LOSS OF MY LIFE

You meet a girl, let’s call her LOML (Love of my life). You vibe with her on all levels; Sexual attraction ✔ Communication ✔ Friendship ✔ Banter ✔ Intellectual stimulation ✔etc. You guys are a phenomenal duo! RMD and Regina got nothing on you, Will and Jada pale in comparison, Sheldon and Amy? They need to bazinga away!

So you date/hang/chill/whatever until you’re entwined in each other’s lives. I mean, she gets you so it makes sense for her to fit into those hard to reach and mostly hidden areas of your life as you have also fit into hers. Life is good, love is better and LOML, the best.

You’re somewhat successful and the thought of having mini-yous, a home and a wife starts creeping in, you know, the whole “I’m a responsible and respectable man” package; the housewife and 2.5 kids.

You’re still with LOML, however, you realize that LOML doesn’t fit your(read patriarchy’s) idea of what a wife should be, you scored her against the sacred list, handed to you by years of perfectly crafted societal ideals of marriage. She didn’t do well. So you shenk her, give her the usual lines; “it’s not you, it’s me”, “any guy will be lucky to have you”, yenyenyen.

It’s ended, it hurts but “it was the right thing to do” you repeatedly tell yourself, you flash back to her ideologies about marriage and yes it was definitely the right thing to do! She wouldn’t have let you ascend unto your husbandly throne, so you quickly recoup and embark on a search, a search for your perfect idea of a wife or most likely what societal conditioning has told you is a perfect spouse, you don’t search too far because she is that girl who is always around but you never felt a thing for, the one who didn’t make your loins catch fire but defers to you at the slightest provocation, she doesn’t stimulate you but she will take care of the home.
So you make up your mind, he that finds a wife….. You’ve found her, you choose her, life is complete and happily ever after can begin.

The story should end here right? But that’s not where it stops because life can be a Shonda Rhimes script sometimes.

Few months, years down the line…… You now realize that your partner doesn’t get sarcasm, doesn’t get your jokes, doesn’t do it(you can’t explain) for you, no stimulation but still checks all the boxes a partner should have according to society’s manual of marriage, you’re stuck!

You remember LOML, the nights spent talking about the stars, dreams, the ludicrous ingenuity of the shakushaku dance, the ease with which they “got” you. You miss that….. You miss her…..

So, you get in touch, hurray, she’s still single!!! You try to reconnect, a little “hey” here, a little “sup” there before you know, it’s morphed into a “let’s hang”. You meet up, you talk, your heart lights up, you’ve not felt this alive in ages, she still ticks those boxes and you realize you shouldn’t have let her go….

You’re back home and it’s cold.. you perform your societal husbandly duties… Yes, you love your wife and “perfect” life but you need to feel alive….

Have you ever been in this situation? What did you do? Don’t worry you can talk to me about it in the comment section. Do you have an idea on what he should do? Let me know in the comment section.

And yes people, I am back!!! We’ll have a catch-up post soon, but until then let’s not pretend you (yes you) didn’t miss me, tell me how much in the comment section too❤

#BYSYSERIES: ARE YOU EQUALLY YOKED?

Growing up in a Christian home, the topic of being equally yoked in marriage always comes up. Usually, it’s in the debate for or against inter-religious dating and marriages, and 9 out of 10 times it is the main topic at every singles’ conference/fellowship/service…

Being equally yoked goes beyond religion. Even though the term is gotten from the Bible, today I am borrowing it to talk about the importance of COMPATIBILITY in relationships and marriages.

So, before you say yes, are you equally yoked?

Even though we all wish to have passionate love from now until the end of time, the truth is, it is compatibility that makes most relationships/marriages work. While it is most likely love that brings the couple together, it is compatibility that keeps the marriage going day in day out, year in year out.

We all know this illustration, or maybe I am speaking from my personal experience. Two people meet, they supposedly fall in love, the rush of wedding planning kicks in, they get married and then the reality sets in (my mother calls it ‘reality channel’). In our culture, the chances of living with the person before marriage is very slim and you can’t know so much about the other person unless you’ve spent enough time with them (even that is relative).

The relationship after the marriage often ends up being filled with explosive arguments, fighting, separation and may lead to a divorce. Gone are those days where people stayed in toxic marriages for the sake of society which may explain the rise of divorces in Nigeria today. In marriages where both people decide to stay, they end up resenting each other and living totally different lives, like flatmates in their own homes.

