Surviving as a singleton!


The shock of a relationship breakdown really can knock you for six. At first, you are consumed with thoughts of how you'll ever be able to survive without that person in your life. The devastating loneliness felt when someone you saw or heard from each day is now gone. The hurt that they no longer want or need you in their lives. The knowledge that they'll never take you in their arms again. Knowing that for whatever reason, they just don't love you anymore.

It really is hideous to feel like this yet at some point, we all go through it. Sadly, it doesn't get any easier however many times you mourn the loss of a relationship. I am currently going through this grieving process and wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. I am lucky that I have such understanding friends who can sympathise. After all, we've all been there.

The first day after the break up all I could think about was how much I missed him and couldn't contemplate life without him. I felt like I was going insane! He was in my thoughts permanently, I couldn't sleep without seeing his face. Conversations we'd had were running through my head. Worst of all, the knowledge that it had happened again, a relationship that I thought was the real thing had melted into nothing.

My friends took me under their wing. I didn't want to leave the house at first but I was persuaded to and felt comforted by talking about it. I was reassured that he had not been particularly fair in the way that he had treated me. They also pointed out many negative points in the relationship that I hadn't thought about because I wasn't ready to. They highlighted that it was better ending the relationship now at 5 months than at a later date when there would be more hurt involved. Despite knowing all this inside, I just hadn't been able to look at it from this angle. Already, albeit slowly, I was starting to heal.

I was advised to write a list of positive and negative points about him and the relationship. I've done this before, after other relationship breakdowns and always found that the negatives far outweighed the positives. The lists even made me laugh! Obviously, not for some time but months later I could see i'd done the right thing and was better off without them. I wrote my list last night and once again the positives were few. I'm now starting to realise that it was far from the perfect relationship and he was a long way from being the perfect man!

At the beginning of the relationship, I was promised the world and more. Looking back on that now, it's like watching a film about someone else's life! Yes I know, relationships lose their rosy glow after a few months but ours seemed to exceedingly quickly. When I looked back at how I had spent my time recently, I realised that not once had we done something I had decided. It was always about what he wanted to do. I felt so annoyed at myself as i'd sworn that I'd never let that happen. After my last disastrous relationship, I vowed that I would not change for anyone else, they would have to accept me and love me for who I am.

Rather cross now, I pondered what had happened to the feisty girl who'd been through hell and back. The promise i'd made to myself that I would never allow anyone to take me for granted because I deserved better. What on earth was I playing at? I realised that I had been doing fine before I met him and my scars had started to heal. The important thing now is not to regret meeting him but viewing it as a steep learning curve. Yes, another one. How many i'm meant to have I truly don't know!

Once I was able to look at the negatives, I was astounded by the realisation that gradually, my life was going to improve because the relationship had failed! I certainly wasn't thinking that on the first day! I still get moments of utter despair and still sometimes feel no one will ever love me again but that's all part of the process. I hadn't realised just how much I had compromised what I wanted so that he'd be happy. Now, I could do things my way again and not have to please him.

I have my impossibly comfy super king sized bed all to myself . Far more comfortable than the narrow fold down bunk in the Boatman's cabin I was squashed into before . I have showers whenever I want them, running water, electricity, Internet and cooking facilities. He had decided that there would only be paraffin lamps and a wood burner on the boat. The water tank was too small to have more than one shower a week. I'm sorry but one shower a week? No thanks. Not my idea of comfortable, clean living. Disturbingly, his was!

He snored too! At first, he wore nose strips and gargled mouth wash to try and alleviate the snoring. That soon fell by the wayside, after about a month I think. I no longer have to lie there wanting to be intravenously fed Valium in a desperate attempt to get some sleep! His music taste and mine clashed spectacularly! Weirdly, when we first met, I thought we had very similar likings, how wrong I was. He adored folk music and some country too. I would rather gouge my eyes out with rusty spoons than listen to that! He rarely compromised and it was his music playing day in, day out, never mine.

He wouldn't wait an extra hour for my body combat class to finish so we could drive to the marina where his boat was docked. He wanted us both to go but wouldn't let me have that little bit of me time first. In hindsite, I think he liked the fact that I had no car and had to rely on him. Independence is not to be sniffed at! There are two classes a week of body combat which I love mainly for the stress relief it gives me. One was on a Thursday, one on a Saturday. I would miss them both . He was in such a rush to get to his boat! He would say he was going to get some painting done then would just sit there drinking and chatting to other blokes on the boat yard. I didn't even have a light to read a book to distract me from everyone getting drunk around me!

How therapeutic writing is. Reading back through this, it's difficult to say what I was getting from the relationship. It also speaks volumes about my self esteem. I am the only person who can make myself happy and I need to be comfortable in my own skin before I get into a situation like this again. On the plus side, I've lost loads of weight, I'll be kicking and punching my stress out at the gym again and hopefully as an outcome will develop buttocks like two hard boiled eggs in a bag!

I'll be able to write more now, no more excuses! I was able to buy myself a laptop with money from my 40th birthday a week or so ago and won't be stuck on a rusty boat with no computer or electricity to see what i'm writing! Perhaps things aren't as bad as they seem! I'm determined to try and stay positive. I've been through a lot worse and i'm stronger than I think. I will get through this. Watch this space... This bitch is back!

