How Changing The Conversation About Your Breakup Can Help You Heal Faster
The breakup conversation is one that’s just never going to go away. It will always be painful, and after helping a close friend through one recently, I realized I wanted to write about this and encourage people to change the conversation about their own breakups in the hopes of jumpstarting the healing process.
My dear friend had just gone through a devastating breakup. In this scenario, they had talked about long term family and future life plans together, when suddenly, their person decided to stop choose them. Their relationship was over and all of a sudden their ex had moved on quite quickly, and within weeks was posting photos with someone new. One day they were having serious conversations about love and family and marriage, and the next…they had moved on, leaving my friend crushed. What I wanted to bring to light was this: when you really start to develop feelings for someone, I ask you not to ignore everything that doesn’t feel right to you. This person who left my friend and moved on right away was the same person they’d been this whole time…my friend just didn’t want to see it.
I give this advice only because I’ve lived it. Too often, we let potentially good people detour us from the right people.
They’re not evil, they’re not bad, they’re just doing what they think is best for them. But what I’ve realized over the years is that to blame them is not the key. Instead, we must look at ourselves and ask what we weren’t willing to see all this time, because we were so interested in being in our relationship…in being loved. In past relationships, I was so interested in being in the role of nurturer, caregiver, lover…that I ignored things that didn’t feel right. We all desire to be this piece of the puzzle for someone. We want to feel it in our communities, in our tribes, in our gyms, in our families and our friend groups…but especially in relationships. We would love to have a counterpart, but really, we would love to be a counterpart. In chasing that, sometimes we don’t allow ourselves to see everything as it is.
This is not a message to be skeptical, this is actually a message to be the opposite.
To let everything in. It’s acknowledgement. There’s a long standing quote, “When you’re standing inside the frame, you can’t see the whole picture.” I encourage you to use the wide lens and step back from time to time to see the whole picture. See how you feel. In doing so, you won’t be ignoring the traits that might surprise you later or start painting those red flags green. That also goes for people who are in relationships that are lasting. We are so shocked when people break up with us, so hurt, we see this other person and ask, “how could they do this to me?” Really, the truth is…this is who they’ve been the whole time.
So much of the attention during a breakup is placed on the other person. But if you are experiencing a breakup, I encourage you to flip that script and place the attention on yourself. While you’re focusing on yourself, focus on the reality of the amazing qualities that you bring. Recognize that you should never be in a position where you need to beg for someone’s attention, love or approval. Stand on your own two feet with pride and own the fact that even though you’re never not growing, you’re curious, and trying, and aware…and that’s special. That is nothing to be traded down for.
Always in your corner,