Twice I’ve come close to cheating on my husband. The first was with my boss. The second was with a guy I’m in school with. Each time, I had to recite the Lord’s prayer—the part that said, “Lead me not into temptation,” before I could step out of the temptation. It was very close. So close I thought I should just give in to them. Not because of my happiness but because of the kind of men they’ve been in my life. The support they had given me. The kindness they had shown to me. The care. When all my husband does is to take from me without giving anything back.
We got married three years ago. He was kind and sweet to me when we were dating. There was nothing I needed that he didn’t provide or sought to provide. He was there with me anytime I needed him. He was the point I started counting my blessings from. “Count your blessings, name them one by one,” and I will go like, “Kenneth. Thank you God for bringing him my way.” After counting the other blessings, I will end by saying, “And I’m grateful for the kind of man you’ve thrown my way.” He came first when I counted my blessings. He came last after counting my blessings.
When it got to the time for us to marry, I counted it as all joy for being able to marry my best friend and the man who had been the pillar for me. A year after marriage, he got transferred to a new town. I didn’t like the place he had been transferred to. It’s a little town with a few economic prospects. I’m a government worker who loves to do other things to bring in money. At work, I sold to my colleagues. After work, I sold to the people I met on the way. In the house, I sold to my neighbors and people in the vicinity. Moving to the new place with him wasn’t a good idea for me. There was no way I could make the kind of extra income I was making but we always follow the lead of love. Wherever it takes us, we go. Trusting that love would make a way.
I sought transfer and moved with him to that new village. I got pregnant a few months later. But that didn’t stop me from trying to sell. Trying to find new customers around for the product I was selling. A lot of people couldn’t pay. Those who were able to pay also bought on credit. I had to chase them everywhere for my money. Some will pay, others wouldn’t pay. I lost my capital so I stopped doing that work and concentrated on my main work. I gave birth to a bouncing baby boy to the happiness of everyone in the family. I was home taking care of our baby. That was when my husband also became very popular in town because of his work.
He met a lot of people. New people came to look for him every day. He was making good money and meeting good people. At some point, I picked the intel that he was meeting good women too. Women who were ready to lie down for him regardless of his marital status. His actions showed. The time he came back home from work sang a new song—a song of a man who’s in love with someone else. I started asking questions. Harmless questions like, “You’re late. What kept you busy at work?” “You knew you’ll come home at night, what kept you from pre informing me?” “Things are changing around here. Is it my fault? Tell me and I correct my ways.”
These questions got him angry. He said things he shouldn’t have said to me and made life difficult where it should have been easier. He wouldn’t provide for the house.He wouldn’t buy baby things. When I complained he asked me what I’m doing with my money.”
The only way I could make more income is to go to school and upgrade myself. When my child was a year old, I started going to school outside town. I discussed it with him. He accepted. He called it a good idea so I started. I sought support from him each step of the way but he always gave me excuses. I needed money for fees. I needed money for books. I needed money for other things. My salary could do something but I needed help. He made promises, “Oh I’m expecting some money from a friend. Immediately I get the money, I will pay.” He’ll never pay. Even housekeeping money I had to fight him before he pays sometimes.
I will go to work and be thinking about the problems in the house. It affected my output. It affected my personal relationship with my colleagues. So my boss called. He asked questions and the floodgate opened. I cried while telling him what was going on in my house. He understood me. He told me not to worry but continue talking to my husband.” That was the first time I was opening up to someone outside my marriage. I left his office feeling like a weight had been lifted off my shoulder. I felt lighter. I felt free and fulfilled.
So he started throwing help my way. He would call me to his office and ask me, “Is there something you may need me to do for you?” Or he would call me to his office, stretch his hand and say, “Here, take this for the weekend.” It was always a huge amount of money. It helped. It lessened the burden. It paid for things that needed to be paid. So we became closer. We talked on the phone after work and met sometimes after work. The conversation was changing. I could feel the roughness creeping into the way we talked. I could pull the breaks. I could ask him to slow down. I would tell him, “You know I’m married. I can’t go that far with you.”
He wouldn’t push it. He continued bidding his time. He kept throwing goodness my way. Even when I changed, my husband didn’t notice it. I woke up thinking of how I could dress up to impress my boss. I started using makeup again. I started dressing like a maiden. He didn’t notice. He was so engrossed in his new life to notice the change in me. So one night I decided, “To hell with it. I will go with the flow.” I met him where he said I should meet him. He was graceful in luring me to the point where I could just take off my dress and invite him in. When he got closer I said, “It’s not a good time. I’m sorry. The time of the month. Just give me some time.”
I ran back home. It was 10pm. The lady taking care of my kid brought the kid to me. She said, “Your child had been sleeping. Your husband too hadn’t come.” She placed my child in my arms ad I walked into my room. I broke down and cried. What is becoming of us? What am I turning into? Why is this marriage walking at the tip of its toes? God, speak.” That night he came back home at 11pm. We fought. He said mean words to me. He said, “If you’re tired, you can pack your things and leave.”
There’s Gaf, a friend I made in school. He was in a different class but he had special care for me so anytime I was in school, he was with me. We learned together. We worried about exams together. I didn’t tell him my marital problems but he sensed it. He asked often if everything was alright. I told him I was fine. It was exam time one weekend. The lady who took care of my kid had traveled. I had to go to school and write exams so I told my husband to take care of the kid while I’m in school writing exams. He accepted to do it but a day before the weekend, he told me, “You’ll have to take the child with you to school. I have somewhere to go.” “It’s Exams. How do I carry a child with me while writing exams?” I asked. He said, ”Figure it out.”
So the next morning I had to carry my child to school while in tears. I didn’t even know how I was going to do it. I got to school and met Gaf. He said, “I will keep the child. Go and write the exams.” I said, “How? You also have a paper right after that. This child isn’t the quiet type. You can’t learn.” He said, “Don’t worry. I will handle it.” He handled it. I got back and took my child so he could go and write his exams. That’s how we did until exams ended.
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Then things changed with him too. It got tense between us. He wanted me. I told him it wasn’t possible. He pushed. I hadn’t had sex for over six months. I slept next to my husband and he didn’t care about my presence but you see, Gaf was easy to handle because he was someone I saw only once every two weeks. He told me he loved me. I told him I loved him too. I told him, “It’s not possible to give you the kind of love you want but I love you all the same.” He pushed for it until I decided to just give it to him. On my way to his place, I changed my mind. I got out of the car and came back home. He called all day. I didn’t pick. Later I sent him a message, “I can’t do it. It’s too hard for me.”
Gaf is still lurking around, just like my boss, waiting for the time I will loosen up for him to hit. Why is everyone after me but the man I belong to doesn’t care?
I called his parents and told them everything. He found it as me reporting him to his parents. He screamed, ’You think I’m a kid? You think I’m not capable of running my own affairs? Go ahead and embarrass me in front of whoever you want, your time will come.”
Where did the love go? Is there something about me that he doesn’t like again? Is there something he wants me to do that I’m not doing? Is he simply out of love with me?” I’ve asked all these questions in the best way that I can. He sees it as nagging. So now we don’t talk. I can’t force it so my focus is on my kid now. I don’t want to be in a situation where I can’t feed and also feed my kid. If I get to that situation, I know he will watch me die.
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