Our social lives and relationships are faced with a number of challenges; especially when a major decision is supposed to be made.
On Wednesday, June 15, we published, on our Facebook page – Standard Digital – a relationship dilemma by a woman who met a new man, whom she feels more comfortable with, a month after her engagement.
My name is Julianne.
I’m 45, a mother of two. I live in Nairobi. I’d say I’m financially stable and everything was going on so well for me. Three months ago, I met a 42-year-old man, who claimed to be in love with me. I have feelings for him. He has adult children. Recently, he told me that two of his daughters seem not to like me, saying I’m too old for him. He says his wish was for us to make a blended family, but his children’s approval has not been forthcoming. He has now asked us to break up, but I feel shattered. I’d begun getting fond of him, and I’m usually very sceptical about starting out a new relationship. I don’t believe he’s leaving me because of his children as he claims. I feel used, and that affects my mental health. What should I do?
What Kenyans think
Kenyans who came across last week’s relationship Dilemma on our official Facebook page had the following opinions.
Gathee Wa Thagicu: You are dead weight in the bed. Had you been serving action he would have unfather [sic] his kids for you. Women make men forget about their families. Kindly move on
Robert Bogonko: Your narration says truly that both of you have children from previous relationships. Perhaps, try and put yourself in his shoes and put your own children in the place of his children. Both your children and his are real and you can't wish them away. They are part of who you are and they will remain so as long as you both live.
Revd Lucy: Men will always come to single mothers that they want a serious relationship leading to marriage but in a real sense, he just wants to use you...it's hard to know their motive. Many single mothers have been victims...that man is just a player. forget about him and move on with your life however hard it is...time will heal you dearly...they will always look for excuses to break the relationship...I pray for such men never to have peace.
Danish Onuong’a: Accept the fact that with grown-up children, one can't decide such things arbitrarily. Your own children may equally find it hard to accept your relationship with any male person. Just understand him.
Sheila Gachanja: When we love, we take the risk of getting heartbroken. You did your bit and he's now calling off the relationship. Girl appreciates that you'd not made things permanent yet. Moving on pain before marriage is better than the entanglements in a marriage.
Grieve the loss, take time to mend your heart and walk away. It shall be well; the right partner will come. All the best.
Crispin Okumu: Accept and move on Mama. If it was written you're not going to be married. Just accept.
Martin Timo: At 45, with children and financially stable why would u want to get married? Don't u love the freedom that comes with being single?
Carolyn Otieno: You do not take your heart in such matters.
Virginia King’ori: Is true not coz of kids he is dating another woman what goes around comes around to let him go do not call him don't write cry if you can shout but mostly pray to God for peace within no time something good will come to God end the bad relationship is only we don't see but soon you will realize it.
Joseph Kim: At 45 and crying for love, husband snatching material, you be planning for your retirement and where you will be taken to rest in peace after a life
Dr Karatu Kiemo is a sociologist and lecturer at the University of Nairobi.
Hello Julianne, it is true that part of our mental health is determined by what we go through in everyday life. For that reason, do not dwell much on the rejection but reflect on the gains you have so far made in life. Your mental health can be protected and boosted by avoiding negative persons and situations and keeping yourself engaged in productive and fun activities. Read a book, do some gardening, visit a friend or take a walk with your children. If you focus on making yourself happy, you will not have the room to worry about why your very recent friend does not want to marry you. Whether it is because of his children or not, it does not matter. A person who does not want to commit to a relationship will give any reason. Indeed, it is not worth asking or knowing because it doesn't help. What can you do when someone tells you that you are not good for them because are too old, or too young? Should you be open to another relationship? I think yes. Anyone, no matter their age, gender or situation, deserves some companionship. While no one has the ability to predict whether a given person will give you happiness or not, it is worth trying. As they say, expect anything but hope for the best. Finally, I don't doubt that love, at first sight, can happen. However, committing your mind to marriage requires careful thought. It's obvious that you need to understand the other person's personality and their relationships. So next time you fall in love, be careful not to expect a wedding and a rosy marriage only three months after meeting the person. There is wisdom belief in starting small, slow or moderate growth, building different scenarios for your relationship, and understanding the other partner before believing in them. That way, you are less likely to be disappointed if things don't go well as expected. You will have done your part.