Sex mate in nigeria

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For women in Nigeria, as in many settings, simply being married Sex mate in nigeria contribute to the risk of contracting HIV. The indicate that the social organization of infidelity is shaped by economic inequality, aspirations for modern lifestyles, gender disparities, and contradictory moralities. At first glance, modern marriage in Nigeria would seem to offer women greater autonomy and equality and perhaps protection from HIV. But the findings presented in this study show that gender inequality persists in powerful ways, manifested perhaps most obviously—and certainly most dangerously with regard to the risk of HIV infection—in a pronounced double standard for extramarital sexuality.

In contemporary Nigeria, married men are much more likely than married women to engage in extramarital sex, and it is more acceptable for them to do so. The social organization of extramarital sexuality is shaped by aspirations for modern amenities and middle-class consumption, the influence of urban fashions, and changing expectations of sexuality.

My findings show that these goals and values are themselves shaped by economic inequality, gender disparities, and powerful and contradictory moralities.

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Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa, with more than million people. But perhaps not surprisingly, Sex mate in nigeria a context in which both popular and political discourse on the disease continue to emphasize sexual Sex mate in nigeria as a primary risk factor, little appetite exists for focusing on the risks of marital transmission. Even as—and largely because—marriage remains the single most important social duty and marker of adulthood in Nigeria, both policymakers and ordinary citizens remain resistant to the idea that marriage must be understood as a risk factor for HIV infection.

The study was undertaken in 2 communities in Igbo-speaking southeastern Nigeria, where I have worked and conducted research since Ubakala is made up of 11 villages and has a total resident population of approximately 24 people.

Most households rely economically on a combination of farming, trading, employment, and remittances from migrants. The community is about 6 miles from the town of Umuahia, and everyday life is increasingly affected by the close proximity of an urban center.

With very few exceptions, the entire population of Ubakala is Christian, and most people are regular participants in the activities of 1 of the many churches present in the area. A majority of men and women younger than 50 years have completed at least primary school and are literate, and nearly all parents aspire to have their children attend secondary school and a university.

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Despite ificant changes over the past several decades that have placed strains on traditional systems of social organization, ties of kinship and community remain powerful among both Ubakala residents and their migrant brethren. Owerri is the capital of Imo State and has a population of approximately people. The bulk of the population is made up of Sex mate in nigeria from rural areas, most of whom retain close ties to their places of origin. As in Ubakala and in the entire southeastern region, Christianity is nearly ubiquitous.

In addition, Owerri is the home of 4 colleges and universities and has a student population of close to I spent June to December in Nigeria, living in a household in Ubakala that included a married woman, several children, and a migrant husband, and in a household in Owerri with a young newlywed couple. Four local research assistants were hired to assist with marital case-study interviews in both sites.

Two female research assistants conducted the marital case study interviews with women in Ubakala; I conducted the interviews with men. In Owerri, male and female assistants conducted the marital case study interviews with men and women, respectively. I conducted participant observation in both settings and was responsible for key informant interviews in each venue.

Table 1 provides a summary of key participant observation venues and activities. Marital case studies were conducted with 20 couples, 14 residing in Ubakala and 6 residing in Owerri. The couples were selected opportunistically with the objective of sampling marriages of different generations and duration, couples with a range of socioeconomic and educational profiles, and marriages in both rural and urban settings.

People in Owerri and Sex mate in nigeria were better off economically than were residents of some other regions of Nigeria. Although the sample in the marital case studies is skewed to what might be described as an aspiring middle class most couples were not actually middle classbecause of rising education levels and increasing urban exposure that are common in southeastern Nigeria, most Igbo people share characteristics and aspirations evident in the sample.

For individual couples, men were almost always older than their wives typically by 5—10 years and tended to have higher incomes. A breakdown of the marital case study sample is provided in Table 2. Interviews were conducted in 3 parts, generally in 3 sessions, each approximately 1 to 1. Husbands and wives were interviewed separately. All respondents agreed to participation after being presented with protocols for informed consent approved by institutional review boards in both the United States and Nigeria. The first interview concentrated primarily on pre-marital experiences, courtship, and the early stages of marriage.

