I posed this as a responce to another post and it seemed to be getting such good responces I thought I would post it on its own for those looking for solace in breaking up with someone they still love...nothing helped me more than reading this after my last breakup 3 months ago...
Most people have relationships in their past that didn't work. Many people have one such relationship that is very hard to let go of. This is the one that got away, but shouldn't have. This is the one that felt as if it was meant to be. This is the one that felt like true love. This type of a relationship and how to finally let it go will be covered in today's two-part article. When your partner was at his best, he met all of your needs. He was the perfect fit for you. If he could be the way he was with you 100% of the time, rather then just a fraction of the time, you would be in the relationship still. The times he was everything you needed are hard to let go of. You have been looking for this kind of a match all of your life. Here was a person who could meet your needs the way you have always wanted. You knew he could, because he had. But he wouldn't. You wanted to make him, to force him, to remind him, to talk him into it. You did everything possible to make him be the way you wanted 100% percent of the time. You probably asked him to go to therapy. You used all of the tricks in the book to evoke the behaviors you wanted.
Finally you left the relationship. You knew you deserve better than just some fraction of what you wanted. But the attachment to your ex-partner lingers. It lingers because you never succeeded in making him or her fulfill your needs completely. It feels as if you failed. You feel that somehow not getting what you wanted was your fault. If you were only good enough your ex-partner would give you the love you wanted, all of the time. After all, he or she did give it to you some of the time. It is not easy to move onto another relationship after such an experience. It is not easy to attract love, or give your heart to someone new. It is hard to belive you will have such love and passion with anyone else. At the same time, it is hard to trust that you will somehow avoid hurt the next time around.
One of the things that keeps you hooked into the old relationship is anger. Let's talk about the anger that arises when someone has something you want but won't give it to you. As far as you can see, it would be very simple for him or her. It may look like he or she is not doing what you want for no reason, just to be difficult, or to spite you. How do you feel in this kind of a situation? Most people would feel very angry, and justifiably so. But, anger is a way to stay connected to someone, albeit not a positive way. Anger is one reason you may have difficulty letting go of your past relationship.
There is also another reason why it's hard to let go of the relationship that got away. The person you were in love with truly had great qualities. With him you truly had an incredible connection. Maybe he loved you intensely. He may still love you. The only problem in the relationship was that he could only treat you well part of the time. The rest of the time, he or she acted hurtfully towards you.It is very difficult to throw away this type of connection. And more difficult still when you interact with the wonderful, caring side of him or her. Having to walk away from such a relationship can be the hardest thing you ever do. Even when you walk away it may still pull at your heart. It is so much easier to let go of someone when it is clear he doesn't care about you. It may even be easier to let go of someone that dies, because there is nothing that can be done. But to let go of someone that is well and alive and loves you is an incredible task. Yet let go you must if your partner is not willing to meet your needs. If you are ever to be fulfilled in any relationship, you must let go completely of this past partner. So, how do you do this? How do you let go of the living, breathing partner who may love you, or whom you may love, and yet who is not good for you? How do you let go of the one who seems to have been the one?
There was love on both sides, at least in the beginning. Unfortunately, your partner was loving only part of the time. The rest of the time, he was hurtful and damaging. The relationship is behind you, but you are still having trouble letting go emotionally. The question is how do you let go of the living, breathing partner who you love and yet who is not good for you? The first step is to understand that your partner would have given you the moon and the stars if he could. Even when he appeared to be holding back or hurting you on purpose, he was always doing the best he could. Understand that he never intentionally hurt you. On the most basic level, humans function in survival mode. Those who feel their survival is threatened will respond accordingly. This is a subconscious behavior. Unless there is abuse, it is very rare that one's survival is threatened in a relationship.However, when you push your partner's buttons, he may go into survival mode and retaliate to protect himself. He may hurt you tremendously, and yet he is doing the best he can. Choosing healthy partners is in part choosing partners who have learned they don't need to be in survival mode in a relationship.
