How to deal when you’re being left

Leaving a relationship is hard, but when you’re the one who’s being left, well, that’s ain’t pretty either. And what makes it ugly is how you behave. Whether it’s in a marriage, a loving and intimate relationship, or even a friendship, or a situation that you wanted to be more that went absolutely nowhere. The first responds to being left is hurt. And hurt is immediately followed up by anger.

Now, how do you deal with the hurt?

When you care about someone, or love someone, or want to be with someone, or want more from someone who chooses not to be with you, it is perfectly normal to feel hurt. Hurt is the soul’s way of expressing ‘I’m not getting the love that I want’. Let’s pause for a moment and think. When being in that state of emotion, thought and experience, we would be fine in time. However, immediately after that thought of being hurt the ego kicks in, the litany of ego driven and fear-based toxic thoughts and emotion rushed to the surface. Things like ‘what’s the matter with me?’, ‘why don’t they want me?’ or ‘What did I do wrong?’, and things quickly goes down hill.

‘Look what they did to me’, ‘look what they’re doing to me’, ‘look at all the things I did for them’, ‘they’re taking something away from me, I am losing the love that I want’, ‘they tricked me’, ‘they lied’. The list goes on and on and it is not pretty.

And all of this is fear-based, anger driven, toxic emotions. You see, one of the greatest human fears is losing love. When someone we love or want to love leaves us, fear rushes to the surface, fuels the anger, and fear wears many faces. The best way to stop the fear from fuelling the anger and making all the crazy chatter in the head is to focus on the hurt. I know that sounds crazy, but the soul can manage the hurt, while it’s the ego that drives the fear and anger. You see, the soul can sooth the heart and the hurt, while the ego wants revenge and punishment. So when you are the one that’s being left, my advise to you would be to focus on the hurt. Give yourself permission to sit in it, to be with it, to feel it, knowing that your soul will help you move to the other end. None of us want to admit that we’re hurt, because somehow we think that hurt is a reflection of weakness. That we got taken over or that we got taken advantage of, or that we’re stupid or dumb, all of that is ego! Hurt is not a sign of weakness. It is a sign that you’re alive and capable of loving. Love will heal all your wounds. Even when you’re the one who’s being left. You still have love in your heart and in your soul. So, go ahead and stay hurt and stay out of your head trying to figure out why.

‘Why?’ is never a question that can be satisfied because it’s driven by the ego. ‘Why?’ is a question that is also driven by the fear and therefore it can never be satisfied because the ego is never satisfied. That little part of you that makes you wrong, that makes you the bad guy, that makes someone else the bad guy, that part of you and your consciousness, that part of our humanness can never be satisfied. So, if you’re the one who was being left, you want to stay away from ‘why?’. When you are the one who’s being left, you want to stay out of anger.

Now, running neck and neck with the hurt is that ego-driven rage. When you are the one who is being left in a relationship, rage and anger are also natural responses. You tried so hard, you wanted it so much. You gave so much and still you’re being left. And that will generate a high state of being pissed off! Anger is the ego’s response to feeling or believing that we are powerless. When someone or something encroaches upon a sense of power, and when we believe our right or sense of control has been limited, anger is the ego-driven and fear based response. If someone wants to end their relationship with you, it will give rise to a feeling of powerlessness, because there is nothing that you can do to make them stay, once they made their mind up that they’re going. And you feel powerless. You feel that your control has been limited or taken away. And you want to rage and you want to be angry, and you want to reach out and strike out. That is not going to turn out well for you. You want to lose your dignity. Don’t do it. Don’t fight. Focus on the hurt, because your soul can handle it with time and care. Anger is going to get you nowhere real quick. And it will probably motivate you to do and say things that will cause great harm to your dignity, your honour and your self-respect. It doesn’t matter if the relationship is six weeks old, six months old or six years old, or even more. When you are the one who was being left, hurt, fear, anger and rage are going to challenge you. But they need not win.

So, what should you do? Well, here’s what I know. Everything has a reason in a season. And when the reason is fulfilled or the season ends, the relationship will follow soon. You may not like it and chances are you don’t want it to end. But you also have to be honest with yourself. Because relationships don’t just end. They end over time. But when someone tells you that they are leaving you, that the relationship you are having with them has come to an end, take it in, feel the hurt, breathe through the anger and never, ever ask why.

Let’s go back for a moment. I want to make this point again. Relationships don’t just end. They end over a period of time. It was something you heard, or saw, or felt, that gave you a clue that something was not right. You may not have wanted to see it or know it, but somewhere deep inside, you knew long before you heard the words or experience the final blow. So, now the question is… What did you do with that knowing? What did you do with those feelings? These questions are important, because that is where you will find your learning and that is where you will find your healing, asking yourself: “When did I know this was not going to work and why did I stay?”. When you are being left in a relationship ‘why’ is not important. ‘When’ is not important. ‘You’ are important. So, take care of yourself!

