MY NAME IS ZUBAIDA MAMMAN FROM ZAMFRA STATE. I AM 29 YEARS. I WOULD LIKE TO SHARE MY DIVORCE DIARIES WITH YOU.
I met Kassim in my sister’s house when I was in my second year in the prestigious ATBU studying Pharmacy.
The tall handsome dude took my breath away instantly. He came to discuss a very serious issue with my sister Ladifa having been her best friend’s husband. I served him cold drinks and a variety of our home made snacks but he asked for tea. I served him tea,I brewed the tea to the best of my ability just to impress him, and belief me, he was.
Kassim is a well learned ustaz with his trousers above his ankles and his temple and cheeks full with beards. Kassim was always calling Allah, that made me believe in him more. Ni Zubaida na ga miji. Him knowing I would be in the house for my summer break made him frequent Kano at that period.
Kassim claimed to be a man of God. He can pass for a funky ustaz, the way he calls himself. We secretly started dating. Our love blossomed so quickly and he was so loving and caring.
Hell did not break loose until my elder sister Ladifa got to know about us. She’s the eldest daughter of our family, Baba’s chief adviser, she vowed to talk Baba into not approving our marriage, Kassim’s wife been her best friend, she said ” ai wannan cin amanan bazata ganshi ba” We stopped seeing privately, we made our relationship public.
I went and informed my mother about all that was happening. She did not say much because she does not have any right over me, gidan wani take aure. She separated with my dad since before I was born, she only stayed back to put me to bed because the separation was bitter, Baba said ” bazata shayar da diyar sa ba”. That was how my stepmom took me like her own.
I told Kassim to bring himself forward but he refused, having known that Baba said baze bashi ni ba, Yaya Ladifa has poisoned his mind about the whole thing. We dated for years, later on parted ways because Kassim took another wife along the line, their marriage lasted for just six months.
That didn’t stop me from thinking twice again about been with him again. Khultum, ( his second wife separated with) hmmm, her own story is different and bitter too. We were back with Kassim again, I eschewed from my family’s reservation and continued seeing Kassim, after my graduation, I was desperate to get married like every other northern spinster would be. Baba did not change his decision and I didn’t change mine too.
People started questioning my stubbornness and loyalty to Kassim. There came out the fettish part of everyone around me. Kassim yayi min asiri saboda shi ana ta zargin shi mallami ne, but be taba nuna min hakan ba. Anybody that tried to talk me out of the relationship became my sworn enemy, but Kassim made me believe I could live without them all, he is my world and I was his gold.
Controversy upon controversy, Kassim refused to bring himself forward or send his parents, he claimed he was scared Baba won’t listen to them. He started backing off again, ya fara neman wata ze aura, they did gaisuwa and all the necessary procedures of a contemporary northern wedding, but whenever I asked him, he flatly denied it and accused the girl of liking him.
That was how I dumbfounded believed him. It was at the dying minute that the girl’s parents changed their minds about marrying her off to Kassim, they returned all that was given to them concerning her wedding. He was so much hurt that he came back to me with full force.
We started all over again and with wedding plans kaman ni zan aurar da kaina. He was still in love with that girl but ban damu ba. He wanted to get married on or a later date not far from his wedding day with the other girl, but be yiwu ba. I did all that I could to see that we got married the default traditional way with showers of blessings but it didn’t happen, Baba refused.
Kassim lured me with his pep talk, he talked me into getting married to him in a court and I agreed. We went to the grand qadi of the state and explained our ordeal with a lot of lies and he agreed. All arrangements were made and we got married in a court on a Tuesday, se ka ce wata bazawara mara gata.
I was so happy I was married to the love of my life without Baba’s full consent. His wife was not aware of it too. She was just told “ki shirya za’a kawo miki amarya gobe” and she fainted. A little walima took place when I was taken to Kassim’s house. We went to Niger republic for our homey moon. He furnished an apartment for me the usual way. We became enemies with Nudaiba, we hated seeing each other, that was just the beginning of my misery in my then matrimonial home.
