You meet a nice man. He is a couple of years older and you could not be more grateful because you are bound to learn a few things from him. He takes you out for dinner first then a movie. Occasionally he cooks for and surprises you at the office with your favourite take out breakfast or a bouquet of flowers on your birthday. It all seems rosy till it’s not. On the rare occurrence when he loses his temper it’s bad. He demeans you and you walk away. After a while, you make up and it’s back to normal. Only that now you walk on eggshells to not upset him.
He is secretive about his family and he has some major unresolved baggage that you both could do without. He is not keen on addressing his issues instead he chooses to ‘not care at all’ but deep down he is hurting. Sometimes he locks himself in the house for days and no one else can reach him so you happen to drop by and you find that he has not moved or eaten in days. You cook something up and get him to come out of his shell. By the time you leave, he is happier and even manages to microwave some leftovers from lunch. You urge him to get help, you even secretly plan an intervention with his close friends after which he goes back to the conventional way of life.
At some point, he jokingly mentions that he is undeserving of your love. He pushes your buttons to get you to leave but you are a strong woman so you stay. He pushes harder because he does not understand why you would stay in his life yet all the others left. He pushes one more button and this time it breaks you. You get so hurt you can barely function. Eventually, it is you who is depressed and starved with only a withered cucumber in your fruit basket. Truth is, you are emotionally drained and there is no reciprocation to the care you gave to him. The tragic reality is that he does not know how to help you through your depression, brought about by all the drama because he cannot do it for himself. The whole plot of your emotionally tumultuous relationship plays out so many times you can predict each step.
You work hard to get back to the woman you were once proud of. The one who had some good home-cooked meals woke up to work out before eating up a good book. One who was in touch with her spiritual being and was overall, at peace. The woman who kicked ass at work and inspired those around her to be better; who had a zest for life. A woman who took care of herself and was always smart. With the help of your inner circle, you walk out make changes and begin to heal.
Secretly you miss him. The good moments when there was a balance. So you call him only to find him in one of his episodes again and you dash to his side because you are genuinely a good person. As you stand in his kitchen, your life flashes right in front of you. This will be your norm. With a man who struggles with his esteem, feelings of unworthiness and who is not willing to put in the work to be better. Now you get it. He cannot give you what he does not have. He cannot love you, he barely cares for himself.
So, you switch off the cooker and grab your jacket and phone. This time you are not coming back. You are no better than him if you keep stirring his murk and then cleaning him up. He needs to want sanity for himself. You realize you cannot try to save him anymore, only Jesus can do that. With Rebecca Ferguson’s I Hope blasting in your ears, you laugh at the mess you have become in the last eighteen months. You deserve better. Someone who thinks highly of himself enough to know that he deserves you. Love should not hurt or make you cry. Period. You hope life treats him well but you are done with the depression and drama. It is time to move on.
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***Single lady in Nairobi is a collection of real-life stories and opinions from different women. It looks at the current world of dating in Kenya and the experiences that ladies have gone through. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the contributors and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of Potentash.com.