When it’s time to walk away By Funke Egbemode ([email protected])

‘Forever’ and ‘till death do us part’ are not for every relationship. Some are destined to last. Many end even before they start. Others just get wobbly at some point. The going gets painful. Both parties know in their hearts of hearts that they are not going to go the whole nine yards but they continue to make the efforts anyway, patching and stitching. Sometimes, it is one of them carrying the two of them, which makes the trip more tedious until they both get to the point of no return. Whichever way the parting of ways happen in a relationship, the bottom line is that walking away is never easy. There is that temptation to make more efforts to make it work, to wait for another couple of months and see if the unserious guy would realize the errors of his ways and turn a new leaf, to see if he would stop being a leech and make something of his life. Shouldn’t he just bear with her, even pray for her and see if she would stop cheating on him? But too often too late, you find out that a player is always a player, cheaters hardly ever stop and that a leech will always be a leech.


If you have invested in an unprofitable business, the only sensible thing to do is to divest and move on to a more profitable venture. Holding on may look like you are brave, patient and long-suffering but please, must you suffer in a relationship that is going nowhere fast? There is a time to let go, time to walk away. My darling, take a good look at that relationship and ask yourself the hard questions. Are you happy, fulfilled? Do you wish you were somewhere else, with someone else most of the time? Does he make you cry so often you have forgotten how to laugh? Does that woman in your life make you feel less and less a man every day? Let go, dear, walk away. If it’s not working, it is not working. You can’t force a limp ‘third leg’ walk.


You can’t force anyone to love you. If you need to beg him or her to stay with you, what you feel is not love and it is time to stop fooling yourself. A man you blackmail not to leave you or you are considering trapping with pregnancy, real or fake, is not your man. Even if he stays, he’s only there in body not in spirit. If you are grabbing at straws to stay afloat while dating, how will you cope when the high waves of marriage arrive in a stormy weather?


Although it feels like it, but the end of a relationship is not the end of life. Love leaves you sometimes. It does not mean you are cursed or jinxed. Just learn the lesson and move on. The right person will come. It may take a while but the right person is always worth the wait. As the saying goes, you must kiss a few frogs before your prince charming comes along.


If you are in a relationship where you are constantly having to sacrifice your happiness to please your partner, you are not on to a good thing. For instance, you have to pretend to be a teacher because his mum doesn’t want him to marry a lawyer. You have to hide all evidence that you have enrolled for your Ph.D because his ego is fragile and he’s thin skinned. You have to pretend your brand new car is ‘tokunbo’ because it would make him ‘feel somehow’. You are in the wrong place. You may be managing it now but a few years down the road, you will resent him and what he has turned you into.


A woman who demands but supplies no value to your life is only good for a short ride. If you allow a girl to make more withdrawals than deposits in your life, you will be out of balance and in the red before you know it. You must know when to close the account and take stock. It’s always better to be alone with dignity than in a relationship that constantly requires you to sacrifice your happiness and self-respect.


Is your relationship giving you more pain than joy? Do you wonder more why you are in it than wishing you had met your partner earlier? If all your relationship offers is great sex, something is wrong. If the only time you are not bickering is when he’s on top of or under you, you are in a dry pasture. Don’t be so blinded by the wild orgasms as to forget the real deal, the morning after. If that relationship leaves you frustrated, upset, unhappy, miserable more often than not; if it leaves you in tears every so often, perhaps this might not be the right person for you. The relationship you are in now should be one which brings you happiness now. It is simple enough, in business the aim and objective is to make profit. In a relationship it is happiness, and it has no substitute.


Any kind of abuse, physical or verbal, are definite no-nos. If he hits you, slaps you around, punches you to drive his point home, it is time to let him go. Forget the beautiful gifts and nice words he says after, there is clearly something wrong with him and you too for staying in there for this long. If her way of expressing anger is throwing the intercom at the flat-screen television, please start walking and keep walking. What those crazy moments show is something deep that needs addressing.


Perception is reality. Emotional abuse is even trickier because only the victim feels it. You have told yourself long enough that things will get better. It hasn’t. It won’t. Time to walk away is now.


Aunty, if he believes in God and you believe in science, the two of you aren’t heading in the same direction, so boarding the same plane will be a mistake. For any friendship or relationship to work out, the parties involved must share certain fundamental beliefs and values. The values you share are the big rocks which will hold the relationship in place and help you weather through even the toughest storms. Of course, you know there are storms ahead, don’t you?


On the other hand, if your core values are fundamentally different, love or no love, when the storm comes, holding your union together will be like jogging uphill or trying to hold the ground together in a mud slide.


Are you both growing or this relationship is holding one of you down? Indeed if you will be true to yourself, this relationship has altered your plan and desire for your life. You have God’s calling on your life. You know you have special gifts for pastoral work but she has issued an ultimatum that the day you become a pastor is the day she leaves you but you are hanging in there hoping she will change her mind, praying on seven prayer mountains that God changes her. Bro, you are not married yet. If she’s God’s will for your life, why is she opposing God’s will in your life?


Sisi, you know your ultimate ambition is to become the first female Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) in your village but the man in your life has made it clear that no wife of his will ‘answer sir’ to any man because he makes enough to take care of his family. He told you his woman will not go out to work which is why you are learning cake-making. Take a step back and see the road ahead. Are you where you want to be and do you see a future where you will be happy making cakes? If the only reason you are doing what you are doing is to make him happy and keep him, then you need to think again.


He is mean and abusive. He is lazy and unambitious. But he has proposed and his nice ring is on your bruised finger. So you decide to wait it out expecting a better future. Wake up girl. You don’t live in the past, and the future is not yet here. Are you happy now? You need to make it to tomorrow. It is okay to hope for better days ahead but not in this situation. Take a good look at what you have, at him. He is what he is. She is fully formed. A one-day wedding ceremony will not change him or her. Wedding ceremonies are not designed to change fully-formed adults, trust me.


In all, when you give yourself to someone who doesn’t add value to you, you surrender pieces of your soul, pieces that you’ll never get back.

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