When things go wrong, you know like really bad, what do you make of it? For instance, when a relationship ends that you had such high hopes for. Then it ends. You may blame yourself, or blame them, or even your life. You can start to wonder if your life will always be this way, especially if you have suffered before. Sometimes it seems like it keeps happening. Either way, even when you try to get away from how this feels, its bad.
Sometimes we learn from the relationships, but other times we feel so bad that we need to escape it. The bitter sadness and/or loneliness can something we need to go through. Some of us deny it and never go through the feelings, which can result in what Carl Jung said (I paraphrase), "Whatever remains unconscious is lived out in fate." Others begin to conclude that this is their life. Like Edith's character in "Downton Abbey," at one point her assumption seems to be that she will never have a good relationship, will always be alone, and that this will be her fate. And this can certainly be how this feels. However, sometimes something changes. And it isn't just good fortune. Someone does pursue her. The turning point is not her being pursued. It is her ability to let go of the painful disappointed feelings and let in the good feelings that can come with the experience of someone pursuing them. This change inside does not guarantee one will have a successful relationship, but it opens up that possibility. If we cling too tightly to the the pain, perhaps protectively because to do so offers the protection from it never happening again, we may feel safe but cannot notice or let that good come in when it does and we might unwittingly perpetuate the sadness and loneliness. Sometimes we need someone to go through those hard times with us to move beyond it to be able to find room to let the good in.
steve harris, phd
View My Prior Blog:
"What Is Right With Me?"