Close the door… please

Please skip this post if you are bored of my inability to ‘let go’ .. ( no hard feelings, I’m bored of it myself)

A couple of weeks ago in my therapy session we looked more deeply at why I was/am struggling to let go of my ExP. To be clear, I know he is “bad” for me, I know he was very bad for my family, I don’t miss HIM, I don’t miss the anxiety and stress he brought. I don’t miss the constant trying to ‘square the circle’ and trying to make him understand why I was upset. I don’t miss anything about him really. He wasn’t a support in the day to day running of the house, he wasn’t a  support with the kids, his inertia and inability to organise himself to get stuff done was really frustrating…

I know that I need to cut all contact. I know this is the only way I will be able to heal, to move on with my life.

My therapist commented that this break up was probably not the worst thing I had been through in my life – but I disagreed, I feel like it is,  (even if It should not be) Even allowing for the drama of the here-and-now, this separation is more deeply painful that I remember my marriage breakdown being.

It took me a few moments to work out why.

It’s definitely partially because my children have been affected – The years of my eldest sons life between 15 and 17 were blighted by ExP’s attitude to him. Son#1 and I were not as close as we should have been, and I didn’t support him as well as I could have done. I can’t have that time back and there have been things done and said that will have a lasting effect. Its very hard  for me to  look at this straight on, accept it and try to forgive myself for this.

But more than that I feel like there is nowhere to hide from the mistakes I made. In the past I have been able to ‘blur the edges’ of my own willful, selfish and impulsive decision making. Kind of brushed off the consequences as they have primarily not fallen on others – only  I have been hurt. This time I can’t do that because a) others are most definitely hurt, b) things have been damaged that cannot be repaired and c) I am very very sober and looking at things through a very different lens. I’m comparing my behaviour with what it ought to have been (quote Marianne Dashwood, who was impulsive, emotional and stupid romantic)

I think one reason why I’m struggling to move on, is that closing the door and cutting all contact means there will be no redemption. This whole sorry relationship will stay, like  a stain, without resolution. The scars will remain and I will never be able to say (or think) well it was really difficult but it was ‘worth it in the end’.

Because it wasn’t. And if I had been more circumspect, more cautious, MORE GROWN UP, I would never have got involved in the first place and never hurt those I love. Never have allowed him to damage my children, never have allowed my attention to be diverted from my role as a mother.

I think maybe it’s so hard to finally let go because that means Facing my own culpability, with no excuses and no apology. Accepting that I was just WRONG.And that I have to live with that. Live with the uncomfortable feelings that brings up. Live knowing I could and should have done better. That I was weak and foolish and allowed him to bully son #1 when I should have stood up for my child.

And there is no way around that. 





  1. Oh my dear…you are taking way to much blame here. You did what you thought best for reasons that seemed right at the time. That’s all you can do.

    Have you considered taking to son #1 and #2 and being honest? That you are feeling regret for things that have happened and that you would like to help mend your relationship because you love them?

    Maybe they aren’t ready for all that yet, but I think an acknowledging to them that you are human and make mistakes and wish things were different….and that you are willing to make the effort because they deserve it and you deserve it…it might help.

    Hug. Try not to what if…. it will give you grey hair.

    Love to you

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  2. Everything happens for a reason. It was a learning curve. As Anne says, speak to your children, apologise for not getting rid of dickhead sooner, and let it go. Your kids will appreciate that you got sober and got rid. Some people would not have been strong enough to get rid, but you did, and that is a good thing. It’s a fresh new year. Enjoy it x

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  3. Focus on what you did right. Your children saw you stand up to him, remove him from your life and move on. I bet they learned something very valuable about setting boundaries. If life is always easy one never learns; it is the tough things that help us grow. I bet they are proud of you and ready to move on to a better future as well. Talk to them about their hopes and dreams for the future and all the blessings you have in your life. Help them break down the steps needed to accomplish their goals so they are focused on building a wonderful future instead of thinking about the past.

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  4. My dear Lily you are being far too hard on yourself. Replaying the past in your mind over and over again is so damaging. You can’t go back and fix anything so why torment yourself. You are talking about a period of two years in your son’s life where you felt that you let him down. There are many worse things that could have happened. I am sure there were many happy moments within that time frame, surely it wasn’t all bad. Please don’t give your son an excuse to constantly punish you. He could use that as a crutch throughout his life. Don’t let him become a victim. Help him see that although not perfect he can grow from that experience, turn it around for good. We grow through difficult periods of life. We all have them. Be kind to yourself 😘

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  5. Letting go isn’t easy and each of us are on our own timeline working our way out of where we have been….Out of every bad situation some good emerges….who is to say you would have become who you are without having been in this situation? You have become sober, you have analyzed your issues, and are emerging a much stronger woman. If the situation had been maybe similar but maybe not so bad in regard to your children you may have stuck with it, never changed, continued to struggle with some demons and yet not have become who you are now. We can kick ourselves upside the head over the mistakes we think we have made but the best thing we can do is acknowledge, forgive and focus on moving forward. While I say this, I understand you. It took me a long time to get over my marriage failure. I felt as you do and this part of what you said resonates with me: “I don’t miss HIM, I don’t miss the anxiety and stress he brought. I don’t miss the constant trying to ‘square the circle’ and trying to make him understand why I was upset. I don’t miss anything about him really.” It took me a long time to realize why, if I felt that way, that I still couldn’t totally let go and yet you spot on nailed it with this line “I think one reason why I’m struggling to move on, is that closing the door and cutting all contact means there will be no redemption. This whole sorry relationship will stay, like a stain, without resolution.” That was the key for me. You figured out much sooner what it took me years to understand. I finally had to come to terms with the fact that there will not be resolution. I’m still able to cling more than you to the “worth it” part because my ex is the father of my son, perhaps why you have less of issue with the failure of your marriage because you can say the same thing but can’t in that regard with exP. I’m very, very proud of you and love reading your posts, seeing your regular growth!! Hugs.


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