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Yetunde Olasiyan: When Should You Give Your Partner a Second Chance?



dreamstime_l_815926Hmmm, second chances. A partner who has professed and pledged undying love for you in public, private, social media, among friends and family(even before his ancestors if possible) is suddenly caught neck deep in an affair – be it emotional, physical or secret affair.

In the case of emotional affairs, he feels he is simply chatting and texting and that shouldn’t count as anything untoward. So far he hasn’t taken it a notch higher in terms of active dating then, he isn’t in the wrong. Those who engage in secret affair do not wish their partners to know. They try to cover their tracks but like the title of Teju Cole’s book, ‘everyday is for the thief.’

Now, the crux of the matter here is that after you have caught your partner in either of the scenarios, he begs for forgiveness like his life depends on it. He claims he only got carried away for a moment but he or she is still in love with you. You forgive him or her, yet you know very well in your heart that he will still do it again and again. But because he has begged you, you hang on to hope, the hope of a faithfulness that exists only in your head but apparently doesn’t exist with your partner.

Seriously, has second chances been abused? Why do some people beg you and still go back to the same thing over and over again. Is it that they take their partners for granted? Is it just about ‘let me beg him/her and then cover my tracks well next time’? How many people actually beg for a second chance with the whole of their heart and with the readiness to change?

Take for example, a man who beats his wife for whatever reason, begs for a second chance. He does everything possible to win her back until one day, the devil in him rears it’s ugly head again, and he beats her, yet again. This time he compensates by changing her car. She hangs on, because she loves him and he doesn’t beat her all the time.

A guy begs his girlfriend for forgiveness after cheating and getting caught. He cries bitterly, begs like his life depends on it. Girl sees genuineness, forgives and they move on. Few weeks later, guy is back to his vomit.
How do we explain these strange human tendencies? Do we say it’s a weakness that’s beyond them, or it isn’t ordinary, or they just want to eat their cake and have it? Or they don’t want to commit to one partner?

When is it right to give another chance? Or is it better to do away with such people after a first offence? I’ll be waiting to read insightful and honest opinions in the comment box. And if you’ve got such an experience, kindly share and let’s learn.

Photo Credit: Dreamstime

M.Sc International Affairs&Diplomacy, ABU, Zaria|| B.Tech Environmental Biology, LAUTECH, Ogbomoso|| 1st Prize Winner, SouthWest Nigeria-CLO Essay Competition on Child Labour in Nigeria|| 5th Prize Winner, Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation Essay Competition|| Certificate of Participation, World Bank Essay Competition|| Author of A Gift of Dreams|| [email protected]|| Former Content Editor,|| Ghostwriter, Editor, Profile Writer|| Nike|| Olasiyan|| For writing enquires email [email protected]


  1. marves

    January 11, 2016 at 8:29 pm

    The concept of second chance needs to be explained and properly understood. For cases as you have described above, a second chance is not till he/she commits the second act. Its the series of activities, and decisions the they take to fight and ultimately eliminate the act itself. One who assaults a spouse will not stop at once. One who commits sexual misconduct will not stop at once simply because they are caught. These actions are a culmination of thought patterns and actions. They didn’t start overnight . You will hurt yourself if you believe it will cease abruptly. Note Jesus’ response to peter on the number of times to forgive. What is needed is not a “singular” second chance. Second chance is plural and yet remains SECOND CHANCE and not SECOND( or third or fourth) CHANCES.
    On when it is right to give second chance? When a proper understanding of the misconduct has been displayed,a genuine desire to forsake expressed and steps to accomplish it taken or started. That’s when to give the second chance. Else you wait until they have fulfilled the first step. Else its a waste of time and fruitless exercise.

    • Nicez

      January 11, 2016 at 11:41 pm

      I like this response because it is not biased like the main write up. It takes into consideration the fact that both men and women ? are capable of doing wrong.

