"I've had it with you. Completely had it! You know what, do whatever the hell suits you, you want to leave, leave. Go. Take a walk, take a bus, fly if you want. But if you think I'm leaving this place or taking you anywhere then you're even more confused than I thought you were"
Laide listened to him calmly. It wasn't the first time Laitan would throw this type of tantrum. It wasn't the second, third or fourth either, and just like all his previous tantrums she listened calmly and let him run out of steam before speaking. Yes, it seemed he was done for now.
"Bae, I'm so sorry you're upset. I'm not even asking you to leave, I know you don't want to. I'm not asking you to take me home either, I'll take a cab. I just wanted you to know that I'm leaving, or would you rather I'd left without saying anything?"
"You're leaving, leave. I have a party to get back to. I have people waiting". Laitan said flatly and turned his back to her.
Laide watched as he walked away, eager to be reunited with his friends on the dancefloor. She tucked her phone into her back pocket and walked towards the door. It broke her heart a little to see the look on his face, his voice and it's tone said one thing, his eyes said another. He really didn't want her to leave.
The shrill ring of the phone woke Laide up early Monday morning. She squinted at the screen to see the caller ID and her heart immediately soared. She'd been worried that Saturday night's quarel would linger longer.
"Good morning Laitan" she said hesitantly, not exactly certain what mood her boyfriend was in, for all she knew he just wanted to continue the quarel from where they left off
"I love you Laide.", he said, "I really do. I'm so sorry about Saturday night, I can be such an idiot at times, forgive me babe".
Laide felt her heart melt. She loved this man. Lord, how she loved him! "Yes, but you're my idiot and I love you regardless" she said giggling.
"Would you come over tonight? I could pick you up after work. I've really missed you and I could do with some sugar" he said chuckling mischievously.
Laide couldn't have asked for anything else. The lovebirds made plans for later that day and rang off. The call gave her the boost she needed to start the day, with a huge grin on her face and a fresh burst of energy Laide began to prepare for work.
Nnamdi walked into the office with his trademark swag. He was the office hottie and all the girls vied for his affection, and Nnamdi took great pleasure reveling in their attention. In addition to being the office hottie he was also Laitan's colleague and best friend, and when he saw the look on Laitan's face that morning it was obvious that something was really bothering him.
"What's on your mind bro?" Nnamdi said, breaking into his reverie
"Laide doesn't love me" Laitan blurted. "I mean, she says she does, she acts like she does, she's the perfect girlfriend. But something is off, it's either she's cheating on me or she's lying about something. Whatever it is I'm going to find out and I'm going to..."
"Hey, calm down, take a deep breath. What's this about?" Nnamdi asked.
"She says she loves me, but she hates spending time with me. On Saturday night she left me at the party and ... "
"Again?!" Nnamdi yelled, cutting in.
"Again." Laitan affirmed. Yes, Laide almost always left him when they went out for reasons he could never understand, it just never made any sense to him.
"Hmmm, bro I'm sorry to be the one to say this but it's very obvious that Laide is cheating on you?" Nnamdi said solemnly
"You think so too, don't you?" Laitan asked, hurt and suspicion in his eyes.
"It's pretty obvious. When you guys are out she always ups and leaves, with no explanation whatsoever. She avoids being seen with you in public, and then what about all those times you want to go to her house and she asks you not to, claiming she needs to be alone. Yeah right, alone my left leg! I've been trying to hold this in but you're my friend and it's time I let you know".
"Laide is cheating on me. Laide is cheating on me. Laide is freaking cheating on me" Laitan continued to repeat to himself as though in a trance. He felt a lump in his throat but he would die before he let Nnamdi see his tears. Real men don't cry.
"Madam!!! You're a big girl o! Awon island biggest babes things" Chioma said playfully.
"What is it this time?" Laide asked in exasperation. Chioma was one of the nicest people she worked with, unfortunately she was also the nosiest.
"New shoes, what are those? Loubs? Manolos? And that perfume; Aramis, no?" She asked knowingly.
"No and Yes. Shoes are Alexander Wang and yes, Aramis" Laide answered patiently. Most other people at work saw her as the beautiful ice queen who hated everyone, Chioma however refused to be intimidated by her and saw her for the softie she actually was.
"Hia! Bebe. Tell me how much they're paying you again? Because you and I certainly aren't earning the same salary" Chioma teased. They did earn the same but Laide's wardrobe could indeed cause one to wonder.
"Don't be ridiculous. They're gifts. Laitan got these for me last week"
"Again?!" exclaimed Chioma
"Again" Laide smiled happily.
"Babes. You know I love you like a sister, right?" Chioma asked slowly but didn't wait for a response. "The last thing I'd want is to see you get hurt... But sometimes when you're inside a relationship you become blinded and blind to so many things so that only someone on the outside can see things that you don't." Chioma said ominously.
"What are you talking about?" The panic in Laide's voice had replaced the smile that lit up the office just a few seconds ago.
"I'm talking about Laitan and his infidelity" Chioma said
"His infidelity?" An astounded Laide asked.
"His refusal to spend time alone with you, his incessant partying with girls of all sorts, his constant demand to be out with crowds in order to avoid spending time with you, that's an obvious sign of guilt. It's this same guilt that makes him repeated spoil you with gifts, gifts you don't even need! Ask any relationship expert, that's the first sign that your man is cheating."
"But... No... Not Laitan" Laide said. Yet even as she did her voice lacked conviction and Chioma could see the uncertainty in her eyes. That was her cue to proceed, the seed had been sown.
