Whether your partner has just dumped you, you’ve got 20 pounds to lose, or you have some other difficult situation on your hands, life can seem unbearably hard sometimes. Carrie’s situation is a good example:
Carrie and Tom had been going out for awhile and got along great. The only problem was, Carrie is significantly older than Tom and she felt insecure about it. She had this nagging feeling that the relationship wasn’t going to last. When she shared her feelings with her friends, they didn’t really understand. Most of them said things like, “You’re so lucky! I wish I was dating a younger hottie like that.” After discussing it with her brother, she realized that she definitely wanted a long-term relationship and that her current situation was going nowhere. She broke it off with Tom and started looking for a more suitable partner.
It wasn’t easy though. Her first few dates were very disappointing and she was lonely and sad without Tom. Finally, she met Peter and they really hit it off. He was attractive, her age, had a good job, and said he was looking for a long-term relationship. She was so thrilled to finally meet someone she really liked that she jumped in headfirst without finding out all the gory details about his situation. After they had sex, she discovered that he was still hung up on his ex. He talked about her all the time and still talked to her daily because of some issues they were having with one of their children. Carrie tried talking to him about this issue, but Tom thought Carrie just didn’t understand how hard it was to be a parent. Finally, Carrie had to break it off and go back to singledom, a place she doesn’t want to be.
Lick Your Wounds
How can you handle it when you’re hurting and you feel the need to start over?
- Take care of yourself. Give yourself time to grieve. It’s important to eat right and not delve into drugs or alcohol as a temporary, and dangerous, way to “just forget”. Don’t be hard on yourself for any mistakes you’ve made. You’re learning and it takes time.
- Believe that you will figure this out. Maybe right now, it doesn’t feel like you have any answers, but you will have them in the future. Have faith in yourself.
- Learn something from what happened. It’s never fun to have a crash-and-burn-relationship, but let’s go back to the example of Carrie. She learned a lot from both of her relationships: She learned that a microwave romance doesn’t really work for her and what questions to ask herself before she even thinks of having sex with a new man and getting even more attached. She also began to reflect on her situation more comprehensively, wondering if she had issues with being alone and whether she had a pattern of picking men based on the wrong criteria.
- Get help if you need it. There’s no shame in getting help. You may need to talk to your friends or family about how you feel. If you want to explore the patterns in your relationships, you may want to seek psychotherapy. Getting help isn’t a sign of weakness. It’s a sign of strength to get help when you need it so that you can meet your personal goals.
Life is Hard – Work with It
When your life has thrown you some major curve balls, don’t judge yourself too harshly. The most important factor in your success is that you keep trying.
Maybe Nelson Mandela said it best: “Do not judge me by my success, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.”
Want more tips to help you figure out how to get through the hard times, maybe even changing the way you see yourself and your potential partner? Check out my book, Be Your Own Brand of Sexy: A New Sexual Revolution for Women, called “a must have book for all women dating or looking to date”. Join the revolution of women here (and on Facebook!) who are learning how to have confidence in themselves and be their own Brand of Sexy.