Getting over it.

by mssinglemama on February 12, 2008

lucy.jpgMy best friend is still trying to move on from a rough break up…and she’s a single mom. I’m running out of advice for her … and feel like a broken wheel. “It will just take time, you’ll be okay, he was a jerk anyway.” But in the here and now she’s hurting. And I’m running out of comforting words. I thought it might be nice to get some fresh perspectives – like yours!

We are all single mothers. And that means we’ve all dealt with a failed relationship or two. How do you cope? Are there any ways to make the pain go away a bit faster? How long do you wait to start dating again?And some more random thoughts on the subject:

Doesn’t it suck when you get used to having someone around – and then poof – they’re gone. Then you have to re-adjust to your 100% solo life again. This is why I, personally, try my hardest to keep relationships at bay.  My goal – to balance having a man in my life without actually changing my life or getting too “comfortable.” Why? Because we can’t really rush into relationships anymore. If we do – we could get hurt and so could our children. Sigh. The old single mom dating conundrum is rearing it’s ugly head for my friend and I both this week.

Please, do dish your thoughts.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

lirone February 12, 2008 at 6:02 pm

(I’m not a mum, but recently and painfully single….)

It’s horrible to see someone you care about in pain, but maybe trying to help your friend stop hurting isn’t the most important thing here. Breaking up hurts like hell… and it goes on hurting for a hell of a long time longer than you feel it ought to. And one of the things that I found most painful was feeling that I _ought_ to have got over this person by now, and that I was weak and so on for still wanting someone who had treated me so badly.

So sometimes you can help people most, not by trying to stop them feeling the pain, but by just being there while they experience the full measure of pain and grief and hurt that they need to go through. It’s not endless, but trying to cut it short may actually make it last longer.

And as a friend you can help by making it utterly clear that you don’t think worse of them for still being upset, or want to be away from their company, because they’re that miserable. Sometimes that’s the most powerful gift you can give – and thankfully I have close friends who’ve given me exactly that.

Of course there’s good pain and bad pain. Good pain is what you learn from, and stops you getting into the same mess again. But there’s also a lot of unnecessary pain which comes from endlessly going over and over the same memories. I’d strongly recommend Paul McKenna’s book “I can mend your broken heart” – it helped me immeasurably to separate out the learning pain and the obsessing pain! I found the exercises for fading out the memories of your lover particularly beneficial.

All the best to your friend, anyway!

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mssinglemama February 12, 2008 at 6:32 pm

Lirone – That book sounds really interesting…and thanks for the wonderful tips.

And for any woman or man – a break up like this – child or not is incredibly tough. So many questions of why…

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lirone February 12, 2008 at 7:58 pm

You’re welcome!

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