Compatibility can mean many things to different people, but the basic things include values, ideas, habits, preferences, interpersonal and communication styles that have a lot in common.

Based on last week’s post, we know that we cannot change people so what we should be looking for is someone we are compatible with, especially in the following key areas.

  • Religious beliefs – Let’s start with the most obvious since I am borrowing the phrase from the bible anyway. Having two people who are both ‘deeply’ religious in different beliefs could be a major issue, however, I have seen that it is not really about the religion but about the morals, beliefs, and doctrines behind them. For example, two Pentecostal Christians could get married, however one of them is more inclined to the works, i.e signs and wonders, demon chasing, miraculous healings, countless fasting, water from Israel e.t.c while the other does not put so much emphasis on such things and would rather focus on practical living as a Christian. It might look like nothing to you but where a marriage is concerned, it could lead to a series of debates, like ‘what church do we attend?’ ‘why do you pay a tithe when we have bills to pay?’

 

  • Gender Roles – This is a very crucial one. It can be very difficult to move forward if, for example, a man thinks that a woman’s “job” is to be a wife and mother and that his role is to be a breadwinner, and his wife wants to work full time outside the home. Often, couples do not explicitly discuss what each partner thinks about gender roles prior to marriage (especially the division of labor when parenting), so each partner feels blindsided and disappointed when they cannot agree on these things. Our attitude about gender roles comes from our backgrounds and observations of our own parents, for example, being raised in a male dominant home as a woman could affect the way you relate with a man who was raised in a female dominant home.

 

  • The role/influence of extended family – Sometimes, one person has not individuated much from their family of origin, and this can be frustrating for the other partner, who feels they have married a child and not an adult. Like, when you have a man who calls his mother for advice every day and a wife who prefers to be independent and does not ask her family for much, there can be a great deal of conflict. This type of conflict becomes worse when one partner’s family starts criticizing the other partner, either outright or passive-aggressively, and this person does not defend the partner. In-law “drama” can sometimes be the death-knell of a relationship, particularly when it is extensive and one partner feels that the other does not understand the severity of the problem. Sounds very Nollywoodish I know, but it is important that both of you understand the role of extended family in your union and before you take that plunge you should be able to tell if your husband/wife-to-be has indeed individuated from their family. Always remember that you and your partner-to-be will become a new family, a new team.

 

  • Character and personality – Yes we often say, opposites attract, but that has a limit. After a while, you may wish that your introverted partner would stop choosing to stay home on another Friday night or that your extroverted/talkative partner would shut up so you could think for a second. Be honest with yourself, can you really be with someone who is your complete opposite for the rest of your life or would you prefer that would be some similarities personality/character wise.

 

  • Sex – Sex is about having compatible libidos, each partner’s desire for sex, though this will change with developmental issues such as having children or aging. But it is also about both your needs really getting met, being able to educate your partner by saying what you like and don’t like, them being able to listen and not use it as a medium to attack your ‘sexual experience’. If you are in a celibate relationship, are you both open to talking about what your sexual expectations are in marriage? Is sex about connection or fun, or primarily about procreation?

 

  • Finances – Do you both agree where money is concerned? You need to be on the same page about debt, budgets, savings, investments, joint accounts and other things such as vacations, eating out vs staying in e.t.c. I should also add here that marriage essentially involves a complete surrender of your rights for the benefit of each other. Neither you nor your partner will have the right to make major purchases without full disclosure and agreement of the other. Your money will become their money, you will no longer spend it however you please (even if it is helping out your parents pay a bill). Other than the financial answers, you will find that financial responsibility and spending often tells you a lot about someone’s character, are they resourceful or wasteful? Are they self-indulgent or self-controlled? Pay attention to these traits while discussing finances before you say yes.

That’s it for compatibility this week, I didn’t plan for the post to be this long but I guess I just had to write as much as I could on the topic of compatibility before and after marriage, as it was one of my major issues after I got married.

Compatibility does not necessarily mean agreeing on everything all the time, but simply being able to work well together. Compatible couples will argue (that’s a given), but the beauty of a compatible union is that the couple can generally find ways to reconcile their differences, agree to disagree or compromise.

So, before you say yes, are you equally yoked?

Use the comment box below and let me know what you think, do you agree that compatibility is equally as important? are there other areas of compatibility you think I’ve missed?

