NIGERIA: Advice for a Groom

Advice for a Groom

I recently attended a wedding and observed one of our local customs that gave me pause. In a Nigerian wedding, there it is tradition for elders to offer marital advice to the new couple during the ceremony. Interestingly, in most cases, all the advice is directed to the bride. Is this because people believe that a man is hardwired with knowledge of how to make marriage work? Or because they feel there is no reason for a man to know anything about making marriage work? Or is it simply because most of the wedding attendees who give advice happen to be women? I watched as speaker after speaker gave the couple advice, consistently directed only to the bride.

Since the groom at this particular wedding received no advice, I thought I would offer some, just for grooms.

  1. Don’t be afraid to say I AM SORRY. Your wife may forgive easily, but this is no reason to keep offending her deliberately. Apologies should be sincere, and you should never apologize just for the sake of it.
  2. Make your wife feel important. Treat her like she matters, and be considerate of her feelings. Respect begets respect. My husband once said to me, “We are not just spouses we are friends.” Be sure to build a strong friendship with your spouse.
  3. Make family decisions together. Communication is key in every marriage! Don’t try to shield your wife from troubling situations. Instead, let her know what is going on whether with work, and let her share your burden.
  4. Be grateful. Appreciate your wife for all that she does, and never ever take her for granted. Always recognize her for her contribution to the family, work and household.

For marriage to work beautifully, I believe that BOTH parties must make a conscious effort. Most of all, the couple must set goals together, and review them regularly.

What advice would you give to a groom? Is it the same advice you would give to a bride? What are the wedding customs where you live?

This is an original post written for World Moms Blog by Aisha Yesufu in Nigeria. 

Photo credit to the author.

PHILIPPINES: An Open Letter to the Mom Who Feels Like a Failure #WorldMoms

PHILIPPINES: An Open Letter to the Mom Who Feels Like a Failure #WorldMoms

Keep Calm and Mother On


It’s been a while since I’ve written a post here on World Moms Blog, and I’m honored to be back with another open letter. This was inspired by a very recent event in my own life — when I felt that I had failed as a mother, particularly as a homeschooling mom to my eldest child. I hope this “letter” brings you encouragement somehow, dear fellow mama!

Dear Mom Who Feels Like A Failure,

First of all, let me give you a virtual hug. I know what it’s like to feel that you’ve failed your child/ren. Believe me, I’ve been there too many times to count. *Hug*

Just this week, I’ve wrestled with thoughts of how I’ve been failing my own offspring… of how I haven’t been a good mom to them… of how I haven’t been teaching them “well” and “enough” (I believe every mom is their child’s “teacher,” whether or not you homeschool.)… of how I’ve been too busy working at home, maybe even to the point of “neglecting” my children — the very reason why I chose to be a work-at-home mom (WAHM)… and so on and so forth.

I bet you’ve been dealing with similar doubts and “downer thoughts” too, lately, haven’t you?

Well, can I just invite you to join me in saying, “Stop!”? Let’s just stop. Stop thinking such thoughts. Stop doubting ourselves. Stop “downing” ourselves.
Because Lord knows we’re all just doing the best we can.

We are our children’s mothers for a reason. We love them, care for them, fight for them, teach them, pour our lives into them for a purpose.

No one else can mother your child like you do, and believe it or not, you can do it. You can raise a loving, obedient, respectful child — a child who will one day “change the world” — although it may not seem so right now. (And please don’t forget that being a “world-changer” can mean so many things, on so many different levels… which are all good, of course.)

So if you find yourself feeling like a failure today, allow me to encourage you, as another fellow homeschooling WAHM encouraged me recently: Remember the greater purpose behind what you’re doing. 

In the midst of the seemingly endless diaper changes, sibling squabbles, “mommy wars,” cooking and cleaning duties, and everything else mommy-related, please, I beg you, know that you are enough. Know that everything you do will bear fruit one day.

Most of all, know that you are loved. Know that you are not alone on this rollercoaster ride that is motherhood. You’ve got me and the other World Moms on your side, cheering you on, sending you lots of virtual hugs and high-5’s, positive thoughts and prayers, even.

So, mother on, my friend. Let’s just keep calm and mother on!

Have you been feeling like a “mommy failure” lately? I hope this post lifts your spirits somehow! Or maybe you have some words of encouragement for our fellow moms out there who’ve been doubting themselves as moms — do share them in the comments!

This is an original post to World Moms Blog by contributor, Tina Santiago- Rodriguez of the Philippines.

Tina Santiago-Rodriguez (Philippines)

Tina Santiago-Rodriguez is a wife and homeschool mom by vocation, a licensed physical therapist by education and currently the managing editor of Mustard, a Catholic children's magazine published by Shepherd's Voice Publications in the Philippines, by profession. She has been writing passionately since her primary school years in Brunei, and contributes regularly to several Philippine and foreign-based online and print publications. She also does sideline editing and scriptwriting jobs, when she has the time. Find out more about Tina through her personal blogs: Truly Rich Mom and Teacher Mama Tina.

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DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, USA: Five Rules About Running a Business…or Raising a Baby

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, USA: Five Rules About Running a Business…or Raising a Baby


Since my son turned two, I have been getting questions about when another baby might be on the way. But the fact is that I have already have a second baby….my start up. And I’m just barely kidding. My business demands only marginally less time than a baby and gets talked about only a little less than baby number 1 on my Facebook page.

