First of all, I totally failed the A to Z challenge, because it's May, but I'm no quitter, so you get three more posts to finish this off. :)
One of the questions I receive most often from clients is, "Will he/she/they come back?"
This is kind of a gallows-humor joke among readers, because it happens SO OFTEN, and most of the time, the answer is no. It's a question that people will go from reader to reader to ask. I've had someone sit in front of me and tell me that I'm the tenth reader they've been to and all they want to know is WHEN will he come back? He left a decade ago, but the pain is so bright and vivid that it feels like yesterday.
I think I've figured this out, guys, and I'd love to hear what you think. I don't think that my clients really expect (or want) their ex back. I think that they want the person they were when they met their ex to come back. They were idealistic, happy and focused. They had a new relationship in front of them that felt like The Right Thing. They were in love and engaged. Then, things went weird, in whatever fashion.
After the breakup, not only do they have to carry around the heartache of a broken relationship, but they've spent the last weeks, months, or years invested in a person and a relationship that's just gone. All of that time. All of that energy poured into a Maybe Life that just didn't work out. This is the Five of Cups, you guys. This is grief.
It's not just the grief of the lost partner, however shiny they might have been. This is grief about the shininess that lived in them when they first found their someone. It's hard to get back to yourself when you pull away from a partner. Separating from your Person can sometimes take bits of skin with it.
My advice to my clients, is to be sad for a while. To lay on the couch and watch Girls and eat a lot of BabyBel cheese (that's what I do). And then when they're ready to get up, they start dating themselves. They pour that energy and love into doing what they want to do. Into taking good care of themselves. When I talk with them a while later, I find that they're the ones who came back - better than ever.