Maurine and Victor have dated for three
years. They are undoubtedly in love but always at loggerheads with each other.

“Victor has refused to change from his ways. Though he is very generous and
ready to give me his head on a platter of gold, he would always frustrate me
with stories of his kind gestures anytime we had a quarrel. By now, his friends
and neighbours knew who paid for my computer certification course! He paid N300,
000 and that has become the anthem anytime there was a misunderstanding. Whenever
he frustrates me, I would pack my things from his apartment and go back home.
If he does not see me in a week, he gets my friends and family members to beg
me and would always refer to what he has done for me. His best line is, ‘after
all I have done for you.’ At a point, I was sourcing for money to refund the
debt so that I could be free! Aside from that, he is never ashamed to talk to people
about any quarrel we had, even intimate ones,” she says.
Another lady, Agatha,
has the same story to tell. Kingsley, her boyfriend, has a  caustic tongue? Narrating her dilemma, the
30-year-old civil servant reveals: “Anytime there is a misunderstanding, he
apologises but he drifts from that to chronicling all my deeds and renders advice
on how to keep a mate forever. These ‘for-your-own-good’ words are a constant
and I expect them after each apology. Really, Kingsley is a great guy and I
appreciate him but he could scold you as if you were a child and would not mind
whoever was around. I remember my last visit to his apartment when his cousin
visited. We went to the market and by the time we returned to cook for him, he
was angry that I was late. ‘You are just too useless! You lack sense of a
wife-to-be! I hope you will change before December (our wedding date) because I
may decide to call it off!’ he ranted on in the presence of his cousin!
Fortunately, the little girl knew about his lashing tongue too and pacified me.”
Ben, 28, dates
25-year-old Laide, an architect. “I knew her when we were undergraduates but
she agreed to date me during her youth service year. I believe I am her first
boyfriend but we have not spent much time together. My problem is that she does
not show any sense of commitment. It is very difficult for her to call me on
phone or send text messages. Even when I send text messages to her, she would
not reply and anytime we see each other, she makes no comment about them.
Whenever there was a quarrel, she would never say sorry, even if she is guilty,”
he laments.
Albert’s problem is simple:
Stella is not ready to leave her former love
r! “We have been dating for
two years now and I met her when she came visiting her father in Abeokuta,
where I also live. We became close and I deflowered her. I visit her in Lagos once
every month due to my hectic schedule but we talk very often on the phone.
Lately, I observed her excitement is fizzling out and when I humourously asked
if anyone has slept with her since she left me in Abeokuta, her reply was: ‘I
don’t know’ or ‘I can’t remember.’ This really baffles me and I feel the agony
in me always.
So, I told her I will like to quit and she
said ‘Ok’. But I love Stella, called back, apologized and invited her to
Abeokuta so that we could discuss the issue. When she came, I asked her again
if she meant what she said and she said it again. She also confessed that she
was dating a guy before she met me but they quarreled but the guy apologized
and his parents intervened. They are now back. I had forgiven her and we both
promised not to let go of each other. Now, my confusion is that Lagos guy. If
she really loves me, she should dump him for me. I already told her and she
promises doing that soon. It’s over five months and I waiting for her to say
she dumped him.”

Let’s get talking

There are many reasons why
a relationship could go very bad. Ironically, there are many ways to make the
most of any affair, especially when both parties are in love. Good
habits/character and a sense of commitment/thoughtfulness are some of the
ingredients to a successful relationship and partners should make room for
change. Why scold a girlfriend like she is your younger sister? Why reveal to
friends and neighbours intimate things all because you need their intervention?
I believe men/women who brag about kind gestures rendered to partners are
immature. Love gives, it shares and it also receives. Maybe the greatest
channel to having a bad relationship is when there is a known ‘rival’
somewhere. It is worse when there is a promise to ‘dump’ him/her when the partner
you are dating knows and expects ‘a miracle’. If you are not good at
double-dating, dump the idea. If you are in a dilemma of making choices, act
fast before losing at both ends.