By Aidy Thomas

A husband, wife and their two young children were escaping from a city on a small boat. The waves were approximately three to four stories high. This caused one of the children to fall off the boat. The ferocious ocean in no time swallowed the fallen kid into its debts. The father, upset and discouraged by such tragedy, put the paddles down, sat on a corner of the boat, and burst into tears for hours. With the boat almost sinking, the wife took the paddles in one hand and their only left child on the other one and said to the husband, “Yes, we lost one of our dear children and if we don’t get up and row this boat through this storm, we are going to lose the one that is still alive”.

We all would have loved to have our lives smooth and hitch free but sincerely it doesn’t really work like that. Once you are in a relationship, you should be determined to pick the ‘paddle and continue wherever the storms push. You know what, you cannot tell the storms where to take you but you can decide where to go after the storm. Were you ever deceived that troubles will not come in your relationship? Most times it is even little things that trigger problems.

The day Mercy met Fred was good (for her) in every sense of the word- she wrote songs, poems and a whole lot of things to depict the sweet memory that clothed her mind. To sum it up, nothing could be more soothing. Luck shone on her as the initial stage of their relationship spelt bliss. To an extent, she felt her fantasies were not disappointed but she had no idea what the future held.

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While the marriage was still young, Fred got what we could think was good (a job abroad) and quickly made plans and relocated with his dear wife. Settling down in a new place is most times so challenging that if you had not prepared your mind, frustration might be your next call. Fred got so wrapped up in the desire to acclimatize and gradually lost focus of his marital vows and responsibility. At first she (Mercy) thought it was all dreams but the more she wished it was a dream the nearer reality stared at her. Night- crawling, nagging and sometimes violence became part of the relationship. Each time she tried to talk to the husband of her youth, nothing good came out of it; a few people she met through Association tried to rescue the situation but seemed it had gone beyond repairs.

Mercy felt so bad that the love they once shared and celebrated had disappeared to the thin air. But for the sake of other people who might fall into similar ‘pit’, we’ll like to alert them of certain things likely to cause cry in relationships.

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Poor communication: There is a saying that ‘you will not miss it if you never had it in the first place’. This is true about good communication in relationships. But the disaster is more severe if you once enjoyed it then lost out along the line. There is no how you would not feel deep pains; the entire gist your partner used to share with you now stops at mere good morning and good night- will you be happy?

Care: Far gone are the days women used to cross legs and wait to be catered for by the men. Today, care is both ways; the man cares for the woman and the woman is also a care giver. When care is lacking, cry is coming.

Criticism: How do you expect a partner to be happy when the whole day is spent blaming and running down his or her own personality? This is not only painful but also destructive as the victim is likely to accept the bad tag and feel worthless and inferior.

Cheating: There is no ‘angel’ that can convince me that cheating is sweet. Even when you are the smart one playing it, it’s never really that convenient; a lot of lies have to go in just to cover up one silly act. Sure, it’s not worth the trouble.

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Appreciation: Relationship can really be bitter if you are not appreciated by your spouse. At some points, you’ll be tempted to think it’s not worth the trouble when no one acknowledges your effort. What most couples do not understand is that the more you emphasize strength, the harder the other partner tries to please you.

Encouragement: One of the reasons people come together in marriage is for support-emotional, spiritual and otherwise. You have a great role to play in the success of your spouse. The words you speak to him/her means so much than what the rest of the world put together would. Show some level of interest and make your relationship better.

Companionship: where couples cannot feel the impact of each other, there is a serious problem. The joy of loving and being loved is deeper than man could explain.

N/b; once you have made the commitment to stay together, do your best to bring smiles to your love.