Men’s work doesn’t end in bed

(m) at 6-11-2010 04:48PM (9 years ago)

(1374 | Gistmaniac)

As the publisher of a magazine that assists women during pregnancy, Folawe Banigbe talks about adequate information for women; how to reduce maternal and infant mortality, and the need for husbands to support their wives in this interview with Ada Onyema

To her, writing was just a hobby. She didn’t realise how the potential in her could change the life of many couples for good.

As a youth, she wrote lovely poems and stories, but only her mother appreciated her talent. It was so until an unfortunate event happened, which was the beginning of her journey into publishing.

Today, Folawe Banigbe is the managing director and principal consultant of Cosmofeminin Ltd., a female welfare support organisation. It assists in managing and maximising the performance of pregnant women in the workplace. Banigbe is also the publisher of Nigeria’s premier pregnancy-Oriented magazine, Pregnancy and You, which circulates in Nigeria and parts of West Africa. The publication is committed to the dissemination of cutting-edge information for the upwardly mobile father and mother with emphasis on women in the reproductive age group. Pregnancy and You provides maximum support for the African woman in order to reduce the rate of maternal and infant mortality, she says.

She says, “As a child, I used to give my mother my stuff and she would wonder whether I wrote them or copied them from books. By the time I reached puberty, I was so excited, but was curious unlike all my friends, who started their periods before me.

“But I did not go into full-time publishing until somebody very dear to me died. She died of pre-eclampsia, which is high blood pressure in pregnant women and she was asthmatic. She was at work waiting for her husband to pick her up when she had an attack and by the time they put her in the car, she had gone into siezure and died.

“It was a terrible experience and something that we have not recovered from. I started asking questions because the doctor didn‘t want to tell us what was going on. The doctors should have told her her situation and she would have been put on a weekly ante-natal. Her life could have been saved if she was told earlier. Three years later, I started Pregnancy and You.”

There were many other preparatory grounds she explored as she busied herself with the challenges of saving people, especially the women folk. According to her, the motherhood experience is important in preparing what she gives out to the public.

Banigbe says, “I have a medical background because I studied biochemistry. Apart from that, I had a flair for anatomy when I was in school studying biology. The curiousity I had when I started developing as a woman and the experiences I gained from some of my friends, who got married, motivated me to do what I’m doing.

“I would read the writing on a particualr area and tell my friends what I knew either on the sex of the child or any other area. I found out that they kept coming back to me because they placed value on the information that I gave them.

“When I had my baby, I realised that motherhood had dawned on me. I stopped being Mrs. Banigbe, but a mother. When I had my second child, I loved the first more than the second. It happens among women, we should learn to love our children equally.”

Banigbe expresses surprise at the ignorance of some Nigerian women,whom she says don’t know how to differentiate between the various states of their body. She does not spare the doctors either, as maternal and infant motality rates continue to grow.

“We realise that pregnancy is something that women don‘t nromally prepare for. Maternal and infant mortality rate in Nigeria is alarming and we realised that one of the major issues plaguing this particular sphere is lack of knowledge. The doctors are not helping matters. When we educate women on when and what to do during pregnancy, the rate of maternal mortality will reduce,”say Banigbe.

She might have succeeded in garnering adequate experience in publishing and perhaps endured the difficulties of reaching a stable height in her quest to reach out to the readers, but Banigbe does not hide the challenges she faces.

”Getting enough fund to print the copies; getting the qualified manpower, and distributing the copies beyond the shores of Nigeria are great tasks. But we have actually succeeded in reaching some of our targets. It is a major challenge that every other business passes through, but we thank God because we have been able to scale through.” she says.

With a print run into thousands of copies, the publisher is happy that more women are now interested in matters that concern them. One of the reasons she is excited about the success of her initiative is the number of homes that the magazine has found favour. According to her, there are women who hurt their body system as they try to abide by the rules that guide their work.

”It wouldn’t have been nice for me to be the only one out there, but I believe any woman who has read Pregnancy and You once would like to read it again. We deal with pre-pregnancy, pregnancy and parenting issues. We talk about what to do when you want to get pregnant; what contraceptive to take when you don‘t want to be pregnant because we have realised that this actually affects fertility rate in Nigeria.”

