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Does He Really Know You?



I have recently developed a crush on a man twice my age. Aside from a couple of friends who have been praying fervently and at all costs, trying to exorcise me free from the demons responsible for this crush, he epitomises most things a young lady like myself seek for in a partner. He is witty, interesting, cultured, well read and very intelligent. He jokes about it, that his intellectual side is a thing of default. He is old, so bound to know a thing or two about the world.

We have become well acquainted over time and both understand what we do for and not for a living. Every Sunday, he reads my articles in Elan. He sends me text messages after reading them. At times quoting lines that he finds amusing from the articles or writing his own jokes in response to what I have written. Sometimes, he goes as far as pointing out spelling errors, but it always ends with what I have come to describe as his pay off – “Good Stuff”. I once expressed some concern that I wasn’t sure if my writing was relatable to most Nigerians because I started getting private responses from people stating things like “I don’t get it” or “I think I have to read it again”.  He responded saying “Write from the heart, some will get it and some will not”, which in the end made me feel that little more confident about my writing style and voice. Every Sunday, he induces in me what I call “one of the greatest feelings in the world”, knowing that someone carefully takes note and seems involved in something that you do and more importantly something that means a lot to you.

A few weeks ago, I had a chinwag with a friend of mine about my crush and how awesome it felt when I received my Sunday texts. I was expecting yet another chastising conversation about my falling for an older man but instead she told me how nice it was, and she wished in her former relationships her partners would have bothered to watch her video clips on Youtube or watch her on television. It reminded me of a story my cousin told me, about a male friend of hers, who called her up on the phone reading his personal statement for an MBA application whilst his girlfriend sat next to him. I realised that despite the spiritual, emotional and intellectual connections we seek for in partners, the fact is we spend 80 to 90% of our lives doing certain things; either for money, for happiness or just for a better life. So how crucial is it that our partners are involved in what we do to a greater extent?

From helping you do some research on new courses you would like to do, to helping you review your business plan, perhaps buying resource material to make you get better or just assisting in some brain storming. Because the truth is, however multi-dimensional we are, some things at a designated time in our lives mean a lot to us and consequently cannot be ignored. So the other person involved in your life should understand that. Besides it all making you feel good, it allows the other person feel integral and indispensable to the process of who you are and the who you will become.

The mind, they say, is a great thing; understanding the working and process of another mind is the unlocking of a kind of power, but being able to complement that other mind can become like kryptonite. Understanding what someone else does and the manner in which they work can reveal a great deal about their character traits, and a good perception of those traits both good and flawed can yield a healthy equilibrium in that relationship. I believe that relationships are friendships with intimacy attached. I take a great deal of interest in most elements surrounding the lives of my friends and most of them do the same with mine. As much time as we spend gossiping, ranting and whining, is the same amount of time we spend looking out for things that would make each other’s lives that much better. From emailing job vacancies and professional programmes to resource sites and even recommending them at any given time. My best friend bought me my first journal after reading my writings on scraps of paper and I credit that to my career as a writer and a poet till date.

Though my relationship with my crush may or may never evolve past a friendship, knowing that someone is reading and responding to my Sunday column can induce such euphoria that makes me understand that at this juncture in my life, certain things I do are of great importance to me, and anyone planning to waltz in, has to get it because I would do anything in my will to understand their world.


Wana Udobang is a journalist, poet and filmmaker.


  1. summer

    March 31, 2011 at 1:01 pm


  2. Columnist

    March 31, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    Nice write up. It always feel good to be appreciated. I also love having my space. I perceive “interest in most elements surrounding the lives of my friends” as a domineering trait, and I can’t stand that.

  3. opuingo

    March 31, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    i see where ur coming from. i have a crush on an older guy too, mine is worse cuz he has two kids,no he is not married, never have been.its giving me a lot of thought cuz he dose everything right and i see myself liking him more and more everyday. whats wrong if i fall in love with him

    • cilla

      April 11, 2011 at 8:37 pm

      nothing dear for as long as he respects u, treat u right and is very responsible age has nothing to do with it my my dad is older than my mum 11yrs and they have been married for 30yrs and he had 3 kids b4 he met my mom. it what u feel, if it feel right go for it honey my boyfriend is older than me 18yrs, now dat is something to think abt. gud luck and all the best.

