The Girl Whisperer
as published by the Sunday Guardian
of February the 10th
Put the blame on me
From the first time I heard Akon sing the lines, “even though the blame’s on you, you can put the blame on me”, it struck a resonant chord in me. I knew I was hearing a piece of philosophy that I've always strongly believed in, and often, I use that song as an affirmation of the proper thing to do.
Akon is an ex-convict but that matters little to me. Life’s truths can emanate from anyone- children, beggars, millionaire-ex cons, whoever. The world is a peculiar place. In his case, he caught a lot of negative attention for having frolicked on stage with a 15-year old girl in a club. Akon, apparently had no idea how old she was, and did things with her that only adults should partake in. After the brouhaha that attended him having 'played' with a child while entertaining on stage in a public forum, Akon sang his song, saying though the parents and the club that allowed her into an adults’ party should have been held responsible, he would take the blame. I like the face-on approach.
There are many men and women quick to lay blame elsewhere. We lie about our antecedents, our pedigree, our finances, our education, even our physical and mental attributes (in the cases where we have never met the prospective partner before) and then when he or she discovers us as we really are, we go berserk, threatening fire and brim stone, vilifying and slandering the man or woman who has abandoned us.
If you’re going out with a banker and you lie about your income, be prepared to be abandoned when he or she finds out that you earn only a tenth of what you claimed. It doesn’t make this departing partner shallow, you are the one who has brought your ‘shortcoming’ into issue by non-disclosure. You don't tell a prospective partner you've never had a child and then he meets a ten-year old midget in your living room one day calling you "mummy" and you start to stutter. If you had allowed the person to accept you (or reject you as the case might be) for whom you were, when you first met, your integrity would not be at stake.
The only instance I’d tell you to photo-shop the picture in a relationship is where the man asks how many partners you have had in your life. The self-destructing need for many women to be totally open on all issues causes them to want to foist this information on their partners. Trust the Whisperer on this one- for most men, even two previous boyfriends or intimate partners are too many. If you tell him numbers in their multiples, he will leave you, no matter how much he has reassured you he will stand by you forever when he was desperately seeking this information.
A man will spend his days and nights ruminating over this matter, thinking of how both you and the since long-gone other, contorted your bodies in the throes of passion, then his mind will blow because his circuitry is not wired to receive and process that kind of information, and then your relationship will hit the rocks, in that order. If you doubt the Whisperer, play a game of death and tell your man everything about that. What am I saying? Tell your partner everything that is fundamental to the relationship. It’s not helpful for your true love to find out after you have had three kids together that you’re really ten years older than you claimed to be and he finally understands why people have been saying "here comes Romeo and his mother, Juliet" everytime you passed. We shouldn’t be afraid to tell it like it is, for those who will love us will love us. For those who have problems with you as you are, let them go. It wasn’t meant to be and what will be will be.
I’m not suggesting you tell your partner about issues between your parents or your sibling’s marriage. That’s nobody’s business really and you might regret talking too much if you ever part ways with this person you told other people’s business to. However, if you have bi-polar disorders or you’re on medication for depression, please admit to it. There can be no worse sense of betrayal than finding out that a loved one only showed a small part of himself or herself.
There are people who will love us as we are. You also do not have the right to attempt to fit into someone else’s ideal partner when you clearly know you are not what is wanted. The Whisperer assures you that there are enough partners to go round everybody, and the odds tend to work themselves out in these matters. Squeezing one’s self into a compartment not built for one is the recipe for disaster. When a relationship turns sour, accept the blame if it is yours. It shows style and grace and the fact that you stand head and shoulders above the crowd.