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The REAL Lekki Wives (Wisdom In Keep Up With The Joneses?)

A few months back I attended a show that was organized by my nephew's school. The school is in Lekki phase 1 so naturally most of the kids are residents. Although I'm very involved in my nephew's lives I'd never attended one of the school programs. On that day however my sister had a training at work so I had to go and take him for the show. I won't lie I couldn't care less about what was going on, was only interested in my nephew's performance but even if I was interested in everything something else would have stolen my attention. The mothers. The real Lekki Wives, not those questionable characters on the show Lekki Wives. Speaking of the show; Lekki Wives I must first make some comparisons. Unlike the women on the show, the real Lekki Wives are Go Getters, not Gold Diggers. They are freaking independent women who mostly married well but don't need their husbands' money, they are independent, career driven, overly ambitious and very successful.

So on that day I sat and observed the lot of them but I wasn't admiring their success or careers. I was in awe of their size 6 bodies. It was like watching an audition for Nigerian Stepford Wives. It was a children's show but the mothers were the centre of attraction. The fattest mum I saw was a Size 10 at most. They were all really skinny things wearing 6" stiletto heels and garbed in clothes a dress size too small. I was in awe. On the heads of those who hadn't 'gone natural' were the priciest looking weaves I'd ever seen. These women didn't look like mothers, hell, this is not what my mum and her friends looked like in their time. I just sat in the corner observing; the very practiced catwalk on the very thin heels, the back-straight/shoulder-high/head-up posture that could only have been taught at  Finishing School. It was like a competition for who was skinniest, wore the tightest dress, had the most cleavage. And all at a primary school show! They walked from table to table, they like me, could not careless about what their kids were doing on the stage, they were more occupied with 'walking the room', blowing air kisses, networking... oh, a lot of networking was done, it's  hard to believe that's not what we came for. And so many "So where are you now?" questions flying around in the air. I eavesdropped and heard stories of leaving one multinational company for an even bigger multinational company, leaving that bank to start their own business, and oh, business is fantastic by the way... how, the older kids had left for boarding school in England and I heard at least two people say "Oh they're in the best Boarding school in England/France". I was so fascinated. I also found it even curiouser that the mums spoke to their kids with foreign accents. Curiouser and Curiouser... I was in awe. I put my glasses on (they age me real bad so I only wear them when I'm driving, in court or when I desperately need them) and I desperately needed them, I needed to have a closer look at the bags I was seeing. I had to look closer to familiarize myself with the labels. From Roberto Cavallis to Jimmy Choos, from Hermes to Louis Vuittons, from Chanels to Burberrys...and no, they were not the usual random designer bags that people carry everyday. 

Yesterday a few came over. When I could, I watched *Ibiso, *Funke, *Mary and *Chika. All wives and mothers, all in their mid to late 30s and all Lekki Wives. The first thing that struck me was how 'tiny' all these women are. Somewhere between UK size 6-8. I remember complimenting Funke once that she looked good and she said "Nwando I work at it. This takes serious hard work". Funke is about 37 with four kids but seeing us together you'll think I'm the one that gave birth to her and her children *covers face*. Ibiso is equally tiny and we all know that one doesn't eat. If there's one thing Lekki wives detest it's FAT. (Adaora Ukoh take note o!). It's like, that's the worst thing that could happen to an individual, to add a pound. I seriously admire them. These women are fierce! They are boss ladies and they are in charge. Their jobs and careers are fascinating and each of them have got her own! I won't say that some don't climb the less savory ladder, that some don't take less than moral means to get to the top, I'm very certain some do. But then these ones I'm opportuned to know or at least know of are a great blend of beauty, brains and balls!

But then I wondered. Why do they care so much about "packaging", about appearances, about being picture perfect, why does it matter so much? One of these real Lekki wives tries so hard to keep up with the Joneses that I almost feel sorry for her. Kids in the most expensive schools on the Island and yearly summer vacations to the US and UK yet she's up to her neck in debts... Hmmm, Lekki Wives. I find myself wondering though, is she trying to keep appearances or is she doing all she can to invest in her children to give them better opportunities in the future?

Is it foolish to put your kids in expensive schools with an expensive lifestyle even though you can barely afford to OR is it wise to do so in order to improve their chances of a better and brighter future? I think we should talk about this. 

(Let me explain my last paragraph a little. For instance, growing up, I had friends from very average or below average homes whose parents struggled to give them the best and even had to borrow to send them to schools abroad, for their first degree and Masters. Some of these people have come back and have the most mouth watering jobs/careers and are presently earning much more than the rest of us. When Madam 'keeping up with the joneses' was once asked why she won't put her kids in less expensive schools she said she wanted them to rub shoulders, mix and be friends with (the kind of) children in that school. She says when you are friends with those people you become part of their circle, and when you belong to that kind of circle it raises your standing in life. And in future your chances of a better life, better job, better career, better connections and belonging to high society are a lot higher. So in essence she's doing it for the kids, these are investments she's making, although most of people still believe she's just trying to keep up with the Joneses.)

*I'm not speaking generally about every wife who lives in Lekki, just the few I've observed*.
*I'm not suggesting that these traits apply to only women/wives who live in Lekki, they just happen to be the ones who've provided me enough material to go by*.
*The picture I used is that of the cast of Basketball Wives*. 


  1. Wow, wow, wow! Thelma I wish I could have followed you to see these people. I wouldn't mind watching you on reality have a very fascinating life lol. Back to the lekki wives, so in this day and age people like these still exist? Wow...I must have really stayed away from Nja for way too long

  2. I laugh when people call it living above your means. I'm one of the people you wrote about. My parents didn't have much but they struggled to give me the best, including sending me to school in jand. Today I'm more than grateful for it because the truth is that in Nigeria a foreign degree will always be given preference. Also, I understand what you mean about being in better circles. I won't say much but all I'll say is that it's wise. It's a wise investment.