I THINK I HATE MY EX

What do you do when you feel resentment and/or bitterness towards your former significant other aka “The Ex”?

Wow, you’ve never felt that way? Oh Great One, please teach us thy ways!! Okay, I’m sorry for faffing about but I am actually serious and also certain I’m not the only one who has had these feelings creep up on them and you’re just there like “wait oh, but I dealt with you now”. The ironic part of this is that it mostly happens with people you know you will never date even if they come crawling back.

Please don’t leave me alone on this sharing mountain, come join me and say “aye” in the comment section if you’ve been there, done that and got a dashiki for your troubles.

So, I went on a 30 day social media break on the 1st of November and one of the things I try to do when I go on this is to be open to myself as much as possible, you can call it a self-awareness thingamajig. In the few days I’ve been on this “cleanse” I have had to dredge through my feelings and sort them out; you know, file in appropriate folders, colour-code, backdate and update the feelings database if you will. One of this mentally tasking process was sorting through my feelings as regards to my exes.

Please note, this is not a diss-an-ex post but just to talk about certain aspects of breakups/relationships/situationships we are often silent about; resentment, bitterness and teeny weeny anger.

I am someone who constantly blames herself for the end of most of my relationships, even situationships are not spared. Yes, I am that girl that mourns the loss of her relationships cum situationships maybe a teensy-weensy harder than most people, I am talking random bouts of tears, writing long epistles, sometimes sending said epistle to the person, oh and name calling, oh the many name-calling I subject myself to, my go-to one is stupid because most times sometimes I am stupid.

Situationship: That sontin you know is heading nowhere but you get carried away with the good part of it and somehow convince yourself that this good part outweighs the bad and mostly unhealthy parts.

Now, one of the downsides of blaming myself is that I never focus on the other person and the role they played in the relationship, their faults, and mistakes get all swallowed up in my “Put the blame on me” phase and trust me, Akon has nothing on me in this category.

So, I have had to go back to these relationships et situationships and critically examine each person’s role in its demise and also had to address these random resentment/anger I would get sometimes. I noticed it got worse with two of my former baby boys getting married and another one falling in love. Now, don’t get me wrong, I wish them the best in their married/ falling in love lives and would not want them back by the special grace of God but a little part of me felt betrayed. This betrayal was not because they were with someone else, it was because of those dreams and goals we both shared and how us breaking up literally meant a life changing phase for me (at least with one of them).

So like me you’re just chilling and for some odd reason, you think about them and you can feel the anger/ resentment building. You think about them, replaying certain events in your head, you remember their stance on a particular issue; you know, the one who didn’t believe in marriage, the one who didn’t care for SDA (Social Display of Affection), the one who promised to love you forever, the one you had to change your life for (maybe move to a different state, country etc.) or the one whose friends called you our wife while they had gone to “dobale” (prostrate) two weekends ago…

The resentment/anger keeps rising up like the stench that welcomes you as approach Ojota (seriously Ambode needs to do something about that smell). I’m sorry, I’m trying to use humour to deflect the anxiety I feel as I write this, I’m afraid this might trigger someone but fervently hoping it lets you know that you are not alone.

Why are you looking at me like I’m writing in Gaelic, of course you’ve been there before or at least you know someone who has, as sometimes, it is at this point that we make life changing decisions like; “I will never love another person again” or “I will use and dump people”, “never will I be this fragile”, “Please indoctrinate me into the association of Yoruba demons (AYD)” etc.

How do you deal with the bitterness or resentment that comes from seeing your former significant other “moving on” and finding “happiness” in their life relationship wise?

Well, you’ll have to subscribe and join the notification gang as I will be concluding this next week (abeg no vex now). I promise to share my own tips as well as some useful and practical tips from conversations I have had with people.

That’s it, beautiful people, you know the drill, leave your thoughts in the comment section and let’s discuss what type of “not so good” feelings we have felt towards our former significant other…

#BYSYSERIES: ARE YOU THE MESSIAH?

One thing that is prevalent in relationships today is the thought that we can change our partners, after all:

  • there are not enough men in the market,
  • this one that you have found a man, you better hold on to him o
  • It’s just youthful exuberance, he/she will outgrow it

….and so on and so forth

These are the numerous reasons we believe we can change our potential partners, maybe not change but we can influence this ‘change’ and somehow they would become the men/women we want them to be. My question to you today is

Before you say yes, what if they never change? What if they never become better than they already are? Would you still want to be with them?

