These days, if you are lucky, you will get to do your very own wedding, in a garden decorated with flowers and cars with bells ringing. Very cliché’ but it is what most people are looking towards.
However, life plays some sick joke on you and you end up deciding to cohabit with somebody’s son because he is either too broke to do a grand wedding or he doesn’t see its essence. Sometimes, you are forced into cohabiting by circumstances.
You get Wairimu pregnant and there’s no option but to move in together. At times it starts very simple; you are going for sleepovers at your boyfriend’s place and before you know it, you guy Kevin is introducing you to his friends as his wife and he doesn’t even have a ring on it! Alaaa!
Come we stay marriages are good until they are not. Sure, they will save you a few coins from the extravagant wedding expenses (I think wedding planners go all out with the charges, but oh well). However, there are a lot of downsides to come we stay. For one, there is no security in marriage. I’m not talking about safety from robbers, although that is debatable. I mean more the security legal marriage offers.
If a partner dies and property inheritance is in question, it becomes a problem because one may not be legally recognized as married. It is only recently that Kenya recognized that if people have been living together as a couple for about 7 years, then they are a married couple under the law.
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But it is not that easy on the ground. A lot of women are getting it hard when it comes to their share of the property of their departed ‘husbands’. Here is the man’s family telling her that she is not married to him and trust me, she will not get a single cent, not on their watch.
It gets further complicated when your ‘cohabiting’ husband comes back home with another woman and tells you to your face that she is his new wife. You end up so shocked, that you ask yourself whether all that time you have been living together, you were just a manikin.
Essentially, there is a lot that happens behind the scenes of ‘come we stay’ so do as much research as you possibly can. Then you can ask yourself whether you want to proceed with caution or keep on staying in your mother’s house.