Nomalanga: Porsha & Kordell’s Divorce Shows Ultimatums Have No Place In Healthy Relationships

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porsha kordellBy Nomalanga Mhlauli-Moses

So the latest news from the Desperate Housewives circuit (yes, I know they call themselves “real”; not “desperate”) is that former Steeler, Kordell Stewart, is divorcing  Real Housewives star, Porsha Williams-Stewart. Most people are saying that they did not see it coming; in other words, they did not think that the couple would end up back at city hall in less than two years, only this time, not under happy circumstances .

Quite frankly, I was also of the opinion that the couple seemed happy and what they had looked like it was a good thing…until the ULTIMATUM.

There was a clip (may be reruns of the show) that kept playing over and over where Portia and Kordell were discussing having a baby and I recall he told her that if she chose to have a baby she would not be working. Please note the use of the word told. Porsha’s response was to suggest that maybe she could still work and they could hire a nanny to help out and again, he told her that that would not be happening and she was reduced to tears.

I am not one to judge women who decide that a very extreme version of traditional marriage, where their husband barely falls short of being their parent rather than their partner, is what they want if that is what both of them have signed up for. I do believe though, that even in those kinds of marriages, there is a fine line between the husband having the final say in all matters and the husband turning into an oppressive tyrant.

In the case of Porsha and Kordell, there were stories circulating that the other “housewives” had suggested to her that her husband was controlling and she vehemently denied it and fiercely defended him. Then came the ultimatum; career or baby…then the divorce.

Whether a marriage is traditional or unconventional, as many marriages are becoming, ultimatums have no place in a healthy relationship. Every person on God’s green earth has free will and no one, not even a “traditional” husband, has the right to rob anyone of their free will. Instead, there should be communication, compromise and maybe even negotiation, but never ultimatums.

We can not know for sure if Porsha and Kordell will follow through with the divorce, or if the reports are even 100% accurate, but the fact remains that in order to have a healthy relationship, both partners must feel like their needs, wants and desires are heard and are considered in every major decision that affects both partners. A man who forces his will on a woman has moved away from love and kindness and onto control and domination. That, in my books, will never ever work.

Nomalanga helps Black women in their lives and careers. She is a Social Commentator, an Editor at Your Black World , Assistant Professor of Professional Studies and the reigning Mrs Botswana. Visit Nomalanga’s Facebook page or Follow her on Twitter

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45 Comments

  1. Ms. I HAVE A PERFECT LIFE Porssha, falling short WE see. Now u about to be a S I N G L E lady. Kenya Moore is R O T F… L H A O!!! U said mean things about her not being married NOW, look at your D U M a**. Perfect life my a**! You wasn’t happy after ALL! B * T C H.

    • To her it might have been the perfect life and she might have been happy at the time, but things happen in life especially if you put your business on national tv for the whole world to see. And for Kenya, she said some horrible and mean things too, so she is not that innocent in that situation either, but you shouldn’t be so happy about someone’s misfortune. And why does she have to be a bitch? What has she done to you?

      • Doesn’t she plays a B I T C H on the show?? are maybe she’s a B I T C H in real life! What you think B I T C H or do u prefer to be called Dee??? 😉

      • Dee, I wholeheartedly agree with your response to LaLa. This is a forum to voice your opinion, not for people to be immature and call names. You are right, no one should be happy about someone else’s misfortune. And you handled that with class by not responding to her.

    • Wow, youR comments are really, really nasty and uncalled for… especially when your calling a fellow sister a biach… really??
      I see why your prone to Ms. Kenya… no class or compassion- like her… You dont bring your sisters down like that even if you dont agree with how they’ve handled things… You give sound advise and you uplift them… We have enough to deal with in our lives with out having to put up with negative and nasty comments from our fellow sisters… SHAME ON YOU!!!