The mistake most of us women make is believing we are the Messiah, the ones sent to save humanity from themselves. We, with open arms, hug these red flags believing that with much persuasion, everything would turn out fine.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s perfectly natural and healthy to want your partner to grow, to reach their potential, and to be all they can be. Growing and changing together, and working toward mutual (and private) goals is part of a healthy relationship, however insisting on this change, manipulating them into who you want them to be is where there is a problem. Even if it’s for their best interest, it is still a huge problem.

NEWSFLASH: You cannot change people, you must accept them for who they are.

Everyone has a right to choose their career, their friends and how they want to live their lives. What you should be doing is figuring out if that is what you want for yourself and if your choices are truly compatible with theirs (compatibility is a whole different topic).

It is never healthy to believe you can ‘change’ them. And I’m not saying you’re in an unhealthy relationship if you’re trying to change your partner, what I am saying is that he/she is not a project, there is no trophy on the last day for changing your partner. Even if you think you’re doing something for their own good, such as pressuring them into going back to school, being more spiritual, losing weight or becoming financially responsible, you must realize that what you’re really doing is trying to remove their choice. They should choose those things for themselves NOT you.

Here’s how you know you are trying to change your partner:

  1. You disapprove of almost everything – Nothing they do or say is acceptable. Your partner loves playing video games. You hate video games and think they’re childish. Sadly, you can’t take that away from them. Your partner likes what they like. If you continue criticizing them, making fun of them, or complaining when they do them, what you’re really doing is trying to change them into a person who doesn’t do those things. I should also add you are not allowed to criticize their dreams either, their dreams, just like yours are valid (Hey Lupita!)
  2. You’re forceful – There’s a razor-thin line between encouraging someone to be their best selves and pressuring someone to be who you think they should be. You should not become forceful or give ultimatums to get them to be who you want time to be. If their current state bothers you so much and you can’t love your partner even if they never change jobs or get more education, then they’re probably not the partner for you.
  3. You’ve become a monitoring spirit – you police everything they do and they are no longer comfortable being themselves around you. You low-key want to tell them where they should be and what they should be doing.
  4. You play therapist – Trying to fix someone is a way of trying to change them. If you are with someone with serious problems and you feel like you can fix them, you’re doing yourself and your partner a disservice. People have to want to fix themselves.
  5. You are always comparing them with others (including your exes) – This is quite simple if they don’t match up then why are you about to say yes?
  6. You make all the decisions – Constantly making all the decisions is a subtle way of changing someone. Keep the decision-making fair and let your partner make choices sometimes that you don’t like. It’s how relationships work.
  7. You gave him an ultimatum to propose – Before you have my head, hear me out, Ladies if he isn’t ready then why are you trying to make him ready. Giving ultimatums is never a good idea, it makes you appear pushy and irrational. Your partner will only resent you over a period of time because they were not ready for such a huge commitment.

So before you say yes, ask yourself if you love your partner just the way they are because if you don’t, chances are you still won’t love them when they become who you think they should be, and if they never change, you would live a miserable life of wishes and ‘had I knowns’. On the flip side, ask yourself if your partner is trying to change you and why you should be with someone who doesn’t accept you for who you really are.

#BYSYSERIES: HOW DO YOU COMMUNICATE?

Now that we have established why you want to get married, we can now move on to other important topics. Like How do you communicate?

These days, we often mistake conversation for communication in relationships. When asked if we communicate, the first response is usually ‘yes, we talk about everything and anything’. I remember once saying the reason I chose to marry my ex, was that we could talk for hours, which to me meant we communicated but one thing I never realized was all we did was gist, pointless gisting if I am to be completely honest with myself but not actually communicate.

The truth is, just because you can spend 22 out of 24 hours in a day talking about everything does not mean you are actually getting across to the person, especially someone you plan to spend the rest of your life with.

So my question to you today is, before you say yes, how do you communicate?

