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When You are Coping with Relationship Loss, Depression, and Grief


Hey folks ……..I wanted to talk a bit about loss of relationships……..you know………….. with all this love going around.


Experiencing the pain of a relationship loss can be one of the most difficult and emotionally draining experiences in life. It can leave us feeling isolated, confused, and overwhelmed. The emotional impact that comes with such a loss is often hard to comprehend and process.


And let’s be real, some of us have lost a relationship at one point or another …..and not all of us came out of that loss “okay”.


I bet if you think about it right now, there is someone, somewhere, you are missing. Doesn’t matter who ….or what they were to you. It stung then, and might sting a little now.


Moving on after a loss — breakup, divorce, job, family — can be a difficult and stressful process. There’s this strange idea that there is an “acceptable” amount of time for this kind of loss.


Like there’s some formula to the put in the number of years divided by the emotional commitment, multiplied by the positive memories, and subtracted by the ……..you get what I’m saying right?


It can take time to process the emotions that come with such a major change (loss) in your life. And that time is completely yours to determine and yours to claim. Loss can be difficult to endure, and the loneliness and disconnectedness that follows can be especially hard to cope with. It is normal to feel a sense of loss.



Losing a relationship can be significant and intense, so of course it’s common for the loss and the aftershock of such an event to resemble depression. These feelings can become overwhelming, and they may look like signs of depression.


I am sure this has happened to you before, after losing someone/some “relationship” — maybe you slept a lot, or not enough; may be you didn’t want to do anything or did “all the things”, maybe you just wanted to sit around; may be you started questioning a lot about life, or took a break from the things you liked………..



To us therapists, this sounds like depression, but then again, you did just lose something that was a source of joy and connection. Now you feel pain and loss.


Relationships are complex and when they end, there can be more than just the loss of relationship. Often, the loss involves a variety of losses. From the death of a loved one to the end of a long-term relationship …….and even when relationships don’t end permanently, there may be other losses such as communication breakdowns, misunderstandings, financial implications, trust issues, family dynamics, and more.


Yeah …….so are you starting to see why I chose this topic this month? So many of us are grieving (in one way or another) a relationship loss; and it is wide and varied. Some of us come through these losses and feel better, or at least “alright”. Some of us are dealing with it now, and some have dealt with it before. And still some are still dealing with it.


But there are ways to help yourself cope with the pain - when you are ready to do so, and not a moment before. You can always talk (not vent) to a friend, seek therapy/professional help or support, start journaling or meditation, or use any other resource you want, that will promote strength and healing during this difficult time.


The important thing, is that you do it in the time frame that feels right for you — and not what anyone, or anything says.


The loss of a relationship can be one of the most difficult experiences in life. It can be hard to find the strength to push through the pain and grief that comes with a loss. You aren’t expected to stop hurting, and get back to things according to any formula, any pace, or in any time. And yes, it could look like depression — but only you know if it is or isn’t. You can focus on the loss, or you can focus on a different future.


There are some silver linings with loss…….. some things that you can look forward to, when you are ready of course. A loss can grant you an opportunity to reflect on the past and learn from the experience. It can help with learning to appreciate the good times and to take lessons from the bad ones. And you might also develop some awareness and insight into what you need in future relationships, and build better, healthier relationships in the future.

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