One of the reasons I felt inclined to start this blog, was to share experiences on Inter-Ethnic relationships and Marriages in Nigeria.
I shared my experience with the Yoruba culture of kneeling to greet elders. Going forward, every other personal experience will be in the EastmeetWest posts.
For now, as an Inter-Ethnic couple here are some of the questions we get asked the most, and we’ve answered.
I’ll be asking other inter-ethnic couples these questions (and more), and sharing their answers on the blog from time to time.
*Last photo of the day, before I got whisked away. Nnewi, Nigeria. June 2014.
1. Do You Speak Each Other’s Language:
Kachee: I like to say I speak and understand Yoruba, which is a bit of a white lie. I can speak and understand a few words, but that’s about it. But then I was so surprised recently when I was singing the months of the year in Yoruba, and he had no clue what it was! I think I scored major brownie points there.
Tee: I speak Igbo a bit. Well, more like I’m trying to learn on the internet. If I had a better teacher than Kachee, I’m sure I’ll have been a pro by now.
2. Any Culture Shocks:
Kachee: Hahaha! I guess I must have been vaguely aware of most of the culture shocks because some of my really good friends are Yoruba and hey, I’m a Lagos babe. But awareness does not necessarily translate to accommodating it or doing it with ease. So somethings like kneeling for older people or referring to older people as Mummy or Daddy is not something I am used to. I remember clearly as a child of about 5, the lady in the salon, probably in her early fifties always told me to refer to her as Mummy! That must have been one of the strangest things ever. I’m like ‘Huh, you are not my mummy’. Now, I’ve had to consciously tell myself that it’s not much of a big deal.
Tee: Nnewi was interesting!. The way everyone kept saying we were going to the village for a wedding, I thought it was going to be a proper village. On a more serious note though, I really wasn’t expecting a lot of difference in culture, because as a Catholic in Nigeria, I grew up with a lot of Igbos around me. I think that sure helped.
3. How Would You Name Your Kids:
Kachee: We’d love our kids to identify actively with both parts of their culture. So they will definitely have names from both cultures.
Tee: I’d like them to have Igbo first names because I think it sounds cool. Yoruba surname and Igbo first name.
4. What Food(s) From Your Spouse’s Culture Do You Love/Hate:
Kachee: I am not a fan of Amala and Gbegiri even though I have probably never tasted Gbegiri. But I’ve actually resolved to try it soon. I LOVE Ofada rice and Ayamase sauce.
Tee: I’ve never understood the concept of ‘Abacha’ (African Salad made of cassava flakes), so when I had it recently, I was not surprised that I didn’t like it. I also do not like ‘Ube’ (Igbo native pear). But other than that, I think I eat everything else and I like the richness of Igbo soups.
5. Best Part of an Inter-Ethnic Marriage:
Kachee: Honestly, it’s the littlest things that make it so interesting. Like when he asks me to translate Phyno’s rap for him. It’s also so cool how language/culture could be influential. We almost seem to have the best of both worlds because many people just choose to be nicer and helpful to you because ‘Awww you’re marrying our Igbo Sister‘ or ‘So your husband is Yoruba’.
Tee: Giving my kids mixed names, and the idea of learning a new language. And of course, being able to take a Chieftaincy title in Nnewi (Kachee’s hometown)!
6. Words of Advice:
Kachee: I don’t think anyone should have a stereotypical mindset about getting married. Love really does come in the strangest packages. Except there are deal-breakers (which of course there could be), simply saying/thinking like ‘I can never marry a Yoruba person or an Igbo person’, may just be shooting yourself in the foot.
Tee: I think ethnicity is so insignificant compared to the joy of being with someone you really want to be with. For those contemplating getting into it, you need to see the beauty in the other person’s culture and not consider such differences dividing lines.
Any thoughts guys? If you have any other questions, we’re happy to answer!
What’s your favourite food from another culture?
Phyno* – Nigerian musician that usually raps in Igbo language
Ofada rice and Ayamase sauce* – Nigerian type of rice and the sauce is made with green bell peppers. You just have to try it!
read too: First Date Disasters and Which do you prefer: Gift or Experiences?