Women kept trooping in and out of my house to see Kassim, they are all his clients. Am a very jealous person but for Kassim, business dinshi yakeyi, it’s very true shi mallami ne and we all know women are the highest patronizers of such business. I started frowning about the whole thing but he can never be stopped. I was always fighting his clients out of jealousy and they complained bitterly about it. We always had huge fights whenever I maltreated them.
Fadan yau daban na gobe daban, he would even scold me in their presence and I couldn’t do anything. The most painful thing is I have no one to cry to.
I started having morning sickness but I scaled through and bore Kassim a bouncing baby girl. The second year of my marriage was the worst year of my life.
Peace never visited my home, I never lacked any material thing throughout my stay but I lacked peace of mind, care, affection and love. I thought the love I showed Kassim would be reciprocated in folds of mine but at times you can swear Kassim forgets of my existence because he’s still in love with the girl whom her parents refused to marry her off to him.
That was when I started regretting my actions towards my father and started weighing options. Fushin iyaye, karma was catching up with me. I was always in an eyesore state due to the plague treatment I was given by Kassim. I was A prisoner of his spell. I started praying for a break through.
That was how I realized my wrong. I cried in every night. Kassim had series of girlfriends including his married clients. Allah a baki amma babu a zuci, Allah ya yi mana tsari. Nusaiba laughed at each and every quarrel we picked. His parents became the children and him the father, they are scared of him. They never scolded or questioned him.
I started thinking of what to do with my life, because I thought if I’ve something doing, it could reduce a lot of worry I was facing at that time. I told Kassim I wanted to start something but he declined instantly, telling me who’s going to allow me work; imagine after all those ATBU years. I can’t blame anyone for all those; it’s karma catching up with me earlier than I thought, even though I thought Kassim would change but he got worst by the day. I started contacting my relatives gradually, some treated me like an epidemic, some were indifferent and some made me understand my wrong and treated me like a sister they have ever had.
My father, I can’t face Baba, but blood is blood, he’s my father, he never stopped praying for me, even though he didn’t want to see me at all at that time. I didn’t stop praying and the spell Kassim casted upon me was lessening by the day. I told my mom and aunt to organize prayer sessions for me, it was at the tail end of my suffering that that I realized what happened to me. Was it my fault… Or is it that I showed Kassim so much love to show my father he had more power over me. Allah ya isa ban yafe ba. Whenever I cried I told Kassim he has daughters that he so much loves too, same shall be replicated to him in no time. Ai ba’a ma Allah wayo, but Kassim would laugh and mock me, telling me I can’t do anything because I had nowhere to go to. I laughed too and just looked at him. I made the greatest mistake of my life by showing him so much love and he used that as an advantage over me.
Without his knowledge, I started making more amends with my family, especially my paternal relatives. It was very difficult but I had to do it and I got it right.
After our first daughter, our quarrels increased by the hour, we couldn’t tolerate each other one bit. He’s the nagging type and I couldn’t take it anymore. I gathered courage and asked him for divorce but he refused just because he wanted to show me how much in control of me he was. I was so happy when he finally divorced me after series of serious fights.
I went to my aunt’s and she had to accept me because she was one of the few people that didn’t disapprove of our marriage. When I stayed for almost a month with her, she asked me when I’ll be due for delivery. I was perplexed, my response made her laugh and she said” Zubaida ciki ne kuma baki sani ba”. I was devastated but I was three months away. She took me to the hospital and my greatest fear was confirmed.
I sent Kassim an sms informing him of my condition but the sacarstic response he gave was” in kin aihu ki kawo min da na”. Most at times I sit and think of how barbaric a man could be. If my father would swear to me Kassim will be this bad to me, I would have slayed him, but see how he changed instantly.
Alhamdulillah, am still nursing my second daughter, Kassim is still yet to see her in person, but we are healthy and happy. My family members are been a bit pathetic yet things aren’t normal which am still doing my best to see that they are.
Thank you for sharing my divorce story, hope you learn one or two thing from it.
Family is everything, family first.
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Names have been changed to protect the identity of the narrator and other individuals in the story.
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