I have been married for 13 years now and mine has not been a smooth marriage. My husband has a peculiar habit of seducing and sleeping with girls who work in my house. He always promises to stop but goes ahead and sleeps with the next girl who comes. He is now dating a widow in our neighbourhood. It has been so painful to watch. I don’t know why he continues to hurt me like this and I don’t even understand why I am still with him. He does not support the family financially — not even providing our basic needs. He leaves everything to me while he spends all his money on women. I don’t know what to do. Please advise me. I am hurting.
WHAT THE READERS SAY:
Repeat after me. ‘This is not my fault. This is not my fault.’ Your husband is the problem, not you.
Liza, you need to find out where the rain started beating you. Could there be something you are not doing that you used to do that made your husband get tempted to engage these girls? Evaluate and see if you have adequate time for your family and more so for him. If you are a career woman who lets maids do everything for him then you may be contributing to this. Men are attracted to ‘homely’ women, so before you blame him, do some soul searching.
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You have condoned these ugly habits for far too long and it may be almost too late to change him now. You ought to have stopped this as soon as it began. He should have learnt from the start that whatever he is doing is not welcomed by you. But for now, engage him in dialogue to get to know the facts at hand. Make him understand your disappointment. The only and the saddest problem might be if you are to some extent the cause of the underlying issues. All in all, remember that communication and time are key issues in any union. Communication solves issues as time heals all wounds.
The first thing you ought to insist on is protected sex with him. This should continue until he changes his behaviour and you should seek for HIV testing and counselling for both of you. About the ladies you employ, maybe it is time you stopped employing young and beautiful girls in your house. Also try and get to understand why he is having a relationship with that widow. Does he know her HIV status?
What to do under these circumstances is to sit down and have a discussion with him. The fact that you are still living in the same house means you are both committed to the marriage and to the family. However, also check to see if you may be contributing to this and address it so that you don't mess up a successful marriage.
Liza, you may be dealing with a bigger problem than you actually think. As a matter of fact, the problem could be far from what you think it is and this man may be having several psychological issues. There can be no greater form of betrayal to a woman than for a man to engage in an illicit sexual relationship with a lady who is employed by his wife. It is demeaning, insulting and is laced with irreparable contempt. Yes, these matters are not entirely foreign in society but the frequency under which it is happening in your home is somewhat worrying.
His engagement with those girls is not a matter of insatiable libido rather, it is a psychological condition that leads him to derive some form of pleasure from taking advantage of people in vulnerable situations. This would explain his high affinity to house girls as well as his current conquest – a widow from the neighbourhood. Such behaviour is often caused by inherent inferiority complex or some superfluous thoughts that make one think that they can solve all the problems that vulnerable people around them face. For the widow, the issues may be different as she is an independent woman capable of making her own decisions only that she is vulnerable. For the girls at home, this is outright sexual harassment which cannot be condoned for any reasons whatsoever.
What he needs to do is to seek professional counselling to help him deal with this. It is not a permanent problem rather it is a status that is being propelled by some issues he is harbouring within. If he found good professional assistance to help him address the underlying issues, this habit would end. However, you may need to evaluate also on your part if there is any part you may have played that led him into this direction. Often, when you let these girls get very close and intimate with your husband in the course of their duties, this creates a fertile breeding ground for such relationships to happen. While he bears greater responsibility for what he has done, the ladies also have some responsibility apportioned to them. Get him some professional counselling then you can deal with issues of forgiveness and reconciliation thereafter.
Simon is a relationships counsellor