By Silas Nyanchwani
What is your take madam Director?
Can a woman snatch another woman’s husband?
Sometimes deliberately. All too inadvertently.
There are three types of mpango wa kando.
First one usually knows the wife and chooses to respect her. Especially if the man makes clear that wife is here to stay, rarely bad mouths the wife. So, she decides to co-exist with the wife, rarely challenges the authority of the wife and will never throw tantrums when the man is away with family or make those pesky calls. Sometimes even the wife gets to know her. They may not talk, but wife know that she exists, and life goes on.
Then there are those who will never know if the man is married, and if they know they can’t care less, as long as the man is paying her bills.
Then now there is the mpango wa kando who is determined to snatch the man. She will lay every trap for the man. If the man is the type who talks isht about the wife, the woman will learn all the weaknesses of the wife and that is what she will exploit. If the wife cooks njahe, she will cook biryani, with an imported spice from some Central Asia country like Turkmenistan. And she will serve the man other things so well, the man will forget himself. This is the type that gets to be bought Mazda demio, or if the man is well-to-do, even a BMW, Kwani iko nini?
The latter type, power often gets to their heads. They are the ones who throw a tantrum when the man doesn’t pick the phone even when they know the man is at home. Often, they have more rights than the wife, technically that is. And these are the ones who can deliberately usurp a marriage.
What is a woman to do when she discovers there is competition? There are those women who would leave the man pronto if the man cheated. All apologies will never be accepted.
There are those who will fight for their place. But it boils down to a few things. If the man is too rich, and the woman comes from a poor background, the man may wield too much power. And rich men in Africa sometimes have too much power, so, he may not even allow the woman to leave. But if the woman is educated, has her money, the man may be slow to pull any sort of patriarchal rank on her.
And then, there are these women who go searching for the other woman to have a chat with her. The chat usually involves some bit of hair pulling, tousling about, and a few slaps. The idea here is to plant the fear of God in the other woman, until she runs away.
Most women here may not admit, but they frequently receive calls and texts from the wives of their male (boy)friends warning them unnamed consequences. Some get preachy, warning the women about the wrath of God. Some are rational and levelheaded and often end up forming an unlikely friendship… And others go for expletives that will put an angry Tupac to shame.
Is fighting over a man worth it?
It depends. Only the woman who fights knows what she is losing. Some women, may say, there is no man worth fighting for. And true, to themselves, they’d rather walk out, than suffer the indignity of having to debate with another woman about your husband.
I used to think that there is no man worth fighting for. But also, I was stupid. Now that I am older, I have discovered there are men worth fighting for, and even the toughest, and most stoic of women here, if it comes to it, they can fight over a man.
The narrative often goes like this. You meet a man when he is 26, broke as hell, has no toilet manners, but has ambition. As a woman, you stand by him, sacrificing your salary to dress the bastard, pay the rent in bad days, and while at it, sire him kids who understand maths. And such men have a tendency of getting you three or four kids. Ten years later, you are ‘spent’ and the best days of your physical potency are gone.
In the meantime, the man is now washed vizuri, knows how to dress, drives a perfect car, has some investments and that is when he goes for some 23 year old college girl. All the college girl does is snap photos of the god foods, wines and the sandy beaches and post on Instagram, as the wife is trying to cook some uncookable njahe to eat with the kids.
I can understand if the wife decided to pump some sense into the young girl or whichever women.
Now, the liberal, enlightened woman often say, why can’t the wife go for the man. He is clearly the culprit.
I have an answer.
Life is not an academic exercise. For instance, President Kenyatta has the powers and the ability to confront his deputy and square their differences, real or perceived. But, from what we have seen, he is not doing that. Instead, there are things going on that make us believe that someone is after Mr William Ruto.
Same things happen in life. It is easy to attack to the weak link and most married women who confronted the other woman, almost, always succeeded. Because some women when it gets to that, they pick whatever little dignity they have and walk away. Unless, she is the stubborn type described above who, should the wife try some mischief, will soon discover that she, the wife, is the mpango wa kando.
All in all, life is grey. Nobody knows anything. Just deal with your situation whichever way it comes. Don’t believe what feminists or liberal women say, and don’t go with the crowd. Confront the man if you have the guts. Confront the woman if you think it will work. Walk away, if you don’t want that kind of vibe.
Everything boils down to what are you willing to lose!
Safest thing I have seen, from a purely material perspective, for a woman is to have her money and the ability to make decisions without getting clouded in emotions. But love and all about it a chemical process that sometimes does things we can’t control. But at least, a woman with her money who can move on, without bothering with the man’s material things, is usually a man’s biggest nightmare. Because men often use material things to trap women. It can be more about it. Because sometimes you love someone so much, and you want to forgive their flaws and give it a try. Once again. You still can. And rest assured that life is not perfect.
PS: It has been a month, na hamjaenda dunda, na hamjakufa, si you see saa zingine ni pesa tu huwasumbua.