Sunken Ships is a Zikoko series that explores the how and why of the end of all relationships — familial, romantic or just good old friendships.
Lolade* (29) and Amarachi*(29) have been best friends for over a decade. Their friendship almost ended when Lolade started dating Osas*.
How did you and your best friend meet?
Lolade: We met in church 13 years ago. It was Sunday school. There was a quiz competition for teenagers. We tied for first place and have been conquering the world together every day since.
Lolade: She’s one of the best things to ever happen to me. When I broke my leg and had to walk around in a cast when I was 19, she called herself my personal assistant and did everything for me. Picking up my pens that fell, helping me do the dishes at home and loosening my hair. We made promises to each other early in life that we’d stand together no matter what.
Sure, we got into arguments a couple of times, but we always tried to resolve it despite being very stubborn. The one time it seemed like an argument would last longer than a couple of hours, our parents got involved. They sat us down and reminded us about how much we love each other.
How did the guy now enter into all of this?
Lolade: I met Osas in 2021. I had gone out to a restaurant to eat alone because Amarachi was in a meeting with an international client. As I sat alone, trying to enjoy my own company, the waiter brought me a drink I didn’t order. When I tried to explain that it was a mix-up, she informed me that someone had sent it to me. I asked her who it was because I wanted to thank him, but all she did was give me his number on a piece of paper. That he said if I wanted to thank him, I should call him. I won’t lie, I was kind of impressed. Things like that don’t happen to me every day, so I was curious to see it through. When I got home, I sent him a text thanking him for the drink. That’s how Osas and I got to talking.
Was it love at first text?
Lolade: Not really. I mean, I don’t fall in love with people that easily, so I don’t think I’ve ever had a “love at first “ anything. I did however grow to like Osas. We went on a date about a week after the drinks thing and it was the first time I was meeting him face-to-face. Amarachi went to the restaurant we were to have our date at about thirty minutes before me so she could step in if he turned out to be a creep or a weirdo. Luckily for me, he didn’t try anything on the date. He was very respectful throughout the date and he made me laugh a lot. At one point, I texted Amarachi to meet me in the bathroom and we had a mini-session where I just filled her in on how the date was going.
The conversation I had with him was great and I didn’t want that night to end. Amarachi and I had planned a movie night that day and that was the only thing stopping me from going home with him. It was a long time since I had a date with a man that made me feel as good as he did.
Lolade: Well, we kept talking. We’d go on dates, he’d buy me gifts and flowers, etc. He was very determined in his pursuit of me. I liked it. I’m the firstborn and apart from Amarachi, nobody really took care of me. They all just expected me to “handle it”. Having someone who was intentional about making my life easier really made me fall fast. Two months after talking, he came over to my house one day to do my dishes because I was too lazy to do any housework. I fell for this man hard.
We started dating three months after our first date. I became a “my man, my man, my man” kind of girl. Every opportunity I got, I was talking about him and how amazing he treated me. I was in love with him.
Lolade: Amarachi didn’t like him so much. Throughout the talking stage, Amarachi told me she had a bad feeling about him. Now, Amarachi is more spiritual than I am so she believes in auras and reading people’s energies. Not really my type of thing, but whenever she does it, I leave her to her devices. However, I didn’t understand why she couldn’t like him. She’d always complained to me that I settle when it comes to romantic relationships, so I didn’t understand why she wasn’t excited there was a guy finally treating me the way she had always wanted for me.
Whenever I mentioned I was spending time with him, she’d try to change the topic as quickly as possible. If I was telling her about something nice he did for me, she’d end it with a “that’s nice” and keep it moving. It was a side of her I hardly ever saw and it made me start keeping things about him from her. I’d lie about who I was spending time with and talking to and I knew she knew I was lying, but she never pushed. It started creating a divide.
Lolade: It made me start withdrawing from her a lot. We used to have brunch every Sunday and I started skipping it a few times. Our calls became shorter and since I was almost always at Osas’ house or he was at mine, we didn’t have our sleepovers anymore. Our lifetime friendship was slipping away right before my eyes and I did nothing about it.
Lolade: I got too attached to Osas. He was doing everything for me and I liked how he made me feel. For the first time, I considered marrying someone. It felt like he was my one true shot at a fairytale life and I didn’t want to let it go.
When I told Osas about the whole Amarachi situation, he told me she was jealous of me. That since she’s the one used to having different guys shower her with attention, she didn’t know how to react to seeing me in a loving and thriving relationship. He encouraged me to stay away from her and ice her out from a couple of things and me, the olodo that I am, I did.
Amarachi didn’t stop reaching out to me. She’d text, try to call, she even emailed me, but I was not answering. One day she showed up at my office and demanded to see me or else she was not leaving. I know her, and I knew it was not an empty threat, so I went to meet her. She shouted at me in front of everyone. Called me an idiot for letting a man come between us and threatened to beat sense into my head if I didn’t act right. She reminded me of when we promised each other that we’d never argue because of a man and that here I was, refusing to speak to her because a man asked me to. Honestly, I was a bit disgusted at myself for that. Truly, how?
That’s when I realised that all the things I was hyping this man for doing for me, Amarachi did. She’d come to my house when I have cramps, read me bedtime stories, clean and cook. When my car was bad, she drove me to work every day even though she worked from home. She bought me flowers and even flew me out of the country once because I had complained about being exhausted from work. I think the day she showed up to my office knocked sense into my head.
What did you do?
Lolade: I broke up with him. We had been dating for almost a year at this point and were even planning to move in together. But right then and there in the office, I sent him a text saying we needed to end our relationship. I knew the right guy for me will be someone my best friend will love wholeheartedly and if she didn’t, then he was not the one. I cried a lot that day but Amarachi was there, holding my hand through it all.
Wow. That’s a lot
Lolade: That’s not even the end. A couple of months later, I found out that he was arrested for fraud. Amarachi was so tickled when she found out. She still rubs it in my face that she saved me from having all my assets seized. That I’d have been using my money to hire lawyers for a criminal. I can’t imagine what would have happened to me if we were dating when he got arrested. We’d have moved in together and they’d have seized my house. What would I have done? Now, I take her gut feelings more seriously than I ever did. Before a case of “hath I known” will be my portion.