Don't believe the hype.
It’s like a black cloud of shame that hangs over our heads.
The ones that tell us once again we have failed.
Sure, people have different measures of success. For some, it’s wealth, while for others it’s being healthy and fit.
Yet, there seems to be one area which remains mutual for everyone — success of our relationships.
We look at divorce as the ultimate failure, or being single-over-30 as a social fault that needs to be rectified by swiping right on the latest dating app.
We forget that relationships take extremely hard work and that people change and situations aren’t always predictable.
We become quick to judge instead of quick to forgive and love, and forget that none of us deserve to be made to feel guilty for being single by choice or otherwise.
So, why then do we feel so incredibly ashamed and guilty when it all falls apart?
Whether it’s the pressure that society puts on us, or maybe just our feminine yearning to have a happy love life, we need to remember not to get carried away with our destructive thoughts and feel like a failure.
Your relationship status does not define who you are or whether you are successful or not.
So, let’s break the mold and start applauding women who choose to break free in pursuit of their mental health.
Let’s start celebrating the victories that can come with being single or divorced, instead of focusing just on the pain.
Here are 5 reasons why your break up is actually a win and why you need to stand tall and strong:
We assume that because we have committed to someone, that we must then endure everything that comes along with it, even if it is destroying us.
Just because you are capable of bearing something doesn’t mean you should.
There is a difference between knowing when to keep fighting and when to let go. The problem is we think letting go means defeat and then feel like a failure when in some cases it actually means freedom and victory.
Relationships and marriage are hard work, and sometimes they don’t work out, but that’s OK. When we come through the other side, we develop by default a strength that inspires others.
We are no longer just ordinary women, we become women who have survived the pain and heartache and have risen up again.
2. Relationships are hard work and both people need to put in the effort.
If you have done everything you possibly could have done, and it still doesn't work, then walking away is a win, not a loss.
For relationships to function properly you need both people to put in the equal effort. It can’t be up to you to do all the work. Failing is not the result of trying, it’s the absence of trying at all.
And if you have given them your best and it still isn’t enough, then the truth is they don’t deserve you anymore.
We tie up idealized results with the notion of what is failing or succeeding — when in fact, some situations are completely out of our control because they require more than our efforts.
You can’t save everyone, but you can choose to acknowledge your efforts and hard work that you put in.
At what point did we think it was OK to endure sadness over singleness? It’s easy to lose perspective when going through a break-up and think that you've failed.
Our heartache will start to cloud our thinking, and before we know it we have started to fear the unknown instead of embracing it.
Hollywood and Disney would have us believe that true happiness is only achieved when we are loved by someone else. And that if you are single or divorced you are somehow a social failure.
Well, it’s just not true.
You, my dear, are meant to live a life full of joy in and out of a relationship, and the best love you could ever receive is the love you give yourself.
4. You are one step closer to happiness.
When we get out of the wrong relationship, we are ultimately one step closer to the right one.
Whether that’s the one with yourself or a new man, either way, you are well on your way to making it happen sooner.
Don’t get stuck in the past or focused on the “what if’s” or “it could have been”.
You need to remember the reality of your situation. Your relationship was not working and just because you wanted it to (or it did at one point) does not take away from what it had become.
As hard as it is, we must see our broken relationship for what it is rather than what we hoped it would be.
Leaving behind something that was hindering us means we are able to progress and move forward in all areas of our lives.
Every relationship teaches us something new.
There is something to celebrate about being educated in ways that no textbook can give us.
Most of the time we come through wiser and stronger and richer in character.
We enlarge our capacity and develop new positive traits that we didn’t even know we were capable of.
Your failed relationship does not signify that you are a failure. It signifies that you have loved, learned and are ready to live life again wiser and stronger.
Renee Slansky is a relationship and dating coach, as well as the Founder of The Dating Directory — an online community for women doing love, life, and relationships.