Tag Archives: Nigerian

Cross-cultural barriers

Dear globalcounselor,

I am 32 years old and I was living with a man from Nigeria for about three years. We did a lot together. He said he loved me. I know I loved him a lot but six months ago he told he could not do this anymore. He said he has become a Christian and living in sin was out of the picture for him. I told him I was willing to become  a  born again Christian if that would keep us together but he made one excuse after the other  why we should not be together.

We separated and I was devastated. I thought for sure he loved me and would do anything to keep me but I was wrong.  I was not only hurt but I was ashamed of myself. My friends  (both black and white) and my parents kept telling me that he would not marry me or settle down with me because Nigerians are very culture-bound people most of the time. They return to their own kind even though they like to practice their shit on white girls but we’re not good enough for marriage. This is so hypocritical. And they say we’re prejudiced?   My folks always welcomed him in our family. They liked him a lot but they knew better than I did they say men like him (professional whom his parents put through college – he did not have to borrow a dime) do not go against tradition and their parents wishes and that he will return to Nigeria and find a girl or marry one in Canada. Lo and behold, this morning while browsing through face book, I did what I promised not to do and peeked at his FB page and there he was with this beautiful Nigerian girl – married. I cried my eyes out at what a fool I had been. I’m spreading this message to other white girls or girls who may not be from Nigeria to be careful with those men.   If you are looking for marriage, pin them down early on and know where you stand.  I am never going to trust anyone but my own kind from now on. I am mad and I am hurt.


Dear hurt,

Thanks for sharing. What happened to you could have happened with anyone. This man apparently wanted to end the relationship. Men and women do it all the time, not only a particular type of man. I know a man who slept one night with a woman had breakfast with her and then left and went to the registrar’s office to marry another woman. They were from the same race.  He was not into you anymore and maybe he had met this woman whom, you’re right, would be easier for him to introduce to his family and friends. There is comfort in being with a person whom you understand, with whom you speak the same language, to whom you do not have to explain common nuances etc. It takes a courageous person who believes in love so strongly that he or she would marry someone from a completely different cultural and racial background. I know this is happening more and more frequently these days but let’s face it, it is an added stress on a relationship which has its own stressors. Don’t see this as a racial issue, though it might be, don’t see it as a cultural thing, which it might be but see it as a human thing. This situation happens in every culture. People fall in love and they fall out of love. Don’t close the doors on other men who might see you as the one they want to spend the rest of their life with and he could come from any race or culture. Be open. Sorry this one did not work out.


Religion and friendship

Dear globalcounselor:

I am a 17 year old African Canadian girl. My best friend for the past four years is a 17 year old Nigerian-Canadian girl. We did everything together, we attend the same school, played basketball together, watched movies at each others homes on the weekend, went shopping and joked around a lot. About four months ago, my girlfriend accepted the Lord as her Saviour. She became a born again Christian and since then she has been a pain in the neck. She is not fun to be with anymore. Every word that comes out of her mouth is about God. Instead of going to the movies, she wants me to go to Church with her. She has missed basketball practices because of church activities. I am fed up. I miss our old friendship a lot and I feel lonely because she was my best friend.  But I find that I do not want to answer her phone calls anymore because every second word is about God. I am a Christian too but not so anal about it. How can I save our friendship without getting into a big showdown about her holier-than-thou righteousness.


Dear Holier:

Give your friend some time to get over the honeymoon phase of her acceptance of Christ. She feels she has found something good and wants to share it with you. Because you are friends she wants you to be on the same side.  If she is super serious about her Christianity, the nature of your friendship may change permanently because people tend to gravitate towards those who are most like themselves i.e. those who share similar beliefs. Being a member of  the born again Christian community  can also be taxing on its members. It has a way of keeping its members fully occupied with programs and activities to which you may not be privy to. 

In the meantime, you have to have a heart to heart talk with your friend to let her know that you are not interested in turning your conversations into a religious sermon and that if the friendship is to continue she would have to stop trying to change you into a born again Christian.  You need to extend your circle of friends so that you are not so dependent on this one friend.