By communicate I mean, do you both spend the time to talk and also take mental (or written) notes of what your desires are. Or are you just talking and brushing everything under the carpet, because, at some point, you’ll be forced to lift up that carpet and face them one after the other all over again. In order to answer that question, here are a few things to think about:

  1. Are you able to talk about everything honestly? – I am talking from your fears to your fantasies. I say honestly because you do not sugarcoat them, or make them appear less serious than they really are. It is very important to be able to bare it all and not be afraid that you will get judged.
  2. Are you able to explain yourself? – Especially after a misunderstanding because arguments WILL happen, some nasty ones too but communication is when you both can sit down and understand each person’s point of view, make a conscious effort to do better and not repeat the same mistakes. Think back at the last few arguments you’ve had, has there been any change? Do they change the topic while you try to speak your mind or are you hoping that he/she would eventually get the message?
  3. Are you able to tell them when they hurt you? – Sometimes unintentionally things happen or statements are made that could hurt your feelings. You need to be able to tell your partner how you feel without the fear of having another world war. You should be confident knowing that telling your partner your grievance would not mean them turning it into something about themselves and you must be open to listening to their explanation if any.
  4. Do they REALLY apologize? – I cannot stand is when the word ‘Sorry’ is thrown at you, to me it’s just another way of keeping you quiet. One of the ways of knowing if you are communicating is in their apology, A real apology takes into account what happened and promises not to repeat those hurtful events.
  5. What is your nonverbal communication like? – Not everything has to be spoken about. Sometimes you might have nothing to say immediately and ideally, your partner, will be sensitive enough to notice when you are uncomfortable with a particular statement or situation and not force you to be what you are not. To be fair, not everyone is skilled at nonverbal communication so know who you are with and be free to tell them how you feel (Re: #3) in case they didn’t notice.

If you and your partner at the moment have huge communication problems, then you need to sit back and re-evaluate. Do not say yes thinking things will ‘change’ because in some cases it doesn’t and in others, it will take a few fights that could have been avoided if you sorted things out from the start.

BEFORE YOU SAY YES: WHY DO YOU WANT TO GET MARRIED?

If you haven’t read the introduction to the series, then do so now.

If you have, welcome back and let’s begin.

For the first post on the BYSY series, we address the question WHY?

Why do you want to get married? Is it because everybody is getting married? There’s so much pressure? You want to reenact your own Disney fairytale story? You want the white Cinderella or mermaid dress and cathedral veil? Or maybe you want our own cool hashtag?

Obviously, some of the above are not valid reasons but that’s the thing, a lot of us do not have valid reasons for wanting to get married. For some, it is just a box to be checked right after getting a degree and completing NYSC, while for others it’s so people can get off our backs and we can have our ‘freedom’. I once met a guy whose motivation to get married was so he could be promoted in his line of work (I guess that too counts as a reason).

The truth is, no one forces us to get married and dare I say, not all of us will get married, some will get married at 25, others at 35 or maybe 55, it makes no difference the age because marriage is a HUGE decision.

But before we talk about saying yes, the question really should be why you want to get married?

Here are a few reasons why you should NOT be saying yes or maybe taking some extra time to make that decision. I will explain some points further, however, some are quite simple:

  • You want to be free from your parents.
  • To have sex legally.
  • You are tired of feeling lonely
    Loneliness happens to be a very popular reason why a lot of people get into relationships. We somehow believe that the solution to filling the void we feel is by getting someone to do it for us. Which causes us to put such high expectations on their person and time. Marriage will not solve your loneliness, as a matter of fact, it will worsen it. So, if you’re with that person because you thought being with them would stop you from being lonely, chances are, you will still be lonely even after marriage. It’s not them, it’s you.
  • To show you are an adult. Afterall that’s what adults do, have relationships.
  • Just because he or she loves you. Better they love you more than you love them.
  • You think you’re running out of options and time
    The fear that no one else would want to be with you is not only a wrong reason but also a selfish reason. In your head you’re probably thinking ‘ah, this one I have found correct someone that likes me, let me do sharp sharp before they change their mind’. It shows that you are aware that you need some work, an unfinished product so why be a burden to someone else instead of working on yourself.
  • For money and social status.
  • Because all your friends have someone and you are tired of having asoebi on your monthly budget.
  • To have someone to “complete” you.
  • You are tired of being single
    In that case, it’s not about the person you are with but anyone who can take away the feeling of being single? NEWSFLASH: some days you will get tired of being married 🙂
  • There is so much pressure to be in a relationship and get married.
  • Your good friend or family did the hookup and you don’t want to let them down.
  • It is time to get married. By whose watch?

