How do I get access to my children?

Dear Yemisi,

I am 43 years old while the mother of my two children aged 14 and seven respectively, is 40.

It is exactly six years now that she left me together with the children and all I have done to get her and the children have been unsuccesful.

It happened that I discovered that she was not sincere with me and I took her up based on my observation. She works as a school administrator while I am a production manager in Port Harcourt. I observed, overtime that whenever we were together, a man usually called her and I asked her who was always calling.

Upon interrogation, she told me that her caller was her brother and at another time she told me the caller was her church member, which I knew was a lie. Anytime we sat to discuss, this guy would call and she would run out to pick the call.

We were staying in Ibadan together before I relocated to Port Harcourt, leaving her with the children. When I continued to challenge her, she did not even give me any inkling that she was not comfortable with my wanting to know who exactly her callers were.

Though, our coming together was not in any way formalised as we could not have the traditional engagement due to her daddy’s disappearance. All my efforts to find truce have failed as all her family members who I have contacted over this issue have continued to plead with me to tread softly and be patient with her.

I have waited patiently all these six years without seeing my children as she told me point blank that I cannot have access to my children. I initially wanted the children in my custody, but she resisted this attempt.

I am getting tired of the whole scenario as I don’t know what to do to have my children back. Though I learnt that she is still single, I would not mind having her back because I don’t want to have two wives, but if she is no longer keen on having me as her husband, it is a welcome development. I have waited this long hoping that she would have a change of heart, but opposite is the case.  I will rather continue my life with another woman if she remains incommunicado.

We are both indigenes of Ogun State Nigeria.

What do you think I can do to have my children?



Dear Segun,

The way out is to seek audience with the mother of your children because you have written that you did not have the opportunity of formalising your living together as husband and wife.

To my understanding, you cannot claim to be her husband because the woman’s parents never blessed your coming together. Hence, no member of that family will listen to you against their own daughter. To them, you might have treated her badly and the only thing they can tell you is to exercise patience with her until you run out of patience.

With the unfolding scenario, you need to intimate the police of your plight, so that you will not take laws into your hands. Another option is for you to go to the social welfare to register your protest. Doing this will put you in a better stead to pursue your case to a logical conclusion. There are statutory laws on who should be in charge of children from a union that is on the brink of collapse. As long as you are not legally married to this woman, stop referring to her as your wife.

If she were to be your wife, she would not have treated you the way she did. I am not holding brief for her. You have demonstrated that she could no longer be trusted as having you as the only man in her life. Your unspoken words say much.

As long as you are suspicious of her dealings with other men and your disbelief in her response to your queries, I think it is better you let her be and let her realise that you are only interested in the welfare of your children. 

You must not delay your action any further. Time to call a spade its name is now.