It is always painful when good people who once came together now want to go their different ways: divorce leaves wounds in the hearts of men and women. The way they do it in America is exceedingly unfortunate. Yes, little things that could easily be resolved break people apart. With everything institutionalized, the players – man and woman – have only paid agents of commerce to discuss things that have no place in commercial connotation. The counselors are clocking hours as they try to settle disputes and are bounded by many ordinances that creativity in extremely complex issues is stunted.
Think back in your village when men made it back from cities with their wives so that some issues can be resolved. The parents will call some trusted elders and confidants, and right there, they will explore solutions. If that one fails, they will try from the woman’s side, meeting the parents or elders. At the same time, the man who had served as an intermediary in the marriage is working hours to fix the problems. Simply, before people decide to call marriage off, real efforts have been exerted to see if they could stay together.
For all the goodies in the beautiful America, the marriage system demoralizes. They have taken out the bringing of families – just two people signing documents, and nothing but that. That was why a man earlier this year married and divorced within four days. In Nigeria, if that happens, you will shock family members who traveled from across the country as they are sure to still be hanging around after the marriage.
Africa, despite our challenges, does better in this space. Marriage disputes bring communities and families together. If MacKenzie Bezos, soon-to-be ex-wife of Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos, has been a Nigerian, the marriage of 25 years might still be there despite the paralysis the man brought to their union. Sure, Jeff made mistakes but this woman is largely open to forgive. She allowed the man to take 75% of their Amazon assets and 100% of the other entities. She gets 25% of their Amazon assets which is worth about $39 billion.
The Bezoses announced the dissolution of their marriage in January and finalized the divorce just days ahead of her 49th birthday. MacKenzie is now worth about $36 billion, making her among the richest women on the planet. In her divorce statement, she said she was “happy” to give her ex-husband 75% of her Amazon stock and voting control over what she retains, while he takes complete ownership of the Washington Post newspaper and Blue Origin, his rocket venture.
From her actions, you can see a great woman trying to live out a culture which she was battling over. She took 25% and left many billions on the table. In the most challenging moment in her adult life, I guess, she showed so much admiration and respect to Jeff. Left to MacKenzie, she would have simply said: “Jeff made mistakes, not perfect. Yet, we will stay together to fix the issues”. Many at her level will call her weak for putting on with a man that looked elsewhere. Yet, that was the real MacKenzie. Her praises for Jeff in this issue, and her admiration of the past she had with him, and her written tales, tell me that if not for the peer pressure of pack-out-and-leave, Jeff will not become single in weeks. And MacKenzie will not also.
The Nigerian Woman
Simply, without peer pressure that if a man had fallen to adultery, divorce is the only solution, MacKenzie Bezos and Jeff Bezos will still be planning their futures together. The admiration and respect they showed each other weeks before the divorce in events showed a communal meeting like the African type would have fixed some of these issues. That makes me to conclude that if MacKenzie Bezos had been a Nigerian, bringing her community in the process, they would have handled this better.
If Africa does not have anything else to brag about, at least we beat the West when it comes to families and marriages; we do not just give up indiscriminately on those areas. I just hope that our modern day ‘all knowing activists’ won’t push our people to embrace divorce as the new normal; our system is still much better in that respect.
America is a broken place, when it comes to families and husband and wives issues, and it’s always a big mistake when men and women think everything should be ‘institutionalised’, with government coming into these things. At the end of the day, you only destroy homes and breed desolate people who have no taste of happiness anymore.
Just like the legendary Einstein opined years ago, only two things are infinite: the universe and man’s stupidity, and he went ahead to state that he wasn’t sure of the former, while there is no doubt about the latter…
The Creator made marriage or family the way it should be, but in man’s ‘all knowing’ syndrome, that penchant for stupidity, we managed to turn everything on its head, and now we have disaster staring us everywhere you turn to.
Fix marriages, fix families, and you have a decent and thriving society; anything else is just a joke.
I do not agree with this school of thought. Because African marriages tend to last longer does not mean that they are better marriages. When an African woman is encouraged to stay in a disrespectful, abusive, or infidelity ridden marriage, we should not clap for ourselves. Views like this continue to perpetuate the cycle of downplaying the impact of major issues affecting African families, particularly African women who have very little recourse.
Can we honestly say it’s better for a woman to remain in a relationship despite the African man maintaining mistresses and concubines, as is often the case?
Our sons then grow up to believe that it is somehow our right to be forgiven. And our daughters are conditioned to just accept and move on.
Kudos to MacKenzie for not sitting on the sidelines on this one. Yes she’s entitled to 50% of Jeff’s assets, but she is mature enough to know that she doesn’t need it. $30bn can create a whole new life for her.
My response: Mr. …. no one said any should stay. I am not sure there is any criminality here like abusive etc. Here in U,S, people get married and divorced within days. In the blog, I linked a celeb who filed within 4 days of marriage. My grand point is this: it does not have to be that way. A celeb divorced the husband because the man corrected the son in loud voice. You can extend this but I think Africa is better in many ways here, from my angle. Some of these things can be resolved, not just via divorce.
Someone’s response on same lead comment: Abdul, is having broken homes a better option? Certainly not. It’s very easy to frame “abusive relationships”, but the damage caused by encouraging people to part over things that with care and attention – they can be resolved, is still substantial. No matter how you look at it, Africa still have a better system than whatever that is out there, children whose parents are together are more stable mentally and emotionally. We cannot afford to ask people to embrace divorce, just because someone felt cheated, it’s colder outside. People should be more responsible, but nothing guarantees good behaviour all the time; humans will remain humans.
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