There’s an aspect to marital conflict we seldom talk about; and that is the factor of an unseen third-party. The whispering of shaytân that may be confused and casually lumped together as ego. Usually the man’s ego in popular discussions.
Brothers, we’ve got to be discerning. Perhaps your wife is just being like many other women, sending you on some light errands around the house, with no ill intent, her respect for you still high like mountain kilimanjaro. But because of the economy, because she earns a certain amount now, shaytân whispers to you that she’s trying make you hold on to clothes ( read this line in Yoruba), and from that point, you start zooming in on every behavior in the house and from that tainted perception, you see disrespect, emasculation, and the usual culprit, feminism, and in a knee-jerk reaction, you start asserting your power without caution or care, you want to show her you’re the man, and then she too reacts because she doesn’t like your treatment, and then…
She becomes miserable. You become angry. The kids are a collateral. The families. The society.
And a shaytân is just by a corner, laughing, patting himself on the back, and it all started with a whisper. There’s a hadith to this effect.
The whisperings come to us all. A friend doing his PhD whose wife is not even close to him in educational status and he’s more than 10 years older than her once told me he wonders how his wife is able to just talk to him any how. If she were higher in status, shaytân would zoom in and whispers something else. But you see, those whisperings don’t have to influence or define you. That’s where tadabur of the Qur’an and tazkiyyah comes in. At such a time, I would pause and listen to Allah:
إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ ٱتَّقَوۡاْ إِذَا مَسَّهُمۡ طَٰٓئِفٞ مِّنَ ٱلشَّيۡطَٰنِ تَذَكَّرُواْ فَإِذَا هُم مُّبۡصِرُونَ
those who are aware of God think of Him when Satan prompts them to do something and immediately they can see [straight];
-Surah Al-A’raf, Ayah 201.
Be thoughtful. Be calm. If you have to show your wife you’re the man, something has seriously gone wrong. Ká má gba èṣù ni ààyè.