Without resort to a doctor
A diary entry from 2008 which is as pertinent on this day in 2009 as it was back then……
I wrote in 2008 to a friend “We let our romance die without resort to a single doctor. Let’s not make the same mistake with our friendship”.
One of the most shocking realisations post breakup can be that even if you strive for a healthy post relationship amicability, their can be little encouragement from outside forces. “Just let go and don’t invite contact”; or “don’t you think you are being a bit controlling? Why do you `need’ to stay friends?”; or even “isn’t staying friends with your ex a bit weird? After what they did to you?”
And there is the crux of it. Who did what to who – a determined mission to apportion blame, is a natural pursuit of the media, society at large and even your best friends. So striving to form a friendship with your ex, especially if the break up circumstances were morally unpleasant, can be quite disturbing to others. Just because you may have made the leap of understanding that blame,whether before the divorce judge or before your bedroom mirror, becomes an irrelevance, others can be uncomfortable, even downright threatened, by such an absurd need to be `friends’ despite it all.
Yet who of us has not had friendships that somehow withstood disagreements, long distances and even betrayal? Even if we need to create some distance for a time, love of any kind is too precious to be left out in the cold for too long.
The key to it all, for me, is accepting three facts:
1/ The old relationship must be allowed to pass. Some may laugh at Shamanic rituals of burying the wedding dress on the top of a mountain, but anything that helps you let go and move on is a gift.
2/ Understanding that forgiveness, of yourself or others, is not required. Some things are, let’s face it, unforgivable.
3/ Not expecting an apology of any kind is also imperative to success.
With these three barriers cast aside, suddenly the possibility of a brand new relationship becomes possible. OK, it may not have the trust and familiarity of your original relationship, but time truly can work miracles, especially if you have understood that people who are afraid, unhappy or under great pressure, will not always behave like angels. Understanding your own humanity and weaknesses opens up your eyes to seeing clearly the humanity and weaknesses of others, in a non-judgemental way – even those who have really hurt you. And accepting your own part in the dance, with humility rather than shame. Then apology becomes a gift rather than a justification for the other persons moral high ground.
And when the break up is without rancour and spite? Even more reason to `stay friends’, yet just as difficult. Ending one relationship and beginning another (for that is what is involved) can benefit from skilled advice. There are relationship `doctors’ out there who can see the patterns of behaviour, spot the scripting that we have of how we see ourselves and what we believe is possible of ourselves and others. They can help us see our relationships from another country, another planet even, until we begin to see that by changing our expectations, and asking the right questions, an `impossible relationship’ can become a supportive one. Those of us who have experienced parenting classes, or been through personal self development, will know first hand the miracles that can occur if only we allow them to happen.
When I am ill, I rarely visit my GP, but search out my own remedies, or seek help from like-minded healers who will get to the root of my sickness and help me to create my own cure. I hope I can find the courage to protect the special friendship I have with my current `ex’, by finding a relationship doctor who will help us to move away from one relationship and create a new one, through letting go, accepting ourselves for all our weaknesses and foibles, and loving each other without conditions. An ideal? Why strive for anything less….