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The Journey to ‘I Am’ with Tolu Falode: The Cheating Score

Tolu Falode



TOLU FALODEShe smiled confidently into the distance. A smile of confidence does not mean she feels confidence inside; it just means she has found enough courage not to hide.

The truth spoke louder than his many lies. She could no longer keep score of his changing words-the same structures channeled to explain the same indiscretions. She could no longer shout enough words to silence the darkness of her thoughts-as she watched him change into a man she no longer recognized anymore.

She smiled confidently because she had finally realized the truth-beneath the pain, guilt, and abuse-not entirely physical in its composition-an all emotional and mental exhibition that pointed out darts of doubt that stabbed her trusting heart-she smiled because the purpose behind the pain was finally realized. She had made the mistake of defining herself based on another person’s pride.

She had gone through this torturous journey of understanding that life and love and prosperity cannot be tied to another person’s integrity-but rather come from an inner release-an experience of individual identity.

Yes, she understood now as he spoke words that no longer mattered to her in their monotony. She was bored with the same lines spoken as limp excuses that no longer had the ability to paralyze her inner certainty. She may not know how or why this journey of laughter and love had detoured into pain and panic, she may not quite understand what she did wrong to deserve this, but one thing she had come to find was that life had an interesting way of teaching one new experiences.

As he spoke his words of comfort and reassurances once more-a rehearsed script she no longer felt the need to applaud-she was buried inside her own thoughts. She was finding her uniqueness in this trash heap of broken trust. What had changed? Why was he no longer the same? When did she decide he had the ability to make her despise her words? When did he become the scale to weigh her worth? How did he become the center of her own definition of trust? These were the thoughts that now swirled round in her head-she no longer kept a score of his many indiscretions-because she no longer cared.

Somewhere in between the lies, even though there was no proof of truth, a woman has a scent for knowing when she is being used. She can smell the stink on your clothes even though they may not show. She can even tell through simple words that a lie is what it holds. It is deeper than any confident smile in an attempt to hide the truth-it is richer in sound than any one experience of catching an untruth. It is an essence she communes with through your conversations-she can hear thoughts that form into twisted explanations.

She may not know her name but she knows her face; she knows her smile in your silence, she recognizes her voice in your violence, she knows her presence in your absence-and after that experience, after those encounters with this strange new essence, she no longer feels justified to fight alone for a foundation that should carry both prints of commitment. It is different from paranoia-that is a drug that inhabits a particular set of thoughts-one that holds more illusion than definition in its composition. No, there is evidence in this picture-through the silent interactions, the distant conversations, the lack of laughter and the increasing presence of pain and perforations-she has become too familiar with lost words in a familiar face. The mask has fallen away.

And at this point, many women make many different decisions-a product of a female’s unique disposition. Some are bound by their particular situations and constrained into a particular position-a choice made before their thoughts can come to a conclusion. But others fight these natural restraints to nurture, they know the problem is not in another female’s focused attention on a man that she has supported into his particular position, they know that despite his many good qualities, there is still that stink of betrayal that causes a strong stench of disloyalty-a stench burdened by a deep shade of darkness-fumes flying from different deceits she can no longer pretend do not exist. The air is rank with it. She understands that there is more that she can gain from leaving than she can give from staying-because this bondage of broken trust cannot be healed by her renewed attempts to reconsider deceptive words.

Some hide from this truth, and pretend not to see this picture because it creates an eyesore-they refuse to hear warning bells and crash into confusion-a product of indecision.

But a few realize, as he speaks one more lie, as she quietly deafens to the sounds of his explanations to justify his inattention, his lack of true intentions, that this is no longer a place where her substance is nurtured. This is no longer a space where she feels a part of the picture. A few face the reality that this is a lost connection-an expired experience disabled by inattention.

She debates and ponders on these thoughts as he speaks confident that she will stay once more, unaware that she has really just had enough-she is tired of the cheating score-she is tired of feeling unloved-she is tired of being burned by broken trust-she is tired of having to explain to herself why her identity has become lost-she is tired of paying the debts for his careless use of her trust. And a woman that is tired-is a woman that is done.

