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Cohabitation: The way forward 2

In my previous post HERE I emphasized the need for all hands to be on deck to stop cohabitation. I will continue this part by first addressing the issue of fear of commitment.

If I say we have no cause for fear, I will be speaking presumptuously, but the truth is that fear is not of God. I am a believer and follower of Christ, I believe God instituted marriage and has a manual for it (the bible). Problems begin when we let society and media dictate what happens in our homes.

We must keep trusting Jesus Christ to grant us peace in our homes. I used to have fears about marriage too, until I sincerely took it to the Lord in prayer and believed his unfailing word, you can do the same. If you keep living in fear, you will not fulfill God’s purpose for your life and marriage.

It is simply cowardice to refuse to commit to someone in a marriage relationship, yet expect to live like married people do. If you don’t want to get married, it’s best you stay clear completely.

I read something Billy Graham wrote sometime ago “Many airplanes take off every day, but they don’t make the news. Many flights land safely but the media doesn’t tell us about them until there is a plane crash, then they make the headlines. So it is in marriage, there are many beautiful marriages and beautiful homes but the media doesn’t tell us about them, rather, they fill our ears with news of divorce, abuse and marital infidelity” (paraphrased).

They tell us how bad men are and how stupid it is to trust them. But the choice is yours, you must choose who fuels the decisions you make in life, the media or God’s word?

It is simply cowardice to refuse to commit to someone in a marriage relationship, yet expect to live like married people do. If you don’t want to get married, it’s best you stay clear completely.

Having said that, we will now look into our role as individuals. I will briefly outline the role of each party in this fight. If you ask me, I will say that the focal person at the crux of this matter is the lady so I will start with her:

Firstly, it is erroneous to think you can go on in a relationship without defining it. You can’t be claiming someone as your husband when he is not yet properly married to you or even planning to do so.

Secondly, that someone is paying your school fees and feeding you doesn’t mean you should live with him even if he has promised to marry you.

You are precious and priceless. You deserve more than being smuggled into a man’s house like a kilogram of cocaine. If he has enough guts to house you under his roof, let him go ahead and get married to you.

You will also agree with me that cohabitation sometimes doesn’t happen overnight. It starts with going to spend every other weekend in his place, washing and cooking for him regularly. The next thing is you forget one leg of your shoe (however that happens) and next time you are coming, you deposit the other pair and gradually, your belongings move in and you join them in the shortest possible time.

You must be intentional about maintaining your boundaries. You may say “But I will eventually get married to him, so what’s there?” I say the same to you: “Since you will eventually get married to him, why the rush?”

I know you ‘love’ him and you claim that you two are not doing anything. Good! That is why I’m saying you should not be living with him since you are not doing anything. If you are not doing anything, please leave.

Having said that, there is something I need you to understand: the difference between the marriage and the wedding. While the wedding is the ceremony that leads to marriage, it lasts for a maximum of three days unlike the marriage that lasts a lifetime. I will be contradicting myself if I say the wedding is not important but you will agree with me that the marriage is more important than the wedding.

It is vain to desire a talk of the town wedding without desiring a talk of the town marriage. If all your focus is on getting a man that will give you the wedding of your dreams (the type that is ‘tusher’ than your friends own), you will most likely have issues accepting a guy the way he is. At the end of the day, you may fall into the web of cohabitation. If as a lady, you set her priorities straight and stop demanding for Nkechi’s type of wedding, it will help a lot.

Now, the role of the Church. A colleague of mine suggested that the church could step in by allowing intending couples to have a ‘small wedding’ on a weekday without all the plenty drama and expenditure involved in having a Saturday wedding (the conventional way). They simply invite both families, close friends and church members, who will serve as the witnesses, bless the couple and give them refreshment at the end.

This way, nothing will be lost; the marriage has taken place, no one is ‘bleeding’ profusely from excessive spending, no one is owing anyone and everyone goes home happy, the couple also go on to live happily ever after and of course there will be pictures too. What more will be missing out except the stress involved in planning a ‘perfect wedding’?

All these social media competition for whose pre-wedding, during-wedding and post-wedding picture is the best is not necessary. Remember, it’s your wedding, not a wedding competition.

The role of  both families is pivotal too if they can come to a point of mutual understanding. Some of our mothers married our fathers when they didn’t have much, yet they stuck with them ever since and built a stable, beautiful family. If you feel you are not very buoyant, you can ask to have a simple wedding. I am sure they will happily agree to let you start with what you have instead of choosing to cohabit.

There is neither sense in beginning to live together because you don’t have money for a wedding nor in going into debt because you want to wed. It is foolishness to want to spend so much on the wedding that you can’t even afford to keep the marriage proper going financially. Most times our parents are very understanding and supportive and will never consent to us cohabiting.

I know you ‘love’ him and you claim that you two are not doing anything. Good! That is why I’m saying you should not be living with him since you are not doing anything. If you are not doing anything, please leave.

Now to answer the questions raised in part 1: If you are living with someone that is not your husband, I think it’s best to put an end to it. There are two ways to do that: either you get married properly or you kindly leave.

Nobody continues traveling down a wrong road after they discovered it was wrong simply because they have gone far. Once you discover it, you reverse quickly. This may be hard, it will require some dialogue, repentance, resolve and of course guts. But the benefit far outweighs the risk.

If there are children involved, then by mutual agreement, you must decide who will take care of them because in Nigeria I don’t think there is a law to this effect (I stand to be corrected) since you were not legally married in the first place. So to give the children a good life, you must consider their well-being before deciding who goes with them. It must be the one who can give them the financial, emotional and spiritual support they need. But if the two of you can do this together, then get married. If not, again, please kindly leave.

Finally, children need to know that their parents are committed to them and to one another. They don’t have to continue living in fear, unsure if their ‘parents’ are really their parents. Let’s give those lovely kids a conducive home to grow and be all that God made them to be. Save them the emotional trauma of being mocked at in school by their  peers that their ‘father’ is not married to their mother (the gossip eventually finds it’s way into their ears no matter how long you hide it).

I will gladly stop here and thank you for following through, hoping you learnt a thing or two. There is still a lot yet to be said so I will allow you to share your opinion (I know I didn’t say what was in your mind). #smiles

 

Do have a beautiful weekend.

#saynotocohabitation

xoxo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

pics credit: the internet

Nasalian
I am Chinasa, the one whom Jesus loves. I am grateful for the finished work of Christ, passionate about not missing the simplicity that is in Christ Jesus and longing to spread the fragrance of Christ. If you don't catch me reading, writing, thinking or listening to people, you will have to take a closer look to be sure its me...they say its my hobby and I think am beginning to agree. I love people, good music and work. I love bracelets too... Apart from being a Pharmacist, I don't have many titles so my friends simply call me Nasa and it does all the magic. I live in Nigeria, and I really love my country. One place i have been crushing on and hope to visit someday is Orlando Florida, my friends will tell you more about that. I also have an unexplainable desire to attend Hillsong Conference in no distant time...dreams come true, you know! I love writing and I hope you love reading. Nice to meet you too Welcome to my blog.

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