When a marriage begins to crumble, the couple each turn to very a trusted friend or close family member for advice and support, and rightfully so too. Statistics show that 30% of issues couples experience are carefully engineered by a mischievous third party who is either jealous or deviously mischievous and trusted by one or both of them. A simple lie or manipulation by one duplicitous friend or family can be trigger a chain reaction which can eventually destroy even the strongest marriages. There are people here on earth who report directly to the devil, these people have been trained to seek out happiness and harmony in homes and destroy them beyond redemption. They can manifest in any form, friends, church members, pastors, work colleagues and even family members.

What makes such bearers of misery difficult to detect is their ability to mask their true intentions with a camouflage of love and affection. They are often the most trusted around you and your spouse, probably on excellent terms with both of you. They assess the two of you carefully and then choose the weaker one to manipulate. They appear to have your interest at heart and are usually good listeners. Being close to you gives them limitless access to your innermost secrets, concerns and aspirations, some of these may eventually be shared with your spouse to fan the flame of marital problems when it has been ignited.

Naturally, when one reads the paragraph above, what comes to mind is that the people described must be friends, classmates, work colleagues etc. I thought so too until I heard several stories where siblings actually destroyed marriages. When a sibling schemes, it is easy to assume that their actions is out of genuine love, so believing whatever they tell you about your spouse is expected and their identity is protected because you will never expose your sibling as the source of your gossip. Even your spouse for fear of causing family problems will also be very reluctant to share the source of those damaging information about you the mischievous sibling shared with them. So naturally, you end up accusing one unfortunate and innocent friend, cousin, uncle, Aunt or step mother who will conveniently be set up to take the fall while the sibling continues to operate freely.

Sibling rivalry is a real danger, parents must start very early to counsel and discourage jealousy among their children. All kids cannot be the same, some may look better, be smarter, more successful etc, without a proper foundation of love, these things may elicit a feeling of jealousy. Favouring one child above the others may also create a deep rooted envy and jealousy against the favoured. Sibling rivalry is the reason why someone can scheme to destroy a siblings marriage. Teach your children how to celebrate with each other, let them understand that victory for one is victory for all in a united family. Tell them that no one has it all, what your sibling lacks may be be your strength and vice versa, so it is expected that you compliment each other.

You spouse should be your closest confidant, friend and partner, don’t disparage them to your siblings, especially those of them who will side with you even when you are wrong, they cannot give you objective advise and their bias will always be against your spouse, either out of Love or mischief. Be careful how you handle gossip about your spouse, even if such information is from a sibling. uncle or aunt, always verify before you act. Talk about issues with your spouse, don’t hide the source of any information, you may be shocked that the same person has been feeding both of you with damaging information about each other. The enemies within are extremely dangerous and will almost certainly succeed with their destructive plans if couples do not communicate with each other – Sir Stanley Ekezie