Taking sides

Sister Evelyn is one of my most respected aunts. Though she is my ‘little aunt’ as she is only about five (5) years older than me, but the respect I have for her is tremendous. By the way, she earned the respect. She has always conducted herself in an admirable manner. She is also very level headed and wise.

I really need to speak to Sister Evelyn urgently as I need counsel for a matter that is of utmost concern to me. She can be trusted when it comes to giving good advice.

I have only started dating again after I have had several failed relationships. Why these relationships didn’t work out is a discussion for another day but I can promise you it has not. At least I have a witness in Sis. Evelyn.

I have only started dating George. Even though, I really didn’t like him at the beginning but I have come to love and respect him. He is a good guy, and in Sis Evelyn’s words, “there is no perfect person anywhere in the world, not even you”. The relationship had been uneventful unlike others for the past six months, at least until last Friday.

On Friday, George came to my office for the first time as our offices are tangents apart and he also had been away for an offshore training (we usually saw a lot during the weekends though). So that Friday when George came he met Ify my friend at the office for the first time. In fact he came partly because, my friends and I were hosting a small party in Ify’s honor. We are sending her forth because she just got another job.

To my surprise, Ify and George seem to have met before because they greeted familiarly. Throughout the evening, they didn’t say much to each other. In my subconscious I just assumed that previously they must been mere acquaintances.

Later on that weekend, George asked if I noticed the coldness between Ify and him and the reason for it. He said they used to live in the same neighborhood when thee neighborhood when they were younger. He explained how notorious Ify’s family was back in the days. He told me about the number of other neighbors their family was always at logger heads with. He then told me, how his mum and Ify’s mum had gotten into a quarrel and how Ify’s mum had threatened that she will cause his mum to lose something dear to her. And that true to her boast, they lost their dad a week later. Since then, they all believe (even other neighbors) that Ify’s mum killed their dad.

His advice for me therefore is that I should severe any relationship that I have with her and luckily she is leaving our organization for good.

The issue is that I do not agree with him on the matter. Don’t get me wrong, I totally can relate with how George felt and might possibly continue to feel around her. I can relate with the renewed feelings of hate that he might be feeling coming face to face with the offspring of his father alleged killer. But in as much as I think I understand what he might be feeling, I also think that I have come a very long way with Ify that I can’t easily let go now.

Ify and I have known each other way back too. I met her while I was in secondary school in one of the boarding schools. It was a delight to reconnect with her once more when we started working together. We have both been there for each other. She has been there for me, always holding me up in prayers, especially during the previous sour relationships I have had. We were together hoping and praying that my Mr. Perfect will surface soon. Now that our prayers have been answered: this?

My questions are these:

  1. Where did this concept of joining forces with loved ones to fight their enemy originate from?
  2. Why do loved ones always expect you to take sides with them in their issues?
  3. Does it always mean you are unsympathetic, if you don’t want to take sides?
  4. Who should I let go between the two of them if I can’t reconcile them?

Nike Adekunle is the president of SWiM (Sisters, Wives and Mothers} Forum. At SWiM, Nike and her team equips men, women, married and singles with all the information and strategies needed to make relationships and marriage work. In collaboration with members of SWiM, She hosts REALationship Unfeigned (an initiative that promotes healthy relationships) and Roaring Lioness (a prayer focus group). Nike is a relationship coach, marriage counselor, blogger, writer and an author. She currently has four books to her credit. To get her books, visit swimconcepts.org/shop/

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