Rocd break up

What is rOCD? — Awaken Into Love

What is Relationship OCD/Relationship Anxiety?


Relationship Obsessive Compulsive Disorder & Relationship Anxiety is when individual experiences unwanted, intense obsessions and doubts about their feelings toward their partner. They might also experience feeling preoccupied about the "certainty" or "rightness" of their relationship and partner.

These thoughts and feelings are targeted around how they feel toward their partner overall, their partner's character, their partner's appearance, their own sexual desires and how compatible they are with their partner. The preoccupations are all around checking if the relationship is "right enough." They are constantly mixed in doubts, uncertainties and fears toward how they feel and think towards their partner. Most of the time, these obsessions and doubts are fueled by feelings of deep shame and guilt. There can also be a deep fear of speaking about what they are going through to their partner and other people.

Common thoughts in rocd/RA":
  • “What if I don't love my partner?"

  • "What if I don't love my partner enough?"

  • "What if I'm not really in love with my partner?"

  • “What if my partner is not 'The One'?"

  • “What if I don't miss my partner enough? Or miss them at all when they're not around?"

  • “What if I’m not really attracted to my partner?"

  • "What if I can't stop thinking about my partners lack of attractiveness and their flaws?"

  • “If I didn't feel sparks or enjoy our physical touch, does that mean they're not right for me?"

  • "Sometimes, I'm not aroused or turned on enough with my partner. Does that mean I don't love them?"

  • “I enjoyed having some time alone today. This must mean that I don't love my partner or really want to be with them.”

  • “I found another girl/guy attractive! Does that mean I don't love my partner?”

  • "If I feel this way and doubt, then it must mean I'm not with the right partner. "

  • “Sometimes I don't want to have sex and I'm turned off by my partner, that must mean they're not right for me."

  • "What if I'm missing out on 'The One' by being with my partner?"

  • "What if I'm missing out on life by being with my partner?"

  • "What if I'm missing out on something better?"

  • “If I don't feel attractive all the time with my partner, then that must mean somethings wrong. I should be certain with their attraction all the time"

  • "I can't stop fixating on the negative flaws of my partner or character."

  • Constantly fixating on being compatible or not.

  • Obsessing about what others may think of the relationship.

  • "What if I harm my partner emotionally if I stay in this relationship with them?"

  • "What if I harm my partner emotionally by leaving this relationship because they're not 'The One'"

  • "A person was flirting with me last night, does that mean that I'm not fully committed with my partner?"

Common Compulsions

  • Checking to see if you have feelings for your partner.

  • Checking to see if your feelings for your partner are enough.

  • Comparing your partners attractiveness to others.

  • Checking your feelings toward others and seeing if you find them attractive or not.

  • Checking if you find your partner attractive and then getting instant satisfaction if you find them attractive.

  • Checking feelings during sex to see if you're turned on or turned on enough.

  • Checking feelings during sex if you're emotionally feeling connected to your partner.

  • Comparing feelings you might have had to your ex toward feelings you have toward your partner.

  • Occasionally breaking up with your partner to stop feelings of obsessions and anxieties.

  • Constantly having the urge or needing to confess to your partner about your anxieties and doubts toward the relationship (and feeling slight, but temporary relief after)

  • Constantly feeling the need to confess that you find others attractive.

  • Having an urge to want to break up with your partner (especially immediately).

  • Wanting to avoid saying "I love you" or saying nice things to your partner. (With worry that you'll possibly break up or that you won't mean it).

  • Compulsively asking others what they think of your relationship or if they think you're meant to get married.

  • Avoiding people who may seem attractive or might trigger certain feelings and thoughts.

  • Googling, compulsively researching online about love and relationships.

  • Checking or testing feelings of attractiveness toward other people.

  • Asking family/friends about the attractiveness or compatibility of your relationship.

and more...

How we are different…

We help you find freedom from Relationship OCD/Relationship Anxiety without you needing to leave your partner.

Yes, you heard that right.

That’s our goal.

You might have seen research and articles saying that once you find freedom from Relationship OCD/Relationship Anxiety, then you can decide if your partner is a good fit for you or not. Well, we take it a step further by telling you that we help you create deep connection, love, intimacy with your partner even after you find freedom from Relationship OCD. Our goal isn’t to just get you through Relationship OCD. Our goal is to help you create a deeper relationship with yourself and your partner, which requires work, effort and patience. Good and empowering relationships don’t just happen. They are built, they are sustained, and they are maintained and we are here to help you sustain that relationship and grow with your partner.

