So... how does one handle the end of a relationship?

My now former husband moved out last Friday.

What was ending on a positive note finished with extreme acrimony.

Right now, he doesn’t want to talk with me. Maybe he will never talk with me again.

I had no idea this was coming. I thought with the couple’s counseling that we had made major progress. Within two weeks, we’re not married, he’s in a new apartment, and I feel like to focus of major anger.

Don’t get me wrong, I know that I did things wrong just as he did. I know I didn’t deserve this. But I also have no control over his leaving and feel I have little control to the outcome.

How do I deal with this? I’ve been soul searching. It has been very rough. Sleeping alone after two and a half years has been weird and well… I have not slept well in days.

I am hoping, with the board populated with people wiser than me, that someone on here can give me some idea of not only where to go from here, but what the process can be like.

This was my first long term relationship, and the first time I have lived with someone. Starting over is hard, especially when one isn’t healthy.

Thanks in advance for any advice.

I’m so sorry, Hastur. I haven’t any wisdom or help to offer, as I’ve never had a really serious relationship besides my very happy marriage. I can offer my sympathies, however.

Seems to me, ways of handling this sort of thing are as varied as those who have to deal with it. My most humiliating breakup came via letter while he was at sea!!! So I showed him - I cut all my hair off, intending to send it to him. After all, I had been growing it out for him…

Luckily, I mellowed and rewrote the scathing responses I’d drafted. And when we saw each other again a couple of years later, we were able to be friends. Then we went separate ways and I haven’t heard word one from him in over 20 years.

Not that that helps you. But I think you’ll go thru a grieving process, and you’ll develop a new routine in your life. And who knows what happens next. Try not to withdraw from everyone and everything. Try not to dwell on the bad stuff. Take it one day at a time.

eeesh, that sounds cheezy… Still, that’s the way I deal with bad stuff - little doses, not looking too far ahead, not fretting over what might have been. I’ve managed to survive and mostly fluorish for 48 years. Honestly, if I knew the magic formula, I’d share it with you.

Hang in there, look for new pleasures, allow yourself to grieve, but also allow yourself to live. And don’t forget to floss!!

My therapist saved me so much potential pain while I was going through actual and massive pain.
I was not equipted to handle my messy divorce alone. I had no experience with the kind of anger and pain I was feeling. I had never been alone and had no clue as to how I was going to survive my shattered life.
Therapy is not for those who don’t want to work hard and look harder. I found out how I got where I was and it helped me find my way out and helped me find where I wanted to go and how to get there. Not everyone is ready to seek professional help or feels that they can afford it, but I couldn’t handle my broken world alone and my family and friends, as much as they wanted to, didn’t know how to help me.
Time does not heal all wounds. Some wounds get infected. I needed a doctor.

My sympathy, Hastur. I’ve been there… almost the exact same circumstances as yours, even. I know this may not help much right now, but it will get better in time. Also, I found it helpful to spend LOTS of time with my girl buddies, especially ones who had been through it themselves.

I spent about a year being angry and bitter, and almost another year being sad and blaming myself. That first year, I also wasted a good six months harboring hopes of a reconciliation.

One thing that helped me was moving far away from where he lived. I know it’s not feasible for everyone, but knowing I wouldn’t run into him at the supermarket was a relief. It felt like a fresh start to me, which I needed at the time.

Just hang in there, and take care of yourself.

Hastur, I’m so sorry for the pain you are in. You’ve got some good advice here (not that it will ease too much pain) but I would add that staying busy is a good idea. Read a lot, and write a lot, go out with your friends, learn a new skill. Stuff like that. Take good care of yourself, eat healthful food and ask for help if you need it (friends or a doctor)

I would avoid:
*getting quickly into a new relationship (you probably already knew that)
*developing bad habits (drinking too much etc.)
I wish you the best of luck. I’ve heard that the healing process (feeling “normal”) takes half the time you were together. It gets better-I’ve been there and remain hopeful it will get better.

I know this all sounds like platitudes, but it is true.

It will feel like shit for a while. Then it’ll slowly feel less like shit. Then you’ll be back to being fine. If you get stuck along the way, make sure you ask for help.

It’s a grieving process. It takes time. Don’t worry about what you should feel. Don’t feel guilty for the moments when you feel anger, sadness, happiness. despair or any other emotion. Feeling out of control is hard to deal with, but there’s a hell of a lot in life that we don’t have control over. One thing you can control is that you can look after yourself, and treat yourself right.