The second interview examined in greater depth the overall experience of marriage, including issues such as marital communication, decisionmaking, child rearing, resolution of disputes, relations with family, and changes in the marital relationship over time. Scholars of West African society have long recognized the pronounced social importance of marriage and fertility in the region. Modern marriages were becoming increasingly common in urban centers in West Africa more than 50 years ago, and in some places these changes have even earlier roots. In each of these arenas, people in more modern marriages tend to emphasize the primacy of the individual couple, often in conscious Sex mate in nigeria to the constraints imposed by ties to kinship and community.

Table 3 summarizes the predominant characteristics of modern marriage in southeastern Nigeria. It is important not to exaggerate these trends. Even in the most modern marriages, ties to kin and community remain strong, and marriage and child rearing continue to be strongly embedded in the values and social networks of the extended-family system. The choice of a spouse based on love is, in almost all cases, still subjected to the advice and consent of families. The fact that modern marriage in southeastern Nigeria remains a resolutely social endeavor creates contradictions for younger couples, who must navigate not only their individual relationships but also the outward representation of their marriages Sex mate in nigeria kin and community.

You know we have a polygamous culture. This practice of marrying only one wife is the influence of Christianity. But men still have that desire for more than one woman. Table 4 summarizes the explanations of how each of these factors functions. Of the 20 men interviewed in the marital case studies, 14 reported having extramarital sex at some point during their marriages, and of the 6 who said they had not engaged in extramarital sex, 4 had been married less than 5 years. Approximately half of all the cases of extramarital relationships described in the interviews occurred in situations in which work-related mobility was a factor.

Men whose work takes them away from their wives and families are more likely to have extramarital relationships, and they frequently attribute their behavior to the opportunities and hardships produced by these absences. But eventually this woman befriended me.

She was a widow and a very nice woman. She cooked for me and provided companionship. Later, I was transferred back home, and it was over. It was like that. Further, extramarital relationships in the context of economically driven migration can be more easily hidden from wives, family, and neighbors.

Every man in the sample who admitted to having extramarital sex expressed the importance of keeping such relationships secret not only from his wife but also from his extended family and local community. I hold offices in these organizations. My own son is almost a man now. How can I advise him if I am known for doing this and that? Many men were ambivalent about their extramarital sexual behavior, but in most cases they viewed it as acceptable, given an appropriate Sex mate in nigeria of prudence so as not to disgrace their spouses, themselves, and their families.

For the vast majority of male interviewees, issues of socioeconomic status, specifically the intersection of economic and gender inequality, featured in s of their extramarital relationships. Men frequently view extramarital relationships as arenas for the expression of economic and masculine status. Indeed, it is necessary to understand the intertwining of masculinity and wealth, and gender and economics more generally, to make sense of the most common forms of extramarital sexual relationships in southeastern Nigeria.

Indeed, typical female participants in these sugar daddy relationships are not the truly poor but rather young women who are in urban secondary schools or universities and who seek and represent a kind of modern femininity. They are frequently relatively educated, they are almost always highly fashionable, and although their motivations for having a sugar daddy may be largely economic, they are usually looking for more than money to feed themselves.

For married men, the pretty, urban, educated young women who are the most desirable girlfriends provide not only sex but also the opportunity, or at least the fantasy, of having more exciting, stylish, and Sex mate in nigeria sex than what they have with their wives. Although it is not uncommon to hear men boast about their sexual exploits to their peers—frequently alluding to styles and practices that are considered simultaneously wild and modern, another strand of discourse emerges when men explain their motivations. Many men reported that they enjoyed the feeling of taking care of another woman, of being able to provide her with material and social comforts and luxuries.

I like to buy them things, take them to nice places, give them good meals, and make them feel they are being taken care of. I like the feeling of satisfaction that comes from taking care of women, providing for them. It foregrounds the connections between masculinity and money and between gender and economics more generally. It is clear that men with money have easier access to and, it seems, more frequent extramarital sex. But poorer men engage in extramarital sex as well, and their relationships with female partners also typically include some form of transaction, whether it is paying a sex worker or giving gifts to a girlfriend, albeit at a lower financial level than that of more elite men.

Nearly all men noted the importance of keeping affairs secret from their wives, but in the marital case-study interviews, many men emphasized discretion much more broadly. They hide their extramarital relationships not only from their Sex mate in nigeria but from virtually everyone.

Some men had occasional extramarital sexual liaisons that appeared to be about little more than sex.

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In a few cases men seemed genuinely unhappy in their marriages, and in rare instances men fell in love with their extramarital partners. But by and large, men tended to see their extramarital relationships as independent of the quality of their marriages, and in their minds, extramarital relationships posed no threat to a marriage so long as they were kept secret from wives and so long as men did not waste so many resources on girlfriends that they neglected their obligations to their wives and families.

