(By Martin Ruffell)
Despite an eighteen-year age gap and only meeting once in real life because of the pandemic, this couple are engaged.
Ecommerce worker Goodness Mbaeri (25) from Imo, Nigeria, and telecommunications technician Titus Goff (43) from Indiana, USA, met on an international Christian dating page on Facebook in September 2019.
The divorced dad of four liked what he saw on Goodness’ profile and messaged her saying ‘Message me if you’re interested in finding a good Christian man to get serious with.’
Goodness was immediately attracted to Titus’ direct manner and wanted to learn more about him, despite him only being divorced for one month and being a dad to four children, Cade (18), Carter (16), Clara (13) and Brock (11).
However, their relationship was almost over before it began. With Titus being shy and not wanting to show his face on camera, Goodness believed that Titus might have been catfishing her and threatened to block him if he wasn’t willing to show himself.
Fortunately for the lovebirds, in October 2019, Titus plucked up the courage to reveal his face and disaster was averted.
After speaking everyday online for six months, the couple made plans to meet in person
But a lack of funds and the pandemic made this impossible for most of 2020.
However, in December 2020 Titus was finally able to make the 20-hour flight across the Atlantic Ocean to meet Goodness and her family in Nigeria. On the night of his arrival, Titus asked Goodness to marry him and without hesitation, she said yes.
They had a traditional Nigerian engagement ceremony with all of Goodness’ family there to celebrate. The ceremony included a blessing of the couple, followed by a party which included lots of music, dancing and eating.
After two blissful weeks Titus had to return home, but the couple now hope that their engagement will allow Goodness to obtain a K1 visa so that she can visit the USA to marry her fiancé.
18-Year age gap
Titus admits being concerned that their age gap could become an issue for Goodness in the future when he reaches old age but for her, his age, life experience and maturity is what she finds the most attractive.
Titus’ two eldest children Cade and Carter have found adjusting to the thought of their dad marrying a woman less than a decade older than them difficult, but Goodness hopes she will be able to connect with them when she arrives in Indiana.
Goodness is apprehensive about becoming a step mum to so many kids, but is incredibly excited about the prospect of having a large new family.
Trolls accuse Goodness of being a gold digger
Trolls on Facebook have accused Goodness of being a gold digger and only using Titus to enter the USA. Whilst this upset her at first, she now isn’t bothered by these messages, knowing that their love is true.
“I was looking for someone who knew exactly what he wanted and not just out to play,” says Goodness. “Our age gap was never an issue for me because I believe that older men are more mature, experienced and focused than younger men.”
“In my country, it’s not unusual to see couples with huge age gap between them.”
Titus’s ex is not happy about the relationship
“His ex-wife is not supportive at all of our relationship and even messaged me on Instagram at the beginning of our relationship, asking why I was going after a man so much older than myself, but I never responded to the message,” says Goodness.
“When we first made our relationship public on Facebook, a lot of people commented saying I’m with him for the money or for a green card.”
“It used to offend me, but I now understand that our relationship is not common, so I don’t get upset by it anymore.”
Applying for a Visa
Goodness hopes that her application for a visa will be successful and allow her to move to the United States and marry Titus.
Whilst Goodness knows that their relationship is atypical, she doesn’t care what people think and is determined for her and Titus to forge a new life together. The couple have even spoken about having more children, with Goodness insisting on three, but Titus determined to have more.
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