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Pragmatic, reserved and a deep thinker who loves family, sports especially football where am married to two wives: the first, AC Milan who has my loyalty and the second wife, Manchester United who has all my undying love and pampering, lifestyle and society parties. Need I say the law is more than a profession but a lifestyle for me.

Adekanye Adeyinka Olajide.

I do it for me

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You are here: Home / THE CONTRACT.



A few years ago while preparing to take our first exams on the road to becoming professional advertisers, I was asked by my colleagues while taking a tutorial class on Law and Ethics for examples of a contract. Typically, I always like to give five examples but I could only come with four. So after some quick thinking on my feet, I added the fifth. I said marriage! Of course it relieved the obvious tension that came with taking a high paying professional course and we laughed about it, I never really shook off the feeling that I was right. I am certain today that I am, but I want you to be the judge of that. The obvious question then is what is a contact? A contract is a voluntary, deliberate, and legally binding agreement between two or more parties. A contractual relationship is evidenced by an offer, acceptance of the offer and a valid, legal and valuable consideration. Each party to a contract acquires rights and duties of the other parties. However, while all parties may expect a fair benefit from the contract, it does not follow that each party benefit to equal extent.

 As a young unmarried man, one of the things I take delight in whenever I talk to people is talking about their relationship experiences, plans and hopes. And most of the time when I do that, my faith in the institution of marriage is renewed and my hope rekindled. The things I have found to be truly common in successful and thriving relationships are not so difficult to do, at least for any man or woman that is willing to have a happy home.  In all my getting, I came to the conclusion that a marriage is a contract.

Perhaps the single most important ingredient for making your marriage work is CHOICE. You may be excused if you did not choose to be with or marry your partner, or if you didn’t take him/her home to meet your folks, or maybe if you did not attend the ceremony (yes, the wedding). Or you attended and sat at the back just to register your displeasure at the whole arrangement, if you were not there when the minister asked if there was anyone who did not want the couple joined together to speak. Maybe you even spoke up, but you were ignored! Ha! Perhaps you did not say ‘I do’. The point is your choice is critical.

Brand specialist and relationship mentor, Leke Alder in a recent letter to Jill wrote that a “good relationship begins with a good choice of a partner, so does a good marriage. A relationship is a potential marriage and marriage is a bigger deal than many people realise. Marriage will determine many outcomes in your life and to such level of minutiae as is imaginable; it will determine your friends and social circle, your economic fortune, your emotional health and will definitely determine whether you end up happy or bitter”. He advised that you do not force through a relationship you know will not work, or fight for someone who is cavalier with your feelings and emotions and who is disdainful of you.

A marriage decision is one of the most important decisions you can make in my book. How else do you classify a decision made to ‘let go of all’ you have known to take a trip down the unknown?

Equally important is COMMITMENT. I have always believed that you should put your money where your mouth is and this is particularly true in this instance. If you say ‘I do’, commit to it.  The question then is; do you have the will to give it your all or do you just want to give up? I understand will to mean the existence of a strong desire and determination to take specific actions intended to realise set objectives, including the willingness to take the necessary and sometimes painful risks and make sacrifices for the realisation of those objectives.

Will is important but it has to be rooted in love, kindness, patience, and giving. It has to emerge from a largely genuine and conscious decision existing entirely to serve the interest of the contract. Sadly, I have observed that we do not have a good record of respecting our marriages, and we must!

Make no mistakes, will does not miraculously exist in a marriage. It is really borne from a collective thing. It is rooted in a belief and a vision. I should think that partners would give (even before agreeing to marry) each other a reason to believe, a reason to share that vision and a path for its actualisation. A spouse who is a loner can easily be derailed by sundry pressures, but if he or she shares that vision and the other buys into it, the will becomes enduring and effective. Remember that “two cannot work together except they agree”. So will while critical, is not a magic wand and does not just emerge miraculously.

Can anyone stress the need for COMMUNICATION enough? I know that you know this already, but do you do it? To communicate is to allow access into your thoughts, convey information and when you do, be direct with what it is you want, what you would (and wouldn’t) like to see. Keep it as simple as possible, break it down. There is no point in thinking that ‘he/she should know’. Remember, your spouse is not a psychic. Therefore, engagement is critical. Spouses must be inspired; otherwise the daily grinds of making a living will prevent you from taking an active part in the marriage.

Be my guest, COMPLAIN. Yes, you read right. As human, it is understandable if we express discontent, displeasure or unhappiness. Personally, I will rather have my spouse complain than keep mute. It will hurt me to know. Please bear in mind that to complain is not the same as to criticise. A complaint focuses on a specific issue, on a behaviour to change, it is a direct expression of anger or displeasure and it is void of attacks on personality and character. Criticism on the other hand will break down your relationship.

If your relationship will work, you have to CARE. I know that the word is one that you are all too familiar with, but please allow me to bore you with a little detail. To care is to provide special treatment for and attend to your spouse. It is to be judicious in avoiding anything that may harm or endanger your relationship, to engage activities involved in maintaining your marriage in a good working order, to manage responsibilities, to be concerned about your spouse and have interest in each other. To care is to love and love is the greatest force in the universe with the power to transform and heal. Do not forget that love is patient, kind, hopes, protects, perseveres, is not self seeking and keeps no record of wrongs. Show each other every day how much you care.

In a contract, one thing you have to do is to CLEAR-OUT. I have got bad news, even if you have done your best at everything, does it translate into not having issues? I am sorry, but no. There will be issues, challenges, problems and call it what you want. Even twins have their differences! The good news is that you can move on, leave it in the past, and clear it out. Imagine wearing your clothes without doing laundry. When you eventually get round to it, you would be burdened. Burdened by not having too many choices of what to wear, by the smell (nose covered), by the sheer volume of energy you would expend to get it done. Besides, some stains may very well be permanent then. Trust me, you do not want issues to fester unnecessarily and linger unattained. Resolve those issues as soon as they surface and clear them out. If you plan on having a long joyous marriage, then clear out the issues ASAP. Whoever came up with ‘delay is dangerous’ probably had this in mind.

Every marriage is largely unexplored territory and there is opportunity for investing and improvement in virtually all areas of the union. The spouses who are interested in investing in their union (and I urge you to be interested) will be the best judges of what and where to invest in and improve on. You as an individual must help to make your home a place you desire to return to, and raise your family in and care for. I do not have all the answers and neither do I claim that I do. Indeed I may very well be wrong, but I am sure of one thing; at the end of the day, we all want the same thing, namely: a good home; a lasting and enduring contract.

Adewumi Goke DSJ
You can read two other articles “Yes I do” and “I love you so much” by Adewumi Goke DSJ on facebook.