You need to evaluate your reasons for wanting to get married. Take a hard look at your motivations before you decide to answer that question. On the flip side, some of the RIGHT reasons for wanting to get married include

  • You are in love with one another and you want to start your life with another.
  • To have a lifetime companion.
  • You both have realistic expectations and shared goals.
  • You are willing to work on yourselves for the progress of each other and the relationship
  • You have found someone who complements you and is your personal cheerleader.
  • You both have spent enough time with each other and there is no pretense.

I wish I had this conversation before I took the plunge a few years back. It would have helped me a whole lot but hey that’s why I’m here now, so you don’t make the same mistakes I made.

In conclusion, take time out to write your list of reasons for wanting to get married. (I did say BYSY was going to be a little guide). You need to be able to answer this question truthfully before we can move on from here. If all of your reasons fall on the wrong side, then I’m sorry the time is not now for you. You need more time to sort out what exactly it is you want from marriage.

Let’s look at you before we look at the other person.

Have you ever thought about why you want to get married ? Do you think you have all the right reasons ? Use the comment box and let’s talk about it.

BEFORE YOU SAY YES

You’ve met a good guy, it’s a whirlwind romance, you love him, he loves you, you think surely nothing could go wrong, I mean there is love and love conquers all, he’s ready to settle down and so are you.

One day, after a wonderful dinner in a well-orchestrated theatrical moment (maybe alone or in front of family and friends and a camera) he pops the question, opens the box of a blinding diamond ring and at that moment your whole life is dependent on your answer. Say yes and begin to plan a union to this person you love for the rest of your life or say No and start all over again with someone else (remember you don’t have that much time on your hands again, the biological clock is ticking e.t.c)

But before you say YES, know this

Love is not enough

It takes a lot more than love to decide who you should spend the rest of your life with. As a matter of fact, you have every right to ask for a few days to think, evaluate the pros and cons of this person before you decide on what your final answer is.

Love is not a feeling

It is a process, from start to finish. My mother often says you don’t know love until you have been through the ups and downs with this person. So you find a friend, someone you respect, who equally respects you and are attracted to and hope for the best.

Love will be tested

Forget all those Instagram posts and women sending a million and one shout-outs to their husbands on a daily basis or posting pictures of gifts and flamboyant events, that’s not what marriage is all about. Marriage is a never-ending school of highs and lows and both parties must be prepared and determined to succeed. Your love will be tested, it will disappear and reappear but it’s all the other factors that decide the success of that ‘love’

Marriage is forever

This is my official disclaimer that I am not an advocate of divorce/separation because marriage is meant to be forever. However, there are extreme cases where it is absolutely necessary for the sake of survival and happiness where walking away is the only option left. It is a lot cheaper to say No to the proposal than to say No in court, so before you say yes think!

Today, I will be starting the Before You Say Yes (BYSY) series, where I will address key topics on what you should evaluate for BEFORE you say I do. These topics are not gender specific, but as a woman, I will draw from my experience and may occasionally lean towards female examples.

Single in Gidi is all about living on purpose which includes dating with a purpose, so see BYSY as a help in purposeful dating (now I am beginning to sound like a preacher). It doesn’t matter if you’ve said Yes already, as long as you’ve not gotten to the altar/registry then there’s still time to evaluate.

That’s it for an introduction, see you next week for the first topic!

DECODING THE DATE NIGHT SCHEDULE

Is there a difference if your date falls on a weekday or a weekend? Should you be worried? I don’t think so but from research, here’s what the night of the week says about your date.

Monday Night:
Monday night is the direct opposite of “date night”: people are usually back at work, and back to their weeknight routines, maybe going to the gym or dodging the dreadful third mainland bridge traffic. Really, there is nothing ghen ghen about a Monday night…and that may be good for you. If someone schedules a date with you on a Monday it means they are eager to see you and they don’t want to wait for a more socially acceptable night of the week. If the date turns out great, then you might have a repeat on another date of the week.

Tuesday Night:
A Tuesday Night date can mean uncertainty: sure, they’ll grab a drink or see a movie with you but most times, they’re using you to wait out traffic. If things go well, it may turn into a late night. But really, for Tuesdays, the expectations are not high.

Wednesday Night:
By Wednesday night, most people have recovered from the weekend and are looking for a nice break in the stressful week. The beauty of Wednesday is that there is not much pressure because there is still work on Thursday so you don’t really have to worry how late into the night the date would be.