We also believe in the holistic approach, which means we don’t just look at your diagnosis or symptoms and give you a Western treatment plan. We take it further by integrating different approaches to help you heal on a deeper level. You will find a combination of Western Psychology, Eastern, Mindfulness based, Life Coaching, Relationship Coaching and other methods we have created to help our clients and course members find freedom from Relationship OCD. We may also recommend the course, therapy and couples coaching for you. We do this to help you in the best and fastest way possible to get to where you’re wanting to be in your relationship.

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Join the rocd course & community

A Day in My Life With Relationship OCD

Kirsty Turnbull outlines and illustrates the exhausting day-to-day of an ROCD sufferer.

Written by Kirsty Turnbull

01 This article was originally published on The Mighty on February 27th, 2017.

02 In it, Kirsty Turnbull walks you through the struggles and thoughts that sufferers of Relationship OCD experience.

03 Relationship OCD (rOCD) is a type of OCD that revolves around the fixation on the “rightness” of one’s relationship. It’s characterized by repetitive thoughts, ideas or impulses that are described as unwanted, intrusive and anxiety inducing.

04 If you or someone you know needs immediate help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text “START” to 741-741.

Link copied.

I wake up at 7:00 a.m. and my brain begins its morning routine: “Do I hate him? What if I hate him? Should I break up with him? What if I do? What if he leaves me? I don’t want him to leave. What if we’re not compatible enough? What if I don’t actually love him? What if he doesn’t love me? I love him. He doesn’t love me.”

A few words repeat for some time. “Hate, hate, hate, hate, hate.” “Breakup, breakup, breakup, breakup, breakup.” I try to tune out the thoughts with the sound of water from the shower.

I feel shaky. The front of my head is hot. There’s a layer of fog around me deafening sounds and blurring my vision. There’s pressure in my brain.

I get on the bus and go to work.

I sit at my desk and open my work. I open Facebook and think of messaging him. “Should I say good morning? Maybe if I message too often I’ll seem clingy. I don’t want to distract him if he’s busy. If I’m annoying he won’t like me and he’ll leave. But my partner shouldn’t be bothered by my messages, that means he doesn’t actually like me. I shouldn’t be with someone who’s annoyed so easily. If he loved me he wouldn’t care how often I messaged. He doesn’t love me.” I’m now angry at my partner, and at myself for being angry over a fictional situation (I’m wondering if it’s fictional). My face is burning, my head feels like it’s full of sand. A co-worker wishes me a good morning, and I reply with a smile and pleasant tone of voice. It was difficult to hear him over the sound of my own thoughts.

It’s lunch time now and I go for a walk. I blast music through my headphones in an attempt to drown my thoughts. Angel Haze, Purity Ring. Grimes. They bring me some temporary peace. I’m exhausted, so I lay down near a tree. I try to meditate and let my thoughts wash over me, unbothered. Sometimes this works, sometimes it doesn’t. Today it doesn’t. I go back to work.

I chat with my partner for a while over messenger. He makes me smile. We talk about how we’re feeling. I don’t go into detail, I say that I’m feeling a bit unwell but that overall I’m having a decent day. We discuss plans for the weekend. He tells me about some TV shows and movies he thinks I’d be interested in, and I share a short film with him by a director that he mentions. He shares a brief analysis of it. We exchange sappy emoticons. I feel temporarily elated. I try my best to finish the work day without letting my thoughts spiral out. The busier the day, the better. I get up and take a walk around without an objective just to get my body moving to help stave off the

anxiety. I start thinking about last week, how he didn’t want to watch a TV show that I like. I think, “But this show resonates with me, how could he not want to watch it? How will he ever understand me if he doesn’t watch this show? He doesn’t care if he understands me or not. He doesn’t care about me. Why doesn’t he care about me? Why I do I love someone who doesn’t care about me?” I’m angry again (at him and me, again). I go to the washroom to hyperventilate and cry. When I return to my desk a co-worker asks if I’m OK. I tell them I sneezed five times on my way back from the washroom. We share a laugh.

I head home.

