RELATIONSHIP TIPS: How to deal with post-Valentine’s Day heartbreak

Friday February 17 2017

According to Elliott, relationships that end on

According to Elliott, relationships that end on Valentine’s Day do not suddenly unravel on February 14. PHOTO| FILE| NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By SIMON MBURU
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It was supposed to be a magical day. You looked forward to your lover treating you to a romantic dinner at one of the finest restaurants around, or arranging a romantic getaway. In between, you anticipated that he would send you romantic, thoughtful gifts. But alas, all this turned out to be a dream! A bad dream, for instead of all this, your lover declared that he was breaking up with you!

This scenario is actually quite common. According to Susan J Elliott, a divorce attorney and the author of Getting Past Your Break Up, February 15 is a very popular day for divorce papers to be filed. So what triggers these break ups?

According to Elliott, relationships that end on Valentine’s Day do not suddenly unravel on February 14. “It’s often couples who were ready to break up before the holidays but they hung on instead. Then the middle of January came and Valentine’s Day was around the corner,” she says, adding, “They hung on hoping that the day would patch them back together. And when the Valentine’s Day hearts and flowers failed to salvage their relationship, they chose to terminate it.”

In the days leading up to Valentine’s Day, there will be signs to show that a break up is imminent. According to psychologist Patrick Musau, these signs from your partner might include a sudden lack of desire to get sexually intimate with you, lack of time to see you, zero plans for Valentine’s Day, or extremely poor efforts to call or text you. However, a break up on Valentine’s Day is not the end. According to Susan Gacheru, a family therapist based in Nakuru, if you suffer a heart break before or on Valentine’s Day, the last thing you should do is wallow in self-pity or toy with memories from your just ended relationship. “This isn’t the time to sulk, it is the time to show yourself some love. Bear in mind that you’re lovely and that was the prime reason why someone fell in love or will fall in love with you,” she says.

“Take some time post-Valentine’s to go out and have fun with other single friends who will take your mind off the fresh wound in your heart,” says Musau. Make a deliberate choice to focus on your own joy. Remember that you are totally responsible for your own happiness.

Additionally, according to Tracy McMillan, the author of Why You’re Not Married…Yet, you will do well to avoid burying yourself in distractions and stay in the moment. “There’ll be without doubt moments of intense pain, but they’ll pass relatively quickly. Your heart ache will mostly be due to fear of how life will be without your lover, or nostalgia,” she says.