Thursday Night:
Thursday nights are decent: it’s almost the weekend, and people usually feel freer to stay out late on a Thursday than they do earlier in the week. Most times, a date is scheduled on a Thursday because the weekend might be booked or you both are going for an event scheduled for that day.

Friday Night:
This is the second best date night of the week. Everyone wants to do something on a Friday night and if they like you, you’re probably part of their plans for the night. The lack of work the next day obviously means a greater chance of staying out really late and throwing all caution to the wind. Also, Friday nights dates more often than not start out really late because people might want to stop at home, but not for long, freshen up and get ready to hit the streets. For ladies, Fridays means the freakum dress is out to play

Saturday Night:
This is GOLD in the date night schedule: the one day a week where you don’t have to work all day. Because Saturdays are so important, people often loathe the idea of wasting the whole day on someone they are not sure of. If someone makes plans with you for a Saturday night, they’re pretty sure that they’ll have as good a time hanging out with you. Ladies especially will take advantage of the extra time on Saturday to really get ready for the date, and dress up/face beat far more than they would on a weeknight.

Sunday Night:
Never accept a Sunday Night date. It’s the worst night of the week to go on a date. It’s often an afterthought too because you’ve spent the weekend with other important people but either you or the other party is trying to fulfill all righteousness. Chances are you won’t stay out late,  because you’re thinking of the work week ahead, you won’t drink too much cause you’re recovering from the weekend or you’re not trying to start the new week hungover and won’t spend too much cause you’re probably thinking of how much you spent on Friday and Saturday nights. Keep your Sundays for resting….unless of course there is a public holiday the next day, then really it’s not a ‘Sunday’

Disclaimer: These things are not set in stone and I am not trying to start a dating-days-rule-book/debate here, but think about it though, do you agree? Have you ever put the day of the week into consideration when picking a date or maybe it doesn’t matter to you if you have a date on a Sunday?

HOW DO YOU FIGHT?

The older I get, the more I understand  what it means to say  “love is not enough”. Recently Mr. C has been having stupidity remorse and trying to talk about why we didn’t work out and if there was a possibility of reconciliation. I keep telling him I am in love and happy and the man won’t leave me alone.

Apparently, Hausa men have egos bigger than the whole of Africa and feel too entitled. Anyways, I have gone past that and these days, I really just want the best for him, I want him to be happy and I want him to be OK with the fact that we will never be together!

One day, I had this crazy period pain and was on bed rest the whole weekend and was bored enough to have accepted Mr. C ‘s offer to talk about a relationship that ended since 2015.  He wanted to know why I couldn’t work it out if I really loved him. It was so interesting to revisit certain things and talk about it from a very detached perspective. I swear I believe everyone should sometimes reach out to their exes and talk about why they didn’t work out, however, only do this when you are healed and have no vested interest.

Let’s face it, with the way our generation is, statistically speaking, relationships are more likely to break up than to stay together. All you need to do is scan your relationship history to find evidence of this.

The reasons relationships fail are as varied as because of the fact that we humans very different and complex. The truth is, while every ending has its own unique story, relationship breakups fall into anyone and sometimes more of these documented categories:

  • Trust issues
  • Dishonesty/Deception/Cheating
  • Communication issues
  • Differences in relationship expectations
  • Differences in life priorities
  • Inability of one or both partners to manage their emotions
  • Differences in values.

That said, there is no one indicator that can predict, with amazing accuracy why relationships end, there is no one size fits all and sometimes typical pontifications do not apply. However, here is why I think most relationships end, it has to do with how you fight.

Fight in this post has to do with arguments not throwing punches. That one you do not need to learn, if anyone punches you, pack your bags and be going…mbok.

As I was saying, this assumption is based on the fact that all relationships have conflicts. I’m usually surprised that people are not prepared for fights and conflicts in their relationships and are even more surprised when they are uncomfortable with the fight cool-off stage.  Personally, I always take out time to cool down before going back to ‘normal’. Which brings me to this note

PSA – it is not okay to fight and act like nothing happened afterward. It is vicious and it is a form of emotional abuse. As a normal person, you must take the time to cool off, talk about it before moving on.

