Relationship and marriage breakups are very common these days and news on celebrity breakups do not even bother fans any longer. Shatta Wale’s publicity stunt on ‘breaking up’ with Shatta Michy was ignored by the public.
Several men of God and Gospel musicians have divorced contrary to the messages they preach. So failed relationships are very common but what can we do?
Asembi.com has engaged several people including divorcees to share ideas on what caused their breakups as Dr. Otuo counsels us on how to avoid them.
Lack of effective communication is the first thing everyone mentions when it comes to causes of relationship breakups in Ghana. Almost all other causes of relationship breakups are connected to communication in one way or the other.
Israel Bansah told Asembi.com that failing to tell his then girlfriend how busy his job keeps him, caused a breakup.
“You have to talk. Talk over everything. Let him/her know what you are up to. If Bansah should have told her about his job, they would have been happily married by now. Silence creates room for suspicions and speculations. Communication helps understand each other better” – Dr. Otuo urged.
A gap in communication can gradually take a partner out of mind. Studies show that men are not good listeners. Men listen and forget. When men keep forgetting the important things their partners tell them, they (women) begin to feel men don’t pay attention to them. Men should learn to listen attentively.
Hey! man, women listen to everything and store them till death. Men should be careful of whatever comes out of their mouths and avoid expensive jokes when talking to women. Women read meanings into everything.
“I’ll not call if he doesn’t”, “He has to call me first”. These statements have led to the collapse of several relationships that could have led to marriages. In Ghana, women usually want men to initiate everything that has to do with relationships. So if a man is the kind that would also expect the woman to call first, it means no one would be calling the other.
“It’s very good for anyone who makes that call. It tells the other how committed you are. If one calls, the other one could answer – oh I was just about to call you. This makes him/her feels that though the call didn’t come from you, you had plans of calling” – Dr- Otuo.
Committed relationships are built on love, trust, honesty, openness, or any other agreed-upon behaviors. People in committed relationships do everything to save it even when it’s on the verge of collapse.
Sacrifices can be great example of commitment in relationship. When your partner always chooses friends over you, no that there is no commitment. Small sacrifices like taking a day off work to attend to the needs of your partner, cancelling a trip to be with your partner, providing him/her food while you have none for yourself, waking at night to attend to his/her emergency needs etc.
Long-distance relationships do work especially when there’s effective communication but in the case of Ghana, some long-distance relationships do not work not just because there’s no communication but because partners don’t see themselves meeting anytime soon.
The desire to seek for greener pastures in other continents have caused many relationship and marriage breakups. Illegal immigrants stay abroad with the hope of obtaining residency before returning to Ghana. Some stay away as long as 10 to 20 years while their partners wait in Ghana.
“If you have plans traveling abroad, plan with your partner and go together. I’m afraid that chances of the relationship working if one travels and never return is very minimal unless both parties disregard infidelity” – Dr. Otuo.
4- Demands prior to Sex
Some partners, usually women, make requests and these serve as prerequisites for sexual intercourse. Some even ask prior to penetration and the act would never come on if demands are not met.
These demands could be a long standing request, money or something that just came up. Some men are left with no option than to sign cheques or make promises.
“These acts put people off. Find better time to make such demands.” – Dr. Otuo.
Blogger Akesse Sanza says he does’t need anything in a relationship aside respect, not even love. “Love is too huge. I only want to be respected” he keeps saying.
“Respect is reciprocal. The level of respect shown to a partner can equate the amount of love one has for the partner.” – Dr. Otuo.
Every aspect of a relationship calls for respect; communication, sex, kiss etc. It is very disrespectful to allow yourself to be kissed while having a bad mouth smell. It’s very disrespectful to limit a relationship to just one thing. If you only hear from your partner when he or she needs sex or money, it’s a sign of disrespect.
People also expect the maximum respect when in the midst of their friends or family.
As one partner may be somehow addicted to sex, the other may not be a fan of it. Many couples have divorced due to sex. Some people only give in when they are in the mood and never give in based on the request of the other partner.
“Though sex is very important in relationship, the other partner has to be put in consideration. There must be a balance. As the addicted partner tries to work on the addiction, the other also tries to meet the needs of the addicted partner. Seek guidance on how to handle the opposite sex who is always not in the mood” – Dr. Otuo.
“Don’t start what you can’t continue.” – Dr. Otuo warns.
Stephen Mensah told Asembi.com that he lost girlfriend Dede due to a break in how he started the relationship. According to Stephen, he took advantage of free night calls to talk to Dede every night and when it was no longer possible for him to talk at nights, the 3-year old relationship came to an end.
Speaking to Asembi.com, Seth Frimpong, a travel agent said he has never had a successful relationship because of lies. Seth said lies help him start a relationship but his inability to defend the lies always lead to breakups.
“Avoid lies from the onset. Be frank and don’t hide anything. What you lie about today would cost you the relationship in future” – Dr. Otuo.
9- ‘Mobile Money’
Money is arguably the number one cause of relationship break ups in Ghana. Economic hardship and high rate of unemployment in Ghana force people to make monetary demands from partners. Some of these demands even come before the first date.
“My mum has been hospitalised at Korle Bu” is the most fabricated problem used to demand monies from partners.
“It could be true that your mum is sick or that you need financial assistance. Invite him/her over to join you visit mum at the hospital if it’s not possible to keep that out of a relationship you just began. It’s good to support each other in a relationship but trying to be financial independent helps build a lost-lasting relationship” – Dr. Otuo.
Fredie Mawuli of PrimeVal Media told Asembi.com that “sex is for pleasure, not for mobile money”.
10- Peer Influence
Friends play a major role in relationship breakups in Ghana. A survey conducted that Asembi.com revealed that some friends advise out of envy. In some cases, friends who called for relationship breakups ended up taking over the relationship.
“You are the one in the relationship and you know best than your friend who is somewhere watching. So be careful what you discuss with friends as some advice may come out of envy” – Dr. Otuo.