In ancient times the time for an Edo woman to marry was a special time the entire family looked forward to. The marriage brings joy to her family as the community waits eagerly to see all their daughters get married. A time of marriage is a time of merriment.
Marriage was seen as a covenant between two families and not between a young man and a young woman. The ground work was done by the two families. In times past parents of the man met the parents of the girl at the background. This action gave the assurance to the mother of the girl to release her daughter in marriage. This allayed the bride’s mother’s fear concerning the type of treatment the mother-in-law would give her daughter. And until this assurance was obtained no marriage ceremony was performed e.g paying of bride price and the festivities associated with marriage.
On the evening of the day the bride price was paid, the family members of the bride and her age grade friends, would escort her to her husband’s house. On arrival at the groom’s house, songs such as the following were sung: (Vbokhin? Oyenwen-no meaning what is it? It is gladness). It was very exciting and every mother looked forward to the day. Before the day of bride price payment, the mother of the bride would call her daughter to counsel her and give her advice on what to do and what not to do in her new life that she was about to begin. She then prayed for her daughter. Following that, the girl was led to her new home for the consummation of the marriage. In the morning a blood stain noticed on the white bed sheet was honoured and celebrated by her in-laws. The white bed spread was sent to her mother who would proudly spread it outside in the sun. This brought honour to the mother of the girl. The family of the groom would later come with thanksgiving songs and gifts to the mother of their wife. This brought pride to the mother of a Bini woman. Her husband would be proud of her, as well as her family, and her community. What an honour! I wonder how many women this day can bring themselves this honour? This is what brings the Bini woman pride. Today women choose their husbands without the active involvement of their parents. Women are no longer wooed by grooms’ parents. Rather they choose husbands for themselves. This practice is wrong. The tradition of wooing by grooms’ parents gives dignity to women resulting in respect from their husbands.
From the preceding expositions it is clear that the practice of sex before marriage was not encouraged in Bini kingdom just as it is not also taught in the Bible. In fact, for any woman to be caught having sex before marriage she and the boy or man were punished openly by both parents and the entire community. This practice was very disgraceful to womanhood in Bini land. Every single woman should resist sex before marriage for the following reasons.
A. So you can be the pride of your husband
B. You can be the pride of your family.
C. You can be the pride of your in-laws
D. You can be the pride of your community
E. So that you can earn honour for yourself
I was in a place where a man and his wife were quarrelling. The man said to me, “Am I the one who dis-virgined you? So you cannot also end with me. You have been a harlot before I met you”. What a shame! No reasonable girl will like such comment from her husband. The only way to avoid it is to be chaste inspite of pressures. A wise girl has the responsibility to resist such.
The Bini Woman In-Law
The Bini woman was expected to treat her in-laws with respect as she treated her husband. She equally addresses them as “my lord”. She must try to please her in-laws and other women in the house. She must try to please her in-laws who may come to her aid when there is a quarrel between her and her husband. The in- laws in most cases would side with her if she is generous and kind to them. They would readily accept her as a member of that family and no longer see her as a wife but a family member.
Her Husband
The husband of a Bini woman is her pride and when the husband is good looking the wife takes the credit. To achieve this, the Bini wife ensures:
(1)    That her husband is neat in his dressing
(2)    The woman should prepare food for her husband but the man must provide the food.
(3)    She respects and reverences her husband by calling him “My Lord” ‘enaemwen’.
She does these knowing that these things will increase her husband’s integrity and status in the society. After all, no woman wants her husband to be MR. NOBODY.
Her Children
The Edo woman takes pride in her children when they do well, and when the society talks well of them in public. This is why she does everything possible to make sure her children do better each year. When she discovers a new bad behaviour she cautions her children and thereafter reports to her husband who observes and takes appropriate action to curb the unwholesome behaviour. A child is said to be “her father’s when she is of excellent report and her mother’s when she misbehaves”. These are not complimentary statements and must be avoided because both parents are responsible to ensure that their children are not a disgrace to the family
Her Husband’s Death
To every Bini woman this period is a painful one. It is usually a period of fear and sorrow. Normally in this period, people should gather around her to help and console her. Most of the time, however, some Bini women fear this period because of The traditional rites they have to perform in non-Christian families. Some family members of her late husband can be purposely wicked, and would want to punish the woman for their selfish reasons. Hence they insist that the tradition must take its full course. Another reason why this period is exploited is the result of the hatred the family may have for her late husband. To prevent this reaction, every wife must guard against bad behaviour and be friendly. If this advice is adhered to, a good number of them will lend support to her and waive those customs. If the rite was meant to last for seven days it may just take one day or two. The widow may not even be required to take a sip of the water of oath. Every Bini woman dreads this period because of these traditional rites. In view of what has been said, it is advisable that a Bini woman be kind to her husband and his family. A husband should not report any wrong of his wife to his relatives because the relatives are likely to keep the report and act accordingly even after he and his wife might have reconciled.
Husband’s Property
The Bini woman has a right to her husband’s property until her death if she is not seen to be unkind or is suspected to have hand in the husband’s death. No one may ask her to leave her husband’s house child or no child.

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