So you've been dating Arnold for almost two years and it's been your best relationship yet. Arnold is in no way perfect but he has been the best boyfriend and friend to you. He's kind, attentive, generous, caring, faithful and a great lover. The only issues you've had with him is that he's sometimes forgetful and a bit laid back. Nothing for you to worry about. Arnold proposes and you happily say yes, who wouldn't want to spend the rest of her life with this amazing man? Well Mercy wouldn't.
Your meeting with Mercy is purely random; your boss sends you to represent her at a meeting and Mercy is the representative of the other company. At the end of the meeting she looks at your watch and tells you she loves it; "I used to have something similar but not anymore. My ex bought it for me, threw it out when we broke up", she shares with you in a 'girl talk' moment, laughing easily. "Coincidentally my boyfriend bought me this too. But unlike you I wouldn't throw it away if we break up. Girl, I'll keep all the gifts I got, I deserve them... Well, not like we're going to break up, we're engaged", you can't help blushing as you share this detail with this new acquaintance. "Wow! Congrats girl! Are you getting married in Lagos? My sister is an amazing wedding planner, she would hook you up real good and her prices are very fair" she says. You give it some thought and wonder if Arnold would buy the idea of a wedding planner, "I would have to ask Arnold what he thinks...", you mutter, more to yourself than to her. "Wait! Did you just say Arnold? Arnold Dan?".
Yes, it is Arnold Dan.
A few minutes later you're staring at Mercy with disbelief and animosity, what is she talking about? Arnold was a chronic cheat? Arnold used to beat her up? Arnold was abusive? It started with mild jealousy which was harmless and rather flattering, until it wasn't. He took it up a notch, jealousy and then control. Control and then the verbal and emotional abuse; she shouldn't complain about his infidelity, after all he was doing her a favour by dating her, no other man would want her so she had best be grateful to him for 'managing' her. Emotional and verbal abuse till the day he felt his words had lost their sting so he had to use his belt on her bare back, maybe then she would feel the pain. She took to her heels but he followed closely behind, crying, pleading, promising, begging, threatening. And she kept going back. Until she woke up in the hospital one morning and had lost a tooth. "Yes dear, this gold tooth isn't for fancy, Arnold knocked out my tooth and I had to get this". And then she knew she had to leave for good this time. Besides her parents threatened to cut her off if she ever went back.
Noooooo, you keep thinking as you drive back to the office. No, surely Mercy is a jealous Ex who can't handle the fact that Arnold didn't think she was good enough to be a wife. The rest of the day is a blur and once the clock strikes 5 you drive straight to Arnold's. He's surprised, albeit pleasantly, to see you at his door step.
"Something funny happened today. I met someone that said she once dated you. Mercy Oka?"
The look on Arnold's face confirms your worst fears. He doesn't deny it either.
"I am completely ashamed of myself, I don't know what possessed me back then but I swear I'm not that man anymore. I didn't know any better but now I do. I am not proud of the man I used to be, baby please believe me. Have I ever given you any reason to think of me that way? Have I ever cheated on you or as much as raised my voice at you?" You think about it, he never has. Still you're speechless. "Babe please don't punish me for my past failings, I am a changed man now. I am".
How do you proceed?
I'd like to hear your thoughts on this. I'm not necessarily asking from a domestic violence angle, more from a character (flaw) angle. And I'm not asking about men alone.
Succinctly put, my question is do people change? Is once a cheat alway a cheat? Is once an abuser always an abuser? Is once a hoe always a hoe?
Personally I feel that the only time people change is when some intrinsic part of them changes; faith and spirituality specifically. Other than that I believe that people do not change.
But that's my opinion. What's yours? And how would you proceed if you're the lady in the story above?
Queen Spicey I'm very sorry to read about the robbery incident. I hope you're not feeling so down anymore. Joy comes in the morning my darling so smile, they took material things that would eventually be replaced, but the curses they've incurred to their heads wouldn't be so easily erased. Forget about them and stay thankful, ok? Ehugsss sweetie.
Vivadrew your comment also got me thinking but I'm very impressed by your attitude towards things. Just continue to tell the situation that it will end in praise.