“When a woman is working in an environment where the rules state that she cannot be pregnant for a certain number of years, she is under pressure to abide by the rule. She is likely to pick up contraceptives without knowing her fertility status. Some contraceptives disrupt the woman’s hormonal balance whenever a woman uses them. Some people stop it and they get pregnant immediately, while it will take others many years before they get pregnant.

“We have actually started raising awareness about this. We are working on ways of guaranteeing the safety of the women in their work environment.”

The role of men in parenting comes to the fore when African belief is closely examined. Banigbe is of the opinion that men should shoulder more responsibilities than they do at home, especially when their wives are pregnant.

“Women don’t get pregnant by themselves. Men should learn to see through the job they started; it does not only end in bed. It is an African thing for a man to distance himself from the wife because of pregnancy. Men should be totally involved at all the stages of taking care of babies,” says Banigbe.

While calling on men to be tolerant when their wives are pregnant, Banigbe says there is no medical explanation that suggests that sex is forbidden during the period.

“Yes, but men have to understand that at a point during pregnancy, womens’s sexual libido drops and having sex then tends to be more painful. There are men too who would not like to touch their wives just because they think if they do, they would hurt the baby. You can actually have sex during pregnancy withut hurting the baby,” she adds.

Contending that the most societal problems could be attributed to the gradual disintegration of family values, Banigbe calls for a re-orientation of the youths, charging the parents to play the leading role.

“You need to understand that the unit of any community is the family and what I do is taking it up from the family. Look at some of the youths carrying guns; from our researches, we have found out that their parents give birth to them and leave them to cater for themselves. Imagine a father depending on a 10-year-old child for survival. A parent that does not have money can teach his children the right values,” she says.

The publisher met her husband through a friend and they have since made the fear of God their watchword.

She says, “I fear God and I know what I want for the future. That would inspire any man and same goes for him.”

A strong preacher of the right values in the family, Banigbe does not close her eyes to some of the good things of life. She says accessories enhance beauty.

“I get things I like irrespective of the cost. I love shoes, handbags. If you have a $100,000 dress without the right accessories, you will mar your look,” says the Banigbe.


saffronglory (m) at 7-11-2010 10:33AM
(447 | Upcoming)

Commonsense (m) at 8-11-2010 05:26AM
(770 | Upcoming)

senseless post
gabrisky (m) at 8-11-2010 11:49AM
(80 | Newbie)

Every post is senseless what is your problem guy be focus if u don't have any thing to say better be silence pls.
vickie38 (f) at 10-11-2010 03:28PM
(57 | Newbie)

she is pretty Roll Eyes

Abby (f) at 10-11-2010 11:35PM
(718 | Upcoming)

they won't read this one.
MissyBarbie (f) at 12-11-2010 04:56PM
(14864 | Hero)

Damn tooooo lenghty
do4sure (m) at 12-11-2010 05:04PM
(1181 | Gistmaniac)

ksurrina (f) at 12-11-2010 05:11PM
(1579 | Gistmaniac)

She FEAR God and is there talking about having a 100,000N dress and not having the right accessories to go with it. This is laughable! I was really enjoying reading what she is doing until she spurted her true self. What this thing all goes down to is money and every day I pray that I will not be like these people. Why can't you wear a 3,000N dress with no accessories and still look good. Give the other 97,000N to the widows, poor and needy, fatherless. This will let your magazine to reach shores you never dream of. That is the blessings of our Lord through Jesus Christ His son. Also remember that beauty comes from within and not from those cosmetics that the world give to you to enhance your beauty.

bafyguy (m) at 12-11-2010 07:19PM
(1021 | Gistmaniac)

dis na waec & i don do am pas. There4, i nor fit crack my brain
ade_su_wa (f) at 12-11-2010 07:23PM
(4880 | Gistmaniac)

onyin (f) at 12-11-2010 07:25PM
(12048 | Hero)

Quote from: vickie38 on 10-11-2010 03:28PM
she is pretty Roll Eyes
Yea. Cheesy
saffronglory (m) at 13-11-2010 08:13AM
(447 | Upcoming)

PoliticxGuru (m) at 24-08-2015 03:51PM
(14192 | Hero)