Breaking up is always traumatic – some thoughts about what to do and what not to do

Often the immediate reaction to being the dumped is to reach for the phone/laptop to send an agonised appeal to the dumper to think again. Not a good thing to do.

It needs time to settle
It’s vital to give it time and space for both of you to reflect on what has happened. It may be that the relationship was in danger of derailing but was not about to jump the tracks. Not all dumps are permanent and understanding the one that is and the one that is not is a difficult judgement.

grim seascapeThe myth that he/she is only one and there is no one else
Buying into the belief that there will never be anyone else is so easy to do. The emotional investment in the relationship is such that the thought of starting again from scratch is a daunting prospect. However, simple logic suggests there must be many others out there; it’s just a case of whether you will ever meet one of them.

Try to convince him/her you can give them everything they want
When a relationship comes to an end it can rarely be revived by a logical list of reasons as to why it was so great. Relationships are never totally logical, people fall in love with other people who logically are not a good fit and they remain unmoved by others who might appear perfect. That’s love for you.

Stay away from dating for as long as it takes to be ready
A relationship breakup is not a walk in the park. Even the gentle ones cause great emotional damage. When you do finally get back into the whirl of dating there is a strong temptation to becoming a serial monogamist by committing to the next person you go on a date with.  Trying to find a rapid replacement for your departed lover is not the way heal the wounds.

Much of the motivation here is to recreate the relationship with former partner without all the bits that went wrong. Clearly this is not a good idea. When you begin a new relationship you really should start afresh and acknowledge that your previous relationship is over.

Think about what happened
Finally the absolute imperative is to try to use all that pain and heartache to make things better for the next relationship. Whether you are 25 or 65 there are reasons why it failed and careful reflection about the good things and the bad things brings a realisation that both of you must take responsibility for the situation. This will be so very helpful in preparing you for the next foray into the deep, dark waters of 21 century dating.

Learn from the experience
There are always things to be learnt from every relationship breakup. Mostly it’s about each partner recognising the needs of the other. This is never easy and perhaps the most important thing to bring to the next relationship is the needs to talk to each other about what you feel and what you want. This is the best way for men to avoid that most dreaded of phrases “If you don’t know then I’m not going to tell you.”


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