She has no wish to fight anymore-after breaking her back begging and placing broken plates of trust into shattered positions of hope and determination, after ignoring the signs and signals that struggled to get her attention, just one more time is enough to make her realize her decision-a decision that she made each time she decided to stay-and this time, she has finally reached the end of this game-she is tired-she is done. And once a woman is tired, she will not hold herself back anymore. She has finished the game-she understands the cheating score-and is ready to leave behind a tortured love in hands that could not be trusted to hold her up.

She is aware the future promises so much more-and she is too good a woman to cheat herself of true trust. She no longer desires an inattentive love, an unappreciated bond, she no longer wants manipulative, misunderstood words. She is done. And so she picks up the lessons, turns away and moves on; stronger as a result of her decision-refusing to trade her identity for an expired certificate of certainty. In over relying on her love, he had bankrupted her devotion to his words. This is a woman he was not prepared for.

She refuses to be cheated once more. She is tired of a game that drains her of her worth. She has had more than enough and is ready to move on-ready to love where her heart is filled with peace not this burdensome game of shadowed identities layered with deceit.

Tolu Falode is a Relationship Counselor with over 5 years experience counseling couples and singles on having an amazing marriage. She shares dating tips on Instagram: @fantheflame and YouTube: Tolu Falode. You can also reach her via e-mail: [email protected]


  1. frannie-beautifulsoul

    January 17, 2016 at 10:59 am

    Wow, a masterpiece. Can only be understood n appreciated by those who have been there. The choice of words conveyed the depth of the pain wella. I duff my cap for u. U are GOOD at it.

  2. Olamilekan

    January 17, 2016 at 12:13 pm

    I must say, This is a flawless epistle. God bless you Tolu.

  3. Rhonyi

    January 17, 2016 at 1:26 pm

    Spoken like one who knows the pain all too well. I like this piece.

  4. Phoenix

    January 17, 2016 at 4:05 pm

    A beautiful deep and heartfelt, heart-written piece. Any woman whose been cheated on can totally relate. An author I know Yadera says that “Strength, courage and character are born in and through adversity, walk tall through it all”.

  5. shandu

    January 17, 2016 at 4:15 pm

    Thanks for this beautiful piece. Every paragraph spoke about my experience. Leaving is a sure road to happiness.

  6. ...just saying

    January 17, 2016 at 6:17 pm

    Last four comments ar from the same person. At least switch up your grammar a little.

    • Tola

      January 17, 2016 at 8:58 pm

      How do U know for sure. I don’t think the comments read alike. Tell me, what do U see?

    • slice

      January 18, 2016 at 1:29 am


  7. Scorpio

    January 17, 2016 at 8:39 pm

    This piece is sooo me….thank God for the courage to call it quits. This thing called Love can kill and some men are just evil. Its not even physical, but emotionally…..its like thats how I was being punished. All cos I fell in love, and now he has the nerve to want to get upset because I asked to move on; I know the God I serve, omo….dem go pass there cross over….Amin

  8. Kender

    January 18, 2016 at 7:42 am

    Am woahed. Lovely piece

  9. Ada Nnewi

    January 18, 2016 at 10:14 am

    Awesome piece…The scumbags never see your “awakening” coming…

  10. Tgurl

    January 18, 2016 at 11:11 am

    I guess Tolu the writer of this masterpiece is Aisha Falode of AIT’s daughter…….just wondering.

    • FD

      January 18, 2016 at 1:02 pm

      Good morning…

  11. Oma

    January 18, 2016 at 2:28 pm

    See how stupid you look now, because the other 4 comments after yours also used the same words you thought you were smart enough to notice…Negativity on fleek

    And indeed it is a brilliant piece….

  12. Sugar

    January 18, 2016 at 3:00 pm

    Your picture is beautiful tolu. Lots of loveeeeeeeee

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