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Read Letter

Why Relationships Die

My dear Jil, you need to be careful about mounting pressure on a guy to marry you. Once a guy starts saying, “You’re too good for me”… “I am unworthy of your love”… “I believe you’ll be happier without me”… It’s a civil way of saying I want to break with you. Sometimes it’s, “I am going through a lot right now”… Or “Things are quite difficult for me right now and I don’t want you to suffer with me”… These are not good signs. They’re polite rejections. If you persist the guy will cut off, not reply your texts, or calls, or mails. What he’s saying is, “Didn’t you get the message?”

 Of course you can persist even after that. The usual recourse is to want to meet the guy, have a face time. But the guy knows he can’t do face time with you, that he won’t hold up under face time scrutiny. The guy doesn’t want to go through the inconvenience of being persuaded to go through with a relationship he doesn’t want. Such sessions have been known to lead to “make up” sex; only it’s palliative. The can is being thrown down the road. The guy will hate himself for it afterwards. He’s regressed and found himself back in what he doesn’t want. The issue is the fact he doesn’t want you. The issue is still there. It’s not going away. Sometimes these things are a reaction to a character flaw. And sometimes it’s because he feels he can do better. And it may be he’s eyeing somebody, or someone is eyeing him.
Being out of the country can also lead to such outcomes. You no longer see regularly. You’re not in his face. Your physicality is no longer a hook, be it your face, or hips, or breasts or whatever he likes about you physically. There’s missing touch as well. And missing nuances and other peculiarities of your attractiveness. Distance can make the heart grow fonder. But only if the fundamentals are strong. The relationship has to be stronger than its physical qualities. Distance can only make the heart grow fonder if the man values you for your character, heart and devotion. If it’s just about the physical an easy substitution can be made. And so distance only makes the heart grow fonder under certain conditions. It’s more likely to disintegrate a relationship without strong fundamentals.
In a foreign clime the guy has the luxury of exotic or non-exotic considerations. He can date his race, date outside his race, or a mixed race. And so he has a wider cultural menu. He might have disqualified you for your non exotic material composition. Who knows! And some guys believe their horizon will widen if they date a woman from that clime. Many times it’s a quest for citizenship. You’re disadvantaged in that regard. But some break their relationship because they’re genuinely trying to figure things out, trying to settle down into a new society. These things happen. When a boyfriend and girlfriend are separated by massive distances that run into thousands of kilometres anything can happen.
My take is that this guy is no longer interested in this relationship. It’s obvious from his mail. It’s why he’s no longer replying your mail. He’s decided it’s over. You can of course travel and go and persuade him to continue the relationship. But that’s an expensive adventure. And what happens when you leave? For how long are you going to keep travelling to persuade a man to marry you? You can’t afford it financially or emotionally. Sometimes we have to accept hard reality and just leave a relationship alone. If it’s not going to work it won’t work. You can bandage the relationship, apply first aid, do mouth to mouth resuscitation and it will still die. We ought to be discerning about what will work and what will not work. Saves energy investment. If it comes at a great price to your peace, health, fulfilment and happiness it ain’t worth it.
Trying to prove a point by marrying him should not be your strategic objective. A happy, peaceful and loving home should be your objective. And anyway who are you proving the point to? The world? They’re wondering why you’re forcing the relationship. The story will be you forced yourself on him. That story will come out during your divorce. If his mind is not with you it’s somewhere else. It’s like a guy who takes you out and keeps staring at other women. You can keep turning his gaze away but for how long can you keep that up? And what’s the damage to your self-worth? Especially if he thinks it’s a game. And so you need two graces: the grace to recognize a relationship that won’t work and the grace to let go of a relationship that won’t work.
You just have to move on. You have to put him behind you. Take a pragmatic approach. I’m not saying there won’t be pain. There’ll be pain of rejection for instance. No one wants to be rejected. It’s why there’s often debate as to who dumped who. No one wants to be rejected. But whether he rejected you, or you rejected him, same consequence. The relationship died. Some relationships die a natural death. They just die, like they ran out of life or something. The parties naturally lose interest, don’t see the need for the relationship again. It’s some sort of “realisation”, something funny that just happened. And the parties come to the realisation together. Such tend to part on amicable terms, or semi amicable terms. Everyone accepts the fate. With those kinds of endings family members and friends often try to bring the parties together. But both parties just know it’s over. The relationship expired like a drug.
Sometimes it’s because circumstances have changed. Sometime it’s because the parties have grown older, more mature. Truth is, some relationships are special purpose vehicles. They only serve one purpose and when that purpose is fulfilled the need for it ceases. Expiry is very common with relationships that began on campus. The relationship might have come to be because the boy or the girl has a special emotional need. A boy from a weak home may bond with a girl who plays a larger role of “mummy girlfriend.” She’ll be his girlfriend but she’ll also fill the role of mum in his life. Will take care of him. That can also happen to a girl. Where her father is not her idea of what a dad should be she may gravitate towards a guy exhibiting the traits she longs for – steadfast love, listening ear, constancy. The guy may be a straight shooter and a responsible guy… things her dad is not. She’ll date the guy for such traits. But as soon as she comes into her own the relationship may be over. She’s older and more mature now.
And some relationships die accidentally. One instance of carelessness, a spoken word which touches a raw nerve, words that hurt but unmeant… These can lead to accidental death of a relationship. The boy or girl may just not be able to cope with it despite knowing the other party didn’t mean it. And it may be an instance of cheating that leads to the death of the relationship – one careless libidinous fulfilment. We all have our emotional thresholds. We’re all different. What some can cope with others may not be able to cope with. And there are word triggers in everyone’s life. Those words trigger certain fears. There are act triggers as well. An act can trigger deep feelings of insecurity. Humans are fragile and deep.
When a relationship is dead, as in dead, you ought to stop mouth to mouth resuscitation. It’s pointless. Accept the fact. If you don’t accept the fact you can’t move on. You’ll put your life on hold, hoping, believing, hoping against hope. You’ll start reading meanings into tokens, hoping something will be ignited, that he’ll need you. Move on! You have your whole life ahead of you. You can’t tether your life to your past. You won’t soar. All things work together for your good. Someday you’ll look back and be grateful some things didn’t work out in your life. You’ll actually be grateful! But you can’t have the privilege of rear view unless you move on. Make new friends. Go out on dates. Enjoy the simple pleasures of life, like laughter. Laugh from your insides. Some laughs are aerobic exercises. You need those kinds of laughter.
Life is a stream. It soon flows past into a tomorrow without us. Enjoy the life you have. You can’t marry who doesn’t want to marry you. He may not have the knowledge you’re good for him. Life permits that kind of ignorance.
Move on, ok?
Your mentor, LA
© Leke Alder |


Some relationships are special purpose vehicles. They only serve one purpose and when that purpose is fulfilled, the need for it ceases. Click To Tweet Life is a stream. It soon flows past into a tomorrow without us. Enjoy the life you have. Click To Tweet You can’t marry who doesn’t want to marry you. Click To Tweet


Tags : one-sided relationship, Long distance relationship, Moving on

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