Not just talking about just any EX – Its HIM. The one who you thought was THE ONE! Here is a case in point – Chika met Ike, they both fell in love, sweet blissful love. They had disagreements like any other couple but worked it out, he made vague references to marriage – it was reassuring, then things starting going wrong – it might have been his fault, it might have been hers – the details are now fuzzy and then all of a sudden it was over. It was all done and dusted….Chika hadn’t even thought about him in months. That was until her friend sent you an email telling her that he is getting married. She is in shock! Every fibre of her being tells you, it can’t be true – After all, they just broke up 7 months ago. She re-read all his old emails and cards. She didn’t think she would care but she did. Until the day finally arrived, and then she saw the photos on Facebook…
Sadly, what I have described above isn’t from a Nigerian movie. It’s the world we all live in and chances are we all know at least one person this has happened to (if you aren’t a victim yourself), or maybe even more! And whether you dated him 5 years or 2 weeks ago, truth is, even if you feel you are over a relationship – sometimes your reaction to the fact that an ex is getting married can be surprising. So what do you do?
a) Go to the nearest Baba and cast a spell of impotency on him?
b) Send people to the wedding to spray tear gas?
c) Follow the survival guide below
Please don’t send me any enquiries on options a or b oh! If you didn’t choose option C only Jesus can set you free!
1. Moving On
This is pretty obvious but extremely necessary (and you’d be surprised how many people actually forget this necessary first step). If he is marrying someone else, it is a CLEAR indication that he doesn’t want to be with you. No matter what he says, the fact remains that you are not the one with the ring on your finger. No matter how much it hurts, remove everything around you that reminds you of him. Under no circumstances should you call, text, email, facebook, blackberry messenger (or what ever other form of cyber communication tool is out there) him. This seems harsh, but believe me, in the long run, you’ll be better for it. A good way of moving on is learning to concentrate on new things or keeping yourself busy. I know it sounds mundane, but it works. Please note, I am not requesting that you make him your life long enemy. This step is necessary for creating some distance with your past and not an excuse to hold a grudge.
2. Find Yourself
Now this is very important, particularly if you were in a long term relationship. What most people don’t realise is that most times when you are in a relationship, there is a tendency to ‘lose yourself’. Especially if you were planning to spend the rest of your life with this person, chances are, you have changed a lot about yourself to accommodate your partner and the relationship. You may have learnt new hobbies or just picked up certain habits from your ex. Now this isn’t necessarily a bad thing as such, but it’s important that you begin realise which habit/hobby etc is really yours and which isn’t. Also, there may have been things you always wanted to do but couldn’t because your ex wasn’t interested or because you spent so much time with him, you didn’t have time to do it. The time you use to find yourself is also very important for self evaluation. Did you contribute to the break down of the relationship? What could you have done better? While this is not the time to beat yourself up or feel guilty, self evaluation is important to avoid repeating past mistakes. Also use this time to learn more about yourself. I cannot stress how important this stage is. This is why it is not always advisable to move from one relationship to another without some type of space in-between. Although in life there are always exceptions.
3. Love yourself
This ideally should follow naturally from the previous step. At first it might be very difficult to do, especially during the self-evaluation. You might discover things about yourself that you dislike or make you uncomfortable. You might even find yourself doing things that you never imagined you would do in a million years. Don’t worry, its part of the process. Learning to love yourself is the longest battle most women face and sadly it is not one every woman wins. But if you are to emerge from this trial a confident, independent woman, this stage is a must. If you do discover things you don’t like about yourself, ask yourself how you can change them. The person you have to live the longest with in this life is yourself, so it makes absolutely no sense hating you.
4. Surround yourself with love
Another obvious but necessary step. Having someone you love marry someone else is obviously a big blow and more often than not, it leads to feelings of low self worth and rejection. So combating those feelings are necessary. The first 3 steps help with that, but for most people, having people that constantly value and love you will prove even more helpful especially if you are suffering from low self esteem. Be aware that surrounding yourself with love, and jumping into bed with any and everything that moves are two different things. Sleeping around will only reinforce feelings of low self worth and will do nothing for your confidence.
5. Spiritual Rejuvenation
I wasn’t going to include this, but almost every woman I spoke to mentioned this. In fact this should be the very first point. Prayer and trusting God is probably the only thing that can help you overcome any sense of loss you may feel. Chances are, if this happened to you, not only will you feel rejected, you may also feel like God has forgotten you. But the Bible says “all things are beautiful in its time”. So continue to trust God for your time. As 9ice would say “omo na turn by turn, beg Baba God make e reach your turn”. And it surely will!
6. Forgive and forget
Rehearsing how much he hurt you and telling everyone who cares to listen will take you no where. I agree, it is necessary to talk about your feelings especially with close friends. But there must be a time when you put the events behind you and choose to forgive. Forgiveness is not fairy dust, it’s an active choice, although not an easy one. A close friend of mine once told me; “Be careful who you hate because half of them don’t know and the other half don’t give a damn”. So whether it’s in the short or longer term the only person that suffers from holding on to a grudge is you. Let it go.
7. Look forward to your future
Most women approach break ups like it’s the end of their lives. Truth is, it isn’t. It doesn’t even come close. You will love again and if the experience of others is anything to go by, the next man is usually a billion times better than your ex. So be expectant and love yourself everyday. Don’t fixate on the past, be confident, look forward to your future, set yourself new goals and ambitions and most importantly trust God!