Hello everyone! Welcome to another session of #ListenUpNG. This month, we are discussing medical issues in relationship.

#ListenUpNG @iamtoyinadesola is our guest today! She is a woman of steel! Having gone through over 100 hospital admissions, 20 blood transfusions, 5 operations…

@iamtoyinadesola believes you can overcome whatsoever challenges that comes your way! #ListenUpNG

Founder and Executive Director of Sickle Cell Advocacy & Management Initiative(SAMI), @iamtoyinadesola is a Sickle Cell Advocate.

@iamtoyinadesola is also an Entrepreneur, an Inspirational Speaker and the author of STILL STANDING, a book documenting her ordeals #ListenUpNG

@iamtoyinadesola is an alumnus of Enterprise Development Centre, Pan Atlantic University and a Vital Voices Fellow. #ListenUpNG

#ListenUpNG Her life purpose is to help people with perceived mental & physical limitations live positively & achieve their goal @iamtoyinadesola

One of the ways she does this is through a weekly tweetcast on twitter using the #OgaAndMadamAS @iamtoyinadesola #ListenUpNG

#ListenUpNG In spite of all, Toyin who is 50 this year is…STILL STANDING! Join me to welcome this woman of faith and determination! @iamtoyinadesola

You are most welcome, ma’am! Over to you. We are ready to #ListenUpNG ~ HELP: WE ARE BOTH AS! What do we do?

1.       Hello , I am glad to be on this twit chat @KemiOdutayo. Thanks for having me #ListenUpNG

2.       The topic I have also been asked to speak on  is indeed a controversial especially  as regards relationships #ListenUpNG

3.       Unfortunately no matter how we discuss this topic, people already have preconceived ideas #ListenUpNG

4.       Because when it comes to love, the heart wants what the heart wants.@KemiOdutayo #ListenUpNG

5.       Unfortunately this in a number of cases proves detrimental to relationship and even sometimes the entire family.#ListenUpNG

6.       Of course every man and woman want find that person to love, marry, settle down and have children.#ListenUpNG

7.       But in reality having both spouse to having the AS genotype could result in a child with sickle cell @KemiOdutayo #ListenUpNG

8.       Once the child is born there are chances that you as a couple may face health challenges with the child#ListenUpNG

9.       Thus in our quest for love, sometimes encounters frustration, depression and more  @KemiOdutayo #ListenUpNG

10.   Sickle Cell  Disorder affects over 4m Nigerians, the highest in the world,  @KemiOdutayo #ListenUpNG

11.   and has been seen  in most casesas a traumatic, life changing health challenge @KemiOdutayo#ListenUpNG

12.   Sickle Cell disorder is said to predominantly affects black people  @KemiOdutayo #ListenUpNG

13.    But there are traces of it in Asia, Arab and Mediterranean countries like Greece and turkey  #ListenUpNG

14.   This disorder is gotten through the genotype of both parents the most common being AS @KemiOdutayo #ListenUpNG

15.   Other genotypes our AC, SC, SS, AA and this is quite different from your blood group or blood type  A- A=+, B+ B, O+ O- AB+ etc  #ListenUpNG

16.   The AC genotype exists mostly among people in Western Nigeria, Togo, Republic of Benin. @KemiOdutayo #ListenUpNG

17.   If someone with AS marries another with AS, there is a 25% chance that each child born will have the AS genotype #ListenUpNG

18.   There is also a 25% chance that each child will be AS and in the same vein a 50% chance that the child would be AA. #ListenUpNG

19.   However this so called ratio is not dyed in cast #ListenUpNG

20.   There is no way to determine whether a child  would really have sickle cell #ListenUpNG

21.   I have heard couples to be say after all they know of someone who had all their children  @KemiOdutayo AA#ListenUpNG

22.   But in the same vein I have heard situation where all children have the SS genotype. #ListenUpNG

23.   So getting married and believing it would work out without an issues may not work out so. #ListenUpNG

24.   Deciding to marry is when you both have AS, is not something to gamble with #ListenUpNG

25.   There is NO GUARANTY that none of your children will have sickle cell or all would not have it. #ListenUpNG

26.   We have to remember it is about a child you will bring into the world #ListenUpNG

27.   Sickle cell can be extremely painful to the child and emotionally/ financially challenging to the parent #ListenUpNG

28.   So before you get married take time out to be well counseled and think of the health of the child #ListenUpNG

29.   You may think its not important but I assure you there is a big deal, especially when you see the pain some they go through. #ListenUpNG