      • well said, TinaL! The only time we should look down on our sistahs is to lift them up, not tear them down and hate on them. There are much better things to do with your emotions, like feel joy, wishing the best, doing your best…

    • Are you ok? Something’s definitely wrong with a person that goes that hard on someone they dont even know. Ijs

  2. Very nice article. And I agree with every word. I thought they were happy couple as well until she was told she had to choose. I think these older men try to find a young lady that they can control. The problem with that is most young ladies grow up and start to develope their own ideas wants and needs and they no long want or need a man to think for them. I wish them both the best.

    • Older rich man, younger woman, usually a set up for disaster, he who controls the purse strings controls everything, He did LET her go to Vegas on the girls trip, but she was not allowed to go to the strip club.He did not treat her as an equal and I guess the scrutiny was too much for him. Young girls who are with these older men soon realize that they want to live THEIR own lives and as they grow into women, freedom is paramount

  3. I would LOVE for my husband to TELL me that I will not be working in order to care for our child. I would be at home with a kool-aid grin on my face.

    • I feel you Hidaya! What I don’t understand is why would you want to go to work and pay someone to take care of your child when you don’t have to. If you don’t think you can stand to be with your child at least for one year; why would you want to give birth?

    • That what you like but everyone is different some women don’t fell complete sitting at home with the man bringing home the money because as sure as your born they are going to fell like they call the shots, because they make the money. I wish them the best.

  4. That girl is not cute and dumb as rocks like Kenya said…..265 days a year! Girl please I can’t see why in the hell he would marry that bimbo in the first place, he seems like a classy man, but maybe not. Bloop Bloop!

  5. lol becuase a man marry does not mean he will keep you stop teaching girls that mess.she had no business litening to any of those women espicially nene “the stripper” leaks she damgaed goods you cannot strip and not be messed up in the head every one i knew was jacked up in the head

  6. Herman Hawkins Jr. on

    Again, I say enough coverage of these bimbos. I never knew Kordell Stewart was married, let alone be married to a knucklehead. I said it once and I’ll say it again, FIND MEANINGFUL PROGRAMMING AND SKIP THE GARBAGE. These programs like the “Housewives” shows are utterly destructive to our communities and society as a whole. Immerse yourselves in programs that uplift us economically socially and spiritually.

  7. the perfect life was a lie because she couldn’t think of anything else to say. He didn’t just start being controlling, he was like that before they got married and she agreed to it. He saw a dumb, nice shape, not too cute girl he can control and she skipped all the way to the altar. That whole thing was messed up from the start..

  8. We were not privy to what was agreed in terms of their marriage. This could have been one of Kortdell’s requirements and who knows she might have agreed to it then. It’s unfair to simply judge Kordell. As far as I am concerned if you have these type of differences from the get go, then you should not get married. You can’t get married with the hope that you are going to change your partner’s mind once in the marriage. It’s not going to change during the marriage.

  9. VoiceOf Truth on

    Actually, both of them are at fault, assuming this story is true. Too many couples get caught up in the lust of love and never discuss important details BEFORE getting married. Kordell’s ultimatum (career or baby) is too big not to have discussed before getting engaged. So let this serve as a cautionary tale: Discuss important life changing scenarios BEFORE getting engaged.

  10. He’s a very ugly and controlling jerk. She is quite ditsy and air headed but she can do way better than him. I knew when she made that arrogant proclamation in the back of the limo about doing this that and the other and maybe you’ll have a husband, that her marriage was doomed for failure. Marriage is a blood sport and only the grace of God can keep it together, certainly not anything you do. When you start to take credit for what only God can do, you are sure to fail.This is a perfect example.

  11. If he was controlling as some of you suggest, why did he let her go? Controlling people don’t believe in divorce.

    • He doesn’t need someone stupid enough to show theri @$$ as an occupation. Sister doctor girlfriend is a marriage’s worst enemy.

  12. He had to divoce her becuz his boyfriend says this game with Posha went on fo too long. Now Kodell is free to be with his man

  13. I agree with the article but I also agree that before you get marriage you should sit down and discuss these things. Too many women are desperate for a man and too many men are desperate for a maid. Don’t either of you think these differences can be discussed after the fact, or you think one can change the other after the marriage. It cannot be done! As women lets not put each other down because each of us are fighting our own battles, ours is just not out there for others to see.

