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Saturday, May 24, 2014

Michelle: They’ve been dating for six or more months, share the same interests and feel very at ease with one another. They’ve discussed future plans and have even spent some of the holidays together. The relationship seemed right on track and just right in general. Then, without warning, he says he “needs some time to think and figure things out.”

He stops calling and rarely returns her calls. When he does, they’re often met with silence on the other end of the line. When she asks “what happened,” she gets several excuses, including how busy he is and/or how much stress he’s in right now.

What can you say on her being confused and stunned over the sudden change in her boyfriend’s behavior?


DJ: Something seems to be not right with the boyfriend. Out of the blue, he just decided to put the relationship in a freezer. What will she do? Freeze? Of course not. I suggest that she should make the most out of the space he’s asking to also figure out whether this is the relationship for her.

The way I see it, she already tried to talk things through but he it appears like he’s ready to let go. So why hold on? It takes two to make a relationship work. Sure, it’s easier said than done, and it is likely that my compassion can be viewed as sterile. But I am just encouraging her to confront her real, in-you-face situation, so she can focus her time on things that can work rather than on those that can’t and will not work.

M: What if the relationship wasn’t what she thought it was? What if there were signs she chose to ignore or just didn’t see? A sudden change in a couple’s relationship is common. Sometimes there’s no closure because the couple is never able or willing to talk through what went wrong or was never right with their relationship.

The person who has been dumped is left with feelings of low self-esteem, regret, inadequacy and anger. How can she know what the problem was and hope to avoid a repeat of another heartbreaking experience? By examining her failed relationship to gain insight and understanding about what wasn’t right between the two of them.

DJ: A part of me thinks that we usually have an inkling about a relationship’s upshot at its onset. It’s just that we believe that true love conquers all. But is it really true love?

Yes, life involves sacrifice for what we think is for the greater good. And it’s possible that she’ll be able to find happiness in her own sorrow, but probably on a different circumstance and with a different person to share it with. She can blame the guy for being such a bad boy. She can visualize a lightning bolt or an aberrant burst of electromagnetic waves striking him down on the spot. Still, the reason why people leave and settle to be just a part of our history is that they don’t have a place in our future.

It might be hard for us to figure out the reason why but things always ultimately fall into place particularly if we learn our lesson. She has to find the strength from within to take hold of her life, the choices she made, and decide to move on no matter what. I’m pretty sure there are people in her life who truly loves her. And it’s wiser if she spends more of her time with them.

M: Relationships have stages and couples must pass through these together in order to get to the level of shared commitment. They say “you can’t hurry love.” As with life, it has stages that have to develop over a period of time. You can’t reach the peak until you climb the mountain. Sometimes we’re just too much in a hurry that we stumble and fall. Instead of staying put to check on our injuries and to heal, we get back up and rush to another relationship and end up committing the same mistakes.

Evaluate a failed relationship and learn from it. If the second time around you choose well to begin with, your relationship should meet more success. Experience is the best teacher, they say. But evaluation can make one better.

DJ: Some people may think that the world belongs to those who are lucky. I say it belongs to the ba-yee too. Go figure. Seriously, the world belongs to those who choose to consciously live.

We can make the most of everything that happens to us—good or bad. In her case, she can choose to either freeze or to let go and to never let the cold bother her. What people say about life’s circumstances accounting for only 10 percent of happiness is true. The other 90 percent still depends on what you do to make yourself happy.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 25, 2014.


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