Here on Bella Naija, many of the writers, including myself, have spent a lot of time writing about how both men and women feel when we break up and how to cope with the heartache that follows. While I think these topics are worthy of discussion, I think there are still many of us, who need to learn when to stop putting plaster on a broken relationship. Now I am not in anyway advocating that you abandon your relationship at the first hint of trouble, but I do think sometimes we can clearly see the signs when things aren’t working out but we choose to turn a desperate blind eye.
A good male friend of mine once told me that ‘every relationship must not end in marriage’. At first I didn’t understand what he meant. Surely, when you reach your mid-twenties the goal of most relationships is marriage. But now I clearly see what he was talking about. I think ‘some’ of us are so fixated on the expected end result we forget all together the necessary process needed to reach the goal.
I have no shame in admitting that I too have recently been a victim of this mistake. When I met Lanre, I could almost swear that he was a personal gift from cupid himself. He was good looking, had a good job, religious, charming and quite intelligent. We had an instant connection. He loved my articles, laughed at my very dry jokes and thought I was the sweetest thing ever created. I won’t lie to you all, I had already started thinking about wedding venues and asho ebi colours! It was all going extremely well.
But then as time went on I realised something quite disturbing. Lanre and I were both stubborn. The slightest argument turned into a full blown, no holes barred fight. He was not as sensitive as I’d first imagined, neither was he as caring. At first I put it down to the ‘normal’ relationship blues and carried on. Very soon I found myself accepting to do without the very things I knew I WANTED in a relationship. The calls and visits became so infrequent it was almost like he lived out of town. He was always in a bad mood and it became almost impossible to see him without going on my knees first. I was lonely in my own relationship! Anytime I complained, I got labeled a nag. But the longer I ignored it, the more I felt like something was eating me up inside. But I still stayed, hoping that things would somehow change.
So one day, after I hadn’t heard from him for over 48hrs. I decided I’d had enough. It was like the pieces of my brain suddenly cemented together and I realised that I was a big fool! Why was I willing to stay in some sorry excuse of relationship when I was far happier before I met him? Why was I prepared to keep compromising on the very things that I knew I needed and deserved just so I could be ‘Lanre’s girlfriend’. Haba! Enough was enough. So I called Mr Lanre and called it quits. At first I thought I was making a huge mistake, but then I quickly realised that continuing to be in a relationship that brought nothing but quarrels, mistrust, tears, arguments and disappearing acts was the first mistake I had made. What if we got married and he didn’t come home for two days? What if we got married and then had to bring up children in a quarrelsome home. No. We both deserved far better than that!
Off course the usual heartbreak and sadness followed, but hey, I have realised that heartbreak does not kill, it only makes stronger. When I think back on the decision I made, I am happy because I know life has taught me too many harsh lessons for me to keep on repeating the same ole mistakes. I have come to a point where I know exactly who I am and what I want and deserve and I am not prepared for anyone to tell me any different. Do I miss Lanre? Of course I do. But I am wise enough to know that flogging a dead horse won’t bring it back to life.
Today, I am back to my single happy self and Lanre and I are good friends. That relationship wasn’t meant to end up in marriage, but who knows maybe the next one will.
Photo Credit: library.thinkquest.org