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The Death In ‘Till Death’

Let’s talk about death in relationships.


When the man-of-God who’s joining the couple says ‘till death do you part’ I’m sure he means death as in ‘Grim Reaper’ and related subjects. Death; as in the end of physical life.


But as we’ve come to learn, physical death is the least responsible for ending so many marriages marriages nowadays, no?


Let’s consider death in other forms – death of other things. Things that were once exciting – and suddenly are not as exciting as they used to be.  When the sight of her body no longer sends you into the mindless frenzy it used to – when his snore and one-pack become the two most annoying things you know.


When we just want to say ‘you know what? This is no longer working for me’.


In recent times we’ve witnessed more weddings than university students around here have attended lectures. We also know of the tales of woe that abound – tales that make marriage sound like a badly written Stephen King novel. And little by little, slowly but steadily, a happy marriage is starting to look and sound like a myth.


We all know there are happy marriages – just as we know there are still virgins (word to Chidinma) but the thing is – these things hardly; if ever get celebrated. No one made the cover of The Daily Sun for being a faithful husband or wife! We’re more likely to read about ‘Pastor Impregnates Wife’s Younger Sister’ than ‘Couple Celebrate Twenty Years Of Marital Bliss’.


And even if we did read that, most of us will probably ‘yimu’ and go ‘na lie jo’.


Now, what happened to make us so disillusioned about getting married?


I think we happened.


WE. YOU and ME.


We simply stopped taking each other seriously.


Someone said something somewhere ‘If we took our romantic lives as seriously as we took our professional lives, we would be lots happier’.



Death Is A Woman...At Times. Courtesy Google

                         Death Is A Woman…At Times. Courtesy Google




Consider the picture.


Remember that Pacesetter novel ‘Death Is a Woman’?


But then, let’s keep moving.


The vow says ‘till death do you part’. The picture depicts one way death can come into marriage, right?


Now let’s consider the thought that ‘anything not growing is dead’.


Ever flipped through your CV and noticed that for a while, nothing new has been added to it? And then you thought about getting a new job, a new degree, a new experience – something to make the CV fuller and richer?


Can we think about our relationships in those terms?


Relationships in which both partners are individually and collectively thinking of new ways to grow; individually and together.


I won’t lie. I used to think the hardest part was ‘getting the girl’.



But then, as I grew older that part of it became progressively easier until – and then I had a reality check.


The hardest part is making her stay.


I mean really. I had to ask myself; why should she stay with you?


Do you know anyone on any planet or in any reality who likes stale food?


Men want to talk about how men are natural breeders and how men get bored with just one woman. Hello bro. Wake up and smell the coffee  – you’re not the only one stuck with her; she’s also stuck with you!


Make it worth her while.


A friend of mine is taking belly-dancing classes. And when I asked her why, she said ‘you never know with men. It’s better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it’.


Okay. Maybe belly dancing is kind of awkward if you’re a guy (or maybe not); you can learn how to wash her hair. Learn how to make new dishes regularly. Take her to Dubai (these things are not as expensive as we think!).  Be interested in her career – things that matter to her. Come home one day and say ‘I was browsing and saw this online course I think you would be interested in. I already subscribed for the brochure; but if you don’t like we can cancel’.


It’s far beyond ‘dinner and a movie’ these days o. Real.


It’s beyond lying-back-and-letting-the-partner-do-all-the-work. There’s as much competition for men’s attention as there is for women now. We’ve all heard the ‘sleeping-with-his-wife’s-best-friend’ story. Maybe the man was greedy and so on – but where was the wife in the midst of all that?


There’s more to infidelity than sleeping around. And sometimes, the sex is just a by-product; the visible results of some other things. We see the sex, so we just think it was lust. And in some cases it was/is just that. Lust.


But in some other cases…


If we spent more time enriching each other – our partners, friends, spouses – whatever people we have around us, don’t we think things would be easier for all concerned? Don’t we think we would have less of short-term marriages and actually have more people committed to improving themselves and each other?


In Social Studies we learnt the smallest unit of society is the family (or something close). Don’t we think that’s another place a better Nigeria can start from?


I’m just saying.


But I do know this – it’s impossible to do something nice for someone else and not be touched ourselves.


Let’s blow the dust off that record, folks. Let’s get to know each other all over again.


I’m Seun Odukoya. It is a pleasure having you here.


Thank you.


What do you think? What other ways do you think death come into relationships? Looking forward to reading your opinion!


Have a blessed week.


32 responses

  1. One of the most articulated write up on marriage…

    November 18, 2013 at 7:46 am

  2. I think death can come if there is no communication and if the couples take each other for granted.

    November 18, 2013 at 9:26 am

    • I agree with you severally ma’am!

      Thank you!

      November 18, 2013 at 9:50 am

  3. wonderful write up on marriage, relationships and even a better Nigeria. you hit the nail on the head and made so many points. like really, “its better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it” ….and we always are selfish in matters like this, forgetting she is stuck with us, just as we’re stuck with her.

    i make a solemn vow to learn new things and adopt new ways of doing things to keep my woman interested and appreciated, to the extent she cant think of leaving all the good things all together in one place.

    Damn have we been SELFISH. Always asking what others and our country can do for us, rather than thinking up what we can do for them.

    this isn’t a short course beneficial to her medical career, but i’d start with sharing the link to this post with her; it has been very enlightening and eye opening.

    November 18, 2013 at 11:06 am

    • Thank you thank you thank you so much bruv!

