She says it just tastes sweeter under the covers…
That’s the only reason she can give me when I keep asking her “Why?” Why do you insist on doing this?”
I first noticed her strange behavior before we got married, so I can’t say I wasn’t warned. But even though she tried to hide it for a while after we were married, it still came out rearing its ugly head, probably worse than it had ever been before.
My wife…is a midnight snacker.
At first, I thought it was a mere quirk that I’d grow to love…but the morning I rolled over in bed to land on a jam sandwich I knew she had a real addiction. My suspicions were later confirmed after subsequent nights of finding chin-chin crumbs, drops of honey, and remnants of her beloved crackers surrounding her beautiful face in the morning.
Though the evidence continued to pile up, I kept quiet. But the day I reached for her and found my hands circled around a drumstick, I finally decided to stage an intervention.
To be honest, I probably tried all the wrong things.
I tried pleading with her – “Can’t you see what this is doing to our marriage? It hurts me when I have to wake up with biscuits in my ear!”
I tried using the Bible – “Ephesians 5 v 22 says you have to do what I say. So stop eating in bed!” – (I don’t know why i thought that would work. It has never worked before.)
I tried logic – “Do you want to get fat? That’s the quickest way to gain weight!” – This method worked for a while, until she figured out that she could also eat diet food while in bed. That was the season when I’d frequently hear her munching carrots in bed.
I tried fear – “You’ll turn into a gremlin if you keep eating at midnight.”
But she made the usual excuses in response. “I’m not addicted…. I can quit anytime I want to!“…”I only do it when I’m stressed!“… “I only do it when I’m hungry!”… “I don’t do it as much as others do“… “It just feels good!” and the infamous “It’s not like I’m really hurting anyone!”
When she saw that I wasn’t moved by her excuses, she pledged to quit cold turkey and swore it would never happen again. She made public declarations on her Facebook that she would stop eating after 6pm and renounce her “single girl habits of eating in bed”. She’d even paste warning signs to herself on the fridge.
Naijawife was on her best behavior for the first few days. No doubt because she was eager to impress me and prove she wasn’t addicted. Then, one night, just when I thought we’d hit a good stride and that she really had broken free of her addiction, I heard some strange sounds in the room.
I perked my ears up, thinking there was a rat in the room.
Me: “Naijawife…do you hear that?”
NW: “Hear what?”
Me: “That sound. Something rustling.”
NW: “Maybe it’s a rat. Check in the morning.”
I tried to go back to sleep. But a few minutes later, I heard it again.
*Crinkle Crinkle* The sound came again, was quickly followed by a *Munch Munch*, and then muffled coughing.
That was no rat.
It was a human being. Naijawife to be exact.
I kept very still at first…then immediately yanked the covers off of her head.
She scrambled to hide the hobnobs in her hands but it was too late.
We stared at each other for a while in silence….then I asked.
“Can I have one?”
She kept silent for a while then replied. “Erm…it’s finished.”
I couldn’t believe my ears. Not only was she addicted to eating in bed, but she was blatantly lying to me so she wouldn’t have to share. I looked over to the table beside her bed, and saw a strange bundle. I reached over her and grabbed it, only to find slices of bread inside. Nicely buttered. Ready to eat.
I got up and dumped it in the bin. Her reaction wasn’t good.
But I didn’t care. I went back to bed and said nothing more, hoping that would be the end of it.
The next day, before I left for work, she approached me and promised me she would do better. She claimed she had prayed about the problem and that God had reassured her that she would be delivered from it.
I just smiled. I’d read that addicts can be very spiritual when they need to be. Clearly, she was no exception to the rule.
And so our struggle continued. Until finally, one day, it hit me. Every single night that she freely gave into her calorific cravings, was a night that I went to bed after her.
So I started racing her to bed.
The first night, she gave me her usual goodnight hug and “don’t stay up too late working” speech, then went off to have her bath. By the time she came out of the bathroom, and before she had a chance to sneak off to the kitchen, I was already under the covers.
“NH? You’re already in bed?!”
“Yeah…I’m just very tired today.”
Clearly disappointed, she climbed in. Then as soon as her body hit the bed, I grabbed her tightly in my arms and wrapped my legs around hers. If she moved even a tiny inch, I would tighten the lock.
That night. It was me or the crackers.
NW: “Um …Darling?”
Me: “Yes dear?”
NW: “You’re in a very snuggly mood tonight…”
Me: “I’m just happy to see you.”
NW: “Yes, but um, my arms…I can’t feel them…is it OK if i shift?”
By the seventh night of my
death lock of life method, her desire to munch quickly faded.
While I’m pleased with myself for having come up with this, I’m not naive enough to think this method will last. So please drop a suggestion below as to what else you think can be done. She and I are all ears.