Every relationship has conflict. Which makes knowing how to have a fight the most important relationship skill you’ll ever acquire—Or…the most expensive skill you’ll choose not to learn. Relationship expert John Gottman, says he can predict whether a marriage will end in divorce with 94 percent accuracy based on how the couple fight. And engaging in this one behavior turns out to be the strongest indicator of divorce—which is a lot more expensive than learning relationship skills.  So, without further delay here you go:

The number one predictor of whether your relationship is headed for a cliff boils down to whether or not either you or your partner treats the other with contempt when they drive you crazy and they deserve to be treated like that.

You know the disdain you feel when someone who should know better lets you down. It’s when you feel as though you’re better than your partner (presuming it’s you who engages in it, and for the simplicity of writing this). It’s an energy of repulsion that arises from within you during fights. Maybe that disgust causes you to scream so loudly that the neighbors can hear – or maybe it seeps from your pores as you glare silently at your partner during a conflict. It can also look more benign like eye-rolling or an unwillingness to validate your partner’s feelings or choosing to punish them just because they have hurt you.

I know, I know. We’ve all felt and done it. The difference is some of us, even though we know love shouldn’t be anything but kind, choose to express our anger in a manner that will pierce our partner’s soul and hurt them. These days we are so selfish that relationships have become a competition of who can hurt the other person the most.  I know that contempt isn’t a functional emotion for relationships but it is a real emotion that we all feel when the person we love drives us crazy. It presupposes that the person experiencing it is better than the other, but how we handle this contempt in times of high intensity determines whether or not our relationships will go the distance.

It is important that we all learn to handle fights in any form of relationship especially an intimate one. What are you saying? What is your partner saying? but most of all what have you learned from the supposed fight about yourself, your partner or the situation. There is nothing more frustrating than to fight over and over about the same thing before you know it, it becomes a vicious and abusive relationship.

Speaking of which, have you noticed the increasing trend of people walking out of bad, unhealthy and abusive relationships? Well, only Jesus Christ died to redeem human beings.  If you have a bad attitude fix it, if you are in “meanest son or daughter of a bit$h competition” with the devil, take your wickedness to the cross and crucify it there. Stop expecting people to put up with you in the name of love.

That’s it from me, what do you think? how have you been able to resolve conflict in your relationship? has your way of fighting cost you a good friendship/relationship in the past? Let’s talk about it 

Love,

Imarose

5 RESOLUTIONS TO TURN UP YOUR DATING LIFE 

I know the new year hype is over but as we officially kickstart the week in Lagos here is some #SIGWISDOM to try out this 2016 and turn up your dating life.

5. Find your dating purpose. This is very important. What is your purpose for dating this 2016? Figure out what you want and stick to it. If you don’t want a long-term relationship, be clear about that from day one. If you want a long-term relationship, be clear about that, too. No need forming or pretending and acting surprised when the person in question does not match up. Also make sure you figure out the qualities you think are most important to you in a partner. If sense of humor is vital to you don’t ask for a second date with someone who doesn’t make you laugh, if it is financial stability then focus on that.

4. Don’t forget your single friends. Believe it or not, your single friends are NOT your enemy. Be open and honest about your dating experience and resolve to listen to others be open and honest about theirs. You’d be surprised the things you learn just from speaking up. Become a better listener, a better friend and a better person all at the same time. Learning how to talk about emotions with others will, in fact, eventually make you a better person to be with.

3. Let go of the past. If you have any issues from your past, like an ex you never got over or someone you are still upset with, now is the time to let it go. That means letting go of the things in your life that remind you of a retired relationship. It means hiding them from your Facebook feed and taking a vow to stop stalking them online. I’m not saying you need to throw people out of your life, but you do need to give yourself the time to grow without them for a while. Only then will you be in a position to let someone else in.

2. Set realistic dates and keep them. The kind of dates you go for define the potential partners you meet. We all love to turnup but sometimes turning up means going low key. Lagos has a variety of things to do on a weekly basis so feel free to try new things. Don’t change your mind last minute on a potential date because you’re tired or you are all of a sudden not feeling them. If you want to meet someone thoughtful and considerate, you have to be thoughtful and considerate, too…always remember there’s this thing called karma

1. Be present at events. And by that I Mean drop your phone. As much as I love social media, I hate that these days people aren’t giving themselves to be approachable because they spend too much time instagraming or snapchating, I feel like you get to know more about people from their social media feeds than in person. No one wants to feel like they are competing for your attention with your cell phone and 500 followers. Take your life offline for a minute and experience life around you.