I came out of a 6-year relationship and it took me a long time to recover. 1 year after, I met someone. He wanted us to get married almost immediately. I had a dream that felt like a warning against it. In hindsight, I see that going to my father with it was a bad idea. He was biased because he wanted me to be married. He dismissed the dream. I sought the counsel of one of my female church leaders. At the time, I felt like I could no longer hear God and she told me it was because God had given me everything I need. She said He expected me to be smart enough to know that everything was okay. So against all the resistance my mind put up, I got married.
Few weeks in, my ex-husband started mistreating me. When I fell sick, he said I was seeking attention and ignored me until I had to be rushed to the hospital. About three months into the marriage, my father died, and I fell into depression. I confided in a mutual friend who told him about it. He had been away, working on different projects since we got married; so I was living alone. He decided that to keep me safe, I should live with a family friend whose home was close to his project site. What’s interesting is that he lived around there, in a hotel room; while I slept on those people’s couch for three months.
Once, he had an accident and blamed me for it. He said the marriage had caused his bad luck in business and that he wanted out. He left me in that family friend’s house in Lagos and returned to Ado-Ekiti. At the time, I was struggling financially. When we got married, he had told me to sell everything about my business in Lagos, so I could move to Ado-Ekiti. But my father fell sick at about the same time and I used the money for that. So all this time, I had limited options because I was broke. I moved to my family house in Lagos.
On the day of our first anniversary, he invited me to return home, and I did. He apologised and seemed to change; then one month after, he began to act funny again. Once, I walked in on him telling a friend I was merely there to do all his bidding. He said it in such a demeaning and insulting way. Then, just when I was settling in and trying to get a job, he said he wanted to move back to Lagos. I was still trying to reach out to people I knew in Lagos to get a job when he absconded and refused to pick my calls.
After a while, I became tired of taking these blows to my self-esteem and mental health; I moved to my father’s house and started my life afresh. I’m no more married, but I am in a better place. I still struggle to believe that I deserve love or that I am enough for anyone. Right now, I’m just grateful to be alive and I take each day with hope. I believe that God is healing me.