“Love begins with a smile, grows with a kiss, and ends with a teardrop.”~ Anonymous
The ending of a relationship can be very difficult, even traumatic, especially if you did not want it to end. It can be like a death, and you may go through stages similar to those experienced in grieving.
The stages can occur in any order and may repeat. They include some or all of the following: 1) Denial – one has the sense that this cannot be happening, or that the situation will change, 2) Anger- here the denial gives way to feelings of “Why me? It’s not fair?” How can this happen to me?; along with feelings of blame,
3) Bargaining- “Maybe it doesn’t have to end?” “Maybe we could try again?’ “Give me another chance.” 4) Depression – here the sadness and fears for the future set in. One may fear being lonely, being alone forever, never being happy again,
5) Acceptance- finally one accepts the reality of the situation and understands the need to try to move on.
Some may get stuck, holding on to the past, and never really get to the acceptance stage. They may stay with the anger, or remain depressed because they keep looking back, rather than trying to create a future.
In order to move beyond survival, and to actually thrive, we have to adopt a more positive perspective. We need to consider that perhaps everything does happen for a reason, and that our lives indeed are unfolding as they should. Often we need to move way into the future before we can look back and see that the worst thing that could have happened turns out to be the best thing.
When taking a road trip you do not spend all of your time looking out the rear-view mirror. In the journey of life, it is wise not to do that either.
Copyright © Gwen Randall-Young, All Rights Reserved. Contact us if you would like permission to reprint.
CDs You May be Interested In:
When Relationships Break Down
Conflict Resolution in Relationships
Trust and Fidelity
Codependency and Projection