Wednesday, March 9, 2011

My Life is An Oprah Episode - "Breaking Up is Hard to Do"

Although far from being a relationship expert, my experience in breakups has provided me with a repertoire of  drama that surrounds the breakup.  What are the causes of a breakup?  How do we heal from it?  And, when exactly do we walk away?  I believe that relationships need to change and grow once you reach a plateau.  Otherwise, in my view, it's time to let go.

Currently, I am not in a relationship with anyone except myself, which, I think finally puts me in a far better place to enter into a relationship, if, the opportunity presents itself.  I live by very simple rules when it comes to a relationship:  It must be HEALTHY, it must experience JOY, and there must be KINDNESS.  While every involvement cannot promise anything except the present moment, and there are no guarantees to forever after,  investing time and energy to hold on to something that is unhealthy and joyless, is emotional suicide.

I have several friends and also a family member that are in the middle of breakups, marriage or other.  One of my closest friends has been married for over twenty five (25) years, yet, for the past fifteen+ ( 15+) years, has been living with her husband as a roommate.  On the surface, there is nothing wrong with that if it works for them, but, truly, I never thought of it as workable.  They are both great parents who love their kids, and their kids worship both of them, but, I can't help but wonder if they are setting the stage for their kids future relationships...by modeling their marriage as normal.  I am not judging my friend, and she knows that, and she will acknowledge how stuck she has been all these years.  She is involved with someone else now, and is planning to divorce, but, there isn't any real joy in this relationship either.  It will still be a difficult transition for her, because, there is a certain amount of comfort in not having to make changes and to let go of the status quo, even when unhappy.  Have all those  years with her husband been wasted?  Maybe.  Their kids are great and caring individuals, and that is no small thing, so perhaps they have benefited from their parents misery on some crazy level.  Time doesn't heal; it's what we do with the time that does the healing.

I also have another close friend who is on the fence as to whether or not she should end a relationship of two (2) years.  In this case, the issue is trust.  She knows her boyfriend had cheated on her, and after the fighting, took him back.  Problem reared again, and she believes he has again cheated on her.  As to why people cheat in a relationship requires individual analysis, the reasons can vary from someone just being narcissistic, having fear of real intimacy, or just not be strong enough to say no.  What I've told my friend is this:  she has to determine for herself is she is feeling the joy from the relationship, or is now all her energy being placed on the fact that trust is gone.  If her boyfriend would own up the the lies, only then, can they move past it.  And, only if the choice made is to wipe the slate clean.  That is very hard to do, as I know from experience.  Yet, what seems to an obvious answer,  my friend is having a difficult time making the decision to sever the relationship, knowing it has taken such an unhealthy turn.

Life is a series of letting go.  Letting go of people, of places, of things.  It's hard to look past what is right in front of us, because, we think the bogeyman lives on the other side.  I have made a promise to myself that wherever a relationship might take me, I will no longer let it take me to a place that is unhealthy and joyless.  And, kindness, every day, in every way.....and, I love to play Geisha :)

In spite of a popular quote: "...parting is such sweet sorrow",....I believe another quote:  ..." parting is dumb sorrow, it is going home, leaving yourself behind."

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