    1. Also as for leaking wives I'm glad someone else highlighted that you don't have to sleep around or marry a rich man to make it in life, that's what that stupid show is about and it's so wrong.

    2. Lekki wives. My auto correct

  3. My take, packaking is necessary for personal branding and attractiveness to employers(if you fall into that category of those needing white collate job), even if you are an employer of labour and you provide services, packaging is still necessary. However, one shouldn't do such in the bid to 'keep' up for appearance purpose.

    Anyways, happy to have you back. Keep the stories coming please and do a few spell check on the above...the paragraph where you described having to wear your glasses. Ehugs

    1. *White collar job

    2. Ok thanks, I'll check and edit.

  4. hmmmm booboo dont be fooled abeg. Not all that glitters is gold. What u saw at that school is the minority. ah well.

  5. I am speechless!!! This matter pass me. They should carry on, whatever floats their boats!!!
    But am definitely raising my kids according to my means! I know better now about REAL happiness please...

    Am glad U are back T...

  6. The competition on the island is terrible. Especially among these Lekki wives. Thelma pls don't be deceived these women are willing to sleep with their fathers to maintain this lifestyle. Even the single ones too. Appearances are very important on the island. Even our celebs do it too. God help us sha with this our I must belong mentality. I agree with you on the weight thing. Everybody is now size 0 but you forgot to mention the bleaching. That one is even worse.

    1. My dear its one thing to bleach and another thing to counteract the effect of the sun on ur skin...and the sun these days aint smiling

  7. Ppl's appearances doesn't faze me anymore. Iv grown past the stage of knowing dat gold doesn't glitter.

  8. lol, the Lekki Life....... It is indeed a huge struggle. Most times I just look n smh. But, what's so amazing is how this has come to be the most accepted lifestyle, everybody trying so hard to keep up with what not, and we have suddenly justified it with "making investments and planning a better future for our children", Ok o, issorai. we'll see how far this takes us.

  9. The truth is wherever God will have you get to. You will get there, even if you are from the backside of nowhere... No need to keep any appearance.

  10. T baby, you will agree with me that this *living above means* pay sometimes. Its not everytime it backfires. There are times I wished my parents sent me to certain schools and borrowed to, foriegn schools or even private university. I dey suffer am today somehow somehow. All the besties then feel they are better than you. Anyway sha, I will do my best to give my children the best. We won't have to live above our means. They must go to the best schools and all.

    Living above means, so far is not keeping up with the packaging. Its needed sometimes.

  11. I think it's actually a wise investment, as preposterous and angling as it sounds.
    Consider that even Kate Middleton, a commoner, met Prince Williams in college.
    This has always been the case, Jackie Kennedy met JFK through his sister who had been her roommate.
    Everyone knew Jackie's mom, Janet, was the most scheming of social climbers but then, the question is, does it work? Does it pay off? Is it worth it?
    The answer has and is almost always an emphatic YES.
    It's just actually desiring a better status in life- it's not as bad as it looks.

    1. I have to say I agree with you. I always use Kate Middleton as an example. Back when we were kids I had this aunt who could barely afford to feed but put her two daughters in Coroner. It was one struggle after the other to get them into good schools here and abroad although she could barely afford to. All I can say is today all those people who were laughing at her have kept their mouths shut. It's paid off big time!

    2. Sorry but kate middleton is from a wealthy background though not royal. Also, I dont think it pays. At times, your kids have a complex all in trying to keep up with the joneses. As for lekki wives, hmmmn thats a topic for another day. At the end of it all, all is vanity

    3. You have to be in some sort of money to be able to afford the perks of sending your kids to the type of schools the blue-blooded send their kids- it still doesn't make a commoner a blue-blood or equate a Kennedy and an Auchincloss- its all in the fact that the children get to meet, relate, decide to be friends and their parents having no choice than to accept their choice.

  12. What is imperative, is raising a confident, self assured and stable child. That is why a rich man's child can be intimidated by a vulcanizer's child. That Hollywood director's son that went on a murder spree, can we say he was raised in poverty? He had self esteem issues inspite of his wealth. Give your child an education and let him believe in himself. He will hold his head high anywhere. I will give my children the education I can afford. But they must be confident and believe in themselves and their capabilities. Your education will get you there but it is your faith in yourself and your capability that get you further. Money can't buy that. It comes from within oneself. I have harnessed it and I want my kids to do same.

  13. All I picked from this post is their body sizes. I really have to start working on this my tummy biko!

  14. In India, educational loans are given to parents who want to send their children to an English school. Even taxi drivers take such loans to invest their children's future. That is the most common loan taken by peasants because they want their children to have a better life. Unlike some of us who take loans to buy lands, houses, cars, to go on vacations. Some even borrow cash from family and friends to buy jewellery, expensive asoebis, collect clothes on credit etc.

    Your child is your greatest investment. He/she is top priority. Do the best you can. (and please, don't make it a competition with your neighbours,friends and family. The focus should be on your child and his future.)

  15. Quality education that you can afford is imperative. My fathers family budget was mostly on education and trips overseas. We didnt get much by the way of clothes and household entertainment though. And we all ended up in very good schools overseas.

  16. Proudlydarkskinned9:50 am, June 24, 2014

    All i can say is "All that glitters is not gold" The sad reality is that most of those women go to the extreme with what they do to maintain their lifestyle, i used to work for one of them and the things you hear them say makes you wonder what the future holds for "decency". Dnt get me wrong ooo, some of them are goal getters like T rightly said but then again, All that glitters is still not gold.

  17. Makes sense but I always believe u did cut ur cloth according to ur size


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