Relocation and relationships – Being far away when it ends

 In Relationships

This weeks post comes straight from the heart. A few weeks ago my fiancé/partner of 4 years and I decided to go our separate ways. It’s never easy to part with people, especially the ones we love the most. Which is why most of us hate goodbyes. And especially those times when we know it’s not a ‘see you later’ kind of goodbye. Even if you try to part as friends.

One thing I know (having been far away from my family during another breakup many years ago) is that when the heart aches, you need your support crew there. And after a breakup, the hug is sometimes the most vital part of comfort in a time of absolute emotional turbulence. With half a globe or at least a few hours travel to that hug, it can sometimes feel impossible.

I’ve noticed a few things over the past few weeks that I trust will be helpful for anyone out there that’s going through something similar.

  1. Allow yourself to be sad. Cry the tears you need to and take time to grieve what ended as well as feeling that you’re too far away from what matters. It’s ok to grieve in whatever way works for you. You don’t have to be strong or have all the answers.
  2. Ask for help. Over the past few weeks I’ve received love and support from more people than I would have ever imagined. Friends, colleagues and family members. Even if you don’t feel like talking, ask for help with the basic things you don’t know how to cope with. Moving house. Borrowing someone’s car for an errand. Someone keeping you company just to watch a movie and say nothing. Dare to reach out for support and the universe will repay you. Hugs (both real and virtual) are always available for those who ask for one.
  3. Get creative with temporary solutions. You’re far away from many people who would be your obvious backup solution, so get creative. Can you stay with a colleague for a week or two while you look for another place to live? Can you sublet your spare room to someone for financial help and some piece of mind while you go through the sadness? You don’t need solutions that last forever, they just need to work for now and a little while.
  4. Take the time for you. It’s easy to want to run away or rush into something new to just stay busy. But things end for a reason (even if it does not feel like it right now), so make sure to give yourself time to grieve as well as time to digest the learning of what happened. A great way to connect with self is to practise daily gratitude. If you’re not sure how to go about it, just send me an email and I’ll send you my online gratitude journal for free. It might sound trivial, but it’s the single best daily routine that’s gotten me through the past few weeks.
  5. Remember where it began. When things end it tends to be a roller coaster between the good moments and the disagreements and sadness. Many expats and travellers move to another country or place far away to be with the one they love. So when it ends, it hurts even more. When you feel ready, remind yourself of why you came to the new place. It may have been because of him or her, but what else compelled you to move? Pay attention to all the other things that inspired you to take on this journey.
  6. Decide where to head next. Even if you feel like locking yourself away in your bedroom and watching movies and escaping the world for another few months, there is a tomorrow waiting for you. When you have your short term solution in place it’s time to get curious about your vision. Only you can decide what that vision includes and that’s probably both the best and the most frightening thing about being on your own again. Don’t move away or back home unless you truly feel it’s what you want. Don’t stay put unless it serves you. If you’re feeling lost you might want to chat to a friend, mentor or coach to help you get started on how you can shape this next chapter of your life.

In the midst of misery lies great learning and opportunity. Grieve what you lost for as long as you need to. Then honour yourself and create your journey beyond the sadness and into your compelling future.

Have you been through something similar? How did you get through it? Leave a comment here to share or hop over and join the conversation on our Facebook page. If you’re in a challenging situation right now and would like to have a confidential chat – contact me directly for a chat!

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Showing 4 comments
  • Kylie Bevan

    …. and in helping others you help yourself. Emmy, you’re an inspiration, moving through this next chapter of your life while helping others on their own journey.

    A lovely source of insights and ideas for when people need it most – when a key relationship is not ‘going to plan’.

    Hugs, and thank you for sharing.

    Kylie Bevan
    Health & Relocation Coach

  • Angela

    Emmy, what an honest, courageous, and real piece you’ve written here: thank you for having the guts to share it so authentically. I have an offering back to you, a poem which touched me the other day about leaving relationships. It’s by David Whyte:


    Above the mountains

    the geese turn into

    the light again

    Painting their

    black silhouettes

    on an open sky.

    Sometimes everything

    has to be

    inscribed across

    the heavens

    so you can find

    the one line

    already written

    inside you.

    Sometimes it takes

    a great sky

    to find that

    first, bright

    and indescribable

    wedge of freedom

    in your own heart.

    Sometimes with

    the bones of the black

    sticks left when the fire

    has gone out

    someone has written

    something new

    in the ashes of your life.

    You are not leaving.

    Even as the light fades quickly now,

    you are arriving.

    Much love and warmth to you on your journey. Thinking of you, Angela

  • Carol

    This is an extra hug from the USA with a really big squeeze. You have written so wisely, and honestly. It is our job to help you continue on your path, always looking for blessing from our past and present times. With you in love, cjmc

  • Emmy

    Thanks for all your beautiful comments. This is such an important subject, so make sure to spread the tips to anyone you know who will benefit. Emmy x

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