In most of the novels I’ve read about men leaving their wives, the spurned wife with a broken heart wants to kill herself. It says a lot about me that when my husband left me, I wanted to kill HIM.
In the online neighborhoods that made up social life in 2021, I saw my share of spurned partners venting onscreen about their broken heart. I am always a little befuddled at how people can completely fall apart when they’re left.
I mean COMPLETELY fall apart. Obsessed with the departure. With being left. Yes, even those not married. Even those with children.
Don’t get me wrong: I was a crazy mess the first six months after he left.
I leaned hard on close friends, in between plotting how to kill him. I bought a .357 Ruger. I took shooting lessons. I hit the bullseye 90% of the time. Not just the target. The BULLSEYE. I was motivated.
I also sought help. My therapist was visibly shaken when I told him about the gun, so I sold it and bought a piece of furniture I had for years.
But after those first crazy months, I picked myself up and went on with my life. Oh, I wasn’t 100% functional. Had I been functional I wouldn’t have jumped into a rebound marriage. But I wasn’t a puddle of tears every day, either. I worked. I read books. I dated. I saw friends. I traveled.
So I really am puzzled by how so many people can’t seen to bounce back into life after a split.
Here’s what I’d like to tell them:
I promise you that one day the person who left will seem just like another person to you.
That there IS life on the other side of this. And a good life, too.
It is NOT the end of the world.
Oh, and don’t use the gun. Don’t even buy it.
For those who might need them, our gentle tools for healing & grief can be found here.