Yes, indeed, breaking up is hard to do. Few events are more gut-wrenching than separating from a loved one. The shock of suddenly losing a relationship can trigger overwhelming feelings, even trauma. How can we tap into inner resources to help us heal and move forward?
The First Arrow when Losing a Relationship
The Buddha’s story of the two arrows offers some psychologically savvy clues to one of life’s most painful predicaments. The first arrow of misfortune is the deep loss and sudden sting of being alone again. The comforting connection is no longer there.
If the separation was gradual, with periodic inoculations for our eventual loss, our grief may be similar to losing a loved one after a long illness. There is still the shocking finality of no longer sharing our lives together.
We can no longer cling to hope for the relationship.
If the separation was based on a sudden betrayal or unilateral decision by one person, our tender heart may feel especially pierced. The brutal shock of such a pronouncement may be traumatic. Unable to wrap our mind around what happened and having no voice in the matter can leave us feeling disrespected, powerless, and heart-broken.