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Busola Adedire: Tipping The Scales of Love

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‘Marry a man who loves you more than you love him’. This is a phrase I am sure every girl would have heard at some point in her lifetime. In fact, my friend says that a man should be obsessed with you before you marry him. According to conventional wisdom, this is not a bad advice at all. But, on the other end of the spectrum are women who settle and are stuck because of this same piece of advice.

I am a person who believes in practical love, but I have heard from various sources that there is no such thing as 50-50 love. As a matter of fact, most people argue that the person who loves ‘less’ holds more power in the relationship. This is a reasoning I still cannot get over because it is pointing towards the direction of control and manipulation and if you really love someone at all, you will not be headed that direction. I did a bit more research on this topic and got some interesting responses from Brothers A, B, C, and D.

Brother A: As a man you CANNOT, I repeat CANNOT be feeling a woman way more than she is feeling you and expect it to work. You’ll end up overextending yourself and eventually lose her. Or if you already have her you’ll end up losing your ground as a leader and end up following and be stuck approval seeking. That doesn’t work and it also causes women to be bored and frustrated with you. They’ll eventually just stop messing with you. You have to be a man, and a part of being a man that makes you strong is your indifference to your feelings. Sure you love her and you show it, but don’t fall so deep into it that it’s borderline female (who are more emotional than men are, and it gives great balance). You have to be able to be a pillar and not a hammock. You can’t spend your whole time in a honeymoon mindset; someone has to hold it down. And women fall out of love with a guy who’s always bending and swaying. This is crazy,and every guy can think about a time when he lost a girl from being too head over heels and not being more laid back and less emotional.

Brother B: You hit the nail square on the head homie and I concur. To add to that, the laid-back & indifferent demeanor that a confident/secure man has in a relationship is EXACTLY what keeps most women interested/in love with him in the long-term and why they fell in love with him in the first place. A man that puts too much effort into a girl can (sadly) have this work against him. Women below 30, in general, don’t seem to respect a man that really cares about them. This is why the chilled, confident men with swag are cleaning up in the ‘kitty kat’ department because women instinctively are turned-on by that and can’t be happy with less. Those qualities I described are all alpha male traits and we know that via casual observation ALL females (human or animal) want the alpha male. As I’ve said to my friends before: Love too much and a woman can (and most likely will) lose respect for you. Love a little less (not treat her with disrespect or anything but just lay back and let her feel you) and those heart/drawstrings are yours.

Brother C: Any belief that one partner should love the other more for the benefit of the relationship, is bound to be driven by fear. Fear in its very essence is the opposite of Love. They cannot coexist in the same place. You cannot truly love someone in the purest sense if you are afraid. The lack of fear allows one to totally love someone else the way they should be loved. Fear creates the imbalance that most of us have felt at one time or another. I think people honestly over complicate things and fail to see the bottom line. Why would anyone want to be in a relationship where the other person loves you more than you love them? That’s actually rooted in selfishness and self-preservation. It’s a defence mechanism to ward away pain that can only be experienced when you are vulnerable. People defend themselves when they sense danger or are afraid. Secondly, how could one find his or her self happy knowing that they’re with someone they don’t love equally? In essence, they’d be occupying a space that someone else should be filling for fear of being hurt. You can’t have true love in a relationship if fear is the driving force.

Brother D: A woman whose love is unconditional and reckless will do more harm than good to her man just as a woman with unconditional love for a child encourages him into mediocrity rather than challenging him to be the best. It is the woman who brings out the best in her man that is celebrated eventually not the one who out of love has catered to his every need without once challenging his manliness.

My train of thoughts align with Brother C’s and the phrase “the man should love the woman more” is embedded in the belief that virtually every man, sooner or later, will prove to be a huge disappointment to the woman who loves him. However, if she loves him just a little less, it gives her a way of negotiating his presumably inevitable infidelity traits or risk of abandonment. Therefore, this romantic imbalance “works in her favor” by giving her the chance to manipulate. The same goes for a man who expects the woman to love more. I believe in treating people exactly the same way they treat me and in relationships, I do not believe in settling. It is either my mind is in it or not, and if it is… I would not hesitate to give it my best shot. However, the difficult part is not ‘losing’ yourself while you at it and this will require a lot of self-evaluation and self-development as it progresses. As an individual who loves to deconstruct societal norms I am putting it out here to the ladies ‘why are you really choosing to commit to him long-term’? Are you making the decision to commit to a man because he loves you more than you love him? And are you looking to keep the man around, because if he loves you more, then he WILL stick around? And to the men, ‘Do you believe a woman should love you more before you make the ultimate commitment to her?’

