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

Get three master’s degrees

“We met in 2015 when I was doing my third master’s”

It’s the only way to give yourself a fighting chance at true love. The subjects of this Love Life attended the same secondary school and university for their first degrees but still didn’t meet until she happened to be studying for her third degree at the same university as his sister. If she hadn’t pushed harder by getting three whole master’s, would she have found the love of her life? Get serious, please.

Start selling puff-puff

“I saw (her) selling puff-puff by the gate to my father’s school”

What’s better than three degrees? Real-life culinary and entrepreneurial experience, of course. In 2024, only two things matter: the bag and fuel for your body. For these subjects, a simple puff-puff transaction turned into exchanging numbers, and before long, they’d married and japa together.

Or sell small chops

“He was this tall guy a year ahead of me who owned a food business everyone knew about”

I don’t know a single Nigerian who isn’t obsessed with that rectangular foil pack of deep-fried appetisers from all over the world. Just like jollof rice and amala, anything tied to the Owambe culture becomes a hit no matter what. It should be studied. 

The subjects of this love life story built a friendship entirely on small chops transactions. I mean, they had little to no communication besides knowing smiles and extra barbecue chicken at no cost. Next thing we know, they’re considering marriage at 19. 

We’re not saying you should move to your favourite small chops vendor/customer o. All we’re saying is how important is love to you?

Leave your community to it

“My father and uncles said they’d narrowed my potential wife down to two women from our village”

So what if it was the 1960s when the naira was worth two dollars? If an arranged marriage by proxy could help this couple survive an entire war and months in a bunker with an infant together, then it most certainly will deliver you from the war zone that’s today’s streets for good.

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

Join the same university club

“We became friends in 300 level when we joined the technical (TC) unit of our school’s chapel”

It’s not enough to attend the same school in the same year as your supposed future soulmate. What if you don’t study the same course or take any classes together? What happens then? If joining the same school club still doesn’t work, initiate a conversation about cartoons you enjoyed as children. That works like magic in any university setting, trust us.

Trust your mum’s matchmaking

“Our mums hooked us up”

Family matchmaking works so well we had to mention it twice. As long as they’re old (and therefore, experienced) and have your actual best interest at heart, your family members can set you up for life. Just ask these subjects whose mums have been best friends since childhood and even gave birth to them in the same year. The mums said they should get married so many times, they pretty much spoke it into existence — modern-day arranged marriage 101. 

Stick to your secondary school sweetheart

“After I saw her during our lunch break on day one, I started going to her class just to catch a glimpse of her”

Sometimes, it just pays to make sure the innocent love that involved plushy toy gifts on Valentine’s Day, illicit chats under the school staircase and pairing together during field trips, lasts till adulthood. That way, you’ve already grown up together, which is perfect practice for growing old together.

Argue on Facebook (or any social media, TBH)

“I just went at him, criticising him for supporting such a person”

It all started with a day-long politically charged back-and-forth between two strangers. But this couple spent the next three years as chat buddies before they finally met in person, and the rest is history. Answer me this: would a relationship have blossomed if they hadn’t spent up to 24 hours passionately airing their opinions to each other on day one? Communication is key regardless of the subject or medium, dear.

Date your best friend

“I’d always loved Jojo, but that’s when I realised I really liked her too”

It should go without saying by now, but really, why haven’t you dated your best friend yet? If you’re still looking for love in 2024, and you have a best friend, date them today! The answer to your prayers is literally right there.

READ THE STORY: Love Life: I’m Not Gay, but I Love Her

Take risks, trust your in-laws more

“My brother-in-law told me an old friend of his was looking for someone to marry”

As soon as this couple met for the first time, the man told the woman he wanted to date and marry her. Straight to the point. That’s the kind of certainty you get when you allow family members to do the matchmaking for you. The couple moved in together some months after and had a traditional wedding the next year. A surprise pregnancy might’ve played a part, but that’s just semantics.

Go on blind dates

“The friend left us, and we just sat there, talking a bit, trying to be cool”

So the blind date in this Love Life was actually awkward. What’s a little awkwardness when it achieves the desired result — an introduction to the future love of your life? But let’s just say in the end, someone’s mother was a catalyst to yet another successful marriage. If you’re still single, you’re sleeping on your mother’s influence.

Try your childhood friends

“We’ve always known each other. We’re family friends”

Thanks to their strong foundation of family and friendship, seven years of separation and one year of pushback against their marriage had nothing on this couple’s future together. Before he proposed, the man even applied for a master’s program in the UK just to be with his woman. That’s the level of “I’ll go everywhere you go” we should all aspire towards in our love lives.

Attend more business conferences

“I knew I had to talk to her because she was the best-dressed person there”

The connection was so strong at the “boring” conference that brought this Love Life couple together that when one person revealed they were already in two relationships, it took the other person less than an hour to agree to join the fold. There’s something in the air at these conferences you might be missing out on.

Friends of your friends should be on your radar too

“He was a childhood friend of my closest male friend from secondary school”

We admit it took this couple seven years to get together, so this might be more of a long-term option. But the high point is this man relocated back to Nigeria to be with the woman. He did the reverse of the Nigerian dream for love. Come on now. Meanwhile, it helped this other couple go from situationship to best friendship to relationship in two years. Don’t sleep on that mutual friend.

Public transportion is the answer

“We met on a danfo going from CMS to Eko Hotel roundabout”

How do you hope to find the one if you keep taking private cabs everywhere? It doesn’t even add up. Except cab drivers are your type though — that’s absolutely valid. But if you want to widen your net, especially if you live in Lagos, you know what to do. Just so you know, the love that arose from this danfo trip made one of the subjects question his sexuality. Enough said.

Attend birthday parties

“We met at a friend’s off-campus birthday party”

The next time a friend, or even an acquaintance, invites you for their birthday and you decline, ask yourself if you’re really serious about finding love. Now, listen carefully. It’s not enough to attend the party and find the love. As soon as you establish a connection with the person, move in with them. Don’t let that love breef.

You don’t attend political rallies?

“It was one of the first (rallies) she attended, ahead of the general elections”

Who knew you could find love at Nigerian political rallies? Those ones where they wave brooms and umbrellas in the air, shouting party slogans in different Nigerian languages at crowded stadiums? Interesting. Well, if your 2024 New Year resolution includes “Be one half of a power couple,” better grab a party registration card and get to volunteering with your local government chairperson. 

That’s how this couple got together in 2011, and 12 years later, they’re running things at the federal and state levels respectively, thanks to each other’s support.

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.

RELATED: Love Life: 10 of the Most-Loved Stories of 2023



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