The influence of family on people’s life cannot be overemphasised; unfortunately, folks do not seem to understand the magnitude of their position/disposition on issues affecting loved ones.
Your brother comes to tell you he has found someone to settle down with for the rest of his life; instead of being objective and supportive, having his best interest in mind, you begin by secretly questioning if you would ever be that lucky to meet someone to match or outshine his choice.
Straightaway, you cook up scenarios to portray the relationship unfit and out of place. Fault-finding becomes your daily bread and if that seems not to deliver instant result, you switch to blackmailing the guy before the lady, pretending to protect her from falling into wrong hands. At the end of day; the relationship is destroyed and you offer condolence to your bros who mistakes you for a caring chap.
Trying to decide who a family member should chose for a life partner is a dicey adventure. In as much as it helps to settle with someone you can tolerate, if an adult sees nothing wrong in breaking fallow ground and learning to do things differently for once; I see no reason he/she should be discouraged.
I respect parental consent so much in marriage but if your heart beats stronger in the opposite direction, talk things over with them and get to know really why they would not want you to be involved with such a fellow.
Parents might be decades away from modernisation and ‘e taste’ but believe it that the power of parental instinct is strong enough to detect potential danger. Does this mean you should depend totally on their instinct for a choice of love? Not really; but if they express concerns, slow down and find out if there is sense in what they have said.
This is totally different from having domineering and manipulative parents who want things to go their own way. They probably had already covenanted with some unknown persons to match make you once the time comes. Behind all these coordination is their selfish aim of either identifying with a certain class of people/family or fighting for what to gain out of it even at their child’s expense.
When did relationship become a trade? Does this explain in a way why divorce is on the increase? It would have worked out fine centuries and decades ago where that was the norm, everyone knew parents played the link role in relationships but now that Internet, education, socialisation, professionalism, tourism, etc have made meeting others so easy and interesting; should people still be cajoled into choices they detest?
Giving a grown-up an opportunity to choose who to share love with is not only liberating but it also registers a mark of responsibility and readiness to commit.
Silvanus, a nice gentleman grew up having dreams of how he will have Eileen in his arms someday as his wife. No doubt; she was a young cuddly girl whose parents moved into Canary wharf area of London at a time Silvanus was already ten.
Having lived there from birth he naturally assumed responsibility of telling and showing Eileen around the neighbourhood. Spending such a long time together; from primary school to college gave Silvanus a feel they would make a great pair. It’s not so clear if Silvanus really loved her or was moved by compassion to see such a young girl grow up without the love and support of her biological mum.
Although many people thought the wife of Eileen’s dad was her mum but close contact with the family will reveal otherwise as the woman nursed a massive hatred for the poor girl. Well she could not say where her mum was, whether she was dead or alive as her dad grew unnecessarily defensive each time she wanted to head in that direction, no one really knew the truth but it was clear the man she was living with was her dad with a nose and eyes similar to her’s. She looks so much like him even the way she walks is not too different from his not to mention the voice tone.
Silvanus’ parents were not in support of their relationship at first but when he insisted and threatened to disappear to an unknown destination if not allowed to marry Eileen, they gave in and gave their blessing. Not too long after they got married, he discovered she was nothing but a bunch of bitter pill; full of resentment and ready to cause pain to anyone coming her way.
Yes; she was very reserved and withdrawn through the years but her husband had no clue she was quiet because she hated the idea of life itself. Nothing meant anything to her and it was clear she had no time or intention of making him happy at all.
This was not the kind of home he wanted; he thought it would be cool to have his little cuddly babe all to himself. I was shocked when Silvanus came to see me about their marital problems; as usual, I expected him to say he was tired and wanted a divorce but no: he came to ask how to cope with this difficult woman he had chosen for himself. It’s not common, is it? That is where commitment comes in. People who got to know a little of what he was passing through dropped their ears to pick stories of when to call it quits but he never danced that way.
If you allow someone to make an unhindered choice, do you know you put them on the spot? They would do everything to make sure they do not fail but if it’s you who forced something on them; even when it’s working, they’ll never be satisfied.
It’s good to offer guidance and express the way we feel about circumstances but the honour to decide should reside with the one who’s going to live with the choice. There are a few cases where some people would crave your opinion and be willing to follow it to the latest- then go ahead and offer your best counsel with their interest at heart.
Some relationships are suffering today because family members would not let them be. They want a particular sex of children, the man should be a cash cow, the woman should work like a slave, their home should be like an open centre where things are demanded and collected at will, etc.
Any attempt by the couple to express dissatisfaction render them ‘bad’. How on earth can someone expect you to live like this? Let everyone mind his own business and support their home the best way they can. Relatives can extend a helping hand, if they can but don’t put yourself as some other person’s responsibility.