Except in economically and educationally elite or middle-class families, husband and wife eat separately. They spend little time together, and are discrete in their expression of intimacy. Even in monogamous marriages, extramarital relations are rather common for men. Divorce is discouraged (see "Relative Status of Men and Women"), was rare in the past, and remains less frequent among Bamileke than among the other major ethnic groups of Cameroon. Nonetheless, increasing numbers of Bamileke couples get divorced. These divorces are rarely completed legally, but rather are considered like permanent separations. Most only seek out an official state divorce if they want to remarry. Because of the exchange of bridewealth, if a divorced or separated woman dies, she will still be buried in her husband's village. Bridewealth is not returned to the groom's family in cases of divorce unless the wife is infertile. Once a marriage is consu-mated, the bridewealth stays. In the case of a woman's remarriage, the bridewealth of her daughters by the secondly marriage still goes to first husband.
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