  4. foolish talk

    March 31, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    unfortunately.. Most guys ive picked tend to be quite selfish. the want a slim traditional lady with “no wahala” and thats that. everything else is fairytale… *sigh* i feel you…

  5. MOOOO

    March 31, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    nice one,second

  6. Choc

    March 31, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    Very well written. Well done!

    Enjoy your crush. I totally relate to the euphoria you feel.

  7. Lil miss sunshine

    March 31, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    not quiet!

  8. hoty

    March 31, 2011 at 1:43 pm

    this is all true most relationships are so shallow u wonder y u got into it in d 1st place.why have a partner if u cant share your heart issues with and all the things you both are interested in ?people do get involved these days all for the wrong reasons

  9. Nee

    March 31, 2011 at 1:46 pm

    first, yah, some good friend of mine bought me my first journal, since then, I always kept one, am on the third ! okay article.

  10. yaya

    March 31, 2011 at 2:01 pm

    [email protected]….
    It reminded me of a story my cousin told me, about a male friend of hers, who called her up on the phone reading his personal statement for an MBA application whilst his girlfriend sat next to him…..
    This happens a lot in relationships and i think it just show a gap

    • feyi

      June 2, 2011 at 9:03 pm

      it doesn’t have to be a gap..let’s not take things at face value here..just because you’re in a relationship with a guy doesn’t mean you must be each other’s be all and end all…so what are my friends for? what are his friends for? Everyone has different strengths and the key is to leverage on the resources at hand…yeah she was sat there while he was on the phone with the cousin discussing something that could have a huge impact on both their lives but how do you know she’s not helped with other parts of his application or will have the final look at his personal statement????think guys before you make conclusions..nice article

  11. Austine

    March 31, 2011 at 2:06 pm

    First….so? Never said anytin! Anyway, first to comment…lol! Wot an interesting prose…nice one!

  12. Ytee

    March 31, 2011 at 2:08 pm

    That’s an integral part of relationships to me, finding someone who understands what makes me tick and vice versa. Well done, Wana!

  13. NKASI

    March 31, 2011 at 2:13 pm

    *sigh* I can totally relate to this. I used to be friends with this guy back in the day, he was all sorts of awesome-said and did all the right things. We spoke incessantly about a variety of things including my job and every night,he used to call me and we would pray together. *the good times*
    Anyway, about two months into our friendship(yeah we never got beyond that point) he said he wanted to pay me a visit at my office. I was elated, that was like my ultimate high! Now I could show him off to all my colleagues who were always so envious of our lengthy phone conversations. Then he just had to go and put his foot in it…
    Me: so when are you coming over so I can push my break to around that time?
    NS: maybe around 1pm, where do you work again? Please text me the address and the name of the company.
    Me: *shocked silence*
    NS: are you there?
    Me: did you just ask me where I work?
    NS: yeah, so I can find the place now
    Me: you mean after 2 months of talking to me everyday, you do not know where I work?
    NS: I know you have mentioned it a couple of times but I honestly can’t remember. It is sha a media organization, a newspaper or something.

    Suffice it to say, he got no invitation to my office and after this our friendship never quite got past the platonic stage. Maybe I was rash but I cannot fathom a guy being interested in me and not caring enough to know what I do.

    *sorry guys, didn’t mean to take up so much space with my comment. I get like that sometimes*

    • beezy

      April 2, 2011 at 2:25 am

      @NKASI……… Rule of thumb: the comment must never compete for space with the article being commented about……..

    • Purpleicious Babe

      April 27, 2011 at 6:49 pm

      What?? she is just commenting….. hows that taking up space???

  14. notaplayahater

    March 31, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    congrats. now get off the page so people can read. u dey cause traffic for here

  15. tee

    March 31, 2011 at 2:20 pm

    summer, pls we are not in nusery and primary school doing competition for first position. psheeew

    • Miss-cRaZy

      April 1, 2011 at 1:49 am


    • Snyder

      April 1, 2011 at 10:19 am

      lol! I like you!!!!

