Love Life is a Zikoko weekly series about love, relationships, situationships, entanglements and everything in between.
Opeyemi, 30, and Sandra, 27, dated for a year and seven months before getting married. Today on Love Life, they talk about starting a relationship in the DMs, a horrible first date at Opeyemi’s house and why their families and close friends found out they were getting married on Twitter.
What’s your earliest memory of each other?
Opeyemi: I met her at a Twitter hangout in December 2017. She looked hot in her green dress, and I told my friend I was going to talk to her. But I ended up not doing it. She was busy chatting with other people for most of the night.
Sandra: I didn’t meet him at that hangout. I didn’t even see him.
Opeyemi: LOL, because you were feeling yourself. After the hangout, I followed her on Twitter.
You guys followed each other for how long before you started talking?
Sandra: Almost two years. He started stalking me. Whenever I tweeted or posted a picture, he’d like it and hype me up. He did it for some months. And In my head, I was like, “Who is this one?”
On my birthday in April 2020, he tweeted me a happy birthday and said something something about my beauty. I wasn’t mentioned.
I found it funny he was just talking to himself about me on the timeline, so I sent him a DM. I said, “Hey, are you trying to be married?”
LOL. What did he say?
Opeyemi: I said, “I’m available for cuffing. Take me. Tie me. Handcuff and legcuff me.”
Sandra: I wanted to catch cruise that day. I asked him to call me so we could make it official. He did. After the call, we continued texting. And it didn’t enter two days before this man asked if I wanted to hang out at his place. I wasn’t doing anything that day so I agreed. I thought he was cool.
Now tell me why the person that invited me to his house wasn’t in his house when I got there.
Opeyemi: LOL. I went shopping for her. I told my flatmate she was coming so he directed her to my room.
Sandra: Imagine! I was just sitting on the bed. When he got back, he said he went to buy things to cook, but did he cook anything? No. We had to order pizza that took forever to deliver.
Opeyemi: And it was one of those days NEPA didn’t bring light. But it’s not like I had DSTV.
Sandra: Or chairs.
Opeyemi: LMAO. The only thing we could do was play games. We played ludo.
Sandra: See, that day was just a mess. I was so angry, I felt like I wasted my time. When it was time for me to go, he pecked me on my cheek before I got in my Uber. In my head, I was like, “Abeg, comot your mouth from my face.”
I told myself I wasn’t going back there again.
LMAO. So tell us why you’re both here today.
Sandra: I forgot my muffler at his house that day, so I had to talk to him. The next day, he told me that he wanted to send a dispatch to me with my muffler. When the muffler came, it came with a love letter that I didn’t read. Instead, I asked him what he wrote in the letter. He said he was trying to make up for the bad first date. I thought it was sweet lowkey, but I am hard to please.
Opeyemi: Me, I enjoyed the date and wanted to make sure she had fun too. I also wanted to spend more time with her. I’m glad we continued talking. I’d text her to check up on her and make sure she was okay.
Sandra: I liked it. On the third day after the first date, I got to work and there was a platter of food on my desk. I asked him if he sent it, and he said no. Do you know this guy went on Twitter and posted, “Whoever sent platter to my girlfriend, thank you o.”
Sandra: When I saw the tweet, I was like, Oh god, this boy. I’m not your girlfriend.
I didn’t tell him that though. I kept playing with him until I started to fall for him.
How did that happen?
Sandra: Well, he’s a funny guy. We kept texting, and he always liked my pictures on Twitter. We weren’t having deep conversations. Sometimes I would be cold to him, but he remained consistent.
If I tweeted about wanting a shoe, he’d buy me that shoe. If I wanted small chops, he’d get it for me. One time, he got me a power bank. He also sent me money from time to time.
Not deep conversations but he had your account number?
Sandra: He was feeling me so he asked.
Opeyemi: Forget that one. The trick is to buy a power bank.
Sandra: LOL. He was just showing up for me sha.
How did you feel during this time, Opeyemi?
Opeyemi: I wasn’t really bothered because I liked her. There were days where she’ll just blow me off, and that was annoying, but I’m a very persistent person. You can be rude to me, and I’ll just be smiling at you. Besides, I already liked her — from the first time I saw her.
Thanks to the power bank and a month of consistent wooing, she started to like me too.
Did you wooing stop after she joined you in the relationship?
Opeyemi: Nopes. Why would it? I spent as much time as I could with her. During the lockdown period, I’d leave my house in Magodo by 5 a.m. to meet on the island, then return home around 10 p.m.
Opeyemi: This relationship was my first serious relationship. I had been in relationships where we would start off great but before a few weeks, things had died down. I wanted to make things work with Sandra. She’s the total package of everything I want in a woman. If driving from Magado to Island every day was the test, I was ready to pass it.
