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4 things my husband should know

26 March 2015, 15:33 Shakila Alivitsa

Nairobi - I have a friend who has a very idealistic approach when it comes to marriage. She wants to marry for love. The man should lover her unconditionally, above anything else. He should be church going-I think that is the word she used other than born again. He should always put her first... and the children that they have. He should embrace her family. I think by embrace she meant (take care of them when they needed it and also be willing to embrace their shenanigans if any). Be at the dinner table every evening.

He should not behave the way her father did/ does; come home late, never appreciated the late mother or them and already moved in another woman to the house, never taking care of the family or any of his obligations among other things. By the way, not many Kenyan women would want to marry a man like their father. That should tell you something about these men. Basically my friend wants the perfect Kenyan man. I look forward to meeting him as he will prove to be the anomaly.

It got me thinking about the list that I have for the man I want to marry. My mother does not approve of my list, she thinks like my friend.

If I get married, the last thing on my list is love, if anything I do not think it is on my list. My mother thinks I should choose a man who loves me and I love him. What I want from my husband;


Love cannot do what respect can do in a relationship. A man who respects you will never make a fool of you. A man who respects you will do what it takes to shelter you from scorn. A man who respects you, respects your values and takes time to understand you as a person, not as his lover, friend, or his woman. He will first logically think of you as a person and what he would do if you were not a part of him. I will take that over love any day. Love can be dictated by a host of things: lust, looks, money, situation but respect is not.


I need a husband who will put himself in my shoes before talking back to me. If I say I am tired, I need him to understand why. If I say I do not feel well thus I cannot make dinner, I need him to be able to eat take out. If I say something, I need my husband to listen because he knows I need to be heard and not switch off. If I think something does not make sense, courtesy dictates that he should try and explain not think that I am an idiot because my female form says so.


Love can be irresponsible, irrational and foolish. I do not want to make decisions because I am thinking of someone’s love. Putting my money in a pyramid scheme because love says you support what your spouse wants and desires. My children will not live shoddily because mother is in love.

I need someone who will know what needs to be done, why it needs to be done and will do it yesterday and not wait for me to prompt them.


Above all, a good marriage thrives on partnership not one side caving in on the other. Not just in supporting me, but I need someone who can see me as an equal and include me in the plans. Maybe not all of them but the effort of at least one makes me take precautions just in case. Someone who does not frown at being part of their child’s upbringing. Someone who does not think it is women’s work to do such and such.

Bottom line is, love is good, but me thinking with my head will save me future headache. If love comes along fine but trust me, that will never be that foundation of my marriage.

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