  16. May

    March 31, 2011 at 2:34 pm

    Nice one

  17. Africhic

    March 31, 2011 at 2:38 pm


    Nice article i don’t want to sound like some of those “ignorant” Nigerians. But i had to catch my breathe trying to get it. Not that it was not interesting, but it seemed like too much information at once. i have read better posts by you.

    I wish you success in your writing career

  18. Tiki

    March 31, 2011 at 2:47 pm


  19. butterfly!

    March 31, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    sigh….got me thinking about ‘rethinking’ all over again… neways good stuff!

  20. ify

    March 31, 2011 at 2:52 pm

    i concur.

  21. Tiki

    March 31, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    I concur 100%, Wana! I think it’s important to be able to share your partner’s passions and fear – communication and involvement becomes even more important in a long-distance relationship like mine…I find that mere writing on his wall on Facebook, or asking him inane questions like what he cooked for supper and did he clean the house, or even more serious things like his boss from hell, helps to strengthen our emotional, intellectual and spiritual connection despite the geographical divide.

  22. alli eshiema

    March 31, 2011 at 3:25 pm

    second! food for thot

  23. bonny

    March 31, 2011 at 3:30 pm


  24. dewowo

    March 31, 2011 at 3:35 pm


  25. mary

    March 31, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    l love this write up it explain what l’m going through in one word, l’m crying, l’m sending it to him rite away, may be he will understand.

  26. Tyna

    March 31, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    this is splendid

  27. Chichi.

    March 31, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    First of all, I dont think there is anything wrong with getting involved with a guy twice your age. As long as he’s not old enough to be your father. Secondly, its important for one’s partner to be involved in their partners interests; however, there should also be that ‘space’ barrier. I dont think i would be comfotable if my other half was constantly invovled in what I do.

    • Tina

      April 1, 2011 at 5:09 am

      if he is twice your age then he is old enough to be your father…and there is something really wrong with that in this day and age…

    • Ebi

      April 1, 2011 at 8:20 am

      Sweetheart, a guy twice your age IS old enough to be your father

  28. mee

    March 31, 2011 at 4:38 pm


  29. Browngirl in the ring

    March 31, 2011 at 4:54 pm

    I am a 33yr old lady dating a man 19yrs older than myself. He is very attentive, funny, and absolutely worships me.
    I first met him about 8-9yrs ago whilst studying for my masters degree, we used to take the same train to central London and part ways. We were just friends at the time and he’d suggest a million and one places for me to apply to for job, listen to me go on about my studies and I’d listen to him go on about his study days, work and his daughter.
    We started dating 5months ago and he has been incredibly supportive especially where it concerns career progression etc. I write professional exams every now and again and my man gives me so much support I need: proof reading my work, making me endless cups of tea & coffee, cooking dinner and cleaning up so I have enough free time to work.
    There is a lot of disparity in our interestsand likes: I usually watch eastenders, coronation street and the likes and have never been one for QI, university Quiz, etc. I now watch and enjoy them not just because they are programmes he watches, but there is a wealth of knowledge gained watching those sort of programmes.
    This is my best relationship by far and it may not be singly down to the fact that I am a lot more mature and subsequently more patient, but also because I am with someone who is a lifetime ahead of me and is doing quite a few of the qualities I wished past boyfriends had.
    He gets attention and love from me, and I get the same from him as well as intellectual gains…

    • Jade

      April 1, 2011 at 8:09 pm

      yaaaaaay u

  30. JC

    March 31, 2011 at 5:45 pm

    OMG!!! I was just saying this a while back..i find that the older you get the more important this factor becomes…wierd its like you were in my head( d part about ur cousin and her mates mba app is also similar to me….)

  31. KK

    March 31, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    Lol…God I enjoy the “commenter’s”/contributors on BN.

  32. Deola

    March 31, 2011 at 8:14 pm

    I totally feel you, have actually been in such situation that the guy didn’t appreciate my interest or care about what am passionate about. I was in between the guy and my career. We split 4 months ago and moved on in life, couldn’t handle such and couldn’t pretend that everything was ok when really its not.

