We all know that starry-eyed ‘in love’ sensation moderates with time. When things go well you find that ‘in love’ has turned to deep affection, devotion and caring. But what if this doesn’t happen? What if the magic just dies and you struggle to see what attracted you? Or further down the line, you may gradually decide your feelings have evaporated.
The language of love is ‘forever’ but that can be wishful thinking. What do you do when your love has disappeared, and you’re left with very little but difficult choices?
In the following we look at:
DON’T GIVE UP STRAIGHT AWAY
It’s natural to be disappointed when the fireworks fizzle out, but are you sure there’s nothing left? If you are a true romantic and dream of being on Cloud Nine all the time it may be hard to accept that things aren’t going to stay that way. Maybe you feel tempted to look for excitement elsewhere, but it might be as well to think carefully.
Are you truly compatible with your lover? Do you share interests and values? Can you laugh together? Are you good friends? Do you still enjoy love-making, even though the fire has damped down? If you answered yes to these questions, then maybe you’re expecting too much. It sounds as if your relationship still has plenty going for it.
But if you answered no to one or more points, can things be improved? Try to look honestly at what’s wrong and talk about it. Sometimes passion can be re-ignited by re-creating the things you used to do, or finding new interests to share. Don’t give up before you’re sure.
FACE THE FACTS
If there really is nothing left of your relationship, deep inside you will know. You can’t be bothered to do things together, you disagree about the subjects that are important to you and you probably avoid touching. It’s time to face up to the fact that you would be better off apart.
Try not to pretend. There is no way forward from a dishonest position – it will only make things worse and worse. You and your partner need to work with what is real, if you are to find happiness again.
IT’S SAD FOR YOU, TOO
You may feel really bad about what you are doing to your partner, by falling out of love with them. However, this is just as much a tragedy for you, also. That love you thought you could rely on, that lifted you out of the ordinary into a place of dreams, has gone and left you in a barren state. The warmth and caring you hoped would be there for the rest of your life has disappeared. You are facing a loss.
Of course, your partner can’t be expected to see this. If they are still ‘in love’ then they will feel bereft and will probably regard you as having let them down. The truth is there are no winners in this situation and you both have to do your best to come through it.
GIVE UP ON GUILT
When love dies it’s no-one’s fault. You can’t help it, any more than you can tell the rain not to fall or the wind to blow. You may well feel very guilty at letting down the one you loved, but it simply is not something you can control.
Should you be expected to put on an act for the rest of your life, in order not to cause hurt? Will that truly make your partner happy, long-term? The answer is absolutely no. You both deserve better.
TRY NOT TO BLAME
Deep down, you may feel a bit let down by your partner. Maybe you feel they weren’t quite honest with you. Possibly they pretended to be interested in things, and to agree with you, just to get you close. You may believe that you’ve been the subject of a subtle ‘sales pitch’ or clever manipulation. Maybe your partner promised more than she or he delivered. Or they may have put on weight or in some other way changed, so they no longer resemble the person you fell for.
Accept your feelings, but don’t judge. We all put on our best behavior when we want to impress. Looking back, maybe you did the same. Even if you feel your partner hasn’t been quite genuine, has let themselves go or whatever, there’s no point blaming them. If this relationship has to end, let it be in as friendly a way as possible.
PART AS FRIENDS
Once you loved each other, so respect all that you have shared. Your efforts now should be put into parting as friends. Be as kind and considerate as possible – it’s the final gift you can give each other. If you can, learn from the situation, and if you have made mistakes you can try not to repeat them. Now you are separating you both have a chance to find happiness again, and you deserve that.
HOW WE CAN HELP
In this article we have looked at when not to give up, facing the facts, realising it’s sad for you too, giving up guilt and blame and parting as friends. Facing the end of a relationship is tough. You may even be in a more complex situation, where you know your love has died but moving on is not simple, maybe because children or practical considerations are involved. Whatever the case, talking about this will be a tremendous help. Our expert Readers are always available with their advice and empathy, so don’t struggle alone. Put in a call without delay, and make the move towards feeling so much better.
PUBLISHED: 22 February 2017