#4 Different Cast, Same Script
'If you line up your ex-lovers in a row, you can see the flow of mental illness...'~Unknown
So you are back in circulation. You are feeling confident. You think you are getting your groove back. Why then do you feel like crap? What is that sadness you feel? Why does it seem like all men are the same? Ok not all men, we are being a bit sensational. Why do the men you meet seem to be the same man in different bodies? You know the one who does not call you, does not reply texts, flirts with other women when you are out with him. The one who refuses to acknowledge that he hurts you, he is constantly putting you down, the one who makes you jump through hoops. The one who expects you to pay for the drinks, refers to women who are in relationships where men support them as gold diggers. Boy, you sure know how to pick them! It feels like the monkey will not get off your back no matter how hard you jump or shake and try to slap it off.
Now I am not a certified therapist, but in my own experience, I have found out that seeking out the 'same' man is a twisted way of self-protection. You prepare yourself beforehand for the disappointment the man you have chosen will be. You know he will disappoint because you picked him to disappoint, then you yell 'Aha! I knew it, you monkeys are all the same!' Sometimes if he does not disappoint you by himself you set him up to disappoint. It is hectic I know. We have become used to pain and disappointment and like the humans we are, we seek out familiar scenes. They give us some sort of comfort.
It is at this point that you call yourself to a meeting. You say to yourself, 'Self. This is not going to work, you deserve better!'
First, forgive yourself. For everything. For kicking the cat, for sleeping with your ex's friend, for stealing your friend's potential man, for not going for confession, for going out with that clown when you knew he had tricks but you thought you could change him, for badly shaped eyebrows, everything!
I then recommend that you go on a sex sabbatical. Sex clouds judgement. One minute you think the man is a tool but after a romp in the sack, you will start using words like 'misunderstood' to describe him and even add that 'he must have had a difficult childhood' in an attempt to pretty him up some more. Suddenly you are keeping him around and you know deep down he is no good. During your sabbatical think through what you really want for yourself and what you want out of your relationships. Not everyone is for sleeping with. Some are for avoiding totally. Remember sex with someone new does not heal past hurts.
Consciously spend quality time with your children if you have them. Enroll in a self-improving activity. Go to the gym, learn a new language or dance. Try new things that do not involve removing your knickers. Some ideas on how to keep the knickers on, Check out number 3.
If you feel it is too much to handle if you are struggling, get professional counselling. There is no shame in asking for help and receiving that help.
Next week.....Helping your children deal with your divorce/separation