How? Well, hopefully you have a good friend you can confide in and that you can speak to. Share your thoughts and feelings. Hopefully this person can listen to you without commentary. If you don’t have such a person, a living physical being, to turn to, then turn to God. Or your journal, like I do. And just let it rip! Let out everything you’re feeling, everything you’re thinking, so that you can gain clarity and move beyond the hurt and the anger, with grace. So, again, express your feelings to someone other than the person who is leaving you.

The next thing that you want to do is be gentle with yourself. Be gentle in your thinking. Be gentle with your approach to everything. Give yourself time to settle in to this new reality. Because when someone is choosing to end their relationship with you, they are making a choice, a hard choice. And whether you are believing it or not, in most cases it is not easy for them either. So, as you are being gentle with yourself, you’ll be able to be gentle with them. So when a relationship ends, regardless of the circumstances, what you need for your healing and growth is time and closure. Now, that’s where the next step, the tricky step, comes in. But it is very, very necessary.


Tell this to yourself: ‘I refuse to allow myself to want somebody who doesn’t want me’. ‘I refuse to give myself permission to desire someone who cannot, does not, will not meet my desires’. And I simply refuse to think about it anymore. And once you have that thought, everything will shift. ‘Why do I want to be with somebody who doesn’t want to be with me?’

Sure, the companionship is nice. A warm body is comforting. But, hey, I love me! I want me! I like being with me! All the energy and love you’re giving to someone who doesn’t want you, it is all yours! You can give it to yourself. Love yourself, spend time with yourself, cherish and adore yourself, and take care of yourself. When you do so, everything will change instantly. When you refuse to follow your own pattern of chasing after people who don’t want you, everything will change! When you are the one being left, don’t focus on the other person. Focus on you! Nurture and nourish yourself. This is the way you will discover that the love you were giving, is the love that you are. You lost a person, but not the love. You may have to shift some things around and change some priorities, but you’re loving and you’re loving yourself will keep you strong!

What I learned by being left was the depth and capacity of my own love. I know this is not easy. It’s easy to say and hard to do. But I also learned through experiences there is a call and wisdom in the soul. And when you let go, you can go into your own soul, your own love, and discover many things about your life that will prepare you to love again. It’s not a cake walk, that’s for sure. To honour the hurt, and to give yourself permission to really feeling it and to be with it, to breathe through anger with compassion and dignity, without acting out and to ask for what you want, without back pedalling and taking the easy way out, like calling, whining, blaming, begging. To be left, dropped, rejected, abandoned and to refuse to believe you deserve it or that you did something to cause it. Now this is not for the faint of heart. But it is the path to healing and growth in the evolution of your soul.

There are, however, some practical considerations, like for example when a marriage ends, and where there are kids involved, or property. Or when a long-term relationship ends where friends and family, and other people, are involved. Or when a relationship or friendship ends after years and years of knowing, loving and trusting. These are things that can’t be taken lightly. But what I want to mention right now, is the way out of a relationship, any relationship, where your heart and soul are at stake. It is simple. Refuse to want to be somewhere, where you’re not wanted, honoured, respected and where your love cannot be returned in full measure. Take all the love that you were focusing outward and turn it on yourself. Trust me, you will figure out how to do it. You absolutely will. Don’t get caught up in the drama of the hurt and the anger. Feel it! Deal with it! And let it go. I know this is not easy. But I know from experience that it is doable. And if you will trust yourself, honour yourself, and do your damnedest to love yourself, I can promise you, you will attract the right person at the right time who will love you for you, measure for measure. This is a hard one, but like I’ve said, it is doable.

Stay in peace! And not in pieces.

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  • Reply
    Lori Smith
    October 16, 2016 at 11:25 pm

    Simply beautiful, Leander!

    • Reply
      November 9, 2016 at 12:16 am

      Thank you, Lori!

  • Reply
    October 17, 2016 at 8:55 am

    You are so right!
    Thank you! :*

    • Reply
      November 9, 2016 at 12:16 am

      Thanks, Deb! :)

  • Reply
    November 6, 2016 at 7:25 pm

    Thank you so much for this heartfelt post. I am in tears because this spoke directly to me. Thank you for taking the time to put this together and share with the world, Leander!

    • Reply
      November 9, 2016 at 12:17 am

      Thank you so much for reading it! I hope this helps a lot of people. It took a lot of self examination to really get my thoughts and message across.

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