Photo Credit: bmoredivasent.com

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Oluwabusola Adedire is a graduate of Medical and Pharmacological Sciences, an enthusiast on social issues, and loves to inspire people about life, God and Love. Find her on Instagram @hrh_oluwabusola and on Twitter @HRH_oluwabussie

34 Comments

  1. Ada Nnewi

    April 17, 2014 at 2:26 pm

    And Busola opens Pandora’s box…#sighs and exhales deeply#

  2. Adaeze

    April 17, 2014 at 2:29 pm

    I actually thought about the phrase ‘A man should love me more than I love him’ today and I practically laughed at myself. Seriously, for me, it’s a 50-50 thing. It helps to love someone and have him love you back the same way. Love is no competition and it’s definitely not a ‘heifer’ in a crowded market. I have met a lot of guys and truth be told, everyone who has chased me more or pursued me more because he loved me, didn’t get my attention or affection. For me, I believe we should love just the way we want to be loved.

    • Purpleicious Babe

      April 19, 2014 at 12:17 pm

      I agree with the equal kini not that I care about figures sha.
      My own, no rules, no regulations, no GAMES. Boy meets girl, both like what they see, fall in love and make it work. KAPESH.
      That is where I stand.

      He loves you, he loves her more etc are all emotional kini.
      LOVE IS LOVE it is not measured and it is not calculated.It is free, freely given and freely accepted.

  3. Xala

    April 17, 2014 at 2:43 pm

    I was enjoying the article until this ‘However, if she loves him just a little less, it gives her a way of negotiating his presumably inevitable infidelity traits or risk of abandonment. Therefore, this romantic imbalance “works in her favor”’..So his infidelity is inevitable?! And by loving him deeply she can make excuses for that? Someone please tell me my deductions are wrong…this is the kind of flawed thinking that makes women all over the world keep ‘coping’ with a lying cheating idiot (pardon my french)

    • Realz

      April 18, 2014 at 4:52 am

      @Xala, i think u are missing Busola’s point. She is simply stating or describing the viewpoint of those that believe in the ‘man must love you more’ school of thought. When you read the article through, she clearly doesn’t agree with this school of thought and makes the point clear in the last few sentences of the article.

  4. iyke

    April 17, 2014 at 3:02 pm

    This is about the intensity of love. Whichever choice anybody will take will depend MORE on the person’s personality traits.
    Let me tell you a little story – A friend of mine Emeka dated Linda for a year or so, left her and dated other ladies on the grounds that although he liked her and enjoyed her company, he did not love her very much. Later he came back to Linda and told me that Linda is the woman he wants to live with. I was clearly surprised and reminded him what he told me some months back that he didn’t love her enough to be with her. To this he replied, “Yes, but she loves me like no one else ever has before and this is what is most important at the end of the day.” In fact, he even had asked Linda the same question: “Why do you want to be with me, knowing that I do not love you as much as you love me?” Linda said that she prefers being with a person she loves very much and who may not love her that much, than vice versa.
    Advantages here: Emeka has great love bestowed upon him and the conviction that Linda would never leave him.
    Disadvantage: Linda is more vulnerable as she has less control of the situation and less certain about her relationship with Emeka. She gives up the control of her future in order to enjoy profound love in the present.
    My Opinion: People who believe in romantic love will no doubt align with Linda, while those who believe in rationality, will align with Emeka. What this shows is that Intensity of love is never 50/50, it’s never equal among lovers – Despite the fact that being aware of the differences can be hurtful, lovers SHOULD try as much as they can to repress this issue or adopt a positive illusion concerning their partner. (a better coping mechanism).
    Back to the personality traits and in conclusion, a man/woman with more egotistic tendencies is more likely to prefer to be loved more as he/she believes that there will be no shortage or difficulty finding a new lover when boredom sets it. More rational people will also take this route while the romantic types more often than not, will always want to love more.
    My suggestion: Know your personality type and seek for partners that complement you.

    • Bleed Blue

      April 17, 2014 at 3:34 pm

      Standing ovation iyke! As in. Literally. On my feet. Clapping.

    • Ekwitosi

      April 17, 2014 at 7:08 pm

      @Bleed Blue I am with you! @Iyke this is the best comment I have seen from you!

    • ima

      April 21, 2014 at 2:29 am

      same here….in this case i am linda.

  5. Gorgeous

    April 17, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    I Agree with brother C and D. So many games in this love thing these days. Why cant we all just stop the pretence and just really appreciate who we are with. To Brother A, most women want a man who loves them more because men these days ehn??? Only God can judge una. Playing games like little boys and then they command respect. I cant waste my time with any man that is not head over heels in love with me. I cannot even stand games, and i dont play games with love. It is serious business.

