Rebuilding After Loss
In Parts One and Two of this series, we examined the primary reasons most of us choose to date in the immediate aftermath of loss and what to expect from dating within the first year of separation. Today, we will focus on the importance of creating a solid life, independent of relationship status.
Stable people attract stable people. When we are deeply rooted in own lives, we are better prepared to endure the fickle winds of the dating scene. With this in mind, here are some reminders and tips to consider:
Often, I am asked by the acutely grieving when the whole ordeal will be over. Grief unfolds on its own timeline and healing is retrospective. Often we must consider where we have been to fully appreciate how far we have come. Fortunately, it is not necessary to know how long something will last to keep choosing the next best step. Like a fawn on wobbly legs, we will stumble; this is normal. Each time we get back up again, we prove we are stronger than our pain.
Once we have (mostly) healed, the intensity of transitional love will start to lose its appeal. The day will come when we are no longer able to imagine being with the very person we once thought we couldn't live without. It is then we are truly ready for lasting connection. In the meantime, remember we are all doing our best to get where we are going. Be patient, kind, and honest with yourself as you work to transform your old life shape into a newer, stronger one!
If you have any questions about what you have encountered in this three-part series, feel free to ask them in the comments section below. Or, if you prefer to have your questions answered in a more private forum, click here!
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Dr. Jill Gross is a licensed psychologist, dating coach, and writer whose therapy practice is located in the Phinney - Greenwood area of Seattle, Washington. She has been providing counseling and dating consultation services since 2000.