Can we help? with PASTOR & MRS BANDA
DEAR Raphael and Namukolo,
I was in courtship for close to three years and we were on the verge of getting married when my fiancé walked out on me. No good reasons were given for his behaviour but soon afterwards, I learnt he was dating another girl.
I was deeply hurt by his behaviour and as a result, I have developed a trust problem. Although almost two years have passed since we parted company, I fear I have not recovered enough to date another man.
How can I recover fully and how can I tell when I‘m ready to take on another relationship?
Here are some signs that might indicate that you are yet to fully recover:
• Crying: If you find yourself frequently crying or getting into a bad mood or becoming depressed when you think about what happened.
• Memories: You want to hold on to memories by keeping his photos or any items that remind you of him.
• Hatred: You hate or despise his current girlfriend. You cannot stand to see or meet her. You are abusive towards her. You blame her for what happened to you even if their relationship started long after you had broken up.
• Fantasising: You still long to hear from him. You would be happy if he got in touch with you either through social media or phone.
• Vengeful: You still hold a grudge against him and you find it difficult to forgive him for what he did to you. Given a chance, you would rather something bad happened to him.
• Comparisons: You treat him as the standard man against whom all other men should be compared. You look for him in other men.
• Feeling of inferiority: Because of what happened, you feel you are not good enough. You blame yourself for what happened and you resort to various attempts to improve yourself.
• Suicidal thoughts: You feel life is not worth living and you are better off dead. You even contemplate taking your own life.
• Blaming God: You feel God let you down. You wonder why God did not stop this bad thing from happening to you. You question God’s love for you.
Any of the above is a good indicator that you have not recovered. Please note that the passage of time alone will not guarantee healing from emotional wounds. You need to take deliberate steps to address them. Here are some things that can assist you to recover:
• You need an honest audit or assessment of your broken relationship. You cannot do this on your own. You need mature people to sit you down and talk you through what happened.
• You need to answer questions like how did your relationship begin; what drew you to each other; how did you spend your time together; did you have mentors assisting you; what things did you differ over and how did you resolve them, etc.
• You equally need to audit your own character and that of your ex. What were yours and his strong points and weaknesses during the dating period? How did your weaknesses manifest and how did the two of you relate to each other and your own weaknesses?
• You need to audit his past life prior to him dating you. Did he have an inherent weakness relating with the opposite sex? Is there something in his past which you overlooked?
If it is viable, your counsellors should endeavour to meet and interview your ex and hear his side of the story, why he took the decision to break up with you. They should carefully sift through his answers to separate mere excuses from reality. Better still; the counsellors could facilitate the coming together of the two of you to discuss your past in an amicable manner.
This is the reason why it is always advisable to carry out courtship under the superintendence of seasoned mentors. Ideally, the sitting down to try and identify areas of conflict or difference should be done before the courtship breaks down. It is to the advantage of the courting couple to involve mentors in their courtship from the word go.
This process should afford you an opportunity to talk about what happened, and to get counsel you require to face the future. This is far much better than being perpetually eaten up inside.
If you do not thoroughly address your emotional wounds, you will simply be carrying them forward into your new relationship and this will subsequently culminate into sadness.
Colossians 4:6: “Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.”