    • iyke

      April 17, 2014 at 4:00 pm

      …I cant waste my time with any man that is not head over heels in love with me. I cannot even stand games, and i dont play games with love. It is serious business….
      This is like ‘ Hmm, I can’t marry a short man’…or date an Igbo Man.
      I ask, Nne are you sureeeee? Hmmm, I know why I dey ask….I understand that you don’t play games with love …. BUT don’t forget that LOVE can play basket ball on your life. Don’t be too sure for you don’t know how far you can go.

    • Gorgeous

      April 17, 2014 at 5:06 pm

      I am very sure. Been there, done that and have the T-shirt. If people appreciate what they have. Life is a lot better when your husband is crazy about you. It takes age and experience to truly appreciate a man that loves you like crazy. After being around those who love you but play games so they seem “hard to get”. When a man loves me more, I don’t take it for granted. In fact I love him back in return, that is if I agree to be with him.

  6. Somebody

    April 17, 2014 at 3:04 pm

    A man should love you more than you love him I was told. And so I dated a man who loved me more than I loved him and my God! I was unhappy. He tried his best to make me happy but I couldn’t help feeling I was settling. That we both deserved better. I deserved to be as in love and happy as he was. And he deserved someone who would love him the way he loved me. I can’t imagine him not being in my life but I knew I would do us both a great disservice if I stayed in the relationship. I broke up with him. Hardest thing I ever did. Maybe I am crazy maybe I would never find someone like him again. But I want to be loved madly and I want to love madly too. Me and my precious both happily in love with each other, no drawbacks, no inhibitions.
    This whole marry a man who loves you more is the reason many women would end up cheating on their husbands.

  7. Dr. N

    April 17, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    If I am not crazy about you, I can’t even endure the 2nd or 3rd date. Too career driven to waste time with a guy I’m not feeling. Don’t know how people do it sha. drnsmusings.wordpress.com

  8. Teris

    April 17, 2014 at 3:55 pm

    “…But, on the other end of the spectrum are women who settle and are stuck because of this same piece of advice…”
    i stopped reading at this point. i may never grasp whatever profound bit of wisdom you wish to dispense. there are few places to take this sub-plot…and

  9. Love Sucks

    April 17, 2014 at 4:16 pm

    Don’t waste your time loving anyone if you can’t go with the fact that one person always tends to love more vice versa… There’s love, and there is mutual respect. For me, love is far fetched, mutual respect is the way to go. Did I digress? maybe…. Add this, I hate the idea of Love… Always hurts you. Bleh

  10. lilz

    April 17, 2014 at 4:20 pm

    which one is this love someone more or less. If you love someone then you love the person #fullstop. i mean how do you even measure love??? kai!

    • Radiant

      April 17, 2014 at 5:48 pm

      Lol

  11. tos

    April 17, 2014 at 4:25 pm

    @Xala, painful bt true…most guys are cheats, but its up to the girl if she wants to stay or move…if you decide to stay..things might chnge later on, and you would eventually be happy….then again, if you decide to leave, you jst mgt end up jumping from one man to another all because they are cheats….God help us in ds crazy world!

  12. Anonymous

    April 17, 2014 at 4:31 pm

    @somebody, I’m in ur shoes right now, he loves me madly, can go any length to make me happy but I’m not that madly in love with him. I’m a career driven person so I keep giving myself the excuse that it’s better he loves me this much so I can get away with so much including not being arnd when we’re married cos of career and maybe other things, I see him and no excitement, I jst think I love him like a sister wld love a brother but really TBH, I want someone I’ll be madly in love with but I’m a control freak so I’m also scared that if I meet this kinda person, I’ll be unhappy cos I’ll be so much in love and loose control of my life… Mehn, pple that have it 50-50 shld be grateful, maybe I’ll jst settle afterall *confused much*

    • memebaby

      April 18, 2014 at 4:34 am

      hmmm..at least you are true to yourself.. sad, but you have to let that man go.. you both deserve better.. you may end up cheating along the line which is even worse..so sis do the right thing.. sigh lifeeeee.

  13. larakingz

    April 17, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    Iyke…. Flesh and blood did not reveal that to you. So on point.

  14. Ibukunoluwa

    April 17, 2014 at 5:52 pm

    I believe love should be 50-50 if measured, but then again why should it be measured. I think love has different definition by everyone and that’s what should matter. For me, love is not playing games and it’s about treating me the same way you want to be treated by your significant other. Your partner should be among the first group of people, you will do anything for, as well as challenge them to be the better part of themselves. To me love shouldn’t be measured on a scale in the first place, because it brings in uncertainty, insecurities, and fear.