On the one hand, nearly all men want to keep their extramarital relationships secret from their wives, although on rare occasions a man in a troubled marital relationship in which there is no longer much pretense of harmony will openly flaunt his infidelity. On the other hand, for a ificant proportion of men—in this sample about half of all men who admitted having extramarital sex—it is apparent that there would be much less benefit to having extramarital affairs without the opportunity to display masculine sexual and economic prowess to peers.

But even among men who like to show off their girlfriends to their male peers, there is a general tendency to try to hide Sex mate in nigeria relationships not only from their wives but also from their extended families and their communities, especially in the village setting. In part, this is a means of protecting their wives and children from harmful gossip, but it is also a means to protect their own reputations.

In their church congregations, their village associations, and their extended families, men Sex mate in nigeria up to very different expectations than in some of their more urban-influenced peer groups. In more modern marriages, in which couples conceive of their marriage as their own choice, romantic love is frequently an important reason for marrying, and the conjugal unit is viewed as the primary locus of family decisionmaking, women risk undermining whatever leverage they have, because their influence is directly tied to the presumption of an intimate and trusting relationship, by openly confronting infidelity.

People will say it is because she did not feed him well, she refused him in bed, or she is quarrelsome. And it is often our fellow women who are most likely to blame the wife. For women whose husbands cheat, protecting themselves through condom use is Sex mate in nigeria, if not impossible. Further, they cannot expect that their husbands will have used condoms in their extramarital relationships. Before public awareness about HIV was widespread in Nigeria, many factors contributed to relatively low use of condoms. Levels of awareness, availability, and affordability remain issues for the poorest and least-educated segments of the population.

Even among people who know about condoms, widely circulating rumors suggest they are sometimes ineffective and potentially threatening to health. Further, a common perception exists that condoms symbolize impersonal or promiscuous sex. In addition, in many extramarital relationships, economic, gender, and generational inequalities make it difficult for women to negotiate condom use with their typically older and wealthier male partners.

For women who suspect their husbands of infidelity, suggesting condom use for marital sex poses multiple problems. Asking for a condom may imply she does not want to become pregnant, which itself can create tension because reproduction is so highly valued. Perhaps worse, her request may be interpreted as indicating that she suspects not only that her husband is cheating but that the type of extramarital sex he is having is risky and, by implication, debauched. What is more, the meaning of her request may be inverted by her spouse and turned against her with an accusation that it is she who is being unfaithful.

Is she crazy? A woman asking her husband to use a condom is putting herself in the position of a whore. What does she need a condom with her Sex mate in nigeria for, unless she is flirting around outside the married house? The ultimate irony is that for women in the most modern marriages, in which the conjugal relationship is primary and romantic love is often an explicit foundation of the relationship, confronting a man about infidelity or insisting on condom use may be even more difficult.

The reasons that men in southeastern Nigeria engage in extramarital sex cannot be reduced to a simple formula that privileges uniquely innate male needs and appetites, even if Nigerian men and women sometimes reproduce this all too common explanation. Indeed, among men who have extramarital partners, the terms of the relationships differ. Some men clearly show off their girlfriends to male peers and enjoy the social status that accrues in certain types of predominantly male social settings; others keep their affairs secret from their peers.

Many men see the separations caused by work-related mobility and migration as creating need and opportunity and providing a justification for extramarital sex; others have partners who live closer to their married homes. Some men develop long-term relationships with their lovers, providing them with and receiving emotional as well as material support; others prefer the relative brevity and anonymity offered by commercial sex workers.

In some cases, it really does seem to be just about sex; in other instances, extramarital relationships are as much about the performance Sex mate in nigeria masculinity or social class as about sex itself.

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For most Nigerian men, masculinity is closely tied to economic capacity. In the context of contemporary southeastern Nigeria, the paramount test of masculinity for adult men is getting married and having children. With the high cost of bridewealth wealth required for the completion of a marriage ceremony and the growing expenses of educating children, these tasks alone are a challenge for the majority of men.

Wealthier men are more likely to have extramarital sex not only because they are more attractive to potential partners, and not only because they can display both masculinity and social status through their girlfriends, but also because they Sex mate in nigeria have affairs without the risk of failing to provide for their families.

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