"No buts my darling. And how come he's always everywhere without you? Any man that really loves you will follow you home whenever you're ready to leave a place. But not your Laitan. No, he'll throw tantrums to make you think he cares, throw angry tantrums but still he lets you leave alone. And then what happens after you've gone; he's free to do whatever... and whoever he wants" Chioma added meaningfully, holding Laide's tearful gaze.
"I can never be with a man who's unfaithful to me. Never", Laide said with such calmness and finality that even Chioma felt a chill run through her spine.
Just as Laitan had promised, he was there to pick Laide up at the close of work. Unfortunately, to his chagrin he was told that she had left the office a few minutes before he arrived. He called her phones but they were both switched off. Furious, he drove over to her home and barely turned off the ignition before he was out of the car. He was a confused man in need of explanations.
"What are you doing here Laitan? Since when is it ok to show up at my house unannounced?" Laide asked curtly.
"W w w what?" said Laitan. Why was Laide acting so strangely?
"Anyway, since you're here I might as well let you know and get this over with. I know you're cheating on me Laitan. I just want you to know that I find this completely unacceptable. I've given it enough thought... It's over Laitan". Laide said. Yet she desperately wanted to hear Laitan say that she was wrong, that he loved her madly, that he would never cheat on her and he would never let her go.
"Well that makes the both of us, I don't know what games you're playing but turning the table on me isn't going to work. I don't think I'm interested in dating a woman that cannot keep her legs closed either. So guess what, I want out of this relationship even more than you do." Laitan said.
He made to head back out of the door when Laide frenetically stepped in front of him and began to snap her finger as she spoke, rolling her neck as well, for full effect.
"Me cheat? Me? Look young man I've freaking taken all sorts of shitty insults and bullshit from you, but never ever in your pathetic life, call me a cheat. You hear me Olaitan?"
"Oh, so you can talk like this? So you haven't only been cheating on me all this while, you've also been pretending about who you are. And to think I was just about to propose to you... Olorun Oba o! I think I dodged a bullet!" Laitan said, aghast.
"Look I'm not cheating, but you obviously are. And what's worse, you're also delusional. How could I have been blind for so long?
Back and forth they exchanged harsh words filled with bitterness and expletives. This went on into the night and a few hours later when they'd both lost steam a mentally and emotionally exhausted Laitan walked out of Laide's house and went home. Laide also exhausted from all the yelling and accusations sat on her floor and sobbed quietly till day break.
"....... I don't understand. You have both ascertained to a very good extent that you were both faithful to each other all through your relationship?" David, the youth pastor asked.
"Yes" they said in unison.
"Yet you still insist on parting ways?" Pastor David asked, baffled.
"Yes" they said once again. There was a finality in their voices. Still, pastor David wanted to understand.
"Why? Don't you love each other anymore?"
They both exchanged glances, no words were said but after a few seconds Laitan nodded and Laide began to speak.
"Pastor David, Laitan and I love each other very much, but in truth love is just not enough. We fight over everything, we fight everytime, we're always arguing. And we don't even know why! This isn't how it's meant to be. Relationships should not be so difficult and unpleasant pastor, love shouldn't hurt this much. It's basically for these reasons that we've decided to call it quits, it seems we're not meant for each other." Laide said
Pastor David looked at the attractive young couple. These two loved each other so much, so much so that they even communicated without speaking. They were well known in the church and everyone was certain they were heading for the altar. No, he wouldn't let them part, not without a fight at least.
"Before a tree grows, a seed must first be planted, and then it dies. It's only after the seed dies that a tree begins to grow. The seed MUST die first. Olaitan, Olaide, your relationship needed to hit rock bottom in order for it to get to the top. Yes, it may be over, but this is hardly the end. Your relationship has only just begun" Pastor David smiled reassuringly.
Laide and Laitan looked at the pastor, then at one another. Neither had a clue what the pastor was talking about.
One Year Later
The church was packed to the rafters. It wasn't often that Pastor David saw such a huge turn out in church for a marriage blessing. The crowd almost caused him to panic, this was the first time Pastor David would preside over a wedding.
The church committee posed some objections but the couple had insisted that Pastor David was the only one they wanted to join them in Holy Matrimony. He was after all the one who had opened their eyes to the reasons for the challenges in their relationship and given it a rebirth. It was only apt the the man who stopped them from making the near-fatal mistake of calling it quits be the one to wed them.
......"And now, you may kiss the bride" the Pastor said, breaking into a wide smile.
Laitan paused midway and looked into the eyes of his bride, she was easily the most beautiful woman that ever lived. They said people do not complete you but his life was incomplete without Laide, and to think that he almost missed out on this blessing due to their ignorance... In a moment of sincere gratitude he smiled at the young pastor and then hastily grabbed his beautiful wife and planted a kiss on the soft lips of the new Mrs Laide Laitan Lawani.
Are you aware that many relationships have ended or face challenges just because couples do not understand their and their partners personality types?
Are you aware that relationships and marriages also face challenges and threats just because people don't know their partners' love languages?
Laitan was an extrovert, Laide was an introvert. If two people belonging to these two personality types enter into a relationship with each other without understanding their diverse personalities and how to deal with and relate with people of these personalities, it's almost certain that they will encounter some problems during the relationship.
The importance of knowing and understanding your partner's love language also can never be overstated. Receiving presents was one of Laitan's loves languages which is why he probably assumed that everyone would appreciate same, not knowing that people have different love languages. If Laide had known this she would not have paid any mind whatsoever to Chioma when she accused Laitan of cheating.
And speaking of Chioma and Nnamdi, listening to third parties, outsiders and people speaking and looking in from the outside could be detrimental, there should be a limit to the importance you attach to the opinions of people who are not living your own reality.
So... Knowing & Understanding personality types; introversion & extroversion... Knowing you and your partner's love languages; quality time, words of affirmation etc could actually save a relationship.