Copyright © Tara Carbery.


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Comments 31 comments

diogenes 4 years ago

I enjoyed your story, it's one most of us share, one way or another - and all too often, time after time. One door closes and other's open...get one with a bigger boat at least next time!


Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Ha ha! Thanks Bob. I feel so much better after writing it! His loss!

Janet 4 years ago

very honest and personal account. I liked the positive tone and the lack of self indulgence! Great ending!

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Thanks Janet.

fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

BRAVO!!! That's my girl! You've gone and talked yourself right out of the doldrums! Just reading your account, dear, had me screaming at my screen...."OF COURSE YOU'LL BE ALL RIGHT!!! FROM WHAT YOU'VE DISCLOSED.......THIS SPLIT IS A BLESSING!!

Fortunately, you have loyal friends...and supportive in a very positive way.

What has happened, Peanut....had happened simply to help you on your way to where you are really going......toward the man (if that be a reality in your future) who will be THE man. OK? Please just trust an older, more experienced gal....oh have I been down the winding roads....more than once.

There's the guy who you were drawn to for his specific special ways....the one who loved everything you loved....the one who vowed his undying devotion forever....the one who made you laugh......but, they all ended, Peanut, because they were not to be. Period. ALL things are as they SHOULD be at any given moment for all of us. Believe this and you'll become one of the enlightened.....

When THE man enters your WILL last. WHY? lol...simply because he is THE man. That's how it happens. TOO simple for we complex women to realize. Moral.....relax and think "simple."

The best to you!!! UP+++

Borsia profile image

Borsia 4 years ago from Currently, Philippines

I'm not sure if that was a relationship or a mild form of insanity.

The funny thing is that I know a guy just like him. He lives on a small sailboat with only the barest comforts. Fortunately for him the marina has a shower room and full bathrooms,,, lol.

If I might offer one suggestion,,, try making the list at the begining of the relationship. I made that change and it really does work a bit better.

Not to say I haven't had any failed relationships since but I have steered clear of a few I might have started.

Great hub; keep it up and remember that there really is someone out there who will be right for you.

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Thanks fpher48 and Borsia. Making a list first is a great idea! I always have an idea in my head of how I expect to be treated but it tends to go out of the window when I fall for someone! fpher, your motivational comment made me feel great! I will happily take advice from an older, more experienced gal!

LizzieRoss72 profile image

LizzieRoss72 4 years ago from Cheshire

Beautifully written. Expressive, warm and honest. Had me laughing in quite a few places. I never thought you were cut out for boat living, unless the man in question had a des res on a yacht. You are worth far more than your life was for those few months. Embrace your freedom, do all the things that make you laugh and smile. Someday there will be someone who wants to share your wit and abilities. Borsia has made the point I wanted to, too - make the list first. If he doesn't add up or you need to compromise the very things that make you happy - stay away! Better you on your own and happy, surrounded by good folk, than miserable, anyday.

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Thanks Liz, what a lovely comment from a friend I have known a long time. A Yacht! That would be fabulous! Chance would be a fine thing! I never ever meet men with money!!! I really thought he was a good 'un. I'm just annoyed with myself for failing to see his selfishness. He had everyone fooled. To be honest, I did see it but hoped he'd become less so. Big error!

bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 4 years ago from Central Florida

Peanut, if they can't take you the way you are and share, they don't deserve you! I just left a relationship for many of the same reasons, although showers occurred daily! He snored, drank too much and we never went anywhere. I decided I'm better off alone. And I am, trust me!

Be strong, be you and don't give in for the sake of needing to fall in love. You'll know when it's real.

leni sands profile image

leni sands 4 years ago from UK

Tara, I am so pleased that you have been able to see this break up for what it really is and have been able to look positively at your life now rather than cling to something that just wasn't right for you.

Mister Right will come along when you least expect him - when you aren't looking, he will become the very best friend you never had and a soulmate to share your life with. You will both compromise where it least matters and your life together will be as near perfect as possible but you will both work at the relationship where it most matters. The sad thing is that you have to kiss many frogs before you find your Prince. So make your list first - you could even write up a criteria of expectations for when you meet someone new (bit like a job interview) and if he doesn't meet your high standards then don't go there...don't compromise on what is right for both of you.

Keep thinking positively and don't rush to get involved with the next possible 'mate' until he passes your inspection test.

Most of all keep writing and doing your body combat....

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Bravewarrior, You're right. It is far better to be alone and happy than stuck in an unsatisfactory relationship. Thanks for taking the time to read and comment. All the best.

Leni, I've kissed far too many Frogs for my liking! I'm focusing on writing, exercise and just enjoying being carefree for now. Relationships can wait! Thanks for your kind words.

Free2writ3 profile image

Free2writ3 4 years ago from Sharon Hill, Pennsylvania

Being single is not the most pleasant situation..but you give good points to follow.