Ekene OhMay 15, 2016 at 10:12
Love the post. I commented since oh. It’s really funny too.
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 16, 2016 at 08:39
Thank you Ekene! You can probably relate since your parents are fro different ethnic groups as well. Xx
cassandra ikegbuneMay 15, 2016 at 18:53
Aww . I loved reading this! I see you’re back to disqus lol For me, I think it’s the different way my SO makes his food . lol Its a bit different from the igbo way my mum makes hers, so that’s something I may/may not have to learn.www.cassiedaves.com
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 16, 2016 at 08:41
I’m indeed back to Disqus. Lol. See you’ve gotten a hang of it Oh yeah. Food is a different one indeed, but It depends on how fussy he is. Lol.
iruoma GinigemeMay 15, 2016 at 19:00
Hehehe. Mr and mrs Adesina. Well my opinion of people is that we all necessary want 2 marry or be with who we fall in love but it sometimes boils down yo your family. Example, u r d 1st child and daughter and ur father absolutely refuses to even hear you are dating sm1 who isn’t from your tribe. Lol I remember literally just remember d convo i had wit my dad (kachee’s uncle) a few days b4 i left 4 school. He said I’m not saying don’t fall in love or be in a relationship oo. I’m just saying be with sm1 in such a case that if there is an emergency @ night and they come 2 call u all u need to do is cross road and u r home. Lol it was awkward and funny. It doesn’t mean he is been shallow minded @ d end of d day he just wants what is best for mii. And so do all our parents. But when they realise your partner is d absolute best . I’m sure all doubts r put 2 rest.
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 16, 2016 at 08:45
I’m laughing so hard at your dad’s statement. It’s quite funny, and I absolutely agree that they simply want what is best for us. There’s a bit of fear that creeps up in them, when you think of the other person’s culture that you know not much about. But I think we shouldn’t stifle love by putting boundaries. If you fall in love with someone from your ethnic group, all well and good. Hopefully there won’t be any emergencies! Lol. Xx
PreciousMay 16, 2016 at 18:28
Let me share my Yoruba culture shock experience with you. I once offered some delicious rice and stew to a Yoruba course mate. The way he thanked me eh… I was getting confused. After thanking me so much on the day he ate the food, he had to leave his seat in class and travel through the other rows the next day just to tell me, “thank you for yesterday!” At some point I started wondering if it were just the food or something else. My friend (from Benue) told me that is how Yoruba people appreciate. Quite interesting! A Yoruba brother in my church who used to give me rides will help me then thank me. Sahh! Kachee, is that how Tee thanks you? It is interesting to see how binding love can be irrespective of cultural differences. I love the idea of both names for your kids!My mother-in-law’s funny reaction to TV
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 16, 2016 at 18:38
Oh my gosh Precious this is quite true!When I went to school in the West of Nigeria (University of Ibadan) I was totally surprised at this. People will say ‘Thank you for yesterday’ ‘Thank you for last week’. I’m thinking in my head – it’s okay now. Loool. Subconsciouly I think I almsot began to appreciate like that. You just made me laugh! Tee doesn’t quite thank me like that oh. Once is enough.
glowingscenesAugust 10, 2016 at 14:53
Oh wow. Haha. This was so funny and had me laughing by myself because I can so relate. Some weeks ago, my mum was sharing with me over the phone how she’s learning to understand that other tribes see differently the way Yorubas see or perceive things. She has a new young friend and the lady is not Yoruba. She mentioned doing something for the young woman and the woman thanked her the first day and the next day the woman didn’t say anything and she was tempted to be upset. We both laughed eh. Love is teaching my mum so many things and understanding is one of them. I remember my aunt doing something for me and I thanked her and the next day, she said it’s good to always thank someone for ‘yesterday’ Infact if you can be thanking the person all the time sef. Lmao. Our culture is just wonderful. I remember gisting my friend how we have greetings for every season and everyday. Ekaaro, Ekaale, Ekuojometa, Ekuojo. Infact, if we had to greet someone when they do something…Oh, we have one for that. “Eku ise.” One good side of the language is that it helped me understand my french classes when I was taking them. They have a few similarities.P.S: I love your blog KacheeTee and I’m sure I’ve spent above 30minutes clicking, reading and nodding to some of your posts I happened to come across. You interview so well you would make a journalist jealous and your writing skills are so intimidating. lol. I love how you conduct your interviews too and then your post on “Don’t hit snooze and becoming a morning person’ reminded me of MichaelHyatt’s blog. I think his blog is one of those you might enjoy indulging in.Okay let me go before I write an entire blog post in the comment section. lolMuch love. xo!