      As long as we keep learning and keep trying, I’m sure we’ll be fine!

      Please go ahead and share. Bless!

      November 18, 2013 at 11:22 am

  4. in fact do i have your permission to RE-blog this? all protocols would be duly observed and i wouldn’t relent in the least when giving you the credit.

    November 18, 2013 at 11:07 am

    • Please, go ahead.

      Thank you so much!

      November 18, 2013 at 11:19 am

  5. Pingback: The Death In ‘Till Death’ | NotJustAny Smitch! the #1 WordSmith

  6. Who knew a post that started with death would end up giving so much life? I have been blessed and encouraged on marriage, family and the growth we desire in our dear country.
    About death in relationships/marriages, i think we fall for the wrong things in people and when those things are missing or lost, we fall out. i also think we get too comfortable and relax, then we start dying slowly and vent our frustrations on the spouse.
    You have said a lot around this and if we deliberately follow your advice, it will do us a whole world of good.
    I have seen successful marriages and if there was a sentence to sum up what made it work, it would be that ‘each person in the relationship treated the other the way God treats us all when we enter into his kingdom’. So, when you’re burned out from stress and her fat body is not life-giving, you sit and stare and tell her how much you love her just because that is what Jesus did and still does and then you tell her in love how you will appreciate it if she lost a little weight.
    please pardon my long speech, you just asked for opinion on a topic that i’m passionate about. 🙂
    Thank you for writing this.

    November 18, 2013 at 6:54 pm

    • I appreciate you taking the time – appreciate you sharing your thoughts! Thank you so much.

      Bless God.

      November 18, 2013 at 7:28 pm

  7. Paul

    Just reminds me of the line, “When was the last time you [experienced] something for the first time?” Thanks for writing this. Just reminded me that true living is waking up to experience the world with the same wonder as at the first, that the true exercise of love and loving is to realize that your beloved is not a book with finite pages, nor a satellite merely orbiting your world, but a universe, an endless journey of discovery and delights, and “see finish” is the mental disease of the truly ignorant mole. Thank you again sir

    November 19, 2013 at 7:27 am

    • It is a privilege to share.

      Thank you so so much. God bless!

      November 19, 2013 at 7:53 am

    • Gloire

      well said, well said.

      November 20, 2013 at 1:28 am

      • Thank you, thank you.

        November 20, 2013 at 3:33 am



    November 19, 2013 at 10:02 am

  9. Gloire

    Thank you. For this.

    If I could copy and paste sentences that spoke to me, I’d just paste the whole thing.

    Now to my opinion on the matter.
    I agree with @ husysweet. Communication breaches in relationships kills them slowly.

    Just. Talk.

    Today, we see partners who resent each other. The resentment didn’t just happen. It grew.

    Little drops of water, make the mighty ocean -a poet whose name I can’t remember.

    We like to bottle up stuff till we can hold ’em no more, causing hurt when we loosen our tongues …

    Insensitivity … a little fox that spoils the vine. A very little one …

    November 20, 2013 at 1:25 am

    • Undoubtedly you’re right.

      I think we just need to know each other better. Appreciate each other…and be good to each other.

      Thank you ma’am.

      November 20, 2013 at 3:35 am

  10. Death also comes when either party loses respect for the other, I think. And since familiarity breeds contempt I think it’s something every couple (or people in any type of relationship, for that matter) should watch out for.
    Well done, Seun Odukoya, the piece says volumes!

    November 20, 2013 at 5:21 am

    • I think I agree with you ma’am.

      Thank you much.

      November 20, 2013 at 5:43 am

  11. this is multi-pronged. it has touched different aspects in ways i can’t explain.
    taking my time to read what some people write has been rewarding, you are one of those.
    i have seen the ‘death’ in relationships due to differnt factors and i can say this is spot on.
    communication, will power, determination and the very small details count in either giving life to, or sending relatioships to their graves.
    big ups Seun

    November 21, 2013 at 2:47 pm

    • I’m glad. That’s what it is.

      Thank you so much.

      November 21, 2013 at 3:03 pm

  12. Nneka

    There should be no end to wooing your partner. No end to playing with each other. Laughing for no reason. Alone time. Looking for ways to spoil them silly. Being genuinely interested in their career. The real work begins after you’ve gotten the girl/guy. Not before. Thank you Seun. I’m sharing this. Totally!

    November 22, 2013 at 9:38 am

    • Yes o.

      It’s not easy; the trick is finding someone totally worth it.

      Thank you, Nne!

      November 22, 2013 at 10:00 am

  13. Hmm.. great thoughts you have here.

    Marital bliss is not a destination, I would say, but a journey. It never ends… the time invested, the work, everything.

    Indeed, marriage is not meant for the shallow-minded. It should be a synonym for ‘commitment’!

    November 27, 2013 at 12:24 am

    • You’re very correct ma.

      Thank you!

      November 27, 2013 at 3:26 am

  14. Brilliant

    December 2, 2013 at 8:19 pm

  15. B.L.E.S.S Y.O.U.R H.E.A.R.T!!!!
    You took the words outta my mouth and articulated ’em brilliantly!

    January 31, 2015 at 5:36 am

    • I did?!

      Hmmm. WHo would have thought?1

      Thank you – a year later!

      February 12, 2016 at 7:18 am

      • I’m grinning from ear to ear. Not sure I can help it.
        Sometimes, belated packs more pleasure than instant.

        Thank you.

        February 12, 2016 at 8:06 am

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