There was once gist of a cheating pair who died while having car sex in Ogba, Lagos. Both deceased persons were married and in fact, the man in question was a close friend to the woman’s partner.
That cheating is bad is something that can’t possibly be said enough. But it appears that Lagos couples either don’t hear any of these or they just don’t subscribe to the idea of marital exclusivity.
This is not to free cheats in other Nigerian towns and cities from blame and scorn, because they are also terrible, but the probability that they are anywhere close to the special specie of cheats in Lagos seems unlikely.
Such is the blatant flouting of marital vows in Lagos that older married men and women unabashedly hit you up, soliciting sex. Some newly-weds do not even wait to leave their wedding venue before planning their next booty call, sometimes with the one of the bridesmaids or even a wedding guest! The shamelessness just cuts through age boundaries, to be sincere.
Their modus operandi sometimes include offering money to smoothen the process, especially by the older ones. Some, mostly the younger ones don't offer money. They actually suck up to unsuspecting victims, and charm them into relationships. Like, they get into a whole boyfriend and girlfriend relationship with another woman, as if they do not have a wife and a couple of kids at home.
That's exactly what happened to Rose's [not her real name] friend in their final year in University. As Rose narrates to me: "She ran into this guy at a bar where she was attending a friend's birthday and they just hit it off from there."
That instant connection would power them through eight months of bae-ship.
"This asshole was actually acting unmarried all the time, and even his friends all acted same such that my friend never suspected a thing.
"They did everything n that time. Dates. Sex. Everything," Rose says, a bitter smile on her face at the recollection of what happened almost four years back.
Eventually, as it often happens, the truth came out and the fake relationship had to end. But in typical fashion, "he was actually flippant about it when my friend found his wedding ring, neatly wrapped in tissue paper and concealed in the glove compartment of his car.
"He felt no remorse despite my friend's tears and tried to validate his actions by saying his marriage was a different thing, and that it has nothing to do with them." Rose rants.
Paul is a bachelor in Lagos who works hard and hardly stays at home except on weekends. That does not stop his 30-something-year-old married neighbour from making moves on him.
ALSO READ: Why do happily-married women cheat?
“My neighbor – a pretty married woman – would always try to initiate conversation with me and when that didn’t work, she got my phone number from our gate man and kept calling me for a hangout with her.
“She even invited me to go with her to an event at her place of work. I always politely rejected her advances. Maybe if I had rudely rebuffed her, she would have kept a distance,” says the Lagos big boy.
The married woman was still on his case at the time of writing this piece.
Joe has a similar story and so does Ahmed, both of whom have been hit on by married women in their 30’s and 50’s respectively.
Obviously married men are just as bad as women at this.
Toluwani is in her 20s and has been in Lagos all her life. She has seen so much of Lagos married men to have the opinion that way over 80% of them cheat on their wives.
“What’s most annoying is how disrespectful they are about it," she says.
“They and their wives live here in Lagos, have friends, go to church, have business associates and know the same people littered all over the city.
“Yet these men have no qualms taking their side chics out on dates where they’ll like be seen by someone that knows about their marriage,” she says animatedly.
To underscore her point, she shows me messages on her Instagram, where a family man who looks to be in his late 30's is still pestering her with romantic advances.
That man actually has a pretty wife and three kids, pictures of whom are littered all over his Instagram timeline.
Make no mistake about it, cheating and unfaithfulness did not just start now. And this is not just in Lagos alone.
The whole of our society - as pious, chaste, prim and proper as we like to tout ourselves as a people - has always thrived on sneaky relationships and covert sexual activities.
People like to talk about the good old days, about a time when society was saner and collectively more well-behaved. But even then, men still had reasons to put Magun on their wives.
Magun is a Yoruba charm that a man secretly puts on his wife on the suspicion that she's being unfaithful. Anyone who sleeps with such woman will die if quick remedy is not found.
If there was need for such mortal test of faithfulness, what does it say of the previous generation which is always held up as the period of sanctity and virtue?
The only difference that exists between then and now, I'll tell you, is just the brazenness with which these married people go about their indiscretions.
Back in the day people would normally be scared about the social disparagement and shame that results from such behaviour.
These days, one hears and sees so many cases of bold cheating in Lasgidi – even among unmarried partners - that it feels as if Lagosians that cheat do not even give a damn whether they get caught or not.
But how did this city get here? There can be no sure answers and to be honest
The idea that men are gonna be men and the popular belief among women that every man cheats also helps to sustain this cheating culture. Many women believe that cheating is 'normal' and that a man only owes his wife enough respect to not make her see or know know about his unfaithfulness.
Julie [Not real name], a media personnel says; "Many women actually don't care that men have side-chics these days. They just don't want to see it or know how he goes about it.
"So far he respects them enough to make them the main chic and keeps the side bae away from their homes, they're good."
What we have as a result of this mindset is not just a free pass for men to cheat but as time has shown, a full blown culture of revenge-cheating.
Many women feel that their partners are almost certainly cheating, so they're out here getting themselves sugar sons, sexual partners and boy toys. This is why wanton decadence among married men and women in Lagos now appears evenly split.
The two lovers mentioned above, who died while having car sex in broad daylight on a Sunday, were afterall both married.
I was born in Lagos and I’ve spent almost all my life here. In close to thirty years, I have seen, heard and read so many occurrences about married people in this city that it's going to take a lot to convince me that there are more indecorous married people anywhere in Naija than here.
I really do believe that of all the cheating scum in the country, unfaithful married people in Lagos are the worst of the lot.
NB: No real names are used in the whole of this piece as respondents were all promised anonymity.