Love Life is a Zikoko weekly series about love, relationships, situationships, entanglements and everything in between.

What’s your earliest memory of each other?

Ore: We met at a restaurant in late 2012. My mum’s friend matchmade us because she felt I didn’t go out enough. She gave him my number, he called and we decided to meet for a first date a week later. 

I got there first; the first thing I thought when I saw him was, “Doesn’t this guy eat?” He was so lanky then and around my height. My spec was you have to be at least six inches taller than me for us to date.

Steven: I got there about 30 minutes late. I remember seeing her alone on the table, looking bored. I sat down and apologised, and she shrugged it off immediately. We ordered our pizza and laughed about the aunty who’d set us up. I drove her home, and we sat in my car and chatted some more when I got to the side of her house. 

But I left her that day thinking we’d probably just be friends.

Why exactly?

Steven: The attraction wasn’t there during that first meeting. But the conversation flowed well, and we got along. When we spoke the next day, I loved the energy she brought into it.

Ore: I wasn’t looking to get into a relationship. I was figuring out work and how to make more money. There was a lot of drama at home that I was navigating at the time. Black tax was choking me. Although, now that I’ve thought about it, I should’ve probably dated more. Maybe a man would’ve been sending me money.

Anyway, I was halfhearted about our relationship at the time. I was just fine with having one more person to talk to. So we talked and talked and talked for months.

When did feelings start seeping in?

Ore: I’m not sure I can pinpoint one moment. But by the end of 2013, we were talking like every other day. He managed to scale my entire friends list to become the first person I call to tell important things. And I wasn’t having much luck with relationships at the time.

Steven: One thing I pinpointed was it felt more like we were coasting through an eternal talking stage than friendship. I mean talking stage wasn’t even a thing at the time, so maybe that’s why we didn’t clock it. 

It was like we were trying to figure out whether to like each other or not, constantly asking questions about our likes, preferences and dislikes. During this time, I knew things like her favourite colour and shoe size, things I didn’t know about friends I’d known for much longer.

At what point did you decide you had to date?

Steven: In September 2014, when she invited me to attend a family member’s wedding with her. I thought nothing of it, and I’m sure she just invited me as a close friend. But at the wedding, I realised I liked how I felt walking hand in hand with her, sitting beside her with her friends and all. 

It didn’t feel like we were just friends. Maybe it was the vibe of watching a couple get married that made it sink in. But when I got home, I knew I wanted her to be my girlfriend.

Ore: I confess that I didn’t think about us getting into a relationship at all until after he asked me. Then I thought about it and realised I cared about him well enough to give it a try.

Steven: I didn’t ask her out immediately, though. It took about a month for me to find the right moment. I also didn’t want to ask her over the phone, so it happened during one of our hangouts at the beach.

The biggest women-only festival in Lagos is BACK.
Get your tickets here for a day of fun, networking and partayyyyy

Sounds romantic. What was the relationship like, given the uncertainty?

Ore: It was brief. It was perfect. I knew I liked and even loved him from that first week. It wasn’t even anything he said or did. It was how I felt with him — warm and safe. I don’t know how to explain it.

Steven: We’d gotten to know each other for so long without the pressures of “we must date”. So when we finally got together, we already understood each other well. It didn’t even feel like we needed to date. We came into January 2015 knowing we wanted to be husband and wife.

Ore: We decided together. There was no “Will you marry me?” He never proposed.

How exactly did the conversation of “we’re getting married” go?

Steven: It happened over a couple of weeks. As soon as we got together in November, we became inseparable. We were always hanging out, seeing each other during lunch breaks and after work on weekdays. She worked in VI, and I worked in Lekki, so it was slightly easy to meet up and then go home to the mainland together. 

On weekends, we’d meet up in my area or hers, and we’d take strolls, sit in a nearby eatery or even a workstation, nothing too expensive. 

