I have two men who will go to the ends of the earth to make sure I don’t lack anything. They provide for whatever I need, all I have to do is ask. One of the men is my baby daddy. We have three wonderful children together. The other man is my boyfriend. He treats me like he has never seen my kind of woman before. I doubt Mark Anthony, whose love for Cleopatra lives through history, was as devoted to her as Sly is devoted to me.
I say this because he knows he is not the only man in my life. I told him everything about my life with my baby daddy and the fact that we live together. Every time I go to see him, he knows I will go home to Baba, yet he does not cease professing his love for me. He tells me, “I know that Baba is the father of your children, but babe, he does not deserve you. If you say the word, I will marry you right now and take you away from him.”
When Sly says Baba does not deserve me, he does not say it merely because he shares me with him. It is because of everything Baba put me through since I met him. You see, while Baba is a Ghanaian, I am not. We met in my country. I was young, naïve, and a little hot-headed. And Baba is as charming as any con artist you would meet.
My young heart didn’t know much about men or love or even relationships. All I knew was that there was a man named Baba, who had my heart thumping in my chest whenever he was near me. He treated me delicately as though I was a flower, whose fragile petals would crush at the slightest manhandling. By the time I was completely in love with him, I had no brain cells left. All I wanted to do was to please him. That is why when he told me, “I am going back to Ghana, and I want you to come with me,” I didn’t sit to think about the implications before saying yes.
My family didn’t like the fact that I was packing my bags to move to a foreign land with a man I had just met. They tried to talk me out of it; “Think about what you are doing very carefully. You don’t know this man’s family or where he comes from yet you want to follow him to his country. He has not even married you.
You have no friends or family in that land. If something happens to you, who will you run to for help? Don’t go with him, please.” I listened to everything they said with a hardened resolve. I told them they didn’t understand. I could not stand the thought of being separated from Baba. So I moved to Ghana with him. When we finally settled in Ghana, I saw another side of him that I did not think existed. He has never made me want for anything financially, but he went about dipping his joystick inside a variety of women. He did it so shamelessly that it was apparent he was telling me that I can’t leave him no matter what or whom he did.
It wasn’t enough that he was going about sleeping around, this man started hitting on my married friends. When they told me about it I was very embarrassed. I confronted him about it and he said, “Oh relax, it’s not as if I am in love with them. I just want to sleep with them. When it comes to love, it’s only you.” His admission hit me hard.
I fell sick for several days because of it. I thought that the sight of me falling sick because of his indiscretions would cause him to change, but he only got worse. I remember just after I had our second child, I caught him cheating with a new girl. I confronted him about it; “I just had a baby, Baba. You can’t wait a few weeks before you start your womanizing ways?” Baba’s elder brother who overheard me got angry on his behalf.
Why are you talking to my brother like that? Don’t you know that he is a man? Don’t disrespect him in his own house.” Before I could say something back in response, this man removed his belt and whipped me with it. And Baba stood by and watched without doing anything to stop his brother.
After that incident, I regretted ever laying my eyes on him. I regretted not listening to my parents’ warnings. Indeed, I had no one in Ghana to run to. I didn’t have a job, therefore, no money of my own. That’s how Baba wanted it to be. He didn’t want me to work. He said it was his job to bring home money while it was my job to take care of the kids.
And he made sure he gave me everything I needed so that I wouldn’t have any reason to complain about money. But that was the only good thing about him. Everything else was a nightmare. When I was pregnant with our third child, for instance, this man told me he was going away on a business trip, but it turned out he had taken his latest side chick on a baecation.
Because of his behaviour, I went against him and started learning a skill. But I haven’t perfected it yet because of the constant emotional pain Baba inflicts on me. It was during one of these painful moments that I met Sly. Usually, I wouldn’t have given him my attention, but I was in a bad place and he was kind to me.
Sly is in his late forties and has never been married or had a child. He wants to help me set up a business so that I would be financially independent. He is always on me, “Babe, look for a container somewhere and let me set you up. If you start making your own money, you will realize that you don’t need Baba.” I want to accept his help but I’m scared. I keep asking myself, “What if, like Baba, he too has a hidden character I don’t know about? I would hate to accept his help and marriage proposal only to find out that there’s something awfully wrong with him.
However, despite my fears, he has not done anything to hurt me. My entire life, no man has been as good to me as Sly has been. He wipes my pain and replaces it with love. He gives me happiness every time we spend time together. I even told him that I don’t want to have any more kids, but he is not deterred. He still wants me regardless. He says he will stick around till I am ready to marry him.
As it stands now, I am confused about which of them to choose. Sly is new so only time will reveal all the hidden parts of him. Baba, on the other hand, has shown me all of himself. The love I had for him died long ago but I am with him because of the children.
I am concerned that if I leave him he will stop taking care of them, and I will have to bear the responsibilities of all three of them by myself. That’s why I don’t know whether I should choose Baba or Sly. Please, I need your advice.