A Nollywood actress’ recent comments about wishing she’d married for money instead of love has woken social media debaters from their slumber and inspired another version of the age-old conversation topic: Should you marry for love or money?

I spoke to married Nigerians, and they talked about marrying for either love or money and what they’d do differently if they could have a do-over.

Gbemi, 51

I married for love, but I won’t advise any young woman to do the same. My husband isn’t a bad man, and I’m not suffering, but I have a reason for my answer.

When I married my husband, he was unemployed and only had foam in his bedroom—no bed or mattress—just foam to sleep on. If you mistakenly slept on that foam without a bedsheet, you’d have to spend hours removing foam from your hair. But I loved him, and he was kind to me. I also had a job, and we planned to use my salary to build a school as our family business.

It worked out for us, but only because my husband is a rare breed. For over six years, I brought most of the money, and he never acted out. He never talked even when I did my normal woman wahala and spent money on unnecessary things. He neither asked me for money nor tried to police what I used money for. I dropped it at home by myself because of our school plan.

Men of these days can’t do that. I can’t count the number of family issues I’ve helped solve that’s rooted in the woman earning more. Don’t say your own man can’t do it. Marry someone with money, please. Marriage is already stressful without adding money and the stress of managing someone’s ego to it. If I didn’t get married to my husband, I most likely wouldn’t have married a poor man.

Obinna, 43

I didn’t even marry for either love or money. I got married to my partner because my parents knew her family and recommended her. I don’t have any regrets. She’s made my house a home and is the best thing that’s ever happened to me. We’ve been married for over 10 years, and that’s love if you ask me. If I had the opportunity again, I’d still allow my parents to pick for me. 

Rola, 29

I married for both love and money by making sure to find love where the money was. I understand that money is vital in building a home and removing unnecessary stress, so poverty was a deal-breaker for me when I was single. I don’t have much in common with broke men, so where did they even want to find me? I make good money and expect the same from a romantic partner. That’ll always be my standard.

Justina, 40

I married quite young for love, and while I’m grateful that my husband and I are fairly financially comfortable now, it wasn’t always like that. There were years of struggle that affected the love. Of course, you can’t be thinking about love when landlord is threatening to throw you out over unpaid rent, or when you’re doing 001 and eating once a day so your kids can eat. 

Fortunately, we stayed together through those years, but I don’t think we’re as close as before. We lost that connection while struggling to make ends meet. If I had the opportunity to do it all over again, I’d have waited for us to make money first before getting married and raising children.

Femi, 34

Do Nigerian men really have the option to marry for money? I don’t think it’s as common for us. I married my wife because I love her. Whether she brings in money or not isn’t really my business because I’m meant to provide for her and my family. That’s not to say it doesn’t get difficult. I’ve been married for five years, and sometimes, I want to run away from all my financial responsibilities. If it’s not house rent, it’s fuel or the children or even extended family. Maybe if I had another opportunity, I’d find a way to hook Dangote’s daughter so that I, too, can enjoy.

Yemi, 31

I married for love and peace of mind. Money isn’t everything. My husband and I don’t have it all, but at least we’re together. I’ve heard stories of richer couples who eventually divorced or are battling one problem or the other. I’ll advise anyone to consider peace of mind and whether they can stay happy with that person for years over how much is in their account. Money can disappear overnight, but marriage is a lifetime thing. Will you end the marriage because there’s no money again?


NEXT READ: I Blame My Rich Parents for My Lack of Ambition

>

OUR MISSION

Zikoko amplifies African youth culture by curating and creating smart and joyful content for young Africans and the world.