What not to do when cohabiting
| August 11th 2012
Cohabiting has for various reasons become a norm, so when in this kind an arrangement, play your cards right, writes NIKKO TANUI
There was a time when young couples seeking to live together as husband and wife couldn’t do so until they had informed their respective parents and sought their blessing over their union.
And, of course, a wedding had to follow because the young woman’s parents wouldn’t gladly let their daughter become anybody’s wife without receiving a herd of cattle, goats or sheep as dowry, while providing debes of honey and murantina.
However, more young couples for reasons such as; fear of rejection for hailing from a ‘bad’ tribe or class, age difference, luck of funds to finance an elaborate wedding ceremony among a host of others are choosing to cohabitate.
As a result, many parents go into shock on receiving news that their son or daughter living in urban centres have since “gotten ‘married’ just like that”.
Even so, what many young couples want is to ‘try’ the marriage first.
But after all is said and done, when a couple cohabiting for one reason or another feel they are not ideal for each other, the loser is usually the would-have-been bride.
Therefore, for a woman who opts to live with a man first before he puts a worthy wedding ring on her finger, there are certain things that she should, under no circumstances, let herself do while in cohabiting with him.
If you must cohabit with a man, baby, don’t sit there for years daydreaming that one day he will finally give you that dream wedding you dreamt about since you were a little girl.
You see, the longer you live together the more the idea of a wedding will be relegated to the back banner since a wedding certificate doesn’t make a successful marriage anyway.
It is only after things fall apart that you will realise the costly mistake of your folly for not demanding a marriage documentation.
It is even worse when the man dies as you will find it hard to convince anyone that you are his wife. Sadly, his side of the family, whom you even shared many meals and memories with, will suddenly turn around, especially if there is property up for grabs, and say their son had never married!
Children need and should have parents who are committed to staying together for the long haul. However, one of the hardest things for a couple cohabiting is keeping their hands away from each other, especially during cold nights. This is why, to their horror, they usually find themselves with a baby on the way.
Therefore, a woman must, at all times, keep her guard up and do all that it takes not to fall pregnant.
See, if she gets pregnant and the baby’s father decides that he no longer wants anything to do with her, she will be kicked out of his house unceremoniously and left to nurse the baby and her broken marriage dream bitterly alone.
When a man dangles the marriage carrot, most women seem to mortgage their brains and will not think twice before taking huge bank loans to help finance some lofty man’s dream.
Worse, when they will be happily handing over the money to a man, they will forget to demand to have their names appended, for instance in a plot’s deed as co-owners.
Therefore, you can bet that if things will get sour, the man will simply kick her to the kerb and when she demands for her money or other property back, he will laugh it off and claim that he didn’t ‘see it’.
The thing is, if a man wants money to buy something, let him save until he can afford it or alternatively go for a bank loan. And if the bank can’t find his idea viable to lend him money, baby, you shouldn’t either.
If you must loan him some money, let him sign on a doted line and better still make you a co-owner of whatever he wants to invest in. So, incase of a break up, you will not have to walk away with a broken heart and a broken vault too.
Are marriages between cousins legal?My cousins are married. Socially, the community knows they are cousins and as a family we wonder what to do and what provisions of the law says on this type of marriage. They married secretly before both families got wind of their union much later The community now accuses them and my generation of aping behaviours from the West. What is your take on this as families are against the marriage?
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