Sunday 15 September 2019

Broken-hearted mum gives her blueprint for dealing with a break-up

When the rage comes, use it!

Couple breaking up
Couple breaking up

Rachel Hosie

Breaking up is hard, and never more so than when it appears to come out of the blue. 

For one woman, the shock came when her husband of nine years (and boyfriend for six before that) suddenly left her because he wanted to be with someone else. 

After telling her story on Mumsnet and revealing how upset she felt, the woman developed a strong following, and six months on she has shared her advice for anyone whose partner has just left them.

From what she’s learned, the woman has created a checklist of 13 important things to do if you find yourself suddenly single again.

Broken heart
Broken heart
  1. Don’t talk to your ex. It’s important to cut off all communication if you can - they’re not your friend.
  2. If you live together, make him or her move out.
  3. If you have a shared bank account, take half of the money in there. “He will soon use money as a weapon,” she says.
  4. Sort out your finances - the woman recommends seeking advice from the Customer Advisory Board and a welfare benefits officer.
  5. Talk to your friends - it’s important to have real human support.
  6. See a lawyer. Not doing so immediately was the woman’s biggest regret, she reveals.
  7. Don’t forget to look after yourself by eating well and sleeping. “The horrible empty feeling in your chest and ball of sadness in your tummy will fade,” she says, and suggests drinking sugary tea if you can’t bring yourself to eat. 
  8. See your doctor and get on the waiting list for counselling. Even if you don’t think you need it right away, when you do, you won’t have to wait months for an appointment.
  9. If you have children together, don’t lie to them to protect your ex, just make the truth age appropriate.
  10. If there’s any possibility your ex will break down and cry whilst telling your children, do it yourself. The woman’s ex-husband cried which made him seem like a victim in the eyes of their young children. Her son “worried every night that daddy was lonely in his flat,” which made the woman rage.
  11. Use the rage! It helps keep you motivated.
  12. Make lists for anything and everything. Ticking things off lists will keep you focussed and help you see your progress.
  13. Remember that “grief is a non linear process."

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