    • tola

      January 12, 2016 at 2:54 pm

      Marves this response made so much sense and as I read the part about second chance being plural and not being 3rd 4th etc chances, it just hit me that as long as we are forgiving as much as Jesus asked that we forgive one another, it would always be a second chance we give because that one incident is forgiven no matter how mant more times it is going to reoccur in the future. Don’t know if this makes sense but it just hit me in a way i have never looked at it before 🙂
      The question now becomes if you have to keep forgiving the same offense continuously how does the person deal or heal from hurt? I guess we trust that we have a heavenly Father who is a divine fixer

  2. Jagbajantis

    January 11, 2016 at 8:34 pm

    To cut my answer short, there are no hard and fast rules, and the following are my observations.

    – It depends on the nature of the “offence”. For me, if what she did was “contrary to morality, good conscience and natural justice,” I am sending her back to her mother. For example if she slept with a close friend of mine, or if she committed a crime against a child.

    – You can forgive, but if you are refusing to forget, then maybe its time to give the relationship a rest, as your greviance will not allow you heal enough to keep trust in the relationship

    – if the lass is a repeat offender who only apologizes because she get’s caught, then it is better to jettison her

    – The good parts of the relationship must surpass the bad parts.

  3. n

    January 11, 2016 at 8:42 pm

    who chop my burger this early evening?

  4. Tolu

    January 11, 2016 at 8:51 pm

    Nice article but you need to know that ladies even cheat more than guys hence a need for this article to be re-directed to both parties

    • Cindy

      January 12, 2016 at 7:24 am

      “You need to know that ladies cheat than guys”. I don’t know which is funnier, the confidence with which you made this comment or the stupidity of it all. The author of this article is female, of course she would use examples that relate to her gender. Number 2, why do you people like spreading so much fallacy without shame? Don’t you know there are unsuspecting individuals that would actually believe it? It reminds of the generally accepted lie that we have more women in Nigeria and so ladies should stop doing shakara whereas the last general census clearly says otherwise. Please, tell us the basis of this your statistics. Secondary or primary data? Scope of your study? Method of data collection?Response rate? Method of analysis? Test of hypothesis? You can’t? Good. Next time, keep this little lie you tell yourself in your head and save the rest of us from this nonsense. Mtchew. Your comment just made me weak this early morning?

    • portable

      January 12, 2016 at 12:43 pm


    • belle

      January 13, 2016 at 6:22 am

      i wish i could dispute your statement but you are somewhat right, a lot of women are into the cheating game these days….its really amazing what a lot of committed/married women do these days outside their relationships/marriages. if you hear some stories, your jaws will just drop

  5. Natu

    January 11, 2016 at 9:37 pm

    When you learn how much you are worth, you will stop giving people dicounts.

    • Nicez

      January 11, 2016 at 11:43 pm

      I tire ☺.

    • Person

      January 12, 2016 at 5:32 pm

      This is my personal mantra. Absolutely no discounts. For someone who struggled with low self esteem & abuse in childhood and early adulthood, I don’t give discounts on how I expect to be treated. Mba. Been there, done that and have the receipts!

  6. Tea

    January 12, 2016 at 12:37 am

    If Toke can forgive Maje, surely anyone can be forgiven.

    • Iris

      January 12, 2016 at 9:09 am

      That was kind of unnecessary, but it was also funny as hell.

  7. Californiabawlar

    January 12, 2016 at 3:19 am

    Contrary to what I tell the men I date, I actually believe in second chances (except for physical abuse).

    In my head, cheating doesn’t quite bother me (I had a cheating ex, and I literally laughed to his face about it). I’d say I’d only leave if I was looking for a reason to before the episode. However, taking into account that I’ve never been in love and/or physically intimate with a partner….those two factors may change my view on things….especially since I’m very ‘superstitious’ and finicky about sex… I imagine I’d feel a certain type of way knowing your penis has been in another vjayjay, and now you’re bring the same bucket to fetch from my well….it might not go down well….literally.

