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