My parents abandoned me when I was two years old. My grandmother took me in and took care of me to the best of her abilities. When I completed JHS she couldn’t afford to pay my fees for secondary school. She was a frail old woman. She did what she could. I stayed home for three years and worked to gather money for school. When I started school I struggled with money. It was hard to feed. Buying books was almost impossible. I was always in need of something but by God’s grace, I was able to make it.
After secondary school, I did some odd jobs and gathered some money. I put myself through a pharmacy assistant course and came out feeling a sense of triumph. I had a plan to pursue short courses until I could use one of those certificates as leverage to pursue higher education. I was right on course when my boyfriend suggested I move in with him. We had been dating for about three years so it felt reasonable. To make his case, he said it was more economical. We would share a room and split the rent. I thought, “Half rent means that I get to save money for school.” So I moved in with him. We share the cost of everything: from food to utility bills.
He is the type of person who never listens to my advice. He spends a lot of his time and resources going out and partying with his friends. Meanwhile, he has never taken me out on a date. Sometimes I even feel like his friends are more important to him than I am to him. Currently, I am working as a medicine counter assistant after I took my second short course. I don’t earn much but I am saving to go back to school and further my course. I have done nothing but support my boyfriend in everything he does. Even when I caught him cheating, I didn’t waiver in my support. I forgave him and continued to stay with him. Because of that, he kept cheating. I have lost count of the number of times I have caught him. To be honest I stopped counting. I just accepted it as something he does and willed myself not to care when he does it.
Whenever the issue of marriage came up he told me, “We’ve been together all this time and you’ve never gotten pregnant. How do you expect me to marry you then? I don’t want to marry you and find out later after marriage that you are barren. I will rather marry you when you get pregnant first.”
Somehow, I felt this was not his own words. He never makes decisions about our relationship without consulting his family first. So I just had the feeling that his family had discussed me and the pregnancy issue came up. Despite everything he was putting me through I loved him and I didn’t want to lose him. I wanted to get pregnant if that is what it would take to secure my place in his life.
I stopped being careful. I loosened my methods. I hoped things would take their natural course and I would end up pregnant at some point. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen. After a while, I became concerned so I went to the hospital and they run some tests. The doctor said I had a blocked fallopian tube and it’s the reason why I couldn’t get pregnant.
My boyfriend who said he loved me and asked that I have a baby before he marries me didn’t lift a finger to help me with my medical bills. I gathered money and started treatment. By the grace of God, the problem has been corrected. I thought that fixing the problem with my tube will help me fix my relationship. Boy, was I wrong.
The moment I was ready to start trying for a baby my boyfriend started acting up. When I asked what was going on he said, “My family is complaining that you don’t show up for family meetings. And you don’t act like you care about anything going on in the family. How can they accept you as part of us when you haven’t embraced them as your own?”
I was angry. “Did you tell them that you don’t tell me anything about your family gatherings? That’s not even the point, you haven’t officially introduced me to them. It was your sister who pointed your mum and aunt out to me.” He got defensive. We had a big argument about who was right and who was wrong. Sadly, his mother passed away so the timing wasn’t right for us to have a baby. He had to take care of the funeral. I supported him with money and running errands for funeral arrangements.
Currently, we’ve been together for eight years and out of nowhere, he is telling me that he is no longer interested in the relationship.
He said, “Tell me what you want for compensation and I will sort you out.” I told him, “I have invested eight years of my life in this relationship. What do you want me to do?” I tried to reason with him. He stood his ground. I told him to give me GHC30,000.00 so I could move out. He said he doesn’t have that kind of money.
We are negotiating how much he should pay me for the time I’ve wasted with him. In the meantime, I am staying with him until we settle on an amount. I don’t have any family so I took this guy as my everything. I am not happy that things are ending between us but it will help me not to walk away empty-handed. Please I need your suggestions, how much do you think is a fair amount for my compensation?