Veteran Nigerian actress, Patience Ozokwor expressed her thoughts on the way and manner marriage is handled in this modern age; she stated that, today’s marriages baffle her and that she feels for the next generation.
“What we have today baffles me and I feel for the children that they are giving birth to because I don’t know how they will learn something better from their parents.” She said, adding that, “we are praying for this generation and the generation to come; that is our duty as good mothers, to pray for them because, without our prayers, I mean, what you see today is a child’s play; in future, it will be worse.”
The renowned actress was responding to questions on the differences between the marriage institution of old and that of today; according to her, the way people go around marriage in this modern age does not qualify to be referred to as marriage in its proper sense.
“That is not marriage for me; that is just a relationship that could be broken any time. For me, marriage is forever, till death do us part and I don’t care what I meet in it and that’s the way I brought up my children and that’s what I’m looking out for and by God’s grace, with prayers, it’s working out for me” she added.
Speaking on what kept her committed in an ‘arranged’ marriage, she revealed that her family rules does not allow anyone to abandon his/her marriage, so she remained to please her parents; secondly, the actress stressed on the fact that her religious belief does not permit one to divorce. She added that her children were equally another reason she decided to stay.
“In our family, you don’t come back from your husband’s place. You stay, manage it, make the best out of it so when I came in I saw what was involved, I put my head because I couldn’t disappoint my father who loved me so much so I have to stay back…In my place, it is not easy for you to abandon your children and leave, so I have to stay” Ozokwor said.
Due to globalization and assimilation, certain African institutions, including marriage have lost their native values. Comparably, the true African definition for and practice of marriage is a union that goes beyond individuals and also preaches true commitment. That family (mostly extended) presence has sustained most marriages, especially in time of disputes. It is equally worth noting that, even amidst this global threat, Africa which still maintains some of its values records lower divorce rates as compared to Europe and other continents.