• Short Stories

    Her Home To Keep – 6

    “I don’t understand why you are back here with your children. That girl is gone now and you should be at home with your husband working to resolve your issues.”

    “That girl is called Amen, Mum, and you once liked her.”

    “Well, I don’t anymore and I’m glad she’s finally out of that house. In short, I don’t understand how you could still send her to a fashion school. That girl is not a good person, Belema. She tried to destroy your home. “

    “Oh, Mum, why can’t you see that Mike is more to blame here than Amen? She is nineteen. A young girl. An innocent before he coaxed her into having sex with him. We were her guardian. He should have been protecting her, not talking her into helping him cheat on his wife.” Belema said and hissed because she was still too mad at Mike and mad at her mother for not seeing things rightly. “Yes, I’m disappointed in Amen, Mum. I’m hurt that she would betray me. But she’s only a girl. A teenager. One who lost her virginity to a randy man, got pregnant and had to have an abortion.”

    “So, you feel sorry for her. She sleeps with your husband and gets pregnant and you feel sorry for her.”

    “Maybe I do, Mum. I don’t know. What I know is that I don’t hate her and I refuse to punish her alone for what happened.”

    “Oh no, you didn’t punish her at all. If anything, you rewarded her for her betrayal by paying for that school. So, well done, Saint Belema.”

    Belema sighed at the sarcastic tone. “Mum, what if she was my sister, your daughter? Would you not think that Mike took advantage of her?”

    “If she was your sister and did this, I don’t know what will stop me from disowning her.” Her mother said. “Belema, what she did was inexcusable. Yes, she is young but she’s not stupid, is she?”

    “No. Just naïve.”

    Her mother shook her head. “I don’t know how you can continue to excuse her. But since you so easily forgave her, I don’t see why you didn’t forgive your husband too. They committed same offense after all.”

    “No, they didn’t. My maid betraying my trust is not the same thing as my husband cheating on me. Mike owed me more loyalty than Amen did. He certainly owed me fidelity. We took vows before God, Mum, and he broke those vows. And you know what else?” Belema asked. “All through this, and until now, he’s shown no remorse. He’s not sorry, Mum. And maybe because he considers it his ‘manly’ right to cheat on his wife.”

    “He’s a man, Belema, and…”

    “And nothing, Mum! He’s a man and nothing. Stop making excuses for him. We need to stop this as women. A man has no right to cheat. A husband shouldn’t be excused for sleeping with his wife’s maid. It is wrong. He did wrong.”

    “Yes, he did wrong. He made a mistake…”

    “He did not make a mistake, Mum. He planned this and did it repeatedly. Sex on repeated occasions is not a mistake.”

    “Okay, so it’s not a mistake, what are you going to do? Throw away your marriage and start all over again with three children? Is that what you are planning to do?”

    “I don’t know what I’m planning to do. I haven’t decided yet. But I do know that I’m not going back to a man who would cheat on me and still not have the grace to be contrite. He insulted me, Mum, and I won’t insult myself by acting the desperate wife who believes her entire life resolves round her husband.”

    “Belema, he might be sorry bit don’t just know how to say it. You know men and their pride.”

    “He had no pride when he chose to sleep with a girl of nineteen who also was his maid and children’s nanny, so he shouldn’t have any pride when it comes to saying sorry to me, Mum.”

    And unless he was sorry, and she saw it, there was no forgiving him.

    He looked unhappy and very much put out. Belema wasn’t surprised by his countenance, Mike never liked it when he was punished for anything he did. And he would consider her leaving their home as punishment.

    “How can you so easily forgive Amen and still hold a grudge against me? It’s not fair.”

    “You think it’s not fair? What a laugh, Mike.” Hurt and disappointed, Belema shook her head. “How could you, Mike? That is what I don’t get. She was my girl, my maid. Your children’s nanny. She was nineteen. Or was that the attraction, having to be with someone that young?”

    “Of course it wasn’t. I don’t know what it was. I think,” he shrugged, “I briefly found her attractive. Look, it’s not something I’m proud of, Belema. I know I shouldn’t have stooped that low. But she’s out of our life now and it won’t happen again.”

    “Won’t it? You mean you will never again find another woman attractive?”

    When he scowled and wouldn’t respond, Belema asked. “Was this even a first time, or just the only time I’ve caught you?”

    “I’ve never before cheated on you, Belema.”


    “Yes, really.”

    He looked affronted, and because she wasn’t sure she really wanted to know, Belema let it go.

    “Can we go home now?”

    His question, asked in a sullen voice, irritated Belema. “No.”


    “You hurt me, Mike. Do you realise that? You broke my trust. You betrayed me in a way I never thought you would and…”

    “And I’m sorry for it. I’m sorry, okay? Can we just go home and work through this as a couple?”

    “No, I’m not coming back to the house.”


    “Not yet. You don’t get to hurt me this way, feel no remorse and expect me to sweep it all away. I won’t have it, Mike. I won’t be treated carelessly and without respect, and definitely not by you.”

    “I’m not treating you carelessly and without respect. I just want my wife and children back home.”

    “You can come see the children anytime you want. I’m not keeping them from you.”

    “Belema, I’m not accepting this nonsense. I’m not having it.”

    “Oh, but you expect me to accept the nonsense of you sleeping with my maid, getting her pregnancy and forcing her into having an abortion?”

    “I didn’t force Amen into having an abortion. She did that on her own and you know it.”

    “Yes, I know it.” Belema exhaled and let the flare of temper go, leaving the disappointment. “Don’t you even feel any form of guilt, any attack of conscience? How can you be so selfish, so self-focused over this? You don’t care about what you did to that girl or what you did to me. Neither of us matter to you, right?”

    “Of course you matter to me, Belema. You’re my wife. I hurt you and I’m not proud of that. But we can’t resolve our issues while you’re here at your mother’s. We need to go home, Belema.”

    “We can’t resolve anything until I know you’re truly sorry, Mike. That will be the beginning of any resolution.”

    “I’ve said I’m sorry.”

    “So you have. But I want sincere contrition. You wronged me, you should be sincerely sorry for that. I also want you to know that I will not accept being cheated on. I give you my best, in every way, and I expect you to give me the same, not less.”


    “Let’s not keep arguing over this, Mike. Nothing will make me return with anything less than a heartfelt apology and a promise to never again do this.”

    “Is that an ultimatum?”

    “That is my decision.”

    “I see.” He said, turned and stormed out.

    Belema wasn’t moved. He would return, because she wasn’t going to budge until he did.

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  • Reply Datoks June 19, 2019 at 9:40 am

    Yes go girl, is people like Belama’s mum that make man cheat and don’t feel remorse, I wonder what Mike would have done if it was the other way round. Thanks for the update.

    • Reply mobolaji June 19, 2019 at 1:02 pm

      Yes, people like belema’s mum are everywhere in africa. It is the man’s world ,they say. Nonsense and sauce!

  • Reply Exceptionalstar July 2, 2019 at 8:30 pm

    Nonsense and sauce!

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