  33. Obi

    March 31, 2011 at 9:37 pm

    Some guys play the whole attentive gig and when push comes to shove, you’re on your own. Time can distinguish between the serious and the pretenders though some guys can stick to the end and still end up leaving you hanging. But I do like older guys, get along with them REALLY well.

    • Tomi

      April 1, 2011 at 8:16 am

      true talk

  34. indomie

    March 31, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    OK, i move for the motion to BAN all comments of “first” and “second” because not only is it childish and annoying, it takes away from trying to read all the “real responses” that people had about said article. HABA. Nigerians and follow-follow. Tufiakwa!

  35. ify

    April 1, 2011 at 12:10 am

    This article made me sit upright in my chair. I have just been thinking along the same line myself……… far should your partner get involved in your life.? Should he be involved in some things and not in others? I am the kind of girl that loves having my own space. But recently, i am beginning to yearn for someone who wants to be involved in all parts of my life. Yet, I would not like someone who poke noses in all my affairs…..I guess it’s all about discernment

  36. Miss-cRaZy

    April 1, 2011 at 2:10 am

    ^^….I just had to copy paste this….prolly paste it on my boyfriend’s forehead.

  37. Sabirah

    April 1, 2011 at 3:25 am

    I really enjoyed this article

  38. diva

    April 1, 2011 at 5:50 am

    follow ur heart my dear, the emphasis on him being much older than u is not necessary…..when there is love and affection, age shudnt be a barrier. my man is 12 yrs older than me and we love each other very much!

  39. ugowoundo

    April 1, 2011 at 7:55 am

    interesting piece….i’m involved with a lady 10yrs younger than me(i’m 32)…..sometimes i wish she could understand i love her for who she is and not what is underneath those skirts……is there anything wrong dating a guy 10yrs older…

  40. ephee

    April 1, 2011 at 8:25 am

    hell NO!

  41. Mary Abiola

    April 1, 2011 at 10:37 am

    Nice write up.Wana I don’t know your thought when you were writing this but I want to guess its’ for us to learn something so don’t mind the fellow that posted that he has read better post by you.I think the essence here is that relationships should go just beyond sentiments.Personally I don’t understand why m in a relationship and the person does not care about my affairs.He / she should be sincerely interested in all my affairs and vice versa. Well done girl.About you having a crush on someone twice your age as long as he is not married and you both understand what you want

  42. Ms M

    April 1, 2011 at 10:51 am

    Here’s your Friday text (or well comment)… Good stuff Wana!

  43. bunny

    April 1, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    ok…on a lighter note..wana, u sure say no be chaz B?(hope i got d spelling right?)

  44. Oluchi

    April 1, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    It’s so true. It’s difficult to meet guys who are truly into you: your passions, interests, dreams and so on. Problem is, the physical chemistry is often missing with best friends.

  45. Chioma

    April 1, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    Love this piece. Candid Wana style!

  46. henry

    April 1, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    the truth is when theres a will there’ll always be a away to get to the object of our attraction. Pretense will always crack under the pressure of temporary denial from a desire or yearning. Brilliant peace lady!

  47. Isabelle

    April 1, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    Dear friend, I always appreciate your writtings, but allow me to tell you what I think for this article. I will not judge you for having a rush for a man who is twice your age because everyone is responsible for his/her own life and free to do what he/she wants; however, there are those things that are not good from the judgement of your own conscience, from the community perspective, for the common sense and you know it. What I seem to understand is that may be you wrote this article either to find someone to comforte you in your decision or to exorcize asituation you know is bad. Another poit is that, there is nothing to be proud of because your partner is involved in EVRYTHING you do! In contrary it should raise red flags because that is common trait of people who are possessive and want to have an absolute control of partner’s life. I don’t believe you will find it that funny when he will start having soething to say about how you dress, how you cook, how you eat, who you should be friend with…, if you doubt, go ahead time will tell. A last point, from experience, most people involved in relationship with old men end having the age gap problems sooner or later.