I make a simple dinner of rice and frozen dumplings and praise myself for preparing a meal. I send him a message before I begin eating, and check for a reply when I’m done. He doesn’t reply. I’m scared. “He hates you.” I try to calm myself down, telling myself that that it’s OK, it’s not true. “How do you know?” My brain replies to my calming mantra. I can’t answer. I begin to shake. “You hate him.” I shake more. I decide to distract myself. YouTube. I look for movie trailers on YouTube. I watch the trailer for “La La Land” and think it looks decent. I wonder if my partner would like it. In that moment, I realize that I don’t know if I like it anymore. What if he hates it? What if he hates what I like? What if this means we’re not compatible enough? Suddenly, his opinion of this trailer, which I only kind of liked, is more important than anything. I begin to hyperventilate and my chest hurts. The room spins and my vision blurs. I can’t breathe. I’m having a panic attack.

It passes.

I check my messages and he replied. I smile.

Relationship OCD (rOCD) is a type of OCD that revolves around the fixation on the “rightness” of one’s relationship. It’s characterized by repetitive thoughts, ideas or impulses that are described as unwanted, intrusive and anxiety inducing. ROCD is invisible to the naked eye, as all of the “checking” and repetitive behaviors associated with OCD occur mentally. ROCD is rooted in doubt about one’s own feelings for their partner, their partner’s feelings for them and whether the relationship is the “right” one.

In the last eight months, I’ve gone from daily crippling feelings of guilt, shame, panic and suicidal ideation to an enjoyable life.

I saw a doctor who I’m forever appreciative of. She examined my thoughts as well as my physical health. She let me speak freely. I stopped feeling so ashamed of what I was experiencing. I discovered that my iron was low and began taking supplements, relieving some fatigue and improving my mood. I began taking an SSRI, which (after two awful weeks of side effects) relieved the pressure in my brain and helped me create more positive thought patterns. I started journaling regularly as an outlet for my thoughts. The interesting thing about writing thoughts down is that it allows you to step back and decide if you agree with those thoughts. The world in an OCD mind is confusing and misleading. When you remove the thoughts from your mind and put them to paper, suddenly they transform from all-consuming to small.

I also started to write and draw, and that’s how I created

Homebound. The story is a reflection of my journey from feeling like an inherently bad person, terrified of uncertainty and consumed by doubt, to finding equanimity in uncertainty, and learning that I am not my thoughts. While Homebound marks a turning point for me, the journey isn’t complete. I still battle daily with my OCD, but it no longer controls me. I recognize it, I see it for what it is. I’m not afraid of it. I also recognize that I have certain privileges that made my recovery easier than what others will face. I had money saved from working, a family I could fall back on when I was too ill to continue working and friends and a partner to lean on in moments of panic. To those who face more difficult circumstances than me, I’m not going to pretend I know what you’re experiencing. But I can tell you that it’s possible to come back from wanting to die to truly living, not just surviving. If you have OCD in any form and you’re still alive, you’re strong as hell, and I believe in you.

You can find Homebound at my online shop along with prints and miscellaneous merchandise reflecting my mental health and relationship journeys. To read this article on The Mighty, head here, and for additional OCD resources, check out The Mighty's OCD page

Related Reading
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Is it time to leave? | PSYCHOLOGIES


Man and womanRelationship crisisDivorce

Leave or stay? Are there sufficient grounds for this? Having lived with a partner for several years, we do not always realize that our relationship has ceased to bring joy and has become a routine. How to recognize the signals that your relationship may be ending soon?

The ability to apologize

“Apologizing primarily involves the ability to rise above one's ego,” said clinical psychologist Goal Saedi. - It should not always be related to who at the moment, from your point of view, is right or wrong. The ability to apologize is the ability to acknowledge the feelings of a partner and treat them with care. nine0003

Of course, no one expects false repentance, but a persistent unwillingness to notice that a loved one needs support leads relationships to a dead end. “It’s very hard for me that you are hurting. I didn’t want (wanted),” these simple words are able to restore the spiritual balance of both, showing that our partner is not indifferent to our feelings.