  14. First and foremost, balance is the indicator of the human condition. Cordell is worth 22 mil. With his belief system in mind, Porsha was hand picked to follow his instructions. A friend of mine used to say, he maintained control because he kept his women stupid. Unfortunately, people to evolve and realize their own power and potential. Hanging out with the other ladies gave her some ideas about Cordell’s behavior. When Porsha and Cordell were coversing about allegations of him being controlling, he had a puzzled look on his face, he was exposed to the world. Cordell is peeking down the road, babies cost money, a wife talking back, if he stays too long, she will get more money more money. As long as he could have remained under the radar, life was good. He mentioned that she makes enough money from the show and that is enough, he wants to leave her with nothing. He was in love with an idea that did not work to his liking, so a swift departure. As Porsha, Mia said “when we know better, we will do better”

  15. I agree with you Dmoney you’ve said it perfectly. I am also starting to believe that the rumors maybe true about Cordell hanging out in Stone mountain,GA. She may have just been a cover because he is to controlling from what they show on TV.

  16. Tell me what marriage has stayed intact when a wife is hanging with these “Get w/the program” reality show wannabees., A compromise would have been a stay at home parent until a child reach a certain age… My opinion reality show women reflects selfishness to a high degree., It’s hard to see a substantial spouse in the “party girl ” characters they portrayed …

  17. I do think Porsha is young and put all her eggs in one basket, thinking that this would be a marriage for a lifetime. I think Kordell has a lot of skeletons in his closet and needs a young naive woman that he can control. He is an insecure male, not attractive and quite controlling. All of these signs & characteristics are a recipe for disaster in a relationship. The key is respect, love & good fair communication. Some of those aspects seemed to be missing and the relationship seemed very one sided and like Kordell had the final say in every aspect of their relationship. It seems like he has someone else in the works and was cheating on his Godly, committed, dutiful wife. Because in order for a man to file for divorce like that, he had a plan B in the works all along.The only one to naive to see that was Porsha. I wish her well and feel she is much better off.

  18. I agree with most of it but, if its your first child and your husband can make sure you don’t have to work, why wouldnt you want to enjoy the first few years (the golden years) of your childs life!

    • You are the first person I have heard say something realistic. Why not stay home and raise a child. Once they get older do you. How many people wish they could do that? Everyone says control, but lets be real. She can do what she wants, and the show has shown that. Just because she didn’t want to go to a strip club, people said it was because of her husband, no it is because of her personal feelings about the clubs. My man don’t go and neither will I. They agreed she would be a house wife, why is everyone getting mad at what they initially agreed to before they were married? If people think that’s controlling, check out articles of women in a home unhappy and depressed. That woman is far from that. She has the world at her finger tips and makes sure we see that, in front and behind the scenes. Don’t be so independent that you think you don’t need no one. He flat out said he give her whatever she wants, let them be. Everytime you do something and say, oh I can’t do that my man don’t play, that’s just like Kordell. And if a woman says, oh who cares what my man thinks, then you won;t have a relationship long cause you don’t respect your man.

  19. I think Woman who stay home depending on the man to bring home the money lose herself somewhat. while he is out there making his dreams come true she is dying inside because she want her career also why cant she have it all just like he is.

  20. First of all, I feel that there is an all out attack on the institution of marriage and family as a whole. What’s wrong with staying at home raising your children? As a daycare owner, we care for children who are with us from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and after that, they go to a babysitter? When do these parents spend time raising their children? As a culture, we leave our kids with daycares, schools, Grandma, Big momma, Uncles, boyfriends. The schools and jails end up raising our children.

    Also, I watched the episode when the housewives were talking to Porsha about her marriage. How can they give marital advice when based on what is portayed on the show you a) Don’t have a man (Kenya) b) Are having problems in your own marriage (Cynthia, Phaedra, NeNe) c) Have a man on a layaway who is not committed fully to you (Candy). I said to myself, this time next year she’s not going to be married. The lesson in this for single and married people is; if you have a good thing going, don’t let people get in your ear and mess up what you have.

