As people walk away from a relationship and head towards separation and divorce, they often experience shame or embarrassment. A sense of failure or regret, and concern that they will be perpetually labelled by their end-of-marital status.
I’ve been divorced more than once. Whilst it’s not something I wear as a badge of honour, it’s not something I feel ashamed of either. As a “boots and all” kinda girl, each time I made a commitment I meant it. I went into my marriages with high hopes and strong intentions of a lifetime together, but it just didn’t work out that way.
Over the years, a few people have chipped in their 10 cents worth, tried to define me by my failed relationships and questioned what it says about me as a person. I can tell you exactly what that says about me…it says I give people my all. I see the best in them and I try my hardest. I am also a woman who knows my limits and believes that life is too short to be perennially unhappy. I’m certainly not going to stay in a relationship to prove a point or to abide by the expectations of others. That doesn’t make me a f**k up or damaged goods. It means I am committed to a happy and fulfilled life for myself and those around me.
Many of us who leave a relationship realise that things have reached a point where we have done everything to salvage it and it still isn’t working. Sticking around will lead to ongoing misery for all involved. If we end up in a situation where we realise we aren’t living authentically and no longer recognise the woman looking back in the mirror, it’s time to make a significant changes. Be true to ourselves and everyone else involved.
That doesn’t mean we are giving up lightly or failing to take commitment seriously. It’s about following the wisdom of the Serenity Prayer;
“Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.”
Food for thought
If you are going through a separation or divorce and feel upset or concerned by the opinions of others, shift your thoughts and focus to the following:
- No one knows you and your story better than you do – it’s easy for people to stand on the sidelines and cast judgement, but ultimately you are the one who knows what happened and understands your choices.
- The end of a relationship doesn’t make you a failure – it simply means that things didn’t work out and that chapter ended, paving the way for a new chapter to begin.
- Find your tribe – if people are judging you, it’s the perfect opportunity to see who is and who isn’t on your team.
- Create a shift – don’t judge yourself for this break up. Instead, re-direct your energy to rebuilding and creating the life you want and deserve.
“Be yourself, because the people that mind don’t matter and the people that matter don’t mind”.Dr Seuss
Supporting you with a fresh start
If you’re ready to get back on track after a breakup, we have the perfect companion to walk with you as you build your new life. Our 10-week online program called “Moving onwards and upwards after separation or divorce” will give you all the insights, tools and templates to work out what’s important to you and where you want to be… and then we’ll guide you to create a workable plan to get there. For more information, please click here.