Romantic relationships bring different changes to our lives. Some welcome, some not. In this article, five Nigerian women talk about how their partners changed their lives.
I grew up in a conservative space but I always knew I wanted to explore certain things and with the help of my current partner, I am able to do so.
So far, I have tried wine, gone clubbing and used sex toys I’ve always wanted to. He also takes me sightseeing. Sometimes, we spend nights at hotels I can’t afford and honestly, it’s been a beautiful experience.
My husband and I have been married for 15 years now. As a child, I was abused and this traumatized me — I couldn’t tell anyone about it. My husband helped me to speak out freely about it without feeling shame. He always tells me to express my opinions or desires on any issue, even with his family. He has shown me that love can be unconditional. I believe he is God sent for my life.
I got married last year and since then my husband has made me reach for heights I didn’t think was possible for me. He has made me a better giver and I am intentional about how I want my life to go.
Before now, I had never considered leaving Nigeria but he has made me see reasons why leaving would be better for us as a family. He paid for my international passport and I am currently preparing to write the IELTS. He is sponsoring the entire process for me to move with him to Canada.
One of the most significant changes I noticed after I started dating my partner was how the way I viewed my body changed. I am plus sized and he swore that he liked my body when we met but a few months into the relationship, he started complaining.
He would say things like, “So you want to eat?” or “You shouldn’t eat that, you’ll gain weight.” It became worse. He would tell me he can’t go out with me because he was worried about how I looked. He wanted me to cover up my body more and said if I wanted to show skin, I should lose weight.
After the relationship ended, I became insecure about my body. When a man says he likes me, I wonder what he likes about my body or if he is pretending because of sex. When people compliment how I look, I’m not sure how to handle it. These days, I struggle with my body image in a way I never used to and I don’t know if I’ll ever stop.
Before i met my current partner, I had an unhealthy way of approaching relationships. I always imagined that people would leave me and would prepare for them to go. I would create scenarios in my head about all the possible things that could go wrong and act on it.
One day, I was talking to my partner about the things that could go wrong in our relationship and they said, “You can’t keep worrying about all these things. You can’t control the future and you need to focus and live in the present.” It took a while for it to resonate with me but I’ve finally gotten to a stage in my life where I no longer let my fears lead me. I’ve started learning to live in the present and all of its fullness.