Sandra: I wanted to make things work too. Before him, I was in relationships where we weren’t sincere with ourselves. The kind where accountability is a myth. But with him, it was different. He was always present.
At first, I thought he was just another guy, but around June 2020, my friends and I were moving into a new apartment, and he helped us do a lot of things that period.
Opeyemi: I was the handyman. I did carpenter work, carried load, drove sometimes… What did I not do?
Sandra: LMAO. My friends kept telling me, “Sandra, this man is in love with you. He’s showing up and showing out for you. What’s up?”
The evening we moved into the flat, he got someone to clean the whole house and moved all my stuff into my room. I was stunned.
He bought every single thing I had in that house even though I was always at his house. Six months into the relationship, he asked me, “Do I look like someone that you can marry?” I said, “Why not?”
The conversation ended there, but it caused a shift in how I saw him. He was no longer my boyfriend — he had become my fiancé.
How did that change your relationship?
Sandra: We started making decisions as a couple. We wanted to get married. I told my parents about him, and they asked him to visit them in Port Harcourt.
Opeyemi: I thought they’d reject me because I’m Yoruba, but they welcomed me. Her mum did say she wasn’t comfortable with her daughter marrying a Yoruba man because when Yoruba men marry someone that’s not from their tribe, they end up marrying a second wife. I told her no one in my family has two wives, and we laughed about it.
Her father, on the other hand, was really excited about the idea of a cross-cultural marriage.
What about Opeyemi’s parents?
Sandra: They found out about the engagement on social media. I posted the video on Twitter, and it blew up. That’s how everybody else aside my parents found out we were getting married.
How did that happen?
Opeyemi: They knew we were planning to get married, but I didn’t tell them exactly when I was going to engage her. Besides, my mum wasn’t entirely on board.
Sandra: His mum was uptight in the beginning. She didn’t want an Igbo girl to marry her son.
Opeyemi: But I didn’t even let it fly. I told her it’s Sandra I wanted to be with and that’s about that. Eventually, she came around.
Interesting. What’s changed about your relationship after marriage?
Opeyemi: Very little has changed. We lived together before we got married, so it wasn’t hard to settle in. She kept her place when we got married but after the rent expired, we moved her things to mine.
Sandra: My mum says marriage is a closed gift. Whatever you see inside is anything you want it to be.
From time to time, I realise that I can’t vex and go to my house because I’m now married. There’s this consciousness that I have to deal with him for the rest of my life. Aside from that realisation, nothing has changed.
Interesting. Tell me about your biggest fight.
Opeyemi: We all have exes that have refused to go away. Sandra has this particular one like that. One time, before we got engaged, he called her. I heard them talking about the trip he had just returned from. She told him she was “coming to collect goodies”. I was offended. What kind of goodies? After the call, we had a conversation about it and I told her, “If you’re not going to respect this relationship, just go.” She got angry, packed her things in different small nylons and went to her house.
Sandra: LMAO, my box was in my house.
Opeyemi: Did you even have box? The worst part was that when she called later, instead of her to just say sorry, she said, “God said I should call you.” I was like, “Okay, what did He say you should tell me?” This babe said she didn’t know.
Sandra: LOL. When I got home, I talked to my best friend about it. She told me I was wrong, but I didn’t know how to apologise. Eventually, Opeyemi and I talked about it and I apologised. That’s when I realised how much I loved him.
Because you apologised?
Sandra: LOL. Yes.
DFKM. What’s the best part of the relationship?
Sandra: Our friendship. Outside of romance, we can talk to each other about anything. He doesn’t baby me when I am wrong. He calls me out on my bullshit and vice versa. I think good friends should be able to do that for each other.
Opeyemi: Apart from the friendship, I like that we complement each other. I’m a very calm person, and she’s the direct opposite of that. If someone is trying to do some shit around us, she will clear them straight. She doesn’t even fucking play.
Even in our careers, I’m a creative and she’s from a corporate background. We see the world differently, but we meet somewhere in the middle. She says I’m ice, and she’s fire. That synergy is my favourite part of the relationship.
What attracts you to your partner?
Opeyemi: I love that she’s a free spirit. The first time I saw her, aside from being so attracted to her beauty, I loved how she was so free with everybody even though she was meeting some of them for the first time. I love that boldness so much. Plus, she’s so beautiful.
Sandra: So for me, it’s—
Opeyemi: Power bank.
Sandra: It’s not power bank. Apart from the fact that he has swag, I love how present he is. He always listens to me and is always there for me. I want to keep that for myself forever.
If you had to rate your relationship on a scale of 1-10?
Opeyemi: I’d rate a 10 because we always had each other’s backs. I know that there’s nothing that can mess up our relationship. We put in the work to make it work, and I know that won’t stop.
Sandra: Also, a 10 for me. Because we are accountable to each other. He makes me want to be better.
If you want to share your own Love Life story, fill this form.