We just clung to each other, and it made me feel happier than I’d probably ever been. I didn’t want that happiness to stop. Because we were always together, we always had these long-drawn conversations about our individual and joint plans. It only took us three months. We started visiting our families by the end of January. February 10, we went to the registry.

Ore: See, I’ve only dated two other people, and I’d never felt so eager to live with and have kids with anyone as much as when I was with this man. I don’t know why it took us so long to even get into the relationship. But I think that talking period is part of what helped us fall in love.

If you want to share your own Love Life story, fill out this form.

Did you get pushback from family or friends?

Steven: Nope. None.

Ore: Everyone was so supportive. It all went smoothly. We didn’t do anything big. Luckily for me, my family is not the “big owambe” type of Yoruba.

So, how has married life been for the last nine years?

Steven: We had a huge shocker because it was rough for us in the first couple of years.

Ore: Yeah, we had a huge sex problem.

Tell me about it

Ore: So we waited to have sex after marriage. It wasn’t even a religious thing. We just never visited each other at home or in any other private space. Beyond making out here and there, sex never came up. Even after the court wedding, we didn’t move in together immediately, so no sex until like two months later. 

We had sex some weeks before our main wedding. I was a virgin, he wasn’t, but everything seemed fine.

Steven: Then, the wedding and all its chaos came and went. We settled into family life. That’s when we noticed that she wanted to have sex way more than I did.

Ore: It probably wouldn’t have been a problem if he wasn’t so good at it. For the first year, I didn’t understand why we couldn’t do it every day, like, multiple times a day even. I understood we had work, but then, I’d be ready to get down in the weekend, and he’d keep making excuses.

That sounds serious. How did you guys get past this?

Ore: For months, we fought, and I felt so ashamed because who could I talk to about sex issues in my marriage. Therapy didn’t even come to mind.

Steven: It felt like such a u-turn from how we felt during the dating period, like we’d made a mistake because we rushed in. 

Ore: The funny thing is that the sex was even better during this period when we were always fighting. But we were not happy. I always felt like I had to beg him for sex. We even considered divorce. 

I remember on our first wedding anniversary, instead of celebrating, we had “the talk”. I asked if he thought we should go our separate ways and he got angry.


Steven: I didn’t think she valued sex so highly that she was willing to break up our marriage because of it. It wasn’t like we weren’t having sex. But it wasn’t something I wanted to do more than once or twice a week.

Ore: He said that since I cared so little about our relationship, we could separate. It was crazy, but we never acted on it. That night, we still had the sex.

You’re still together today. What was the turning point?

Steven: She got pregnant shortly after, and for the next five years, we focused on having and raising our two kids. After that, we looked for other ways to bridge her libido with mine.

Ore: I thought having children back to back would reduce my sex cravings, but it only made it worse. So I’ve gotten into a wide range of sex toys and also therapy, and we communicated more about why he didn’t enjoy sex as much as I did.

Steven: I enjoy it, but maybe not as much as other people do. I think it’s just an interest thing. 

Till today, I still can’t keep up with her libido, but it’s less of an issue now. I’m glad I have a wife who loves sex because, at least, I know anytime I want her, she’s ready. I try my best to give what I take, but I also know I have to accept that I may never be enough. I’ve made peace with it.

Do you think you’d ever open your marriage?

Steven: Ahhh. No.

Ore: No. Even me, I won’t agree.

How would you rate your Love Life on a scale of 1 to 10?

Steven: 10. We’ve gotten back to that easygoing connection we felt before we even started dating, and it’s so comfortable.

Ore: 10. But I also don’t want us to get too comfortable. Actually, 9, because I’d like for us to try new things and have some more spice in our marriage.

Check back every Thursday by 9 AM for new Love Life stories here. The stories will also be a part of the Ships newsletter, so sign up here.

NEXT READ: Love Life: I Think She’s Too Cool For Me Sometimes



Zikoko amplifies African youth culture by curating and creating smart and joyful content for young Africans and the world.