Thoughts on the End of a Relationship

As she works through the pain, she contemplates the qualities she values in a partner. 

by Renee Hanson • Member { View Profile }
Photograph: iStock

Pain is a funny thing. O.K., I’m being sarcastic. Pain isn’t funny and ending a relationship can bring some of the worst pain there is. Some feel as though their heart is literally breaking and feel physical pain. Others sink into depression and can hardly get to the grocery store or lift a hand other than to finish their cocktail. Yet others find someone else right away replacing the pain with staying busy in a new relationship but never giving oneself a chance to truly heal and deal with the grief generated from the loss of the relationship.

I just ended a relationship that I thought would last me the rest of my lifetime. Dating late in my forties has led me on a search for someone who meets many needs I have developed from my life of experience. Above all, I expect a relationship to contain mutual respect from both partners. I find it nice when my relationship is physically satisfying and emotionally safe. O.K., those should almost be a given, but I’ve had some relationships over the years that were unbalanced and leaned one way or the other. Great physical connection and not one lick of emotional caring made one of my relationships last a good five years.

That same imbalance brought my most current relationship to a screeching halt after just 16 months. Perhaps I had learned something from the ex-boyfriend after all. I’ve also had a relationship that seemed to be emotionally strong with common bonds but had a serious lack of a physical connection and after the last month with no booty call at all, I ended that relationship.

Interestingly, the closer I get to 50, which looms at the end of this year and with some health problems that have crept up along the way, the need for a strong emotional partner seems to be outweighing my need for a more physical partner.

As I close out day one of my new single life again I have been reading some online relationship articles on men and whether or not they ever really change, on healing time after a break up, on the top 10 things to do after a break up and of course the top 10 things “not” to do after a break up. I already have broken several of those items down and thrown them out the window. I mean, I have texting on my phone for a reason.

I know I will get up tomorrow, and the sun will still be shining or perhaps it will be raining, but either way I will have the entire day ahead of me to make of it what I choose. I will choose to make it a wonderful day. It will be Day 2 of my single life on my journey to healing and reconfiguring some thoughts in my head that I thought were correct but after re-evaluation find that they may need some tweaking. Tweaking is something I have become good at and have had multiple opportunities to practice.

Remember: If you find yourself on the single path again, be patient with yourself, be kind and loving, and give yourself an opportunity to get to know yourself again. Remember that your happiness is dependent on you and doesn’t rely on a partner. You can learn to love yourself as well as what you truly have to offer and recognize the important value of that offering. Once you learn to value yourself, then perhaps you will be ready to step back out and explore what the relationship world has to offer. Until then, enjoy every moment!

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