Take time to be you. Rediscover the things that you enjoyed before your relationship. Do the things that you didn’t do because they pissed him off. Just be you. Spend time with your friends.

Remind yourself that you’re a good bloke with lots of fun and love and passion to offer someone, when you’re ready to. This wasn’t your only chance at happiness. There will be more chances. And don’t worry about your health being a barrier - my friend’s dad has MS, and he met and married a lovely, lovely woman two years ago at the age of fiftysomething.

Sleeping alone is hard when you’re used to having someone there. Would you consider a stuffed toy? Or would that be infra dig? It’s not the same by any means, but it’s something to cuddle and talk to.

Peace and blessings go with you.

>Sleeping alone is hard when you’re used to having someone there. Would you consider a stuffed toy? Or would that be infra dig? It’s not the same by any means, but it’s something to cuddle and talk to.

You know what I did for that? I slept on the couch for the first few months… Sounds silly, but it felt like someone was there with me (due to my back being against the back of the couch). It wasn’t exactly the same, but it was comforting at the time.


I’m so sorry. I know the feeling of rejection. This will hurt you for a very long time, but then, one day, it won’t hurt so bad. And then you can start living again…

I’m sorry, too.

Forget worrying over him and his reasons. You can’t control him or those reasons. He has removed himself, for reasons good or bad, and that’s all beyond your locus on control. Focus on you and what you need to feel better and stay sane and start reconstructing a life you’re happy with. It’s okay to be selfish right now. No one is going to hand you a medal for good citizenship or big-heartedness if you try to worry/care for the fate of BOTH of you, so don’t bother.

I don’t know if you’re religious, but I always find that I fall back on that when I feel a lot of despair. I don’t pray for a celestial deity to fix the problem–I simply pray for the strength to deal with it all, hopefully without going mad.

Hastur, I am so sorry for your pain. Please know that I am thinking of you, and wishing the best for you.

I went through a similar situation in my life, and although perhaps cliche, here are some of the things which helped:

-Sleeping on the couch worked for me, too

-Buying things for myself when I had the money, even silly little things

-Writing. I pounded out big ugly stacks of prose, poetry, and non-fiction at this point in my life.

-Finding something to take up my time. Here’s where volunteer work came in- I was doing something valuable, and learning at the same time.

-Analyzing objectively what your strengths and weaknesses are, and learning to accept that.

-Keeping in mind the fact that my ex, although once a major part of my life, was now somebody else’s problem. This was perhaps the most liberating thing for me- I needed, at that time, somebody to care for and baby, and it literally sucked up all my time until there was no ‘me’ anymore. Remembering who I was was very important, and it actually changed the way I relate to other people and how I think about myself, all for the better.

-Keep in touch with this MB. Friends are vital at a time like this, but sometimes mutual friends are a little too close to the situation. Talking to objective third parties can really put things in perspective.

-A ‘binding’ ceremony. Really. I’m an atheist, so the whole thing sounded a little woo-woo to me, but a Wiccan friend invited me to participate in one of her coven’s ceremonies, a ‘binding’ ceremony, in which we all cast into a fire symbols of things we felt had a negative influence in our lives. Then we asked several deities to ‘bind’ these things, so they could no longer cause us trouble, and asked for strength to overcome them. It was actually a very powerful experience, and it helped me to feel better. Safer, somehow.

Hastur, I really wish for best for you. I don’t know you, but from your posts here, you seem an intelligent, witty, charming person, who deserves love and happiness. If your ex could not figure this out, do you really want to be around him anyway?

I’m not a touchy person, but in your case, I’ll make an exception and give you a few cyber-hugs:


Hastur, I’m really sorry you’re going through this.

I won’t offer any advice, however, since I don’t know how to get through a breakup well at all. You might want to keep in mind that if your relationship didn’t end in a fistfight, and if you haven’t been doing astonishing quantities of mind-altering chemicals in the aftermath of your breakup, then you’ve got me beat.

May whatever gods guard your path go with you.

I wallow in a pool of self-pity, blame God, annoy family and friends, and engage in a downward spiral of self-destruction before accepting the inevitable truth.
I don’t really recomend it.

