Having studied interpersonal relationships, whether romantic or platonic, business or family, once thing is for sure, every relationship has to add some sort of value to the people in it. Relationships survive when both parties benefit from each other. In order for one to endure, persevere, tolerate and understand, the relationship must be beneficial, there must be a reason to hang on. Once that reason is gone, once the thing which one benefits from a relationship is gone, irreconcilable differences will creep in to terminate the union. In a marriage, like every other relationship, everyone must bring something to the table. You must make an effort to make yourself indispensable in a very dynamic way. Invent new ways to ensure that your spouse benefits from the relationship always.

You cannot be a housewife without an income, a bad cook, a nag and bad in bed all at the same time, there is nothing in the marriage that will encourage your husband to endure or understand when things get tough. You must make a conscious effort to be useful to your husband, your marriage shouldn’t be about you taking or receiving all the time, you should make an effort to give. If you are a housewife and you do not contribute financially, don’t relax and claim to be looking after the home front, when you have cleaners, two nannies, a chauffeur and God knows what other domestic staff your husband pays for, the least you can do is to make the house peaceful and enjoyable no matter what, ensure that he has the best time when he is home, pamper him and let your pleasant personality make him run home after work everyday.

When your neighbour Kelechi who is a bank manager and who shares the bill in her home comes home late from work and you see her husband ignore it. She has by her usefulness to the family earned a little respect from her husband. He recognises her worth and what she brings to the table and will engage her with respect. It is wishful thinking to expect your husband to react the same way when he pays for everything including the maggi, salt and pepper in the kitchen. You must bring something to the table and it doesn’t have to be money, you don’t have to share the bill to be relevant, I know housewives who have used their culinary skills, nice disposition and expertise in the other room made their husbands extremely happy and wanting more of them.

A man who doesn’t have money cannot be a dictator, a womaniser and bad in bed at the same time, which devil do you want the wife to endure; is it the empty bank account, womanising, bad sex or highhandedness, it is simply too much for one woman to bear all of this in one life time. If there is no money, choose another parade, at least be faithful, be nice, loving or a macho man in bed, endurance usually has a solid support system or hope of better things to come if not it becomes suffering and therefore difficult to cope. Be nice about your inadequacies, accept them and look for alternative ways to make her want to hang on no matter what.

If Mr Obi who bought his wife a brand new car was caught cheating and you noticed that he was even shouting at her on top of his offence, you who does not have money to even buy your own car will go and carry Woman and have the effrontery to also shout and expect your wife to keep quiet and remain calm like Mrs Obi, it’s not going to happen my brother, life is not that kind. Mr. Obi paid handsomely for the position or respect he occupies in his house. Women endure more and longer when there is something they are gaining and enjoying in the relationship, it doesn’t have to be money, it can also be serious love and care, because you make her laugh or fantastic sex. If you are found wanting in all of the above, it is finished.

On a more serious note, you must ensure that your are missed for something when you are absent from home. Your spouse must have a reason to stay with you, it doesn’t have to be one specific thing, no one has it all, what you lack in one area, you make up in another. Study your partner and learn what really matter to them in their order of preference and try to do the first three as much as you can. If you don’t have money, have love, have a kind heart, be a good cook, be good in bed. It is you who should discover your area of competence and put it to good use – Sir Stanley Ekezie