Women In Polygamous Marriages
Polygamy is the practice or custom of having more than one wife or husband at the same time. There are a few places in the world polygamy is practiced while in some parts, it’s illegal (e.g United States). In Nigeria, the northern states recognize polygamous marriages as equivalent to monogamous marriages and this allows a man to take more than one wife. Zamfara State was the first to legislate polygamy, which occurred on January 7, 2000 and other parts of Nigeria has taken up this act. Some even go as far as killing their fellow brothers or friend to take his wife as a second one for himself.
A lot of despicable testimonies and abandoned children are being born from polygamous marriages but it’d shock you to hear some people call it a blessing for them. Lets look at the reasons why polygamy takes place among women.
1. Lust: This is the most callous approach to polygamy as the first wives are usually unaware. A husband brought home a house-help to live with them; she lived with the couple for a long time. The wife took good care of the girl and ensured she was enrolled in a school. Unknown to the wife the husband was grooming the house-help for marriage. He later secretly married the house-help and accommodated her in the house with the help of Family members who testified the housemaid’s pregnancy.
2. Choice: Some rich men would decide to take up second wives with no form of restrain or complaints from their wives.
3. Scarcity of males: In some parts of Africa, a man is allowed to take up another wife from the same community if he can take care of more than one woman.
4. Bareness; Touching but true. If a woman fails to bear a child in a long time, the man is usually forced to take up another woman
5. Culture: In some cultural practices, if a man’s brother dies, he is allowed to take his brother’s wife and children.
Polygamy has a lot of disadvantages, here are a few.
1. Men in Polygamous homes are not good parents because they can not provide equal opportunities to the wives and their children. They are sometimes focused on the younger wives and intelligent children
2. There’s competition among wives.
3. Wives are usually territorial and unsatisfied
4. There is always sibling rivalry among children.
It increases the probability of Child bearing: If the first wife doesn’t give birth, the second will and if one of the wives gives birth to females only, there is a possibility the other could give birth to males.
If you have other points, stories from experience or more disadvantages and Advantages, leave a comment. I’d get back to you