A sincere conversation gives us the main thing - a sense of the truth of the relationship

At the same time, the Jungian analyst Lev Khegai believes that in our culture it is important to reinforce apologies with further heart-to-heart conversation. “We have a legal culture in Western Europe where formal apologies are an important element in resolving disputes,” he says. - In Russia, chronic disbelief in the effectiveness of the law has led to the fact that it is more important to "understand the concepts. " A sincere conversation gives us the main thing - a sense of the truth of the relationship. nine0003

Attitude towards conflict

The strength and durability of relationships are tested during periods of inevitable contradictions. How does your partner behave during these moments? Does he prefer demonstrative silence to open dialogue? Does he allow himself “passive aggression”: “By the way, N. broke up with his girlfriend because she did not devote enough time to him”, “You will regret it if you don’t do it.”

“If you feel that in order to maintain peace in a relationship you have to constantly control yourself, this is an occasion to seriously think: are you ready for this? Goal Sayedi reminds me. “The very desire of a partner to “teach a lesson” or “punish” is a sufficient reason not to continue the relationship.” nine0003

Lev Khegai remarks that rivalry and aggression in marriage cannot be completely eliminated. The desire to stay in the "comfort zone" is forever unrealistic, and tension will arise again and again. “Each of the partners goes through their own development process, an important part of which is the expression of their individuality,” says Khegai. - And since significant relationships occupy a large part of the soul, then a person will “train” in self-affirmation primarily on loved ones.

And here the most important thing is the ability of partners to rise above themselves, to speak heart to heart, that is, to take steps towards rapprochement. However, the inherently healthy need for individuation can also take various neurotic forms: from the “fusion complex”, that is, “getting stuck” in relationships in which you can no longer stay, but there is no way to break them, to attempts to constantly prove something to your partner. , defeat or humiliate him"*. nine0003

Feelings of isolation

In a relationship, there should be time for each partner to meet alone with their close associates. This is an absolutely healthy desire. However, your significant other's refusal to spend time together with both him/her and your friends and family can make you feel painfully isolated. “Relationships cannot develop in a vacuum,” reminds family therapist Steven Stosny. “Besides, it’s always good to hear the opinion of our loved ones from those we trust. This will give our view of the partner some balance. In a number of collectivist cultures, the family becomes a kind of outpost for the relationship of a young couple, which can also interfere with the formation of one's own view of a partner. nine0003

Therefore, it is better that the circle of people whose opinion we care about and with whom we could consult is small: no more than a few people. In addition, such networking will help, in case of disagreement with a partner, to share your feelings, talk about the problem and look at the situation from a new angle. “But for those whom you trust to have a certain idea about your partner, they must be familiar with your couple and observe the dynamics of the relationship not only from your words, but also based on their observations,” says Goal Saedi. - By cutting you off from your circle, your partner deprives you of important related information about him: who his close people are, how he manifests himself in communicating with them. nine0003

Meanwhile, it is these observations of yours that become (or do not become) a symbolic guarantee for him. Avoiding, even subconsciously, building a common circle, the partner indirectly hints that he is not ready to build your relationship either.

Rules are constantly changing

If the overall goal is endlessly changing, then all efforts to achieve it are useless. “A classic example that counselors often come across in practice is that he does not see the need for marriage. True, if children appear, he will definitely create a family. However, he is not yet very ready for children. It turns out the formula a \u003d b \u003d c, where "a" - relationships, "b" - marriage, "c" - children. "a" in this formula is not equal to "c". This is a violation of a simple logical law. It turns out that a partner who is focused on marriage and children is wasting time on a meaningless solution to this unsolvable formula, ”says Goal Saedi. nine0003

Pygmalion complex

Lev Khegay admits that we always unconsciously, and sometimes consciously, expect from our partner that our projection will match, which for a man can be made up of a child's image of a mother, experience of previous relationships and collective ideas - what a woman should be like. Similarly, a woman presses her projections on a man. “In the case of the union of two more spiritually developed partners, these projections are realized in time and adhere to, or successfully coincide with what the partner himself wants to become,” Khegay notes. nine0003

The fear of looking ridiculous or inadequate is associated with both unstable self-esteem and a lack of trust in a partner. However, we cannot encroach on the essence of man. Therefore, any desire to psychologically “dress up” a partner by imposing a different external image on him - to make him more (or less) talkative, to teach him to look at life more soberly or optimistically - turns one side into a guru, and the other into an eternal student. Such an alliance has the right to exist, but only outside the field of equal, mutually enriching relations. nine0003

