IMAGINE your best friend, whom you confide in with everything, including your marriage issues, starts having an affair with your husband. As if that isn’t enough, the pair then gets married. That is the current storyline on SABC1’s soapie, Uzalo. KwaMashu’s biggest thug, Nkunzi, is taking a new wife without his current wife, Lindiwe’s blessings. To add fuel to the fire, he is marrying his wife’s best friend, MaMlambo. On the day of the wedding, the courageous Lindiwe, popularly known as MaNgcobo, causes chaos.

WALKING DOWN THE AISLE

Nkunzi, portrayed by Masoja Msizi, is married to his gangster wife MaNgcobo, played by Thandeka Dawn King, who is also an entrepreneur and manages her own club. Like any other couple, the two have been through ups and downs in their marriage. At his wife’s disapproval and disappointment, Nkunzi is now marrying her best friend MaMlambo, played by Gugu Gumede.

As per her wish, MaMlambo looks like a princess in a stunning white mermaid dress on her wedding day. To her surprise, MaNgcobo also shows up in a wedding gown and stops the wedding. At the end of the day, Nkunzi takes home two brides.

FALLING FOR THE BEST FRIEND

Weighing in on the issue, counselling social worker at Family Life Centre (FAMSA), Jennifer Papers, says it is not right or normal for your friend to date or sleep with your husband.

“You may be shocked after finding out about an affair between your best friend and your man. You could also feel angry and betrayed,” she says.

Masoja shares with Move! why his character

attracted his wife’s best friend. “Nkunzi is a traditional man and wants a wife who is submissive, cooks, cleans and bares children for him. MaNgcobo is not that kind of a woman. She is independent and runs her own business. Nkunzi has been hungry for attention and affection since MaNgcobo started her club,” he says.

Masoja also says when Nkunzi was shot and injured, MaNgcobo took time off work to nurse him but his nagging got too much for her that she opted to rather ask MaMlambo whom she trusted to take care of her husband, not knowing that she was shooting herself in the foot as the pair grew closer and closer.

Jennifer says your friend could want your man because of his good qualities and how well he treats you.

“Your friend could also be jealous of you and envy your life and how happy you are. Sometimes when you misbehave outside of your relationship, your friend can share that information with your partner, pushing themselves closer to him. You may also confide in your friend about your marriage problems and they could use that to get your husband’s attention,” she says.

BATTLE OF THE WIVES

Thandeka says as many presumed, MaNgcobo was never really married to Nkunzi.

“Moments before Nkunzi and MaNgcobo said, ‘I do’ some time ago, Nkunzi was arrested and their marriage was never ever finalised. MaNgcobo tried to get Nkunzi to finally marry her before he walked down the aisle with MaMlambo.”

Her efforts failed, leaving her feeling humiliated. Gugu says MaMlambo sacrificed friendship for love, but at the same time she didn’t want Nkunzi all to herself. She believes that she and MaNgcobo can play different roles in his life. MaMlambo is more domesticated while MaNgcobo is business-minded.

BROKEN FRIENDSHIP AND FORGIVENESS

Thandeka says her character MaNgcobo is pained by the betrayal of both her husband and friend, but mostly by that of her friend.

“She is hurt that she shared everything with MaMlambo and in the end MaMlambo had an affair with her husband,” she says.

Gugu also adds that MaMlambo gets so excited about the wedding and forgets to think about what the marriage is going to be like, with MaNgcobo involved. Whether the two will ever be friends again or work well as sister wives, is unknown.

Depending on how strong your relationship with your husband is, Jennifer says you may decide to forgive him and move past this. You could also decide to forgive your friend and leave your husband.

“Regardless of whom you decide to forgive, trust may always be an issue. Will you be able to trust your husband again around your friends if you forgave him? If you forgave your best friend, would you allow her to be close to any of your partners in the future?” she says.

GETTING HELP

To get help, Jennifer advises that you talk about what you are experiencing.

“I would prefer that you speak to a neutral person, especially a professional, to deal with the pain and betrayal. It is usually better if you only speak to your family after you have seen a professional, dealt with the pain and you have decided what to do,” says Jennifer.

“Sometimes when you tell your families, they might take sides. Your family may never forgive your husband, even if you decide to go back to him and make things work. It is just easier to involve them right at the end.”

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