Omo buruku se fe, sugbon, ana buruku kose ni

Yoruba Adage

 Translation: Marrying a person from a bad home is worse than marrying a bad person.

I hear this a lot in the Yoruba movies that I watch. Even in reality, I have heard of people’s prospects being disqualified because of the kind of parents or even distant relatives they have. Despite being a good ol’ fashioned type of girl-who would go to the mountains to seek parental approval before agreeing to be with a guy, I kinda felt this was pushing it a bit. Why should a person be deprived of marital bliss simply because of his pedigree, I wondered.

I am now older and with age comes its twin, wisdom (hopefully). I ‘m actually beginning to agree with the whole idea of family being a major issue. Ok, as you probably know, I am an only girl so I have heard my fair share of advice being dished out to my brothers on who or who not to be with. Some years ago, my aunt was having a conversation with one of my cousins advising him to stay away from a particular girl, *Yinka*.

Yinka is a very pretty girl and aside of the surface, she was so respectful, helpful, hardworking etc. She totally won the entire family’s heart. Even my dad, who is usually aloof until you formally present your choice was already liking the girl. Well, there was a little something my cousin eventually revealed to the family one day my aunt came visiting and saw Yinka helping out in the dish washing.

This particular aunt is a very upfront, open, direct woman and after Yinka left for her house, she asked clear questions. From her barrage, it was discovered that:

-Yinka is the product of a brief university relationship between her parents.

-Her mom has 4 other children by 2 different men who had at some point been her spouse.

-Presently, she is separated from the father of the last child and is living with another divorcee in his Ikoyi mansion.

-All men have been way above average financially.

-She has never stayed up to 5 straight years with any man.

-Her maternal grandmother also was separated from her granddad and ended up having children for different men.

All these facts and patterns got my aunt very worried for him and she bluntly predicted that Yinka would end up towing the very same path if she does not go for deliverance or something. Her words stung my cousin (who had been with Yinka for 1 year-ish and was deeply in love with her). He refused to adhere to her warnings. In the end, for some very random and different reasons, they broke up.

Yinka ended up marrying (traditional) a very wealthy man who has 2 children already and she became a regular figure in the pages of City People magazine. Today, she is single again but is a society lady by every standard with tattoos and a gold tooth and all. Shocked? I was. My aunt wasn’t. She actually still expects worse to happen. Whilst, I am not condemning those who have tattoos or gold teeth or whatever, in this case, I am using it to explain how it was so unlike Yinka and so unexpected. She showed no such signs and this dramatic change didn’t take that long to take place. Some would just nod and say: Ekun l’ekun bi: The lion would always birth a lion.

Now guys, do you believe in the truth of family background counting towards the kind of person your partner is? I personally have some AMAZING friends whose parents embarrass them sometimes (eg, getting drunk in public, womanizing to the point of toasting mates of their daughters, fighting in public (wife beating), self-proclaimed traditional god worshipper) Yet, some of these people’s offspring have, to the best of my knowledge, amazing characters.

Would you steer clear of a person who comes from a family that has skeletons in their cupboards though this person has never exhibited such traits. For example, as a dude, would you marry a very lovely girl whose mom is totally bleached out and has had 4 different marriages and is presently single and a constant face in every owanbe? Or even a gentle girl whose mom is known to be a street fighter, who is probably the breadwinner of the home and has totally emasculated her husband- maybe you go visiting one day and find the woman shouting at her husband in your presence and he has become a totally weak man?

As a girl, would you marry the son of an acclaimed wife beater, a man who has no regard for his mother even though your partner appears to be as gentle as a lamb? Now, on a different side to character vices, would you marry a person whose family is from a different tribe, worships a different deity, is known to have some hereditary serious illnesses such as serious mental imbalance, in whose family all the male children die on their 50th birthday (including his/her dad)etc? *these are real life situations by the way*

Importantly, where does trusting in God come in instead of relying on investigations conducted by family members? God had promised that He would visit the father’s sins on the children’s children’s children up until the 4th generation (Exodus 20:1-26). But since we have Christ, we are no longer under the curse of the law (Galatians 3:13), right? So should we really concern ourselves with such matters? Or maybe we need to actually pray and fast and do the required deliverance first before marrying into such homes???

Some of us are actually the ones from families that would be frowned upon…Should we now not marry good people because of the behavior/illnesses of our mom/dad/brother/sister/grandparents/4th cousin which we absolutely condemn? How exactly do you feel about this issue?

I just had to throw in this cute picture

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