    This time next year Porsha, you can guarantee that another woman will be sitting in your seat as Cordell’s wife!!!

    • Totally agree Lisa – but as a man (I don’t watch the show so I don’t know) I understand the financial responsibility that bringing a child into the world means. Far to many of us have had to accept being fathers whether we wanted to or not. Call Kordell a control freak, but a baby is for life and we fathers usually have little to NO say in the matter. Nannies and such are the trappings of rich folks. I submit that the man didn’t want a baby being raised by nannies when he was already out of the house bread-winning. If she wants kids, motherhood is a more than honorable full time job…

  21. Clearly, there was WAY more to this than the baby vs career issue. Something drastic happened for them to abruptly end their marriage like this. Maybe someone showed Porsha proof that Kordell really likes the boys, or maybe he decided he didn’t want to be married to a child instead of a woman.

  22. Hedied4all1x on

    I am here to voice my facts concerning Porsha’s as a wife…I can say one thing for sure that Porsha was a wife to him. She submitted herself to her husband the way the Bible tells us women to. (When I say submit I mean as in honoring her husband) She voiced her opinions/facts about situations with out yelling screaming or trying to dominate him)But a lot of women cannot recognize a Proverbs 31 from the Bible woman because they have been taught to be and/or have become an unsubmitted, rebellious and overly independent woman because that’s what is taught on the TV and various other sources. However, I do believe that Kordell had some control issues, but the thing is Porsha married him for BETTER and for WORSE. And she loved and respected her husband in his face and when she wasn’t with him. No matter what the other women said, she held on to what she believed was happiness with her husband. The Bible tells us not to tear apart what He has put together…We as the viewers do not know if the Lord had put them together or not (and don’t base it on because of what we watched for the past couple of months on television if God did it or not) The main thing is they were married and I can really say that I believed that she really loved him from the little bit they shown on RHOA. I commend her for showing the other woman that no matter what another person says about her husband that she stood up for him and their marriage. I believe God will honor her for that. She actually reminded me that this is how a woman of God (Christian) is suppose to honor her husband no matter what. Good job Porsha

  23. I am not speaking as an expert , just someone who has been married for twenty plus years. Marriage is about love, respect and
    compromise. If you love your mate you will respect each others differences . That is where compromise takes place. Sometimes you have to look past your wants and think of your mate. A marriage has no room for control. If more couples could learn that we will have a lower divorce rate. I pray that “WE” will give them the respect , privacy and the prayers that they will need to get past this time .

  24. I feel the same way as any other woman does without a child. My issue Started when i was unable to come up with a Child after 6 years of marriage, he started to put pressure on me to give him a child. But what he has refuse to understand is that it is God that gives children. After much patience with me he lost it and started setting up with his co workers he always is texting them even after I told him how I feel about it. He will stop for while and then start all over. He always tells me how fat and old these woman are but I dont know that. Today I have now found out he is setting up lunch dates with one of them. I no longer can take it. Why don’t he just leave? I do not understand why he keeps doing this to me. He even comes home late after work now and he finally went away and broke up with me, well i been at Psychics and there was still no change. what should I do? until my friend introduced me to a spell caster that has helped to reunite her husband. But when i contacted my first complain was about my barrenness and the Dr. did tell me what to do so that i will have children of my own and to make my Ex come back to me, when i did i was surprised my Ex called me and Apologized to me and we did a reunion, and now i am expecting my second Child. The email of this spell caster is **** you can contact him.

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  26. Mansa Okike Bansu on

    Sister Nomalanga, there are definitely time when women and men must issue ultimatums. Certain lines cannot be crossed in a heathy relationship. I only iron-clad one I bring to the table is no cheating. There is no discussion or excuses accepted for this behavior. Yes, it is an ultimatum…

  27. I domt watch the show but That man has every right to want his child raised by he and it’s mother instead of a nanny. That sounds completely logical to me

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