This essay is an arrow shot in the direction of anyone in a relationship who has the tendencies of a centaur – by this we want to recognize that in most relationships there are animal as well as human tendencies. It is the pristine as well as the human (not the humane) tendencies that we shoot at.
There are two kinds of relationships we talk about: those who are married, whether newly-weds or the pros of the game, and those who’ve made a commitment to each other to love and to hold but circumstances make it difficult for them to physically have and hold. The suggestions here are gleaned from real-life situations that have had a measure of success in application.
*First, any one of the parties involved should by all means avoid that situation that establishes a long distance between them. Relationships are not configured like that. They blossom when the couple is together and that is why it is important for the one to take the other along if that distance is unavoidable. Though other people say that absence makes the heart fond, I insist that it also does a lot of crazy things to the mind.
*Be committed to your wife or to your husband. Despite the fact that 90% of the guys are the most prone to jump in the hay with a total stranger, we know too that there are women like this too.
*If you’re married, apart from making sure that you always put on your ring, the man may want to take something of his wife’s that constantly reminds him of her – and it should be conspicuous. In this case, since this paragraph is being hard on the guys, we suggest the following: her picture of course, her unwashed underwear, a lock of her hair, her favourite perfume or whatever you know will keep reminding you of her.
* Call and speak with her everyday. Call and speak with him everyday. Everyday, if you could afford it or make an arrangement that must not fail.
* At any opportunity you get, come home and spend time with each other. We used to poke fun at, and quietly insult Bill. The dude would travel all the way from the US to spend just a couple of nights with his girlfriend here in Benin, Nigeria. In a month he would show up about three times, disappear into thin air as it were, reappear to tell us cock and bull stories, leave us crumbs from what he’d spent on his bimbo, until he finally left with that wicked woman. He did that for about six months. Whenever he showed up, and that was before we found out the object of his frequent visits, we would be all agog that our bro has come; bro has come only to find out that all the goodies he brought were for that slimy little bitch. I overheard one day one of our big bros ask whatever love portion it was that that woman introduce in his food to make him that love sick. My other bothers were not sure it was just a matter of food alone but that it had to do with the way the woman ‘arranged’ something for him that’s why. I didn’t quite understand something, and it was this: why didn’t he settle for much better food (if it was food he came to eat), get much more sophisticated ‘arrangement’ (as it were) in a place known worldwide to all to have a superabundance of food and ‘arrangement’.
Well, we were all wrong then. First, the woman was hardly wicked, oh no, she was not. She just had that wicked natural attraction that pulled our brother from the land of a lot of ‘arrangement’ and plenty food to a place where there is another kind of plentiful food and ‘arrangement’.Second, we didn’t understand what the Bible had said concerning the ways of a snake on a rock and the ways of a man with a woman. Nobody can really understand it. Third, how was I to know that love neutralizes geography? Well, it took me two long distance relationships to find out how to navigate and be with the one I love.
*Send gifts. Email. Send internet cards. Kiss her. Kiss him. Kiss her? Kiss him? Yes, on the phone. There’s absolutely nothing that cannot be done via the internet these days – I mean it, absolutely nothing. Get a web cam. With that device, you certainly can see something of each other, albeit via a machine. Get a web cam and participate in something of his or her birthday party.
*Whether you are either in the North or South Pole, ensure you spend one or two holidays together.
That’s all I got to say, apart from the fact that I do some of these things too.
Bob MajiriOghene Etemiku, freelance journalist, runs a private media outfit, Bob MajiriOghene Communications, Abuja. He received training in ECOWAS institutions in Accra, Ghana and in environmental journalism by the International Institute for Journalism, IIJ of InWent, Berlin Germany all in 2008. Bob is the author of Deep Sighs, Tears for A Birthday & other poems, Secrets of a Diary, SAT/TOEFL Essays: lesson notes questions & answers, and has concluded the draft of a children's book, Mamud & the Moringa Tree in August 2013. Other manuscripts he is working on include HOLY LIES, (a play), Once upon a Dog and Other Stories, and I WANT TO LICK MY UKODO & OTHER POEMS. He lives in Abuja, Nigeria and is facilitator for the prose fiction module for the monthly writing workshops organised by the Abuja Writers Forum, AWF. His opinion pieces have been published by Nigerian newspapers like Vanguard, ThisDay, Daily Independent, The Guardian of Nigeria, and by international publications like Equatorial Press, YahooVoices and in a German periodical, KULTURAUSTAUSCH. He can be reached on 07031068186 - firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit his blog.