    • Zahra

      April 1, 2011 at 8:36 pm

      You have already jumped into conclusions that he is married and Wana is dealing with the baggage that comes with that sort of relationship. Don’t be ignorant. There are many ‘single’ older men (in Lagos and beyond) looking for a meaningful relationship that goes beyond knocking boots as there are married and younger men looking for same or unmeaningful as the case may be

  48. Sola

    April 1, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    The problem with women like you is that you like the finished product. You do not want to take the time to nurture a man. Just like you feel the need to be nurtured by your older paramour. His younger self was nurtured (probably by himself, assuming he’s not married), to be the giver he is now. Trust me, this dude knows what he’s doing. Its an act. And it has worked. You will soon be knocking boots. Only after his supportive act is over will you realize that all relationships are a give and take and its mostly men that need the bulk of the nurturing. Everyone is supportive from afar until they get what they want. You unfortunately probably don’t have the patience for a younger man who may need your nurturing. Its a shame really…..but its a lesson you will probably have to learn. Most likely the hard way. That you have to give to receive.

    • Kumasiba

      April 1, 2011 at 11:21 pm

      Wow! I just had an AHA! moment. Thank you for your comment.
      Who will nuture the ‘un-nutured’ ones.

    • na me talk am

      April 2, 2011 at 1:48 am

      I thought nurturing is done by a man’s mother. A BOY who is in need of nurturing is NOT a MAN! If I need someone to nurture, it will be children and not grown men with beards who are seeking nurture and someone to baby them. In another few years, women won’t need men again. It’s already happening here in the West. Men will become stale.

    • Gidi

      November 4, 2011 at 3:22 pm

      so why are the ladies not already nurtured by their fathers?

    • beezy

      April 2, 2011 at 2:32 am

      @Sola…. God bless u for this comment! I luv eeeet!!.Thanx for flipping the coin so we can see the other side too….

  49. dakkylove

    April 1, 2011 at 5:24 pm

    i totally understand this article and for people who have misconstrued the article to a woman wanting the finished product, your ignorance is alarming. there is nothing wrong with wanting a man who understands you and is supportive of your creativity, that being said i found that its mostly platonic male friends that take a keen interest in the more creative things i do, so while i would love a man’s 100% support at all times, i am not going to kick a man to the curb because he doesn’t understand all the 1001 things i am involved in, His unquestionable love is enough for me and someday he will understand that to love me is to know me and to know me is to discover all aspects of who i am….enjoy your crush.

  50. Vee

    April 1, 2011 at 6:09 pm

    Beautiful piece. You indeed wrote from the heart and it came through. I have been blessed to also have older friends at different points inmy life, that have been more involved than the younger ones in my life had been. And indeed knowing that someone out there is interested in what you do and always there to tell you like it is with a hint of encouragement is all worth it. Cheers for this

  51. Zahra

    April 1, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    You have already jumped into conclusions that he is married and Wana is dealing with the baggage that comes with that sort of relationship. Don’t be ignorant. There are many ‘single’ older men (in Lagos and beyond) looking for a meaningful relationship that goes beyond knocking boots as there are married and younger men looking for same or meaningless as the case may be

  52. missyD

    April 2, 2011 at 1:53 am

    I found your article quite refreshing,although never really had much experience with older
    men (do like them anyway!)but kinda understand where ur coming from. Kudos!

  53. Baby

    April 2, 2011 at 11:53 am

    Honestly dis isn’t a biggie,I’m 20 & my boyfriend us 53’he makes me happy….. Understands me….. & since we started dating,I’ve neva cheated on him

    • smh

      April 12, 2011 at 12:06 am

      I REALLY hope those numbers were transposed.

  54. Jack

    April 2, 2011 at 4:37 pm

    63rd! Abi last no dey win award?

  55. Obi

    April 3, 2011 at 3:04 am

    But wait o … all the write is saying is that she fell for an older man. She’s not saying that only older men are worth falling for. If there is a same age/ younger man you feel the same way about and he meets your needs/ wants/ whatever the heck it is you are looking for … then go for it too. The writer is speaking for herself. So to all those “wanting finished products” folk … what’s your point?

