Nollywood diva, Omotola Jalade Ekeinde speaks with Mary Ekah on the challenges of her marriage, work and motherhood
We are two different people
It takes two to tangle; my husband and I have our differences, but a lot of men do know what the women expect from them to make the marriage work. I think everybody should first be realistic in marriage. First of all, you have to realise that you are two different people and if you believe that you are made for each other, and then you should understand that you couldn’t be the same because two of the same kind don’t need each other. If you are truly made for each other you will enjoy your marriage. The reason I must be with you in marriage is to compliment you and vice versa. This means that you have weaknesses that I can help with, while I have weaknesses that you you can help with and when you understand that as one of the basis in marriage, it makes life easier.
My husband for example is always very prompt but I am always very late; I have no idea of what time. But my husband is trained to be timely because he is a pilot so we always have issues on that. That could always cause a fight and he would go crazy at me. But the way we resolve it is just so silly as well. I mean we don’t hold anything that seriously because at the end of the day we understand that it is our life and that we both are different. You can try to correct me but you can’t change me. So you have no choice but to live with the differences. I am yours and you are mine. In my family for example, divorce does not exist. We have never fought and one of us said I am going to divorce you. We do not give room for divorce at all. I can’t divorce my husband.
Women talk a lot
For men, what they need to know about women generally is that, we talk a lot and we say a lot of things that we don’t mean but we are very emotional people and we put our emotion out there but men don’t express themselves. We are two different people, so a man will often not talk. For example, when I tell my husband, let’s talk. He is like, “What are we talking about? There is no problem.” And I am like, for God sake, what kind of man is this? So for them there is no problem but for you as a woman, you are carrying your problem around and you want to talk about it. So when a man understands the fact that a woman is different from him, he would take things easier and learn to yield to her desires at all time. If she talks, talks and talks after a while she will go to sleep.
How we have kept our marriage intact
I know my husband and he knows me and no matter what he reads or hears about me, he only believes what I tell him and when I mess up, he is the first person I tell. That is how open we both are to each other and because in my family there is nothing like divorce, we have to sort it out within ourselves. Anyway, we need to because whatever my mistakes are, they are his mistakes.
If my husband goes out today and impregnate a woman, I would go out and look for that child because that child belongs to me; it is my seed, I mean that is my mentality – it may be extreme but that is how I feel and that is how far we have gone. So we have thought about it so far that anything below the extreme is not it. We have thought about the worst thing and any relationship and we can handle it and I think that is the way couple should go. Don’t assume that it could not happen; we are all human being and nobody is perfect. I don’t even trust myself and so, why should I trust another human and why should anybody trust me.
We are all human being and we are all susceptible to flaws but that does not mean that we will continue with a flawed lifestyles, but in case it happens, how are you going to handle it? Talk about it now before it happens. My husband and I are very good friends and I allow him to be himself and I allow him to relax. I understand that he is different and that we are together not by force. We can actually go apart. It is actually a privilege for him to be with and it is also a privilege for me to be with him; we understand that and we cherish every moment we spend together. We don’t have friends that influence our lives. We don’t make it a must to hang out with friends. I don’t discuss him with friends and the same applies to him. He does not discuss me with anybody even his parent to the best of my knowledge. So we stick to each other.
A man will always be a man
I think that, especially for men, when they feel pressured they go in the negative direction. A man will always be a man, a man is like a lion, they want to be the king of the jungle, and they want to feel that they can express themselves in any way they want and that they can roam around and that this is their territory. And so, the minute you start to make them feel caged; Just imagine caging a lion for a very long time, the moment he gets an opportunity out of the cage, it is going to tear you to pieces and walk over you. And I realise that, if a man has the fear of God in him, just leave him and believe that he is an adult and could take care of himself. Even if he messes up, what are you going to do? You are just going to die trying to monitor him any way. I think this is one of the things that my husband respects – the fact that I let him be himself.
My Husband is in support of whatever makes me happy
My husband had no problem about my career and would never. He says he is in support of whatever makes me happy. He supports me a lot. I even went back on set after my first child was just one month old; it was for the movie, “Day Break”. He goes to the market. I don’t and he doesn’t mind doing that. He is my number one fan. He watches my movies like a critic. The only scene he is not enthusiastic about is the romantic scene. But I got to do what I have to do.
I am the first child of three children and the only daughter. I was the only child of my parents for a long time so I was a bit over-pampered. I was my daddy’s pet because I was the only girl. I loved to dance and mime. While in secondary school my friends and I formed a group. We were three in the group and after school you will find us singing and dancing on the road. I could mime to any popular song back then and singing on the road got me a lot of lifts. I had a stint at Obafemi Awolowo University Ile-Ife; I later got admission into Yaba College of Technology to read Estate Management. My acting career had already taken off before I got into Yaba Tech.
I started acting as soon as I left secondary school while awaiting my JAMB results. Even while I was in Ife reading Economics, my acting career had started. I left OAU in my first year because I was getting married and my husband felt it was too far. So I had to get a school in Lagos. I got in to Yaba College of Technology in 1996 and I got married that same year. I decided to read Estate Management, because I realised that I didn’t like Economics while I was in OAU. My modeling career started before my acting career. I started when I left secondary school. I had modeled for two years before my acting career. I did mostly calendar jobs.