Fear of seeming ridiculous

There is a certain attraction in people, especially men, who always seem to us to be calm and self-confident. However, the ability to try new things can reveal our funny sides and imperfections. There are moments in relationships that form the true depth of our union, and these are often moments of our vulnerability when we can suddenly seem ridiculous. Attempts to perform in one image is the partner’s desire to deceive not you, but rather himself. nine0003

Lev Khegay says that the fear of looking ridiculous or inadequate is connected both with unstable self-esteem and a lack of trust in a partner. “If a person fails to leave the “comfort zone” by trying something new with you, your relationship risks remaining formal, says Stephen Stosny. "You can't get to each other's true human depths, which are both dark and funny."

"Magical Chemistry"

Many people are familiar with the feeling of flight that accompanies us at the beginning of a relationship. This early stage is often referred to as the "cocaine phase" when all the neurotransmitters that allow us to feel euphoric are at work. This can go on for several months until reality lands a romantic upsurge and we begin to see things more realistically. nine0003

However, sometimes our relationship never rises to this first phase. From the very beginning, they are too routine or filled with spats and negative tension. In this case, we rob ourselves in many ways. “Despite the fact that this sparkling period inevitably passes, its powerful energy, like a trail of a bright comet, lives in us over the next years and helps the couple in difficult times. It is this first and important impulse that helps to create a healthy and intimate relationship, where both partners cherish each other,” says Goal Saedi. nine0003

Sometimes we are afraid to part, because we are afraid not only of the emptiness that seems to form in our lives, but also of possible disappointments in a partner. Breaking up can be really painful, but it will be healthier for us than "freezing" in a relationship that does not allow us to develop.

* N. Schwarz-Salant “Black nightgown. The fusion complex and the unlived life” (Institute for Counseling and System Solutions, 2008).

Text: Sabina Safarova Photo Source: Getty Images

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When it's time for two to part ways | PSYCHOLOGIES


Man and woman Relationship crisis

She can hardly bear his presence, but continues to live with him. He can no longer listen to her reproaches, but he does not leave her. According to the Federal State Statistics Service, two marriages account for an average of one divorce. But there is no data on those who remain in a couple, although everything is pushing them to part. nine0003

Probably, each of us can remember our acquaintances, about whom everyone around only thinks: “Well, why doesn’t he (she) leave?” Emptiness, melancholy, misunderstanding - for many years they endure a similar situation before deciding and collecting things.

Hidden benefits of relationships

In a couple we get support and understanding, learn to resolve conflicts and find compromises, grow and develop internally. Communicating with a partner, we better know ourselves, heal our childhood wounds and feel safe. But what keeps us if the couple no longer has dialogue and the joy of being together? nine0003

Some of us cherish the image of the family that we have managed to create. Most modern men and women perceive separation as the collapse of their life ideal, because we want to believe that marriage is “once and for life. ” According to a survey conducted by Tiburon Research in 2011, 79% of those who are married and 57% of those who are divorced agree with this.

“When I had to tell my parents that my wife and I were getting a divorce, I couldn’t bring myself to look my father in the eyes,” admits 29-year-old Sergei. I knew he would blame me. From his point of view, a man is not worthy to be called a man if he could not save his family.

If we live with the idea of ​​ourselves as a victim, we will most likely stay in a couple where we play this particular role. - Keeps a common memory and the feeling that when parting, part of life will be crossed out, devalued. Often, fear of the future is added to this. But sometimes it is the painful experiences of partners that turn out to be the cement that holds the relationship together. nine0003

“Life is suffering”, “A woman must endure everything so that the children have a father”, “Better a bad family than no one” - the family therapist gives examples of beliefs that do not allow breaking the connection, even when it has become onerous. “Partners remain in the union if this union supports their idea of ​​themselves and the world,” Inna Khamitova sums up. “For example, if we live with the image of ourselves as a victim, we are more likely to stay in a couple where we play this role.”

Fear of emptiness

45-year-old Tatyana recalls how she did not dare to leave her husband for almost 8 years. “He was sarcastic: look at yourself, who needs you like that? And I believed it ... ”Tatyana recalls. Some of us can hardly bear not only loneliness, but even the thought of it. They are afraid to be face to face with a deep, unsettling emptiness.

