each could have understood the temperament of each other.
Thirdly, presentation of false social and economic identity by the men folk to their wives to be. Many young men are fond of living false lifestyles, claiming what they are not and what they could not even be in life. And by their nature, young ladies easily fall prey to such false life presentation because, honestly, no lady would like to marry a person where she has to begin suffering from the onset because ladies like it very easy. And modern ladies don’t understand the meaning of “patience in marriage.”
Unfortunately, due to so many societal imperatives in our society today, our young men see courting as a function of sexual interactions. This is where modern young men and women often get it wrong. In fact, a period of courting should afford would be couples the opportunity to critically and tactically study his or her future partner to see whether both can live together. Unfortunately, most of our young men could easily give us courting if they refused sexual intercourse by their would be wives. In fact, when time was time, some men could go for long courting without asking for sex; because, some young ladies adhere request for sex when the marriage has not been consummated.
In addition, today, many ladies have become members of the proliferated Pentecostal Churches which preach seriously against any type of sexual intercourse before wedding. Therefore, our young men and women should shine their eyes before they get into marriage, because marriage is a very serious affair which presents a lot of challenges for which only unbroken chain of patience is required to chain both couple down in matrimonial cohabitation.
According to Charles Dickins, “marriage is a garden. Those inside it want to get out and those outside it want to get in. Yet, it is full of challenges for which only endless patience could solve and sustain the marriage. It is not a jamboree nor is it a mere movie.”
Therefore, parents, community leaders and Church authorities must ensure that they provide enough or sufficient counseling to bachelors and spinsters before they could get into marriage relationship; because today, the rate of divorce has reached epidemic level without our knowing it.