How does one handle the end? It always seems that when someone we care about leaves us, we annoint them with sainthood. We only remember the good times and somehow all those bad times seem to get pushed to the back of our minds. It haunts us and makes us want that person back, to rebuild what once was, to love that person unconditionally. Don’t do it.
As was stated before, time does not heal all wounds. But it does help in making us learn how we can live with it. Life experiences, both good and bad, develop our character and make us into the people we are.
You will go through cycles. Misery and loneliness to begin with and wondering what went wrong and what you did wrong. Then anger and hurt and bitterness will follow. This is natural. We are after all only human.
I found at times that being with friends and family did help a lot. But there were times when I couldn’t stand to be around anyone and I just wanted to wallow in pity-city.
You seem to have already accepted the fact that blame lays on both. And that’s true. But that’s not bad either. I look back over the relationships where I have loved deeply and been hurt deeply. My best advice to you is to take one day at a time, don’t try to look too far into the future because that will shatter you.
Don’t let the financial aspect overwhelm you. Do what you can, and the rest will take care of itself.
Being diabetic, I understand your worry with the physical and health aspect. But when the time is right, and the circumstances are right, love will come again, and you can believe that.
Take care of yourself, spoil yourself and let others help you when possible, right now pride has to be pushed aside.
Above all, be easy on yourself. You can’t make someone love you and we humans try to do that often.
My email address is listed here. Feel free to contact me any time. I’ll send a special prayer up for you.

My mother has gone through four divorces. You’d think she’d grow tired of being married, and it isn’t like she ever got anything monetarily speaking from it (if that’s what anyone was thinking, that’s all I mean by mentioning it).

Being her son, and having a startlingly open and friendly relationship with her, I have been privvy to many thoughts of this sort. The only advice I can offer is this: do not try and figure out “why”. If you feel compelled to figure out why, ask yourself first what good it would really do you to know. I have found that answering the “why” question only leads to tainting further experiences rather than providing actual emotional comfort.

There is no “good” way to get through this, but there are ways that work. Friends and family can help as they will usually not accidentally say stupid things, or perhaps they will and allow you to get used to the pain. :shrug: It is strange when opposite things will have the same positive effect, but such is life. :slight_smile:

Don’t take anything to fall asleep unless a doctor tells you to. Don’t drink to fall asleep, no pills, etc. If you can’t sleep then don’t sleep. No sense in dwelling on that. I f you can’t stop dwelling on it and dwelling on it causes more sleeplessness, then please see a doctor. No sense in torturing yourself; break-ups aren’t attrition for anything.

I am not a doctor. I have two sets of two friends (where I am friends with both male and female) that are married and who often fight; I worry that they will reach such a path. My mother has become so embittered that she refuses to enter relationships now. She has her reasons, and she doesn’t hate men, and of course it is her choice. I’m just saying.

I wish you well in your quest. There are harder ones, and there are easier ones, but most never feel as important.


Cry a lot.

That’s the best I can offer. :frowning:


Realize that you don’t need to worry about the other person, that you don’t need to try to fix their problems.

You can do whatever the heck you want now!

If you see something going past that would be interesting to try, give it a shot! Waste time doing things for only yourself.

Take the money you would have spent on the other person and by yourself toys and treats.

And as someone already said, now your SO is someone else’s problem (YAY!).

Also being able to watch your SO’s life spiral downhill is pretty fun too.

But the first few months will be hard. Make sure you go out each weekend, even if its only to the book store. Bug friends into going to see movies with you. Make dinner for friends.

Forgive him. You’ll be surprised at how much weight it takes
off your shoulders. It is hard to do, but it is worth the effort.
Forgive him for being rude, mean, un-caring, not trying, for everything.

The only way out of the pain is through it.

Days when you wish the earth would just open up and swallow you will keep happening for quite some time. Their frequency will decrease as time goes by, but I’d hesitate to say that the individual days hurt less.

You’ll be on a rollercoaster for awhile. Some days, you’ll feel on top of the world, that it’s all behind you. The next day, you might suddenly realize that you’ve just spent the last three hours staring blankly into nowhere. There will come days when everything is just numb; the world will be a distance away and seemingly timelagged, food will taste like nothing. It’ll come back, sometimes gently, sometimes joyously, sometimes with another wall of pain.

When the world does that snapping-back-to-focus thing, make use of it. Take long walks. Notice beautiful things. The light through that tree. What a bird really looks like as it bursts into flight. The wings folding as it lands again. Notice these things; they’re important.

Resist urges to shut in, and deliberately reach out to friends. It’s one of those things that ultimately you face and go through alone–but that makes friends around all the more important, not less.

May it pass quickly and heal well.

Good advice to be had here. I’m sorry, Hastur. Hope you’re patient with yourself.