Kachee || KacheeTee.comAugust 10, 2016 at 16:50
LOOOOL!!! This is hilarious! Actually seeing it from the other person’s perspective – they really expect you to keep greeting? Looool. As for the greetings, I’m definitely learning them. It probably also acts as an ice breaker. So you see someone siting down randomly and just say ‘eku joko’. looolre similarities with French, that’s quite interesting!pS: Thank you SO SO much. I really really appreciate, you have no idea. I know of Michael Hyatt and I’ve probably read a couple of his posts. I’ll check it out in more detail. Thank you for your long comment! Love it.ppS: I knew all those Yoruba greetings, so maybe I’m not too bad in this thing oh!
Motunrayo ShafauMay 17, 2016 at 09:03
Haha. Reminds me of Simi’s new song “Love don’t care” – https://www.youtube.com/wat…
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 17, 2016 at 09:25
I haven’t actually seen this yet, but I will. Thanks for posting the link! Ah. Love the way the direct video appears on the thread and I don’t have to leave this page to watch it. Whoop!
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 24, 2016 at 11:13
I finally saw the video!! Love it!!
SkyMay 17, 2016 at 12:17
Such an interesting post!My mom’s earlier ‘objection’ about us marrying from other tribes was mostly about the language. She’ll be like “So when you want to speak to your husband in front of visitors and you don’t want them to hear what you people are discussing, how will you do it?”.Or”If i come to visit you in your house, how will i be talking with your husband and in-laws, unu ma na a gaa’m school and amaghim bekee a su” (Translation – you people know that i didn’t go to school and i don’t know how to speak English).I usually just roll my eyes and laugh, but over time, I’ve come to understand that at some level, inter-ethnic marriages have more odds against it than intra-ethnic ones. I might be wrong. I’m not in any marriage, either inter or intra :)RIGHT NOW THOUGH, the woman will be happy if i just marry sha. Her current message is that as long as the person is good and will love and take care of me, then it’s ok. So that i can start having kids.This is usually followed by the gist of how she had already given birth to us for a long time by the time she got to my age (*purses lips*)Anyway, to be honest, i think that there are some tribes that i might not be 100% gung-ho about marrying into, i don’t know. i naturally do all i can to avoid conflict and i have heard and imagined a whole lot about the inter- deal…I have not had any close romantic relationships with folks of other tribes, so maybe i’ll change my mind and won’t care if i meet someone and fall in love.Oh and i LOVE Efo riro! Like, if i get to marry a Yoruba man, he better be cooking me some Efo riro!#LongasscommentSkyNotFancy
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 17, 2016 at 12:34
Hi Sky!First off we love #Longasscomments. Thank you!Your mum’s Igbo cracked me up!!!!! Many times language is an objection. But even if we both spoke Yoruba and we had Yoruba visitors we couldn’t still gossip. Lol. It’s an actual challenge though, but maybe we can just learn Spanish. And if the kids can speak both languages then that’s such a win.My mum always said Marriage on its own is hard, so don’t complicate issues by not speaking the same language and having different cultures. But if you both know that these don’t have to be issues, then fine!Hahahaha@ Rightnow. No pressure! They had all given birth to us by our ages but times have changed biko.I know what you mean, but there are no hard and fast rules, and no stereotypes. Some things I hear about Yoruba / Igbo people, I’ve actually never experienced. So at the end of the day it boils down to that particular person, his beliefs and his family. Don’t worry if you fall in love with a Yoruba person, I’m here for you. *wink.EfoRiro is Bae! I used to think it was just stew and veg, but there’s this combo os Kale, Soinach and Basil with lots of meat and fried pepper that is just awesome!!
