My wife has a six-year-old daughter I loved so much. She and the child’s father didn’t work out because the child’s father was about to get married when he impregnated my wife. She hated the father with passion and because of that didn’t want to have anything to do with him. My wife’s daughter was part of the reason I fell for my wife. Her care towards the child and the fact that she didn’t allow me to come between them made an impression on me.…CONTINUE READING
When we were dating, she came to my place with the girl often. She told the girl I was her father so she should address me as such. We attended PTA meetings together and decided what we would do for the child once we were married. She wanted to be sure that I was all in on the child before she took a decision on us. I proved beyond measure that I loved the child and would do anything for her.
Two years ago we got married. She sent the child to her mother and came to live with me. I didn’t like the arrangements. I wanted the child with us, to be part of the family and also prevent people from thinking it was my idea to sideline her child. Our marriage was barely four months old when her daughter came to live with us. If I didn’t know how to be a father, the presence of her daughter reminded me every day that I ought to learn.
When it came to disciplining the child, we both had our disagreements. She saw her as a child who would automatically change for the better as she grew up. I felt she had to be corrected as and when she made a mistake. That way, she could learn and become better. Even as adults as we are, we learn through correcting our mistakes.
She didn’t beat the child which I agreed but she wasn’t stern enough when it came to correcting this girl. Everything was treated with soft gloves and swept under the carpet.
I didn’t like it so we argued often. I’m the one who goes for the child when she closes from school. Usually, the class teacher would make a lot of complaints about the behaviour of the child and ask us to help straighten the child up. When I come home and I tell my wife, she would be like, “That teacher doesn’t like my daughter. I will take her out of the school when the new academic year begins. She’s always complaining about her.”
But the teacher was right. My wife had succeeded in spoiling the child but because she wasn’t my biological child, I was very careful the way I treated her. We were at peace. I didn’t want her daughter to be the reason that peace would be lost.
One day the teacher told me, “Your daughter has started bullying the kids in the class. They are scared of her so if care is not taken, the administration would decide to take your daughter out of the school.”
She was standing right in front of me when the teacher was complaining. I asked if it was true and she started crying. I used my three fingers to hit her arm and asked her never to repeat that mistake. I ensured she knew why I was beating her. I made her promise the teacher that it would never happen again.
When we got home, my wife asked why she was crying and the girl started ranting that I was the one who beat her. My wife asked why and I told her everything that happened. She angrily told the girl to go inside. When the girl went inside, she turned her anger on me for beating up her child. “She’s a little girl. What does she know that you would beat her? Did you even investigate whether what the teacher was saying was true? I told you that teacher doesn’t like my child.”
Honestly, I got angry. It’s been long coming and I’d harbored all the wrongs she had been doing with the child in me. It could be the reason the temperature of my anger got that high. I told her she was destroying the child’s life by being overly pampering. She asked me what I know about raising children. “Do you even have one? Do you know what it takes to father a child? Wait until you get yours so you can treat them the way you want.”
We were both angry so the weight of what she said didn’t register. We had been married for two years without a child. We were trying but it wasn’t working. We hadn’t gotten to the point where we both saw it as a problem. We were waiting on God’s time for the pregnancy to happen. When she made those utterances and I later thought of it, it made me worried.
I came home from work days later and didn’t see the girl around. I asked where she was and she told me, “I’ve sent her to her father. Now, concentrate on giving birth to your own child so you’ll understand what it takes to have a child like her.”
She didn’t discuss the issue with me and didn’t tell me anything. I felt the child had been with us for close to two years and I’d played a part in her life so I deserved to know what happened to her. I asked, “You sent her to her father? How long have you been talking to her father that I wasn’t aware of? You did all that because I punished her?”
She insisted I had no right to lay a finger on the child and that I played small when I allowed the teacher to influence me. “I didn’t know the next thing you would do to her when another stranger comes out of nowhere to tell you my daughter has stolen from him. Prevention is better than cure. Born your own and treat them how you want.”
I’m no longer interested in the marriage, let alone thinking of giving birth with her. She’s blaming me. She’s calling me impotent and that hurts a lot. She has a child and it’s a prove that she could give birth. It’s the reason she’s indirectly blaming me for our lack. Everyone I’ve discussed this issue with tells me it hurts. They tell me what they would have done in my position but none of them has talked about divorce.
I’m convinced my wife’s daughter would cause a divide between my children and her. The way my wife puts her daughter on a pedestal worries my mind. I thought we could raise a family together but clearly, she sees her daughter as her daughter and that to me would bring problems. I want to leave before this problem becomes permanent. Am I right to leave? Is it too soon to leave? Coming events cast their shadows and the shadow I see on the floor is too gloomy to ignore. Please help.
Lamido Sanusi “Now nobody can talk about petroleum because eight years if you talk, you are attacking the president. We need that buffer. Somebody has to be there”
Free Niger, Free Bazoum By Dr. Aliyu U. Tilde
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