Your relational health may need a little attention!
With the loss of your partner, the person you expected to do life with, you may be feeling rejected and vulnerable. Other relationships can be affected because friends and family feel they have to choose between you and your partner or will distance themselves from you. Suddenly you’re the single person in your friendship circle that may be filled with couples. Grief, its emotional baggage and changing roles all affect your ability to relate and maintain connection to others. You may be too busy just trying to keep going and too physically tired to reach out to others.
To grow healthy relationships you will need to engage with the grief process and heal the negative emotions, learn about who you are now, manage your health, develop healthy boundaries and rally supportive friends. You will also need to discover how your past relationship problems and patterns effect your current relationships see Why unhealed people attract unhealthy relationships from the Boundaries Book Team .
Some blogs to helps with this include:
- Grief process It takes more than a bandaid for the wounds of grief
- Emotions deal with the negative emotions of grief
- Know who you are 5 steps to adapt to being single again
- Manage your health 7 ways to improve your health and health
- Personal boundaries 3 ways to hold your personal boundaries
It’s important to grow your support network
To establish who you are connected to, look at the blog ‘increasing your support’ which contains instructions on how to identify your circles of support.
The end of a relationship can decimate most of these circles. You lose your partner from the inner circle. You lose friends and you may change your neighbourhood or activities losing the wider social circle.
To grow the inner circle generally you will bring in people with whom you have a friendship, so one of the keys to growing a support network at the end of a relationship is to increase your social network from which you gain friends, and then cultivate new friendships.
Friendships need nurturing. Like everything else they take time and energy. Relationships are reciprocal. You cannot just take from friends, you have to give too. You need to develop yourself so you have something to offer others. In the early days at the end of my marriage I chose to put time into relationships that were mutual, distancing myself from people who dumped on me continually when I was already overloaded.