SkyMay 17, 2016 at 13:41
omg i have to try the Efo with Basil!Yes to what your mum said, but you are right too. As long as there is a clear understanding of what is what and a willingness to compromise, learn and adjust, success is achievable.The ‘Yoruba Demon’ nonsense that’s going about is not helping the issue at all, but we’ll see how it goes.on another note, i think I’ve lost count of how many posts I’ve read here today. I’m just O.D’ing. Your writing style is so down-to-earth and unpretentious, i love it!Weldone.
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 17, 2016 at 13:47
Awww! Thanks Sky. You’ve made my day!I checked out your blog and I tried to comment, but it doesn’t give us the option to comment with just our names and URL. Can you have a look? I actually just ordered a denim skirt and I’ll prob pair it with an off shoulder top. Thanks for the Inspo!I’ll send you that recipe. It’s from DooneysKitchen.
SkyMay 20, 2016 at 16:31
Hi Kachee!i’m working on the comment issue. You can use the Google Account option in the meantime and i’ve also added Disqus.Thank you so much.
Ify HalimMay 17, 2016 at 18:29
I love this post, particularly because it’s the first I’m reading on intertribal marriages. Thanks Kachee!I think it will be an interesting experience marrying someone from a different tribe, and I’m hoping my kids would get as much culturl influence as possible from both my husband and I (I wasn’t so fortunate in this area growing up, but hopefully my extended family would be around to help out lol).Dating-wise, Ive actually never gone out with an Igbo guy, a fact that’s just dawning on me actually. Hmm…www.ifyhalim.com
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 19, 2016 at 09:21
Hi Ify! You’re welcome.It really is interesting – and in a good way too, provided you marry the right person. Your large extended family I’m sure would be happy to help. Hmmmm. Maybe you’re coming over to join me?. As long as you’re happy that’s the most important thing!.
Toluwalade Toyin-KehindeMay 18, 2016 at 10:24
You definitely scored brownie points cause even i don’t know the months in Yoruba.. haha I’m also not a big fan of amala so that can pass too!! But yes to Phyno’s songs!! He’s one of my best igbo rappers ayee. Now i can start calling you ‘our igbo wife’ lol. Great post!Toyinwithfashion
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 19, 2016 at 09:15
Maybe I should just type out the Yoruba months for all you people who don’t know it. My primary school teacher taught us with a song, so it kind of stuck. I’ll try Amala though. I’ll let you know how it goes!Yes oh. Your igbo wife. Lol. Thanks Toyin!
KIKELOMO OMOTALADEMay 20, 2016 at 10:08
Ayamase is bae anytime mehn.How can Tee not like Abacha (maybe he didn’t have one that was properly made and garnished with peppered pomo….*lickingmythoughtsnow*sigh)I dunno if I will be able to marry from another tribe though *coversface* I never get approached by guys from other tribes though(dassalie sha i think i just automatically zone them immediately)I am done casting myself….Xx
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 23, 2016 at 11:50
As in! The small chunks of meat, the pepper. Gosh. I’m getting hungry typing this sef. I don’t know how he can’t like Abacha honestly!! I’m going to make sure I introduce it to my kids early, before they decide to be like him.Don’t zone them joor Kike!! You never really know! Hahahahaha
sandraMay 30, 2016 at 17:43
First time here, I just followed a link you left on Nedoux’s blog. This post just softened up my insides. You guys are really cute. Tee has the right idea; anytime I see an inter-tribal name my interest is seriously piqued. There was a yoruba guy, really nice dude. It was fun teaching each other new words, and saying something the other person will have to say “ehn?” to, just to tease. I was already on the yoruba food train since my best friends are yoruba. Efo riro is like jazz for me! Amala + ewedu + stew has become a staple in my diet. But he learned igbo food from me and his mind was blown. I noticed the gratitude thing too. Anyway, we weren’t compatible on some other matter. Since I was a kid I said I would marry someone from another tribe or even country sef. I like to explore, I like adventure. Where’s the fun in the familiar? I thought. Lol. Man proposes right? Turns out the familiar can be even more amazing. I think, never say never- to the same or a different tribe.Naija girl next door
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 30, 2016 at 18:48
Awww! Thank you!!Lol @ man proposes. I’m sure it worked out for the best and I agree that the familiar can be equally amazing as well! So there are really no rules, but people shouldn’t rule out inter-ethnic.Ok now, I think I’m really going to try amala. Off to check out your blog, especially as I often think of myself as ‘the girl next door”. Lol!