30.   Because the pains are not your regular headache, or labour pains that you may have experienced #ListenUpNG

31.   Sickle Cell is so called because of the type of red blood cells it has. The regular one are round shaped #ListenUpNG

32.   But the sickled are hard and sickle shaped almost like a half moon and  easily gets stuck in the blood vessels #ListenUpNG

33.   Because it gets stuck at times, it now results in an excruciating pain that last for a day to a week without relief. #ListenUpNG

34.   Apart from this, due to the fact that it gets stuck in various parts of the blood vessel, complications can also arise #ListenUpNG

35.   Such complication as stroke, blindness, Pneumonia, acute chest syndrome and hand and foot syndrome #ListenUpNG

36.   While others include anaemia, leg ulcers, liver and kidney issue amongst others. #ListenUpNG

37.   It is easy to say love conquers all #ListenUpNG

38.    but it is not uncommon to see that the family cannot cope with the mental and physical stress #ListenUpNG

39.   It is a big deal when for the next 1, 2, 3, maybe 4 hours the child is writhing in excruciating pain.

40.   Because you see this sickle cell disorder never announces its arrival.  #ListenUpNG

41.   When it comes the child lays in bed screaming for help to come. #ListenUpNG

42.   It could choose to attack the leg, the hand or worse all over the whole body.#ListenUpNG

43.   Sometimes involving multiple hospital stays.  #ListenUpNG

44.   And in such cases it is usually the man who will be the first to bow out. #ListenUpNG

45.   And therefore he will end up leaving the wife to handle the challenges ahead. #ListenUpNG

46.   In such situations the love has now flown out of the window. #ListenUpNG

47.   Even more so, the in-laws cry out to the husband to take another wife #ListenUpNG

48.    As usual then blaming game starts, blaming the situation on the wife. #ListenUpNG

49.   Though ultimately marrying is a choice, we should endeavor to think of what the child may go through #ListenUpNG

50.   God gave us the ability to choose, so putting everything on him is not logical  and expecting a miracle #ListenUpNG

51.   To decide to go ahead and ask people to pray that you do not have a child with sickle cell  is a no no #ListenUpNG

52.   Because at the end of the day you made a choice and expecting a miracle in that sense is not realistic #ListenUpNG

53.   It would be like trying to put your hand in a hot pot and praying it won’t harm you. God is not a magician  #ListenUpNG

54.   Personally I heard a challenging life living with sickle cell disorder #ListenUpNG

55.    especially since much was not known about it when I was born #ListenUpNG

56.   But I was blessed to have parents who were supportive morally and financially #ListenUpNG

57.   I have seen many who don’t have this opportunity because the parents can’t handle the pressure #ListenUpNG

58.   Even more so the ignorance on treatment and management still  persist #ListenUpNG

59.   That is why there is the myth that people with sickle cell don’t live beyond 21 years #ListenUpNG

60.   So my dear Mr and Miss. Though getting married is a choice, I would  not really recommend it #ListenUpNG

61.   Mostly  because in our society the other solution are not really favorable #ListenUpNG

62.   Cos at the end of the day it is either you marry, and end up having a child with sickle cell #ListenUpNG

63.   Marry and decide to not have any children, which in this case has a societal stigma #ListenUpNG

64.   Or Marry and adopt children and other option that is not well liked due to social issues #ListenUpNG

65.   Some people with sickle cell live to have wonderful lives as not all situations are the same  #ListenUpNG

66.   Unfortunately the issue of forming relationship can be double edge, #ListenUpNG

67.   There are situations where  people go all out to look for AA and in the process forget to focus on the spouse character #ListenUpNG

68.   Consequently they land into deeper waters of spousal abuse, abandonment and more #ListenUpNG

69.   If you are in a relationship and are both AS, think wisely, seek counseling on your options. Be educated on the challenges #ListenUpNG

70.   There choices we make can either be a stepping stone or a stumbling block. Ultimately wisdom is the principal thing  #ListenUpNG

71.   Let’s choose wisely. Thanks for having me. Would love to hear from you with your questions or comments #ListenUpNG

Wow! Knowledge is truly key and wisdom is the principal thing! Friends, let’s be informed. Kudos to our guest, Toyin Adesola. Thanks for accepting our invitation.

About Kemi Odutayo

‘Kemi Odutayo, a graduate of University of Lagos, Nigeria is a Practitioner of NLP, a blogger, an author, a counselor and a media consultant. She is the Head of Operations, Me4 Communications, a publishing, marketing and communications outfit specializing in publishing books/eBooks, managing and offering training for social media accounts for individuals and organizations. Kemi and her husband of many years, Kayode Odutayo have a beautiful family blessed with three lovely children.