    I think the problem with our generation and below is that we allow outside views, norms, and definition of love to determine what love is for us individually.

  15. blossom

    April 17, 2014 at 7:38 pm

    People would say ” u’ll learn to love him just marry him” I’m in a situation dat I can’t get myself out of ,i’m married to someone who loves me more than words could express. Marrying someone who loves u more is not a bad ideal but the whole answer boils down to how comfortable u re knowing the fact that u don’t love him a bit. To girls…… Pls don’t settle when u don’t have a pinch of love for him. I want a divorce cos all his doings irritates me. I’m a living testimony learn from me pls cos it’s not enjoying.

    • memebaby

      April 18, 2014 at 4:36 am

      sighh..sister it is well ooo 🙁 .

    • Nicole

      April 18, 2014 at 10:24 am

      Its refreshing seeing a comment like yours. The Nigerian society subdues women in a myriad of ways….. I just can’t deal. We are humans not objects for crying out loud. Today, I hear its unlady-like for me to tell a man how I feel about him, the next day I hear I should marry a man who loves me more…..pathetic. I had a taste of that in a boyfriend and.. boy o boy… it was lonelier than being single. He practically licked the floor on which I walked on, but that did not make a difference. He just did not make my blood hot. Just as much as I deserve to be loved, I deserve to love. Even if its one-sided, appreciate the experience. You haven’t really lived, if haven’t loved.

  16. girly

    April 18, 2014 at 2:28 am

    I don’t know oh but someone once told me a man should love you more. this is because women show/give more love than men so you guys would meet halfway.. I hope someone understands what i tried to explain.

  17. Stephanie

    April 18, 2014 at 4:50 am

    Very nice write-up! Weldone

  18. always happy

    April 18, 2014 at 5:37 am

    Love is overrated, Tolerance is celebrated in the Nigerian Culture.
    When as a people you learn how to “FREE” yourselves from this and many other unbelievable foolishness, then truly as a people you will get what you truly deserve and much more a great nation to boot.

    Corrupt leaders – tolerated
    Oppressive conditions – tolerated
    Bad governance – tolerated
    Boko Haram – tolerated
    Airlines that run old planes , crash and kill hundreds – tolerated
    Lack of basic infrastruction – tolerated

    ………..the list is endless so let me stop here and like the 35 million or more Nigerians living in Nigerian I shall bow my head and “pray”, because prayer without works is tolerated.

    • Purpleicious Babe

      April 19, 2014 at 12:23 pm

      DEEP…..
      Well said still.x

  19. Dare

    April 18, 2014 at 10:23 am

    In every relationship, there are two kinds of people, the first is what I’ll call the settler, I.e. he or she feels he can do better but I’ll stick with this and then other is the reacher I.e. the person that consider him or herself lucky to have the partner. But really, which ever way you look at it, we all have some kind of buffer zone in our love life that is meant to protect is in case of hurt. Its just a natural instinct, but it take some level of faith to go in with both feet. Anyways, its all good, Love like it’s no man’s business, it pays off eventually, but then, keep your brains open too.

  20. Kems

    April 23, 2014 at 2:29 pm

    And this is what the Bible has to say about all this:
    Ephesians 5:33
    However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
    A man must love and be in love with the woman he intends to or is spending the rest of his life with. That is the main obligation placed on him by God. A woman would naturally grow to love but more importantly should have deep respect for her man. And there is a reason for that. As time goes by in the relationship, a woman’s love for a man who loves her increases because he showers her with love and attention, she naturally reciprocates and with that comes respect for him because he was man enough to stand for what he wanted and keep going until he got it. But first the man must love everything that embodies his woman: her heart, her mind, her body, her soul, her relationships, her humanity, her calling, her Maker. And he can only do that when he takes his time to get to know her all around, her very essence. The duty to love is not placed on the woman by God, it is placed on the man! And when a man loves a woman all around like God says, that marriage will stand the test of time. I do not know a single woman who can resist that kind of love or who would not respect the man who offers it to her.

    • bella dama

      April 23, 2014 at 6:00 pm

      love grows indeed!lol. i was of that school of thought previosly, and after one yr and some months,(veeeery patient.lol) love refused to grow! rather, i got very irritated despite his much love. d respect reduced and i couldnt just help the situation. i had to call it off. i love to be loved, i’d love to love my partner aswell…not hang on,hoping it grows

  21. alldatallure

    April 26, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    Met a man who loved me so much that he wouldn’t mind washing my undies, but i had to reject his love…….why? It was kinda irritating to me. I’ld mess up sometimes and instead of calling me to order like a man should he’ld rather pet and buy gifts……for my own misbehaviour again…..kai! I no want biko

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