To let go of your past relationship, forgive your ex, forgive yourself, and understand that his behavior was not your fault. Understand that all of his behaviors comprise all of his person. Sometimes he was wonderful and sometimes he was horrible. And all of the time he was who he is. There is no way you could only have his good side. His bad side was hurtful. End of story. Let your ex off the hook.
Secondly, do something to honor and cherish the true connection between the two of you. In fact, you may need to honor that connection for a long time. There was a wonderful part of him, a loving and nurturing part. There was love for you, there may still be love for you. You may always love that part of your ex. How do you honor the connection to your ex? Honor your love and connection in prayer, in your heart, in your thoughts, and in your actions. Use the gift of the connection as an inspiration to find more of that kind of love in your future partners. Send thoughts of peace, healing, and joy to your ex whenever thoughts of your past relationship cross your mind. Whenever you miss him, send him love.
In these ways you can still love him, while keeping your distance and protecting yourself from his hurtful behavior. You may be hesitant to do the above. You may be afraid that it will make you go back into the relationship with your ex. But understand I am not saying your ex-partner will change and become more of what you wanted. Most likely, he will remain exactly how he is, at least as far as you are concerned. The reason for honoring your connection is not to somehow bring your ex partner back. Instead, by honoring the good of the relationship, you become free of anger you feel towards him.
By honoring the gifts he did give you, instead of focusing on what he did not give you, you will begin to feel peace and gratitude. Over time, freeing yourself of anger at your ex will give you the ability to attract and create the extraordinary relationship you want, with someone else.
Re: Wonderfull advice in walking away from love....
That is really great advice Daria74. I am in this situation right now and it is so much harder to do in reality. I may be alone in this, but one thing that bothers me the most is that I do know how good the good side of my ex could be, and I don't like the thought of him having this connection we had with someone else.
Re: Wonderfull advice in walking away from love....
With ya, but that's control, not love. Giving up control has been the hardest part. It takes time, but it's control issues you must work on. I have been doing it, and I am finally over him b/c of giving up contol. I used a higher power--just gave it up to God to deal with as He saw fit. It was out of my hands. It was hard, but it worked. It doesn't even hurt me to see him anymore. Good luck to you. This time does suck--but it gets better. (If you are not spiritual--you can use something else to try to give up control--I didn't want to be preachy--just wanted to share what worked for me.)
Re: Wonderfull advice in walking away from love....
I found that a very interesting read and thought i'd add my comments. I particularly identified with this bit when it comes to exes......."Finally you left the relationship. You knew you deserve better than just some fraction of what you wanted. But the attachment to your ex-partner lingers. It lingers because you never succeeded in making him or her fulfill your needs completely. It feels as if you failed. You feel that somehow not getting what you wanted was your fault. If you were only good enough your ex-partner would give you the love you wanted, all of the time."
My ex had a type of dual personality. For all the wrongs he did i blamed myself. I was forever giving in to keep the peace and to keep him happy. If he was content and happy, then i could be happy too. If he was angry and unhappy then it was due to me failing him in some way, yet he did have a lovable and affectionate side too. I worked out it basically went back to my childhood and the way i was raised and the things my parents said to me. Also teachers in school and the way some of them viewed me, saying i'd never amount to much, when in fact i did. I guess the bottom line might be self esteem. Most of the relationships i'd had eg: parents, ex, a few teachers etc where all conditional. They would be happy with me or would love me only "if" i did such and such and if they were unhappy with me i always felt unbelievably like a failure. It took me many years to realise that the emotional feelings i had within me during and a bit after my failed relationship wasn't something new. It had been there during the time i lived with my parents, i had felt it in school with a number of teachers.
What helped me was some counselling, getting away from my ex and meeting somebody new who treated me the way i felt i deserved to be treated. Meeting somebody new who can give you what you want without compromising you is very liberating and like a breath of fresh air and makes you wonder why you hadn't left your ex long ago. Sure you may still have fond memories, but they are only supposed to be memories. It's no life living with somebody who doesnt make you happy or who only gives conditional love. As far as we know we only get one life and we should get the most and the best out of it. You can't move forward if you are stuck in the past.