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When you got married, you deposited all of your hopes and dreams into your partner and the marriage with the belief that your investment would flourish and grow. You trusted that your return would come in the form of forever.
Now that your marriage is over, you have to reconcile what you thought you had, and the future you imagined would be. Letting go of hopes and dreams is a painful process. The experience of loss feels like a betrayal, because you feel you were promised forever and got never.
As hard as this is, you have to work towards moving forward or you will be stuck clinging to a belief that no longer exists. In the face of uncertainty, we all tend to focus on what was or what could have been. However, you need to turn your attention to what is. The future is what matters and what you should focus on rebuilding.
- The rug has been pulled out from under you, which means you have to find your footing again.
- Your dreams have been crushed, which means you have to reimagine a future grounded in a new reality.
- Your fantasy of forever served you at the time you got married, but now you need to apply these healing balms to your wounds so you can find your way back to your own truth.
Some suggestion to help you heal:
- Define the meaning of forever: Forever is a term that comes from fairy tales and romantic movies. Most married people expect to grow old together, and remain married until death. This still isn’t forever. Reflect on what you really expected because sometimes the fantasy can create more suffering than necessary.
- Find your center: When your world changes overnight from certainty to surreal, and everything you thought you knew to be true is in question, it’s time to find your center. Your center is where you go to find peace and the answers to your questions. For some people, this is faith or spirituality. For others, it’s a meditative activity such as exercise or painting. Your center is your grounding, what will keep you sane.
- Reaffirm your values: It’s hard to feel confident in your own values and what’s important when everything you thought you trusted and knew is up in the air. You most likely held certain principles about your marriage and your commitment. You need to remember that your values are still in place even though your marriage isn’t. The standards to which you uphold yourself don’t need to change just because things didn’t work out as you planned.
- Reconnect to your dreams: You may feel that all of your hopes and dreams went down the drain with your marriage. While your dream of this marriage lasting forever has been crushed, you still have an imagination and capacity to create new dreams. Even though it feels like you’ve been robbed of the future you thought you were going to have, you can begin to imagine a new life worth living, and who knows it might be a much happier and better one.
- Stay inspired: Despair is on the other side of hope, so once the hope is gone, things can become dark. It’s essential that you stay inspired to stay afloat. You can draw inspiration from role models, quotes, blogs, even your own children. Don’t allow the overwhelming feeling of wanting to give up to win. No matter how hard things are take one step forward every day. Tomorrow will be better, as long as you strive towards rebuilding a positive future.
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