Healing from a breakup or divorceBreaking Up is Hard to Do… Actually It Sucks! But There’s Hope.

Break-ups or divorces can be one of the most devastating times in our lives.

As I ponder through past break ups, I’m reminded of how much hurt, anger, and confusion I felt.

My last break up was the most difficult of my life!

From the first time I laid eyes on Luke, I was a goner.

There was something so manly about him, something about his energy was so sweet, his eyes so kind.

As I got to know him, I began to realize my instincts were right. He was amazing!

We didn’t begin dating until a year after we met, and he came at me full steam ahead, told me he saw a future with me, told me he loved me, and I fell for it all…hook, line, and sinker.

When he broke up with me the first time, his world was falling apart and he “needed space.” He ended up telling me that he didn’t think he was ever in love with me. I was crushed.

So why did I get back together with him? I was in love and certain that he was my One.

In some ways, the second time around was even better: I was more myself, more in reality and less in fantasy about us.

In some ways, it was much more difficult because he was so detached.

He told me he didn’t want anything serious but wanted to see how things went. What I saw was things went great! Magical, in fact.

Five months in, after a fantastic holiday season together, it became clear that I saw exactly what I wanted for us, but he didn’t.

So I ended it.

And I was devastated.

I was shocked.

I was so hurt and angry.

I’d never experienced the grace and ease that was between us with anyone else. The sweetness, respect, and fun we had was amazing. How much we had in common. I didn’t care about his annoying idiosyncrasies or the fact that he snored like a howler monkey.

I loved him.

I was so angry at him for not loving me back!

Didn’t he know how lucky he was to have me in his life? How loving, intelligent, funny, sexy, and caring I was?

I kept wanting to stay angry at him.

Blame him for my pain.

Stay in victim.

But what good would that do me?

I realized I had to “flip the script” and take my power back.

Here are ways that I took my power back and was able to move on.

1. Ride the Emotional Wave into the Past

Emotions are signals from our soul that we haven’t resolved something from our past, deeper than the hurt we’re feeling in the present.

If we ride the feeling back to the earliest memory we have of feeling this same hurt, or something close to it, you might be surprised at what you discover.

Mine was when my dad left and my parents got divorced. I don’t remember the exact moment it happened, but I know I was devastated. And that became my story: all men I love leave.

Once I realized that this was my 3 year old’s perspective, I was able to acknowledge the hurt and let the story go as it wasn’t the truth.

2. Stay Present and in Reality

I realized that I needed to keep getting present.

When I missed him or wanted to reach out to him, I needed to remind myself that this relationship was complete and I was safe to let him go.

I needed to feel and acknowledge the loss, and to keep remembering that it was over and that he wasn’t in love with me.

The more I stayed in reality and out of fantasy, the better I felt.

If the sadness came up, then I was sad. If the tears started flowing, I cried (in an appropriate place, of course). If I felt angry, I hit a pillow or screamed into it.

Most importantly, I kept reminding myself that this was temporary and would eventually pass and I would feel good again.

3. Forgive

The next thing I had to do was forgive myself for the judgments I placed on myself and on Luke.

He has free will and if he doesn’t feel love for me, then I have to honor that. And not take it personally because it really had nothing to do with me.

I know that’s easier said than done, but he has his stories too.

Maybe he was afraid of commitment.

Maybe he’s been in so many unhealthy relationships in the past that he doesn’t know how to deal with a healthy one.

No matter what, he was doing the best that he could at the time and if he knew how to do it better, he would have.

4. Be Grateful

The last step I realize I need to take was to sit in my heart space and be grateful for the experience, for everything we went through together and separately.

Relationships are never a waste of time.

They always assist us in learning and growing, if we pay attention.

What I realized was that my heart was not broken…it was broken open, greater than it’s ever been before! I hadn’t loved someone that deeply since college!

I had walls up previously and those came down! I learned so much about myself and how invaluable I am in a relationship.

I had a positive, life-changing impact on this man’s life, and he on mine, and we are the better for it.

After some time, that glimmer of hope entered my heart again and eventually I was able to fully release him and move forward.

Following these steps will enable you to move through the break up/divorce with more grace. You’ll be able to appreciate the gift of your time spent together and move forward towards giving and receiving your heart’s deepest desire…love.

If you are struggling to heal from a terrible break-up or divorce, Kelly Ann Garnett can help. She works with clients to feel happy and hopeful again. Contact her now for a free session.

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