I am a 35-year-old mother of one and I have been staying with my husband for six years. Just after we met, I moved in with him and fell pregnant. My parents ordered him to pay lobola for me but because of his financial situation, he couldn’t. I was afraid to tell my parents that my boyfriend couldn’t afford it, so I lent him the money.

I wanted to save him from all the embarrassment my family was going to cause him. We agreed that he was going to pay me back as soon as he got a better job. Now he has a better job but he hasn’t bothered to pay me back.

To make matters worse, I recently found out that he was cheating on me with another woman and has also paid lobola for her. When I confronted him, he told me that I couldn’t tell him what to do with his money because I was not his wife, since I paid for my lobola. I love him but I cannot be with someone who disrespects me. What must I do? FRUSTRATED WIFE


Nthabiseng Madikgetla, a social worker based in Benoni, says, “Legally, you need to be able to prove that you lent him the money and he owes you. This means that there should be a contract with the terms and conditions that you both agreed on in order for you to be able to get your money back.

Challenges are common in relationships and cheating is one of them. However, like any other challenge, the two of you should be willing to work together to mend the relationship and rebuild trust. As much as you love your man, you cannot be the only one showing commitment to the relationship.

I’d recommend that you seek counselling to help you deal with the pain, guilt and betrayal that he put you through. This will put you in a better psychological and emotional state to make a proper decision.”



You did what you thought was best at the time and now it doesn’t serve you anymore. For your own sanity, let him go. You deserve better than this. This man does not care about your feelings and your relationship. The sooner you realise this, the better!


I love the part where you say, “I cannot be with someone who disrespects me”. You were trying to do good in the name of love. If needs be, you need to sue this man in order to get your money back. You’ll find someone who appreciates you.


Every person makes a mistake at one point in their lives and you don’t have to be hard on yourself. The good thing is that you have learned your lesson. Since you are now hurting, you must find healing and move on.


Since he agreed to pay you back, go to court and formalise that verbal agreement so that he can pay you back. After that, you must part ways with him. You are still too young to be stressed by a man who is not deserving of your love.