I have five daughters.
Now, the only reason I have all five is because my husband wanted a male child. Every time I took in, he would threaten to throw me out of the house because so far as he was concerned, I had not given him any children.
And after my second child, he abandoned me so I was going to the labour ward by myself whenever he found out through scan, that we were expecting yet another girl child!
He flaunted his relationships in my face and the funny part is, the two children he fathered outside were both girls, from two different women. You would think he would have grown more sense by then but no, it was my fault that I was bearing girls.
But I won’t blame him solely. I also had a role to play. I was also foolish too at that time because I thought, if only I could have a son…if only…so I kept getting pregnant. I wanted my husband to love me, to love our beautiful girls, to be home for us, you understand?
Something happened four years ago. I was pregnant for our last girls. They are a set of beautiful girls. One night like that, I couldn’t sleep and was just tossing and turning on the bed. After a while, I got up to take a shower because I was so hot. As I got up, I heard my husband’s phone ding; it was a WhatsApp message and I wouldn’t have bothered if the messages didn’t keep coming rapidly. I waited for my husband to wake up but he was fast asleep, so I picked up wondering who would be sending messages at 2.30am.
It was one dirty message after another from one Doris telling him she enjoyed the 69 style they had that evening and asking if he liked how wet her pu@%y was?
I didn’t know what 69 style was but when I read the rest of her messages and scrolled back to several he had sent her…I got the message.
He had been spending money on her, too, because I saw several debit alerts to the same Doris, he saved her as Doris Day.
I returned the phone to his bedside and went into the shower to cry. Here I was, pregnant like a balloon; wondering how I would cope with the bills popping up here and there because my husband only covers the bare necessities; rent and school fees, every other thing was my responsibility; food, electricity, even if our tap spoils, it is my job to fix it, tv, the children’s clothes, shoes, name it…all on me.
Many times he would tell me he didn’t have money for my girls yet he would go out and spend on other girls.
The following morning, while he was in the shower soaping himself and singing in the shower, I stood outside the sliding screen of the shower and asked him, ‘Who is Doris?’
My husband did not miss a beat, he just replied, ‘I don’t know any Doris’
I swallowed my anger and continued like nothing happened.
He didn’t follow me to the hospital on the day of my delivery, as usual, because the scan had revealed we were having twin girls. I was in emotional and physical pain and didn’t even fully recover even days after.
Days after, I was nursing my babies when a call came in; my husband had been arrested and I was called to come bail him.
He just said I should come and pick him at the police station; he sent an address.
I was shaking like a leaf by the time I got there. At the counter, I met a friendly female officer and explained my mission. She asked me to see the DPO. The female officer then told me my husband was caught with a lady who is the girlfriend of one of their senior officers. He had been previously warned to leave the girl alone but he didn’t. In short, he was dragging babe with oga police…chai!
When I told the officer I was the wife, she was just hissing, telling me I was a lot prettier than the girl my husband was chasing around. I told her that I must be ugly to him especially as I just had two lovely twin girls.
I further learned that my husband was caught in the house of the girl and had been beaten like a thief because my stupid husband had fought back which angered the officers and resulted in him been charged for ‘assault against an officer of the law.’
Now, my breasts were gorged and pouring milk even before I got to the station that day. Though, I had worn a breastfeeding bra, which is always padded, the anger I felt that evening made my milk full and was pouring, staining my blouse; it was just pouring like that.
I was advised to wait for the DPO but because of the state of my breasts and all, the police woman asked me to go and change my clothes and return.
I managed to see my husband briefly when they agreed to bring him out of the cell; he had been subdued a bit but was still claiming ‘innocent’…I asked him, “Is this because of Doris?”
He said, ‘Yes.’
I guess he had to tell me because there was no point lying anymore.
I told him, I had to go back and change my clothes because I couldn’t keep waiting for the DPO like this.
He said, ‘Oya go quick and come back quick so I will not sleep in the cell this night!’
On my way out, the police woman, who sympathized with me followed me outside. She told my husband was very stubborn and that he deserved to be punished for leaving me, a new mother, to be going out with small girls. The woman then told me I shouldn’t bother coming back, that I should let him sleep in the cell, promising me he would be taught a lesson.
That’s how I went home and didn’t return until the following day.
The following day; my husband looked like he had been jammed by a trailer! He was calm, his voice came in whispers. To date, he didn’t tell me what happened in the cell.
I know he stopped seeing Doris and no, he didn’t become a model husband. He still chases small girls but he is less aggressive toward me and my girls.
I have that police woman to thank for this.
(Series written and edited by Peju Akande and based on true stories)