However, I will say that this first business of mine is, as my second child, benefiting from my experience with baby number 1. What I knew about starting a business could have fit on a postage stamp when I began.  But I had at least a modestly sized pamphlet’s worth on being a mother.

I have been expanding both knowledge bases as my two babies have grown and I’ve noticed a substantial amount of cross over. Here are my five rules about running a business….or raising a baby…whichever. (more…)

Natalia Rankine-Galloway (Morocco)

Natalia was born a stone's throw from the Queen's racetrack in Ascot, UK and has been trying to get a ticket to the races and a fabulous hat to go with it ever since. She was born to a Peruvian mother and an Irish father who kept her on her toes, moving her to Spain, Ireland and back to the UK before settling her in New York for the length of middle and high school. She is still uncertain of what she did to deserve that. She fled to Boston for college and then Washington, D.C. to marry her wonderful husband, who she met in her freshman year at college. As a military man, he was able to keep her in the migratory lifestyle to which she had become accustomed. Within 5 months of marriage, they were off to Japan where they stayed for a wonderful 2 and one half years before coming home to roost. Baby Xavier was born in New York in 2011 and has not slept since. A joy and an inspiration, it was Xavier who moved Natalia to entrepreneurship and the launch of CultureBaby. She has loved forging her own path and is excited for the next step for her family and CultureBaby. Natalia believes in the potential for peace that all children carry within them and the importance of raising them as global citizens. She loves language, history, art and culture as well as Vietnamese Pho, Argentinian Malbec, English winters, Spanish summers and Japanese department stores...and she still hopes one day to catch the number 9 race with Queen Liz. You can find her personal blog, The Culture Mum Chronicles.

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Best FriendsRecently, I attended a book launch in Bristol, England for, the book, “Raising Girls” by Steve Biddulph.  Steve Biddulph is a child psychologist and family therapist who has spent the last 30 years publicly speaking to over 130,000 parents about boys.  His books are in 4 million homes and have been translated into 31 languages.  Steve believed the subject of boys to be his life’s work and that girls were going “great guns,” but several years ago began to notice that girlhood has literally become a nightmare.

Steve believes that young women are in the middle of a mental health crisis with eating disorders, cutting, bullying, anxiety and depression affecting one in five girls. In addition, La Trobe University, which carries out a study of adolescent sexuality every six years, has shown that in 2008 the percentage of 17 year olds that had slept with three or more partners had doubled in six years.  Over 30 years, this group had grown from about four per cent to twenty per cent of all girls and shows no sign of slowing down.

Girls have lost four years of their childhood.   The pressures we dealt with at 18, they are now battling with at 14.  The trouble being that 14 year old girls are not equipped with the emotional tools to deal with these types of problems. Girls are trying to look together, but really they are struggling. (more…)

World Moms Blog

World Moms Blog is an award winning website which writes from over 30 countries on the topics of motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. Over 70 international contributors share their stories from around the globe, bonded by the common thread of motherhood and wanting a better world for their children. World Moms Blog was listed by Forbes Woman as one of the "Best 100 Websites for Women 2012 & 2013" and also called a "must read" by the NY Times Motherlode in 2013. Our Senior Editor in India, Purnima Ramakrishnan, was awarded the BlogHer International Activist Award in 2013.

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AUSTRALIA: The Little Things That Mum Taught Me

AUSTRALIA: The Little Things That Mum Taught Me

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADo you ever find yourself saying things to your children and then realising that they’re your mother’s words coming from your mouth?

My mum was a big believer in making my brother and I wash the dinner dishes before going to bed.  As a teenager this drove me absolutely crazy, and when I first moved out of home I reveled in the pure freedom of leaving my dirty dishes sitting on the kitchen sink and going to bed.

Fast forward to several years ago when I was a working mum with three teenage boys, and ‘dishes before bed’ became my mantra – they don’t like it any more than I used to, but their time will come.

What about the advice that it’s disrespectful to be late when you’re expected somewhere at a specific time; be it work, dinner, or even a party. I could never see the problem, I figured that at least we turned up, so better late than never. I had no idea why my mum was so strict on us being on time. (more…)

Fiona Biedermann (Australia)

Fiona at Inspiration to Dream is a married mother of three amazing and talented MM’s (mere males, as she lovingly calls them) aged 13, 16 and 22, and she became a nana in 2011! She believes she’s more daunted by becoming a nana than she was about becoming a mother! This Aussie mother figures she will also be a relatively young nana and she’s not sure that she’s really ready for it yet, but then she asks, are we ever really ready for it? Motherhood or Nanahood. (Not really sure that’s a word, but she says it works for her.) Fiona likes to think of herself as honest and forthright and is generally not afraid to speak her mind, which she says sometimes gets her into trouble, but hey, it makes life interesting. She’s hoping to share with you her trials of being a working mother to three adventurous boys, the wife of a Mr Fix-it who is definitely a man’s man and not one of the ‘sensitive new age guy’ generation, as well as, providing her thoughts and views on making her way in the world. Since discovering that she’s the first blogger joining the team from Australia, she also plans to provide a little insight into the ‘Aussie’ life, as well. Additionally, Fiona can be found on her personal blog at Inspiration to Dream.

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