Breaking up is Hard to Do
Written by listed counsellor/psychotherapist: Graeme Orr MBACP(Accred), UKRCP Reg. Ind. Counsellor
26th August, 20130 Comments
When a relationship comes to an end it is normal to be filled with many emotions. Many of these may be negative; often we are looking to assign blame, or we may not be able to cope with the loss - loss of not only the relationship, but also of many of the shared plans and dreams you had with your partner.
With any break up there is also the fear of the unknown; perhaps you have been in a relationship for a long period of time and it is difficult to imagine how you will adjust to your new status. Perhaps you worry whether you will ever be able to cope with the pain of the break up. Perhaps you are worrying about friends and family. Many people will also be concerned about the effect on any children that are part of the relationship. All of these can make it seem even harder to cope with the break up.
Often we feel that we are facing our most painful experience; yet it can help to realise that the breakup exposes some of the problems in the relationship. It is easy to get caught up in the blame game, especially if one partner has cheated - yet that just maintains the hurt and stops us from moving on. Facing difficult feelings head on help us to find our own inner strength build our self-confidence. Of course, it can be tempting to re-think your decision; if this is the case, you need to fully explore the reasons behind the break up and make sure those have been fully resolved, lest you have another break up further down the line.
Remember that you are a good person; a failed relationship does not make you (or your partner) a bad person, it means that you had differences that you could not ignore that were not conducive to being together. Spend time looking after yourself, nurture that bit of yourself that feels rejected and hurt and try to soothe some of those feelings. Many people find that writing their feelings down or talking to friends helps them to get past the loss. Some people attend a counsellor if they want to talk it through with someone who is not connected with their lives.
There are practical things to do. You may want to consider whether you need to see a solicitor. However, there may be possessions to be moved or money matters to be discussed. At some point you are going to need to start to clear out the shared part of your lives together. Again a friend or family may be a useful support at this point. Try to stay focused on the task at hand as it is easy to start an argument with your ex; simply focus on getting the task done.
Part of moving on is to build other interests to help to fill the gap left behind. This might be the pursuit of an interest or finding some new hobby or part of your life. The emphasis is on helping you to put form to a new part of your life realising that you are not defined by the relationship but rather it is part of your past that has let you grown to new things.
Related articles from our experts
- Relationships and our sense of self
Linda Helena Boutet (Dip.) MBACP15th February, 2018
- Dating after domestic abuse
Marilyn McKenzie BSc, PGDip, MBACP12th February, 2018
- Addicted to love
Marilyn McKenzie BSc, PGDip, MBACP5th February, 2018
- Understanding domestic violence
Antonella Zottola MBACP, Dip. Counselling26th January, 2018
- Friendship after being lovers - Can it work?
Marilyn McKenzie BSc, PGDip, MBACP24th January, 2018
- Divorce can be worse than bereavement
Leslie Sheinman PhD* MBACP UKCP15th January, 2018
Counselling Directory is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.