AB x MeeMeeMay 31, 2016 at 12:27
First time visiting your blog and I like it here! You guys are cute :)Tee is allowed to not like Abacha. I’m Igbo and I don’t like it LOL. I still haven’t tried Ayamase, but anything made with green pepper is definitely bae to me.Having mixed names is cool, it’s all very ‘One Nigeria’ to me and I love it! I have always liked the idea of inter-ethnic marriages, and for some reason, I never wanted to date Igbo. However, present bae is Igbo and it’s a little ironic. Like after everything, I end up here? Haha.I went to a boarding school run by mostly Yoruba reverend sisters, and the culture shock was SOMETHING. Had to adjust to survive, and it has helped me in some situations. Altogether, living in Lagos has always made me feel part Yoruba, but there’s nothing like truly experiencing it in the way that you are.The Kink and I
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMay 31, 2016 at 17:09
Hi!!!!Thank you so much. Oh gosh. I LOVE Abacha. I still had some yesterday with fried fish. You should try ayamase. Dicing up the various kinds of meat is a bit stressful but totally worth it.The one mixed name that got me confused as a child was ‘Segun Arinze’. Lol. But I think it’s cool. Lol @ present bae. Igbo and Igbo works oh biko! Culture shock still gets to me, but it’s much better now.Thanks a lot for your comment.pS: In my mind, I’m kind of going natural, so I’ve been stopping by your blog. But this link on your comment doesn’t work. You may want to edit it.
MunaJune 9, 2016 at 00:10
Haha that calling everyone “mummy” thing mahnnnn, I don’t think it’s something I’ll get used to. That’s how one woman in the market asked me to call her mummy as if the “aunty” I called her was not enough. I told her sorry that I can’t, madam labelled me rude :s. It’s good to see relationships/marriages like this! As for Abacha I honestly see why he won’t like it, I have a love hate relationship with it, but Ube is forever bae chai! xxIt’s Munastic
Kachee || KacheeTee.comJune 9, 2016 at 09:29
Loool! Honestly Igbo people find it so hard to get used to. I’m such a foodie. Love both! The only Igbo food I can think of right now that I’m not so into is Ukwa. Lool.
Chinelo OkoliJune 16, 2016 at 12:23
Well, your hubs can watch African Magic Igbo channel to learn the language. I mostly dated outside my tribe but married an Igbo guy. Whether you date within or outside your tribe, the main thing is making an effort to understand the culture and showing interest. Aloofness is usually a turn-off especially with the in-laws.
Kachee || KacheeTee.comJune 16, 2016 at 13:43
I’m be sure to tell him that. I don’t know if we get African Magic Igbo here thogh. I’ll check. I agree with you Nelo! An effort to understand and tolerate is key! Xx
Yummy Mum LifeJuly 13, 2016 at 23:38
I’m Igbo and I married a Cross-Riverian and it was war with my parents but to God be the glory everything turned out well and we are 5 years going strong.I enjoy all the soups from Calabar-edikakong,afang are just a few.As for language I’m picking a few basic words from my daughter.She seems to understand better and quicker than me :-)www.cheecheelive.com
Kachee || KacheeTee.comJuly 19, 2016 at 16:48
Parents often do it from a place of love, but it’s great when they come around eventually. Hahahaha. Kids pick language easier, so I’m not surprised. I need to ensure that my kids speak both!
