Men, this is a safe space. I spoke to a couple of men in relationships and they revealed what they were wary of telling their partners.

Here are a few things they said:

1) Bade/28.

“I wish I could tell my babe that I need alone time. It’s not that I don’t like her or stuff, but sometimes, I just want breathing space. I need time with myself and my thoughts. She wants me to share my problems with her but I see how overwhelmed she gets by hers and I don’t want her to get burdened by mine. It’ll only make her sad and then I’ll be sad.

The last time I spoke to her about alone time, she asked if I wanted to break up. In my head, I was like wetin be dis? Since then, I just chest it and perform the motions because I don’t want wahala.

2) Tony/25.

“God. I just want her to take the initiative from time to time. She’ll say she wants to go out but somehow, I’m supposed to look for a venue. She’ll say she wants romance but won’t suggest or tell me how she wants to be loved. Then, she’ll now get sad that she doesn’t know my love language because I never want to be ‘romanced.’

I keep telling her that if something matters to her, it’ll be helpful for her to take some initiative to raise both the problem and the solution. That’s helpful for both of us – a template guides us since we are both learning. On her question on how I want to be ‘romanced’, I want to tell her that my love language is autonomy. I need to be able to trust that she doesn’t depend on me to do all the lifting in the relationship. I obviously can’t tell her this because I don’t want to be single. Lol.”

3) Habib/23.

“Guy, my babe expects me to be passionate about the things she likes. Why? Is it a crime to simply not be interested? If she sends something and I reply that it’s nice, she’ll complain. She’ll say that I’m not excited about the things she cares about. I keep trying to explain that we are different people with different interests and excitement won’t match all the time. Now, anytime she sends me something, I just send her “nice one babe” with plenty smileys. At least she leaves me alone. I just wish it wasn’t a crime to not be interested in some things. It’s painful because I don’t expect same from her. Last last sha, na life.”

4) Ekene/28.

“One time my babe and I were going out and she asked me how she looked, I said she always looks beautiful in anything. That’s how she said am I saying she doesn’t look extra nice today? That can’t I see the effort she put. I was like “ah, no, I mean I love you regardless of anything because you are beautiful.” Apparently, that was the wrong thing to say.

I wish I could tell this woman that I love anything that she does. I’m too far gone. Even if she doesn’t bath in two days, she’ll still be so beautiful to me. I want her to do things for herself not because she thinks I want them. So that if I don’t give the required reaction, it doesn’t turn to fight. After the last incident, I’m afraid to raise it up. Next thing she’ll message me saying: ‘Do you even love me? Or like me as a person?'”

5) Victor/30.

“I don’t want to call and text throughout the day. I like for us to do brief good morning text [how was your night, did you have breakfast, have a wonderful day] then talk after work. All that texting through the day thing distracts me from work. It’s not that I don’t want to talk, but there should be a time for everything. If I bring it up, it’ll be that I love my work more than I love her. My job matters a lot because I plan to marry this woman, and that will happen faster if I get a promotion. The only way I can get promoted is by complete focus and doing good work. Whenever I explain, I’ll hear that am I saying if she has an emergency during the day, she can’t call me? I’m like ah. I reply intermittently to keep the peace, but it’s affecting my attention span and quality of work. I really don’t know what to do.”


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