Something Blue

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Dear Dharma,

I’m struggling with something that I’m hoping you can help me with.  BTW, I love your advice and read you all of the time.

A very close family member just announced her engagement. I’m so happy for her and can’t wait to celebrate with the whole family!

The thing is that it makes me sad as well. It just reminds me that I’m older than her with nothing like that even on the horizon. I always thought I’d be married with the kids and picket fence, etc.

It didn’t work out that way for me when my ex broke up with me. That was over ten years ago. How do I get past the sadness and stick to being happy?

I don’t want to ruin the celebrations for anyone.

I’m the Something Blue

Dear Something Blue,

Aww, your sign off name hurt my heart a little bit.

First of all, it’s okay for you to feel sad.  Don’t deny yourself the acknowledgement of those emotions.  When we stuff our feelings away, they came back to us in weird and wonderful ways.

Of course you don’t want to ruin the celebrations for anyone, and my guess is that you won’t.  Likely, you will handle yourself beautifully… but that doesn’t mean dismissing your own feelings has to be part of it, and it’s actually unhealthy to do that anyway.

Acknowledge your sadness to yourself, allow yourself to feel it and talk about with people you feel comfortable with… and then put on your game face when you absolutely have to for the family festivities.

Beyond that, I would invite you to start doing things differently.  Without knowing your exact situation, it’s hard to say exactly what that means, but you can’t expect anything in your life to change if you don’t make some changes.

A new social circle, a different living arrangement, maybe even just some volunteer work in a totally different realm than you normally exist.

Just because things haven’t worked out the way you thought they would at this point in your life, doesn’t mean they haven’t worked out exactly as they should have.  Perhaps it’s time to start digging into what that might mean.

And of course, you’ll buck at this suggestion (most do!) – but how about some counselling?  It’s been 10 years.  It might be time to take a more aggressive stance in working through it all.

Sending you strong and empowering thoughts…

Dharma

 

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