Kate Mc Bride profile image

Kate Mc Bride 4 years ago from Donegal Ireland

Your sense of humour is intact anyway Peanutritious-this bitch is back lol.It is good to have so much courage too.Life is too short for all the messing your ex was at.Keep going the way you are on the journey of life and thank you for sharing your writing here.Looking forward to reading more of it

AlexK2009 profile image

AlexK2009 4 years ago from Edinburgh, Scotland

Indeed being single is better than the wrong relationship but many of us hang on to the wrong one too long either hoping it will improve or scared to be alone or with someone worse for you.

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Thanks Freewrit3, Kate and Alex. You have to look at the positives. I long to meet my soulmate one day but until then i'll try and stay positive. We only get one shot at this life and I want to make the most of it. Thanks for your thoughts. Take care.

suzettenaples profile image

suzettenaples 4 years ago from Taos, NM

I love the last sentence. LOL I wish you the best and a speedy grieving process. I feel for you as I have been there. You will survive - it is hard at first, but then being single does have its ups also. I prefer being in a relationship, but being single is not as horrible as we think it is or will be.

tammyswallow profile image

tammyswallow 4 years ago from North Carolina

Powerful stuff! I hope you will be over it and move on to bigger and better things. I hope you will never settle for less than you deserve. I think to be happy in a relationship we need to be happy and loving to ourselves first. We need to be whole and complete so we don't find someone that temporarily plugs our empty spaces. It seems like you are on your way! You are a tough cookie.

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Thankyou so much Suzette and Tammy, I seem to feel strong and on top of everything one day then down and glum the next. I suppose that's just the way it goes. I'm having a sad day today unfortunately but it'll pass. I'm not as much of a tough cookie as I make out! Thanks for commenting. All the best.

Lady_E profile image

Lady_E 4 years ago from London, UK

Aaawh... thanks for sharing your experience. It does get better with time and when you meet someone who is meant for you, you won't even remember much about the old relationship.

Here's a photie for you:

Thanks, I learnt some things from your Hub.

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Awww Thanks Lady E. That was really sweet of you.

Redberry Sky profile image

Redberry Sky 4 years ago

I love being single. Go anywhere, do what you want, no one to look after, and *especially* I don't ever have to watch someone get drunk with their friends. I love your take on this, Peanutritious, Fantastic positive outlook, and it sounds like the split was the best thing that could have happened for you. I'm with LizzieRoss72 - if you're gonna go for a guy with a boat, make it a luxury yacht!

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Thanks! How amazing would a luxury yacht be! There is a lot to be said for being single. It's those little moments of weakness when you could just do with a bloody good hug when it's hard. A big comfy bed all to yourself (without a sweaty body snoring and farting next to you) takes some beating!

That Grrl profile image

That Grrl 4 years ago from Barrie, Ontario, Canada

How can someone else like you if you don't like yourself? - That's one of the smartest things I ever heard and yet it's also very hard to like yourself when you know yourself too well (or get too many negative people around you).

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Thanks That Grrl, (love your name by the way I always describe myself as a Grrrrlll!) It sums up the Grrr that I often feel with a world I don't understand! We do have to know ourselves and like who we are before we let anyone else in. I have many faults but I know i'm a good person regardless of what anyone does or says to me.

Hollie Thomas profile image

Hollie Thomas 4 years ago from United Kingdom


After two miserable marriages, countless fights and all too frequent feelings of insanity, I can honestly say that I've been there.

Like you, I had very low self esteem, and just like you, I have been in a situation where "I lost everything" Predatory men with a desire to control have excellent antennae when it comes to luring their prey. But that says a whole lot more about them then it does about you!!

I sense a survivor, and although you've hit the 40th birthday mark, that's only the beginning, when you're almost 46, like me, and are able to really laugh at all those negative experiences, you'll know that you've made it! And you will. The next fella betta be up early, or you'll eat him for breakfast. I mean that in the nicest possible way. :)

Humourous, and honest take on life and relationships, well done.

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Thanks Hollie. Sorry to hear you've been through it too. It sounds like it's made you strong and value your self worth more. It's so inspiring to hear that you lost everything yet still emerged fighting. Good for you girl! There's hope for me yet!

remaniki profile image

remaniki 4 years ago from Chennai, India

Hi Peanutritious,

You are absolutely right and have the right to decide how you lead your life. If you are happier on your own, so be it. But you'll certainly meet Mr.Right one day because that is the way it is. All my wishes to you for a happy future. Cheers, Rema.

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Thanks for your kind words Rema, it's always a dilemma, sharing such personal stuff but I'm glad I did. Look at the words of support i've had. It helps so much. Best wishes to you too. Tara.

toknowinfo profile image

toknowinfo 4 years ago

This was well written and wonderful to read, as you went through the process of missing him ... to finding yourself. You are on your way to healing. Life is an illusion, and it hurts to realize this. There is a saying that life's disappointments are God's way of saying something better awaits you. Good things are coming your way. Think positive, believe in yourself, and live a good life. That is what you are supposed to do.

Peanutritious profile image

Peanutritious 4 years ago from Cheshire, UK Author

Thanks toknowinfo. I'm definitely healing. Two weeks after we split up he got into a relationship with a girl half his age. I used to teach her! Mid life crisis or what!

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