Leaving a relationship can trigger so many different emotions. It can be a real rollercoaster ride where one day you feel ok, and the next minute life feels like the pits. Below are just a few of the emotions that you may experience. Understand them, monitor yourself, and get help if they start to incapacitate you or threaten your health.
When you are the person leaving, feeling of guilt can be enormous as you feel you have betrayed someone that you had made a promise too. When there are children involved, this guilt can become all consuming, and can often last for 5 to 10 years.
The sadness and emptiness that you life feels like can be frightening. Climbing into a bed on your own, having breakfast without your partner, visiting places that you previously enjoyed together, seeing happy couples out on a weekend – all these experiences will trigger the sadness that you are experiencing. If the sadness needs to linger, let your self feel it, and cry if necessary. If however it incapacitated you, then you must take positive steps to deal with it.
In many ways anger is a positive response, unless left unmanaged. It enables you to vent all the other feeling that you are experiencing outwardly. However, do not direct it at the partner, and in particularly at the children. Hurtful comments may feel good temporarily, but are not the answer for a healthy recovery.
If you are feeling hopeless and lethargic, make sure you monitor it. Feelings of hopelessness can be signs of anxiety and/or depression. If you are feeling this way, make sure you do the Anxiety/Depression Self Test, and take what ever action may be required.
Guilt can also be tied into pity. Just going to a good movie with a new partner, can make you feel sad for your ex partner, who possibly has noone to share such activities with. Acknowledge those feelings, be aware of them, possibly take some action, but don’t let it prevent a healthy recovery. That is not to say switch off any sense of empathy or caring, however.
Worry about what the future may hold is a real issue, especially if it relates to financial problems which then mean you have to manage a household, job and possibly a family on your own. Talking to others about how to move through these issues is very important. If you are the one who has left and does not have such worries, do not hide from the pain your ex is experiencing.
Often feelings of relief are experienced, especially when the relationship was destructive to health and happiness. If your partner or children are very angry towards you, do not retaliate, but try to understand the pain they are experiencing. Everyone experiences breakups differently, so even if you cannot understand how they are behaving, if it is real to them, then treat is as such.