I maybe dead by the time you read this message. What has happened to me is shameful, disgracing and worth committing suicide over. 

Last year, I met a man in his forties, dark in complexion, tall, rich, has a cute smile, soft spoken, knows how to give a warm hug and he was such a giver. We met at the gym. I actually went to the gym to pay and start training that night. I got to the gym at around 2pm during my break at work. I met him at the counter and I greeted and spoke directly to the man in charge. As I was about to pay, he jumped in and said: “Are you trying to insult me” licking his lips and forming cuteness. 

“I’m sorry Sir. I didn’t mean to. I was speaking to him because I thought he’s the one responsible.”

He took a step closer to me. “I mean, how can you be in the midst of these fine gentlemen and want to pay for yourself? Allow me to do that.”

“No, I can.”

He hurriedly gave his card to the gym operator and said “Pay 6 months from here”

“Thank you so much. This is too much” I said. unlike most Gambians, I don’t usually deny people the opportunity to do me favors. I go straight to thanking you for choosing to help instead of insisting that I can do it myself.

As soon as he entered his card pin, he leaned on the wall and said to me “What is your name”. At this point, he was sweaty and the shirt he had on stock on his body showing his physique and cuts. I was so uncomfortable with what was happening but he just saved me D6000 so, I said to myself ‘just be nice for few minutes’. 

“Yandeh Kebbeh”

“Yandeh. My sister is Yandeh Kebbeh too”

“Really? Then I’m your sister.” I said with a little relief as this was a strategy to make him take a step back and it worked all the time.

“Her name is Yandeh Kebbeh” he said to the gym operator who was at this point writing a receipt for me. 

“You see, Yandeh, I don’t have any sister plans for you” He said quite rudely. “I feel there is a connection between us. You’re like a star. Take a look at this place. Have you seen how this whole place is shinning because of you?” He said turning around to look at the place properly. 

The guy gave me the receipt and I thanked him and left. I didn’t start going to the gym until 3 weeks later. I was so uncomfortable with what had happened. when I finally returned there to start, I saw him over and over again. I ignored him and I guess he was enjoying it. This went on for a month until one night, I left the gym and was jogging home as usual when he suddenly parked in front of me and forced me into his car.

“What is your problem. You nearly killed me. What is all this about” I protested.

“Yandeh, I should be the one asking you that question.” He said standing at the car door preventing me from going out. 

“Look, if this is about what happened that day, I didn’t ask you to pay for me. I could have done it myself and I’m not obligated to talk to you because of what you did”

“This is what I love about you. So Defensive. That’s a turn on for me” he said smiling at me

“If you don’t move from this door, I will scream” I threatened him

“I want to marry you”

“Marry me” 

“Yes. Just give me the chance and I’ll show you the world” he pleaded. 

Fast forward, it’s been exactly 4 months and there was no type of date or event I haven’t been to without him. We went on a boat trip, dinner date, lunch, breakfast, star viewing, beach date, swimming, clubbing, attended music events and festivals together, been to his house severally. He got me a passport for our travel plans. A week after he made that passport, he invited me to his house and asked me to look special. I had to look my best because this man consistently pumped money on me nonstop. I didn’t even do my make-up myself. My mother was so worried walking in and out of my room. Ever since I met this mysterious man, my mother has always been worried. I have never had the love of a man in my life. I didn’t know who my father was. I was raised by my mother. She has given me heaven on earth but there has always been something missing. It’s hell growing up without a father and everyone rubbing that on your face. She tried advising me on many occasions but I was so in love to listen to her. She asked me to bring the man over and my response was ‘he will come when he’s ready’. Gradually, my mother began falling sick over being worried about me. I’m all she had in her life. I didn’t listen or consider anything she said. I would leave her home the entire day just to be with Mr. Right. 

When I got to the house, he decorated the whole place and was his knees proposing to me immediately I opened the door. I was screaming ‘Yes’. My life was falling into place. I just met the love of my life. I will be married to him and my mother won’t be worried anymore. She will live a comfortable life that she so much deserved. I was so excited that I thought I would faint. 

He started getting extremely cozy and I let him. He was my husband to be. I thought it’s okay to romance and free up the excitement. 

He attempted to take off my bra and I stopped him. At this point, we were almost naked. He stopped and wore his shirt and had a very angry face. I tried to ask him what the issue was and he complained that I didn’t trust him, that he was making the wrong choice trying to marry a woman that didn’t love him. He complained that if I loved him, I shouldn’t restrict him from touching my body and getting to certain parts. 

I allowed him to. As painful as it was, I went against my own principles and those of my mother and all other values of my life.

After everything, he was so happy he met me a virgin. He kept praising me and saying that his star will sign brighter that he was right for targeting me. He immediately wore his clothes, started his car and left. I was sobbing and seriously in pain. I have been used. I struggled to go out and get a taxi. I didn’t hear from him for 8 months. I was so depressed, I was dying. I was pregnant. That idiot knew what he did. He dumbed me. He played me. He used me. I lost my pregnancy in the 8th month due to stress and continuously crying. I almost died during that miscarriage and I wish I did. I stopped using a phone. I was always home and I didn’t see any other person apart from my mother and our family Doctor, Uncle Kawsu. 

A week later, I heard a knock on our door and went on to open it and it was him, Alieu Kebbeh. That God for shaken man. I wanted to strangle him. I wanted to murder him. I slapped him thrice and he didn’t move. We were both crying. My mother heard the fuss and rushed into the sitting room and saw him. She froze.

“Yandeh, who is this?” she asked calling the different names of God whilst waiting for my response.”Yandeh, speak to me now” she cried

“This is that bastard I told you about”

“This is the man who impregnated you” my mother asked

“Salma? Are you her mother. Meaning Yandeh is my daughter? Our Yandeh”

My mom screamed, began trembling and fell on the ground. She hit her head on the flower vase and blood started oozing nonstop. I hurriedly tried to catch her. My sight and my hearing were going blackout due to my screams. She wasn’t breathing. She was dead. I screamed till I can’t hear my voice anymore. I kept beating on her body so she can wake up. I was moving and shaking her body. I thought the more I did that the faster she would wake up. 

“This was all my fault. This was all me. I am sorry, Yandeh” he cried

“Why do you hate us so much? What have we done to you? How are you my father? I hate you!” I yelled

“I’m so sorry, Yandeh. I didn’t know you’re my child. I was carried away by life.” He said crying like a baby. 

I ran outside with my clothes soaked with blood. I needed space to breathe. I needed the world to rescue me. I needed help. I didn’t know if I was standing on the ground or on the sky. The world was moving. It seemed our house was falling and it was falling on me. I couldn’t breathe. I passed out.

Today, 4 days later, I woke up at a hospital. The Doctor who was my mother’s cousin said my mother was buried three days ago and Alieu was in prison for reckless driving causing death of 2 persons and that he was undergoing trial. 

As my uncle, Doctor Kebbeh was telling me this news, I collected a blade from the plate he had for his next patient. I was so collected and calm that he was shocked and was repeatedly asking me what was on my mind. 

He just left and I have cut my veins on both hands. I’m seriously bleeding and there is 60% chance that I will die because by the time Doctor comes back in from seeing his next patient, I would have been cold, dead and gone. 

I was just a girl who needed genuine masculine love, preserved myself for God, well brought up and disciplined. I didn’t deserve what happened to me. I miss my mother and all I want is to be with her. She is all the love I was looking for and I didn’t know.

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