Dear Bunmi,

I lived for three years with a man who was very abusive and a drunk. He was always violent towards me and, when I saw him hitting our two-year-old son, in the guise of disciplining him, I left. I’m now into a new relationship, but my first lover visits his son from time to time.

He told me he’d recently met someone and was thinking of getting married to her.

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He’s brought her with him once and she seems a nice person. My ex-partner now wants me to say good things about him when next he brings her. Apparently, the poor girl had been in an abusive relationship before and my ex wants me to assure her that he is a good person who would never hurt a fly. Should he be putting me under this sort of pressure?

Ekaete, by e-mail.

Dear Ekaete,

Your man needs to be honest with his girlfriend about who he really is and the violence which destroyed his relationship with you, instead of looking for a fake character-reference from you.

No one has a right to spoil the happiness their ex is trying to find with a new partner by dumping on them the bitterness they still feel. But this is not what you would be doing by warning this girl of what she would be letting herself in for, especially since she’s been hurt once by a violent partner.

Refuse to cover up the man’s past with lies. Instead, encourage him to change for the better if this new relationship means that much to him.   


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