  56. F

    April 3, 2011 at 1:22 pm

    I think Sola has a good point about too many of us wanting the finished product… It’s like someone I know used to joke- women want “Olorunsogo” not “Surulere”. I am totally with Na me Talk am about that issue, though. Why is it the woman’s job to do this so-called nurturing in the first place? There is a double standard here that I don’t like. We are expected by our culture and society to be these virtuous superwomen with good careers and giving motherly natures… We’ve all heard the anecdotes about “wife material” and how this is lacking nowadays. So, somehow, we women are supposed to work on ourselves to become this esteemed thing called “wife material” but the man doesn’t have to do the same? In fact, getting the man to do that is another task we have to fulfill? That doesn’t sound fair to me…

  57. she girl

    April 3, 2011 at 1:59 pm

    Finally I have gotten some encouragement from this piece tho it is not yet enough.I am datin a guy that is 17yrs older than I am,he is evrything I need in a guy but like some people commented,in his supportive ways,he tends to get domineering but the bottom line is communication and understanding and dialogue.I don’t see anything wrong atall,older men are more mature.beautiful piece!

  58. Tiki

    April 4, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    @sola and isabelle, trying too hard to read meaning into a simple article leads you to see things which aren’t there! What’s the link between a man sensitive and attentive enough to be interested in things which are important to you (eg ur job, family, close friends, likes/dislikes and hobbies) and wanting a ‘finished product’?that sounds like an excuse for men who can’t be bothered with your life except where it merges with his (such as his meals, his bed, someone to accompany him to events etc), something which Isabelle sounds like she has experience with. Sola, nurturing is a two-way street…and men do not need the bulk of nurturing…you veered very close to whining there. If the ‘paramour’ Wana refers to nurtured himself (your comment, line 3), then why is nurturing a woman’s job? This has nothing to do with younger versus older men…everybody has a responsibility towards their partner to show concern. If you can’t do that, regardless of whether you are old or young, that is just immaturity, and the connection does not deserve to be called a relationship, in the intimate sense of the word.

  59. umo

    April 4, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    rilly???????????hhmmmmnnnnnnnnnn………..when u want sth but just cant av it…..

  60. tee

    April 8, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    very realistic piece, one that we all can relate to, i think its an integral part of every fruitful relationship to build each other up, and when we meet such people who are genuinely interested in our progress we cannot but stick with them..nice one wana

  61. Gago

    April 14, 2011 at 8:05 pm

    awesome!! i am so much in love with your article coz it sumz up one major yard stick 4 determining if a relationship is right or wrong which is bringing out the best in each other n not the opposite *thumbsup*

  62. linda moka

    April 20, 2011 at 9:22 am

    i believe ur partner should be ur soulmate. someone who will be there in watever situation u are actually going through. pardon me but i am going to get abit spiritual here. when the bible talks about unconditional love in 1 cor.13 vs 4-8, it broke down wat love is and wat it isnt. when u and ur partner seek and understand unconditional love, u will stop thinking about ur self and put that person’s happiness and thoughts first before urs. if we learn unconditional love, the world will be a wonderful place to be, and we will stop thinking about what we want to get out of a relationship for ourselves.

  63. Tee

    April 22, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    Going thru this article and the comments, what has been bothering me came to surface again. My problem is that most ladies see men as selfish when they are actually are. How many ladies are into their man’s stuff? Had so many friends (not even girl friend) and realized its all about them. They don’t care about you, your family and all. The reason some ask about your work and where you stay is to know if you can actually take care of them not cos they do care. Ladies, what do you know bout your guy? You want him to be engulfed in you but you don’t care about him- is that not selfishness?

  64. sly

    May 25, 2011 at 9:08 am

    i respect the fact that u appreciate his effort not his age or status.

  65. Pam

    October 31, 2011 at 4:02 pm

    This is really nice! Awesome. You write from the soul. But I think something is missing. This writeup isn’t lyk complete though I can see d fullstop there. That’s like saying *some texts missing*

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