During sessions with clients, I’ll usually ask about their past relationships and they’ll give me an answer like, “Oh yeah! I’ve moved on. I’m over that” and then I follow up with, “So, you’ve cut all ties?” and I don’t know if you’d be surprised by this but 2 out of 10 will answer yes to my question.
Why is cutting ties so hard?
I really have put a lot of thought into this question. I’ll ask those who don’t cut ties as to why they haven’t and most of the time I’ll get, “We wanted to remain friends” or “I didn’t feel like we needed to because we didn’t end badly”. Whether you believe in cutting ties or not, we must accept that to every cause there is an effect, a consequence. The majority of the time, when people don’t cut ties with an ex, one will usually cling to the idea that they’ll get back together and the other wants to truly move on. As for me, In the past I used to feel bad about breaking up with a partner so I’d allow them to remain in my life until they moved on themselves. At the time, I didn’t think of how constructive it could be to cut ties. I also want to add that nowadays it’s easier not to cut ties. We have social media and cell phones that need to be updated after a break up. Many would rather avoid this step and disregard it all together which leads to the observation that many don’t cut ties after a break up. The truth of the matter is, we aren’t intentional about it because we dismiss one major factor about a break up, detachment.
A break up is not only emotional, but mental, spiritual and physical. After a break up, If you move onto someone else (physical/rebound), it may seem like you’ve moved on but all you’ve really done is attach yourself to someone else. Think of a string connected from you to that ex, and through this string you give and receive energy and so, it serves you. When you break up, this string goes through a change and so you don’t receive and give from this string like you once did. During this change, you feel discomfort, sadness and sometimes anxious because you know this break up had something to do with it. This string is illusive obviously, but the ego thinks of it as part of itself, its identity and so it’s left thinking “how can I fix this? I know! I will _____fill in the blank_____. Some people go to what I call, fillers, the vises we use to try to suppress the discomfort. Others use distraction like a rebound, more work or partying, but what we need is space to heal. We need time to grief from the “loss” of an attachment, the illusive string connected to this idea/identity of being in a relationship with that person or in a relationship at all. Again, I must repeat that space to heal is necessary.
Healing through Cutting Ties
Cutting ties is extremely constructive after a break up. Whether you think you need it or not, it’s about having humility in the process that there’s a part of you that needs it. The first time I decided to cut ties was after a 3 year on & off relationship. I remember thinking, “I need to do this whole break-up thing differently this time” and so I cut ties by deleting messages, pictures, phone-number and unfollowing on all social media. I didn’t even really know at the time what it could do, all I can recall was feeling anxious, nervous and regretting I did it. Then, after allowing myself to grief this loss, I felt lighter and anxiety didn’t visit as often. As time passed, my mind adopted the idea that I was no longer with that partner. During this, I went through different energy phases; I was going through energy withdrawals, missing the person’s energy because I was used to it. Then, the time came where my body missed romantic affection and I just wanted to cuddle with someone; feel desired. But even through that, I continued to honor my being single and then that void melted away. I vividly remember waking up one morning and feeling so at peace and it dawned on me that I was finally at peace with being single. Let me tell you, I will NOT go through break ups the same way I used to. Part of growing is upgrading the way we go through break ups.
Message from Victoria GOLD
You may be wondering, how do I do this? First, have faith that this could be transformative to your journey. Next, tell the person you need space for yourself and you don’t need to give a timeframe. You must be prepared for possible push back, people aren’t always going to honor your decision but respect yourself enough to honor your decision. I have faith in your journey.