Question

I’m a mother of three children and currently living with my fiancé. My late mother forced me to live with my fiancé after I gave birth to our second child at the age of 19.

 My fiancé is very abusive and does not communicate with me, so I decided to get myself umakhwapheni.

 I have been with my makhwapheni for six months and I love him, even though he always reminds me that he has a baby mama who lives with him. He always calls me, but has never told me he loves me.

He also likes making jokes about having another girlfriend and always looks at other women while with me. I make sacrifices to see him.

 I even don’t mind spending time outside his workplace, waiting for him to knock off. How can I make my relationship with makhwapheni work?  

Readers advice

AUDREY MAMAHOPE MOHALE

You can’t expect other people to give you something you are not giving yourself. Love yourself first; you do not need someone to love you to know your worth. Walk away from both men and just focus on yourself right now. The sooner you realise that it’s okay to be alone, the sooner you will embrace the beauty of life.

 NOMTHANDAZO MABENA

Stop selling yourself short because both men don’t have time for you. Leave both men because it’s not like you’re gaining anything from your relationship or the affair. Learn to love yourself, that way you will get the courage to walk away from the abusive relationship.

TEBOHO PHOKOBYE

Two wrongs don’t make a right. Forget about dating and find the best solution for your children. Your abusive fiancé won’t think twice about throwing you out once he finds out that you are cheating.

CBONISO BUTHELEZI

You should have left your abusive fiancé before getting into another relationship. Be very careful of that makhwapheni has never spoken about his plans for you.  

Expert advice

Michele Hirsch, a senior counselling social worker at The Family Life Centre in Johannesburg, says,

“You seem to have had a difficult time in your life and perhaps you are feeling sad, lost, confused and even angry. It appears that you have never felt in control of your own life as you wrote that your late mother forced you to live with your fiancé when you were 19.

Both your fiancé and boyfriend strike me as being abusive in different ways. You are doing so much to keep the relationship working with your boyfriend, yet he does not treat you respectfully. I strongly recommend that you find a good therapist who will help you to understand your feelings and life choices.”