Relationship failures are always painful irrespective of who causes it. You may feel abandoned, rejected, inferior, humiliated, disappointed and exploited. You go through grief which may predispose you to bitterness which may shatter your life.
Ten years ago, two young adults fell in love. The woman was 'loaded' and sacrificed everything to see her young man through to Masters Degree. She got him a good job.
Just when they had completed arrangement for the traditional marriage, the man pulled out.
His claim was that the woman was a year older and came from a different tribe.
The woman was devastated and very bitter. She withdrew from social life and got angry with herself, her ex and the whole world. She suffered stroke and died later. This is what bitterness can do.
What is bitterness?
Bitterness is a feeling of acrimony, resentment, indignation or ill-will as a result of real or imagined grievance.
It occurs when you think someone has taken something from you which you cannot get.
It grows as you hold on to the hurt and remind yourself and others of the injustice you have experienced in the hope that someone will save you and restore to you what you have lost.
You justify yourself and keep accusing your lover. It does nothing to heal your wound. Instead, it causes your wound to be more infected.
Bitterness predisposes one to many physical, emotional and mental problems. Today, psychologists assert that the majority of our diseases are caused by bitterness.
This means if you become bitter, instead of being a victor, you become a victim no matter how right you are and how badly your partner has treated you.
Bitterness tricks your conscience as substance abuse works; you long for it as you focus on it and justify your pain. Bitterness dominates all areas of your life.
Give yourself time to think of what your lover did to hurt you. Feel the pain so that you can get rid of it.
You may do a symbolic act as you imagine the pain going away.
Move away from things such as photos, video and mail that reminds you of your lover.
Your ex has moved on and so must you.
Do not hold on to him or her and hope for a comeback.
Get over him or her even when you think you can't do without him.
Anyone who hurts you is not worthy of your pain.
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The writer is the Director of Eudoo Counselling Centre,West Legon. He is also the author of 'your guide to marriage' 'love unlimited' and 'the journey of love'