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Ask Naij: My Igbo Sister-In-Law Slapped Me Twice

Ask Naij: My Igbo Sister-In-Law Slapped Me Twice

I am married to a man who is the first son of seven. I am older than all his siblings. One of his sisters was a frequent visitor to our home. I feel I did my best to make her feel at home.

Ask Naij: My Igbo Sister-In-Law Slapped Me Twice

For instance I never asked her to do any house work to help me because I feel it is my home and I would do my house work anyway even if she was not around. I allowed her complete freedom in the kitchen to dish her own food and eat whatever she wanted.

Three years ago when she came on vacation she stole some of my gold jewelry. When I saw it with her she denied that it was not mine. Later she insisted that I must have forgotten it in her parents house the last time we came on vacation which I know fully well was not true as the gold disappeared from underneath my bed.

Last year again she came to visit and some more jewelry disappeared. We were moving house at the time and in all the confusion she packed quite a substantial number. [I sell gold].

I went to their house to confront her about it and we started to exchange words. I called her a thief. Her mother (my mother-in-law) asked her to deal with me and she slapped me twice. I did not retaliate.

During the peace making process, I gave a condition for which I would forgive. I said she would not call me by my first name any longer. I am seven years older than her. My mother in law jumped up, shouting and saying I had no right to demand that. They are Igbo. The girl is the first daughter of the family.

Well since then if the girl calls me by my first name I do not answer her. If her mother is there at the time, a quarrel ensures as she will accuse me of keeping malice. Now people are advising me to let go and accept this girl calling me by my first name for the sake of peace.

Am I being unreasonable?

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