    This angle of second chances, intimacy after cheating, was once explored on BN….a few ladies shared their experiences and it was interesting. I think it’s the reason guys find it much more difficult to take a cheating wife back….just knowing someone else has been ‘there’….which is an interesting twist as we’re made to believe that guys don’t see sex as a big deal.

    All in all sha second chances are not a crime (on the partner that chose to stay)…instances where I’ve adviced immediate seperation was a case where: 1. the first time she found out he was cheating was actually with multiple partners who didn’t know he was married, 2. He wasn’t apologetic (he’s emotionally abusive on a good day) 3. They’re in their late 30s, no kids. All three problem, 1 couple, omo, and she still stay o!

  8. kim Kim

    January 12, 2016 at 7:17 am

    @Natu, I’m with u sister. I don’t believe in second chances. NO!

    • Edu

      January 12, 2016 at 11:26 am

      bcos u are perfect, i guess

  9. kim kim

    January 12, 2016 at 7:26 am

    @Natu, I’m with you, sister.

  10. cherish

    January 12, 2016 at 7:46 am

    hmmmm!this one serz well well!i dunt blv the fact that ladies cheat more than men!mba emi o gba!we get contented easily than men esp married ladies.

  11. Adaeze Writes

    January 12, 2016 at 11:03 am

    To err is human but to forgive is divine. When you forgive and give a spouse or a boyfriend/girlfriend as the case maybe, a second chance, know that you have done your part which is -to forgive. If the person continues over and over again, forgive, but don’t give him or her room to hurt you again. Now, that’s when you walk away.

    For amazing stories on blogsphere visit,

  12. portable

    January 12, 2016 at 12:41 pm


  13. princevinco

    January 13, 2016 at 3:55 am

    Once you desire and feel that you deserve a second chance, it is imperative that you must give our partner a second chance. But if you feel that you don’t deserve a second chance yourself for any reason, it is only then that you can refuse to give you partner a second chance.

  14. Jamce

    January 14, 2016 at 2:28 pm

    @Cindy, I guess your ITK is making you to live in a fool’s paradise not to know that the cheating game is both ways. Also, an objective author seeking to proper opinion should be balanced in their views and should not be gender based. It means that you claim to intellectualism as you tried to show in your different analytical models is a sham.

  15. Amaka d igbo chic

    January 14, 2016 at 3:13 pm

    @Natu @kim Kim…..what if in a situation u deserve a second chance and u are not given? plz think tru before dropping ur comment. there’s no perfect one on earth. everybody is bound to make mistake at subsequent times, in God’s sight its called SIN!!! we all sin everyday and God still overlook and forgives us no matter how terrible it is. so who are we, mere mortal not to forgive.

  16. NewComer

    January 15, 2016 at 9:42 pm

    It is okay to give a 2nd chance but that’s not the issue. I believe the issue has to do with what is within. If the person who is always at fault, be it male or female, keeps repeating it then it means they haven’t really faced the real issue.

    Most people don’t plan on repeating the act but they also can’t help themselves. That’s only because its a problem from within the heart. If one doesn’t have the FEAR OF GOD in their hearts then they can easily go back to their sin even though they promised heaven or earth.

    But when a man/woman fears the Lord. Take your cue from Joseph…. He couldn’t sleep with his master’s wife because he couldn’t stand the idea of committing such a WICKED act against God first and foremost, and then against his master… Genesis 39:8-10.

    When a man/woman fears God, he/she will be forced to stop in that moment of temptation to think about how God will feel, how their partners will feel, and then how “they” would feel if it were to happen to them.

    It’s all about the fear of God. Its an easy statement but the fear of God also brings about so many things such as selflessness, empathy, and sympathy in this case.

    The fear of God rooted, saturated, and wrapped around your heart, soul, body, mind, is the key!

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