Once a romantic relationship ends via break up or divorce, do not participate in breaking your heart. During your healing it is healthy and advisable to ‘unfriend’ your Ex on social media, avoid your former ‘couple’ locations and their friends and family. Maintaining close ties with their social networks prolongs your pain.
Of course if children are involved, it is imperative a healthy co-parenting space is created and for each couple this will look different. In some cases, couples opt to avoid interacting as much as possible during the healing time. This may consist of having a 3rd party pick up and drop off the kids or utilizing the school as the pickup-drop off location (Parent A drops off and Parent B picks up). Some couples prefer to only text each other as it pertains to the children because phone calls or in person can become too emotional.
As healing occurs, emotional wounds will heal, perspectives will change, forgiveness will transpire, co-parenting will become easier and healthier no longer requiring a 3rd party as a buffer. In some cases friendships with healthy boundaries develop.
There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to navigating this space. However, there are some behaviors which sabotage healing and any future possibility for a healthy relationship:
- Not respecting boundaries: If your Ex has asked you to stop contacting him/her, showing up unannounced/uninvited, etc. but you do so any way.
- Emotional Hostage: It is normal to want to process the break-up, but you cannot process your pain with your Ex. Helping you heal, gain clarity, feel better is not their responsibility or role. Seek a therapist.
- Blame Game: The relationship is over; blaming will not change the outcome. It will only infuriate the other person and add another reason why they no longer want to be with you.
If someone no longer wants to be with you, accept it. He or she is not your source for love, happiness, joy, etc. Another person is fully capable, willing and desires to co-create a beautiful new love story with you. But FIRST you must properly heal this space, do not sabotage your future love space with baggage from your past. – Misha N. Granado, MPH, MS