A few days ago, I came across the video of a man who caught his wife in bed with another man. The incident which happened in Lagos generated quite a lot of reaction from Nigerians on the internet. This would not be the first time we have read, heard and watched videos of a man catching wife in bed with another man or a woman catching her husband in bed with another woman.
Several tips abound of how one should react or what to do if one finds himself or herself in such a situation. Most often, the advice is to not create a scene, but handle it maturely, but following through with the advice is a different thing entirely.
As a busybody, my curious mind decided to ask a few people what they would do if they ever get to stumble on their significant other in bed with another person. I started with members of my family, friends, neighbours and colleagues.
My sister, Esther who is yet to be married says she would likely walk away and end the relationship or marriage. “Hmmm, I can’t kill myself. All I know is that that is where that relationship or marriage will end. Please I can’t deal with a cheating boyfriend or husband,” Esther said.
My friend James is married with two kids. He admits he would be very hurt to the extent of over-reacting negatively. He says, “I’m not sure I will react but I know for certain that the man will not go scot-free. One of us will reach the hospital that day.”
Wow! Very extreme, I must say. I decided to ask my female colleague Ijeoma what she would do. “I will deal with both my husband and the woman. After we must have taken a vow on the altar to be faithful to each other, you turn around to break the vow. I certainly can’t tolerate that. We have to go our separate ways.”
Another colleague of mine, Bimbo – a married mother of three decided to join the conversation and she weighed in on the difficulty of ending a marriage when children are involved. “It’s easy to walk away if there are no children between the two of you, but if there are children, I may choose to stay and fight for my marriage. It is if he isn’t remorseful and continues with his cheating ways that I can seek a divorce,” Bimbo said.
Chukwuma whose desk is just adjacent to mine is the probably the most decent guy in the office. A born-again Christian and we like to call him Mr. Nice Guy because he is simply NICE. I picked his brain on our conversation, and I must say I wasn’t surprised by his opinion. “If anything like that ever happens to me, I can forgive her if she genuinely apologises. The Bible forbids divorce and I’m a firm believer of the bible. I believe we can both work it out”
Now you understand why we call Chukwuma, Mr Nice Guy.
Several things run through the mind of a partner who has been cheated on. They imagine the betrayal and are consumed with rage. Then there is the fear of contracting a sexually transmitted infection (STIs/STDs).
“The frightening part of this is the likely transfer of infectious disease. Not when you are protecting yourself from infectious disease, your partner brings it home from some other person. It’s not fair. I will definitely consider letting go of the marriage. I don’t want to die,” Chioma who works as an accountant and a member of my church group said.
Finding out that your partner cheated can be very hurtful, and even more hurtful when you catch them red-handed. A woman residing on my street once caught her husband with her housemaid. From what I was told, the woman beat the hell out of the maid and sent her packing the same day. She didn’t leave her husband though. I guess the cheating men usually get the lesser punishment (if they do get at all).
I decided to tease Sister Jane, the lead singer of our church choir with the same question, “What would you do if you catch your husband in bed with…?” Without allowing me to finish the question, she quickly yelled, “God forbid. It can never happen in Jesus name.”
I tried to tell her it was just a theoretical question, but the mother of one was not having it as she quickly ran away.
Brother Fortune, our church keyboardists stepped in to answer the question and he said, “No one prays for that to happen, but they do happen all the time in our society. Videos abound on the internet. I only pray for self-control. There’s no telling what I might do.”
In many of the cases that have come online, it is a woman who has caught her husband with another woman. In one incident that trended online in 2018, a woman caught her friend sleeping with her husband. In her reaction, the woman decided to strip her friend naked and post the video on the internet. The disgraceful incident, however, turned into a Police case with the angry wife being arrested for humiliating the side-chic in such a manner.
Last year, a vengeful wife killed her husband, cut off his manhood with a knife and put it in a frying pan for allegedly cheating on her. The same year, a 35-year old man dead his wife and two sons in Edo State over infidelity.
Udoh, a banker and neighbour says he would never stoop to violence over a cheating wife and would rather just walk away from it all. “No woman is worth going to prison for. It baffles me when I read of spouses who resort to violence over infidelity allegations. One time I read of a man who shot his wife and himself. To what ends? I’d rather just move on,” Udoh said.
On the other hand, Clara, another neighbour who has been married for four years insists she will get mad and take the route of violence. “I will tear her cloth and disgrace her. I can’t share my man with another woman. Of all the men in Lagos, it’s my husband she wants. Earth will not contain both of us,” Clara ranted.
After this humiliating incident, how do couples manage to get over the betrayal and eventually heal? I have a friend whose wife is always quick to bring up the cheating issue each time they have a little misunderstanding. Forgiving is one thing, forgetting is another.
“My brother, I’m not sure any man can stay with a cheating woman. The embarrassment and disappointment alone are heartbreaking. How does one get to love her again?” Olamide, my married friend told me.
Turning the lens on myself, I’m not quite sure how I will react. But I hope I can be matured and disciplined enough to walk away from the situation.
When I got home and posed the same question to my wife, she just smiled and dismissively replied, “Let’s just pray that that day never comes”
Hmmm, suddenly I’m afraid of her.
Written by Victor Enengedi