“The hardest thing to deal with it is those who did not receive enough love in childhood or were abandoned by one of their parents,” says psychologist Maryse Vaillant. - Left alone, they feel unloved, which means they are bad and relive their past suffering. They are ready to endure a lot - boredom, aggression, contempt - just to avoid it. nine0003

A natural result is a decrease in self-esteem. But the lower the self-esteem, the less self-confidence and the more difficult it is to leave. If such a dysfunctional partnership lasts for a long time, self-esteem drops. All this is reflected in sexual relations: they either do not bring pleasure, or are completely absent.

Partners develop the habit of not allowing themselves to reflect on what is really happening to them.

“Such couples often consist of a woman who is afraid of her desire and a man who is afraid of the woman's desire,” continues Maryse Vaillant. “After all, it takes two to agree to do without sex. Two - to agree to be unhappy together ... "

Partners develop a habit of suppressing their feelings and not allowing themselves to reflect on what is really happening to them. So it was with 54-year-old Ivan, who left home after 20 years of marriage.

“For the last ten years I was always busy with something, I tried not to think,” says Ivan. We met friends, helped children, worked like crazy - and all these ten years were unhappy, I don’t know why. I didn't even want to ask myself that question, because he would drag a whole chain of others along with him. But my friends were worried, seeing that I was depressed, that I was moping and irritated. I did not listen to them until one of them asked directly what was stopping me from leaving. I didn't find an answer for him. And left". nine0003

“The departure of my mother-in-law set me free”

Inna, 44, an anesthesiologist

“I grew up without a father and quite early married a good person, worthy in all respects. For fifteen years in a row, I did everything as it should be: I raised two sons, ran a house, I had a favorite job, an attentive husband, good friends. And we got along well with my mother-in-law, she helped me a lot: she advised, supported, sat with her grandchildren.

And at the same time, in the depths of my soul, I knew that I got married more for convenience than for love: I just wanted protection and a reliable family to always be around. I had no attraction to my husband. Sensuality has completely disappeared from our lives, but I always had explanations: children, worries, fatigue. But still, sometimes such melancholy rolled over that I wanted to quit everything and leave. I immersed myself in the work - and it became easier. I thought: I won’t ruin my house with my own hands, so cozy, so dear! nine0003

And then my mother-in-law died. Some kind of balance was disturbed, and this pushed me “to the exit”. Once I met a childhood friend, we got into a conversation, started to remember ... We remembered a classmate - my first love. I cautiously asked if she knew where he was now. "Do you want his coordinates?" she immediately responded.

More than a month passed before I decided to call. But when we met, we could no longer tear ourselves away from each other ... As a result, I divorced. But until now, I ask myself: would I have had the courage to call then, and then divorce my husband, if my mother-in-law, this strong woman who “kept” our family, were still alive? I'm not sure about it". nine0003

Breakup as an accusation

There are many couples in which each blames the other, not realizing that the cause of the confusion of feelings is in himself. The partner becomes a scapegoat, an object of aggression. Love is intertwined with hatred, and the couple closes in their microcosm, not even trying to find a way out.

“Two people are fighting for family happiness, but do not realize that each of them has his own idea of ​​what this happiness should be,” Inna Khamitova describes a typical situation. - It seems that the other purposely interferes and spoils everything. Mutual accusations begin, and in this struggle, what else could have been destroyed is destroyed. The gap becomes another way to shout to the other: "It's all your fault!" In this case, divorce does not solve problems, but creates new ones. nine0003

“Parting always hurts,” says Gestalt therapist Daniil Khlomov. - We know this and therefore sometimes use it as the last argument in a dispute - in a fit of feelings or from a desire to punish another for the suffering that, as we believe, it was he who caused us. But no matter how we hurt another, it will not heal our own wounds.

Maybe it would be better for us to pause and ask ourselves, "What if there's something wrong with me?" Some couples experience a whole series of breakups, which are accompanied by violent emotions every time. “Each of these partners has such a high threshold of sensitivity that they are simply unable to perceive sadness or joy - only suffering or delight,” notes Inna Khamitova. - To feel alive, they need not just events, but blows of fate. They need strong emotions, otherwise life seems unreal.” nine0003

Open your eyes

37-year-old Natalia was convinced that she had no right to leave her unemployed friend, with whom they lived for five years, because without her he would be lost. “When the attacks of his bad mood became unbearable, I ran away,” recalls Natalya. “And then she came back again to help him get the recognition he deserved but couldn't get.

