|Photo: Jenny Traister|
Recently, a Kenyan woman — Faith Wairimu Maina — pleaded guilty in court for having plotted to kill her husband of 15 years, John Muthee Guama, at Nairobi’s Zimmerman Estate.
Apparently, Faith had hired hit-men to kill her husband and unknown to her; they turned out to be police officers from the dreaded flying squad. She had earlier tried through a similar plot but it flopped.
Asked why she wanted her husband dead, Faith cited ‘unfaithfulness’ and failure to take responsibility and care for the children, which made him as good as dead.
And even before the court issued its ruling on the matter, a similar story unfolded in Nairobi’s Buruburu Estate — a man there is living in fear after the same happened to him. His wife had planned to hire thugs to kill him, but her plans would be botched as she was set up.
These events have left many wondering what would prompt women to resort to such beastly acts to a person they have lived with for years. How does love turn so sour that two people who loved each other so much that they had to get married, turn out hating each other enough to want to kill each other?
Why they do it
Apparently, countries in the West have also not been spared.
A woman in the US Amy Pearson, 42, enlisted the help of her brother as well as her adopted son and lover, Michael Bessey, 21, to shoot her husband Robert Bessey.
Though he survived the murder attempt, police reports indicated that Amy’s motive in wanting to kill her husband was to collect a huge sum from Bessey’s life insurance and to continue a romantic relationship with their adopted son.
In another incidence, Kimberley Kondejewski, a Canadian woman, shot her husband John, a military sergeant, after 17 years of marriage.
A jury found her not guilty after hearing testimony that her husband forced her to have sex with other men and wanted her to commit suicide so he could collect the life insurance.
Sometimes, women who kill their husbands claim self-defense, but for others, it is either the love for money, adultery or abuse.
A local FM station went ahead to air a discussion following the happenings and the response was shocking. Numerous women called in just to confess that they could easily do the same just to get rid of their husbands for good. For those who are not courageous enough to carry out the act themselves, a rather better option would be to wish that they get run over and killed.
“What do you do to a man who is killing you softly by walking around with other women knowing very well what HIV and Aids is doing to families? He too, is a killer and one can only wish him dead,” quipped one woman who only identified herself as Jane.
“I don’t support this but sometimes the things we put our spouses through can make one feel like that woman. The man is wealthy but can’t pay school fees for the children or buy food in the house. He only goes out to drink with prostitutes, which is really bad,” lamented another.
“This is not the first time I am hearing of such a case. Apparently, it is becoming common. There is the need for women to empower themselves by studying to a higher level and acquire lucrative jobs to avoid such issues. As for me, I have my PhD and a good job and with that, I know he will always respect me and stick with me,” said Faith.
So what is the way forward to stem this hemorrhage?
Dr Ebrahim Muraya, a clinical psychologist says couples should learn to deal with conflicts in an amicable way in order to resolve feelings of anger and resentment that drives them to crazy levels.
“Research shows that it is not how much couples love each other or how great their love or sex life is, or even how they deal with their finances, that keeps them close and together in the relationship. But it is the willingness and ability to accept the inevitable arising from marital conflicts due to incompatibility and temperament and solving them,” says Muraya.
Normally, couples start their marriage with a lot of emotional feelings and love.
But as the closeness starts to reduce, some incompatibility and differences is seen on either of the partner, culminating into progressive negative thoughts, feelings, acts and habits towards each other, hence the marriage wrangles and bitterness.
“Due to the unsolved marital conflicts, many women start nagging and quarreling over minor issues. Such behaviour makes a man unsatisfied psychologically. He also decides to solve the conflicts by coming home late, overstaying at the work place, having an extra-marital affair, or engaging in alcohol and drugs, hence neglecting his responsibilities. This may have been the case of Faith and John in the US. The difference between the healthy and unhealthy marriage is not the absence of conflicts, but the way the partners view and deal with those conflicts,” explains Muraya.
OPENNESS AND DIALOGUE
He adds: “Faith may have reached a level of full blown marriage stress such that she opted to kill her husband. Couples who are in such states consistently indicate that they are dissatisfied with both their marriage and the quality of their lives, or that of their partners.”
According to Pastor Titus Akula Ithili of the Great Transformation Revival Ministry, one factor that would highly contribute to the level where a woman would want to kill her husband is failure to comprehend and understand each other as a couple.
“As a pastor, I have encountered cases whereby many married women feel they are tired of their husbands such that they just want to do away with them —as if searching for a lasting solution,” says Ithili.
He adds: “You find that upon getting married, many couples start off their life together with little resources but once the man starts reaping in wealth, he starts to undermine his wife, hence the beginning of extra-marital affairs.
Some do not take full charge of their responsibilities, both as husband and father. This fuels immense hatred in the woman towards her husband such that she will opt to do anything once she is no longer able to tolerate his humiliations.”
To avoid such cases, Ithili says there is need for openness and dialogue among married couples.
Prayer, a batter attitude, and a forgiving heart may all go a long way in making a difference. But if not, every couple has a choice — to stay or leave from a situation that may never change.
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