5 Reasons to Celebrate a Break-Up


5 Reasons to Celebrate a Break-Up

weekend, I am going to my favorite place on earth: Big Sur, California
(pop: 1,049) -- a beautiful town on the Monterey Peninsula. In
anticipation, I pulled out my books by Henry Miller, a writer closely
associated with the area. As I flipped through the pages, I came
across a saying from Miller's lover, the author Anais Nin, that I had
handwritten into the margin. Nin wrote: Love never dies a natural
death. It dies because we don't know how to replenish its source. It
dies of blindness and errors and betrayals. It dies of illness and
wounds; it dies of weariness, of withering, of tarnishing. 


my fingers over these words, I started thinking of my most recent
novel, The Divorce Party,
in which two women find themselves fighting not to let love die. And I
recalled all of the people I spoke with over the course of working on The
Divorce Party

who found themselves fighting that same fight -- and sometimes deciding
was better to let it go. These are five reasons that they shared
me, and to which I return when someone close to me is struggling with a

Some Relationships Are Meant To Be Seasonal

a man I spoke with in Cleveland, was devastated when his first
relationship after his divorce ended badly. He wanted to marry
his new
partner. But after closer inspection of their relationship -- she
only recently separated herself, they had conflicting ideas about
marriage and family, they had different values -- he acknowledged that
what he liked best about their relationship was that it provided
distraction and comfort during a mutually difficult time. "We
passion, but, when I'm honest with myself, I don't know what we have in
common on the other side of all of our drama," Ty said.

Ty's candor, he has hit on something that is important to remember:
some relationships are meant to be seasonal. They get us through a
tricky period, they make us feel alive again. But that doesn't
necessarily translate into two people being compatible for longer
commitment. A psychologist, who I spoke with after Ty, said it
eloquently: "Feeling love or passion is not enough to sustain a
long-term relationship. Liking your partner is just as
important. Ask
yourself: do you enjoy spending time together? If you do, find a way
through the inevitable problems. If you don't, ask yourself if
relationship has served its purpose."

The Wrong Person Can Make Us Feel Wrong

couple in New Mexico, Cassie and Jason, met and married in three
months. It was a whirlwind. Sadly, after the dust settled,
realized that her husband liked the whirlwind more than being
married. "As much as I bend myself into a pretzel to make him happy,"
said. "He criticizes me and makes me feel like I'm failing him."

is human to feel that it's your fault when a relationship goes awry,
especially if you have a partner who is more interested in
finger-pointing than getting to the crux of what is ailing the two of
you. But there is a difference between working hard on a
and working too hard. If someone is constantly meeting
efforts with endless negativity, it may be time to consider changing
the conversation.

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