“You live as if with your eyes closed,” my closest friend once told me sadly. And at that moment everything turned upside down: I suddenly saw that my feelings, thoughts, plans, desires have no meaning even for myself - only what happens to him seems important. This really scared me! Only then did I leave in earnest.” nine0003

Often a breakup is gradually prepared for months, sometimes even years, until some event, meeting, phrase or outsider's glance, like a flash, makes us see the situation in a new way. And what seemed impossible becomes clear: it's time to leave.

"Why am I staying if I have not been happy for a long time?" - this is the question that you first need to ask yourself, - Inna Khamitova is sure. - To ask him means to go part of the way. And the next step can be taken with the help of a psychotherapist: it is very difficult to single-handedly recognize the unconscious reasons that made us forget about ourselves for many years. nine0003

Start over

“Staying in a couple is no longer a matter of life and death,” emphasizes Daniil Khlomov. “For centuries, leaving a family, a woman was doomed to dishonor, and a man left his wife and children without a breadwinner. Nowadays, the choice between saving and dissolving a marriage is not so dramatic.

Women, like men, are economically independent today. And the types of unions have become much more diverse. Some practice an open marriage or something resembling a business partnership or friendship. Partnership unions can include more than two participants: if this suits everyone, then why not? The challenge is to find the type of relationship that's right for us." nine0003

No one is obligated to stay in a relationship that is not fulfilling. But one must be able to accurately choose the moment of separation, so as not to hate each other.

“To anyone who does not dare to break off relations, although he realizes that they have not satisfied him for a long time, I advise you not to drag it out too much, so as not to be poisoned by the poison of malice,” says Maryse Vaillant. “Some devalue everything that they have experienced together, hoping in this way to save themselves from suffering and regrets. But such a strategy makes it difficult to objectively analyze the reasons for the gap and learn lessons. nine0003

Every family is a project, a union of two to achieve certain goals. And when those are achieved, the project ends

If someone thinks that with the help of parting he can “cleanse” the past, stop being what he was before, and start everything from a new leaf, then this is a very romantic look, and it is far from reality. “Parting does not mean that all our common past will disappear,” continues Daniil Khlomov. “I know the habits of this person, I know how to talk to him, and this knowledge will not go anywhere, it will always be with me.” nine0003

In the ideal case, parting means an increase in the distance between partners, and not a painful break. Even if love and the desire to stay together pass, you can maintain respect for yourself and your ex-partner. After all, something united us once, for some reason we needed each other and lived together part of our lives.

Sometimes a couple can bring surprises. “Anton and I got married right after graduation and divorced when the children grew up,” recalls 58-year-old Marina. - We were each busy with our own lives, we worked, we had novels. And then we met to talk ... and suddenly found that we again want to be together. Our grandchildren were also at our second wedding!” nine0003

“Every family is a project, a union of two to achieve certain goals,” concludes Daniil Khlomov, a gestalt therapist. “When those goals are reached, the project ends.” Life in a couple comes to an end when the tacit contract that underlay it is no longer valid. But nothing prevents us from agreeing on the terms of a new union.

Divorce... for trial

Before finally breaking up, some couples try a preliminary separation. What is it - an opportunity to see the situation more clearly or a kind of run-up to better jump? nine0003

“If parting always hurts, then it is important to weigh which pain is stronger: from the presence of a person or from his absence,” says Gestalt therapist Daniil Khlomov. “But while we are together, it is difficult for us to imagine clearly what it will feel like when we are apart. A trial separation allows you to find out. And then the divorce, if it does take place, will be a balanced decision.

Family psychotherapist Inna Khamitova agrees that a pause will allow you to move away from the conflict, to weigh everything more calmly, to think about the extent to which partners are attached to each other. nine0003

“If we leave, slamming the door and blaming the other for all the sins, we take with us a huge baggage of negative emotions. And we will not be able to start a new life: the load of unlived feelings will pull back, - warns Inna Khamitova. “It’s useful to just disperse in different directions, move away from each other literally, in the sense of physical distance, in order to deal with yourself, think about a partner without an excess of feelings and decide with a cool head whether the couple has prospects.”

Text: Valentina Razvilova Photo Source: Getty Images

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