Omowumi OguntuaseJuly 28, 2016 at 09:57
I usually say that our parents’ tribalism is what affects our generation. I used to date a Hausa guy but my father was against it from the beginning even till now he still says I should find a Yoruba guy, they are so lucky that my boyfriend is Yoruba if not, the war would have been great LOL. If only they can stop letting their stubbornness rule a lot of things. I always envy inter-ethnic marriages & I pray God continues to bless your marriage.wumituase.wordpress.com
Kachee || KacheeTee.comSeptember 2, 2016 at 16:43
Just seeing this! Thanks a lot Wunmi & Amen!! Loool @ Hausa. You almost sort of have their looks you know! Lol!
VivianAugust 1, 2016 at 20:47
I loved this post!!!!! Love the picture too !
Kachee || KacheeTee.comAugust 5, 2016 at 14:12
Thank you Boooo!
favour moyseAugust 5, 2016 at 13:22
Me I want to marry an igbo man o 13 ways to surprise your husband without spending a dime
Kachee || KacheeTee.comAugust 5, 2016 at 13:29
Loool! I thought you’re married based on this your last post! I’m confused.
UdAugust 28, 2016 at 21:57
Awwww….love this interview….just seeing this.Lord would do mine for me very soon! Amen!🙏God bless your home with children, blessings, health and laughter…I can’t wait to come for naming ceremonies😘😘www.beautifullyjune.blogspo…
Kachee || KacheeTee.comAugust 28, 2016 at 22:02
Amen!!! Thank you so much. We’ll invite you!! 😬😬😬
DeraDecember 7, 2016 at 17:35
My dad at first had a serious issue with me dating a Yoruba guy for years.. but he eventually came around and told me to bring the guy home and it has been Bliss ever since
Kachee || KacheeTee.comDecember 7, 2016 at 17:46
Yay! So happy for you!! Maybe we can hear the full story some day.
Chimdinma Adriel OnwukweMarch 16, 2017 at 09:30
Hello Kachee, I love love love your blog. I am forced to say that Igbos who marry Yoruba’s are brave; I have not yet attained such bravery. (I studied in University of Ibadan too, Law, Class of 2016) and I know my parents always prayed that I do not bring a Yoruba man home. I grew up In PH CITY and had my boarding school in Umuahia, so I never really had the Yoruba experience, until Ibadan. But I’m forced to ask; were you more compelled to marry Tee because he is also Catholic? I know that for a lot of Catholics, tribe isn’t much of an issue provided the bf/fiance in question is also Catholic. Like, your parents might be sad if he isn’t Igbo but they may be more accepting of it because he shares same “Catholic faith”…. Denomination/Tribe which is more of a deal breaker. You get my question?
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMarch 16, 2017 at 09:35
Hahahahaha! Thank you. I totally get your question. Compelled is such a strong word. That’s like forced!I wasn’t compelled to marry him at all because he was a Catholic. True, faith was more important to me than ethnicity, so the fact that he was a Catholic was a plus. I think some people will be more accepting if one is present as opposed to both. But to be honest, I think we should be more open minded particularly regarding ethnicity. Faith arguably is deeper and is on the same scale and values and morals – which is key!pS: Another UI lawyer. Hope you enjoyed it!
Chimdinma Adriel OnwukweMarch 16, 2017 at 11:54
Yeah, I should not have used compelled. Wanted to even delete it but i had already sent it. I’m sorry. Thanks for sharing. I enjoyed UI. I’m happy I went there. Thanks for sharing all your lovely stories here. I AM A MAJOR READER. Was just thinking about some things and decided to drop the comment. Love and Light.
Kachee || KacheeTee.comMarch 16, 2017 at 12:04
No worries at all! I totally understand. Thank you for reading and hope to see more of you!
Chimdinma Adriel OnwukweMarch 16, 2017 at 14:27
Sure. Please check your gmail dear.
God'sglory Oge IfezueMay 17, 2017 at 13:57
This was fun to read and so inspiring 😍☺ You both looked amazing, love the pic ☺More grace and blessings to you both and in your marriage. Xx
FranklynJanuary 18, 2020 at 10:39
Wow! Really an interesting story. I am in a relationship with an Nnewi lady from Absents state and I am a Cross Riverian from the South. I plan on seeing her parent soon. This is SouthEast love. I pray things all work well in Jesus Christ name, Amen.