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    Hey, morning both!

    Yeah, slightly busier weekend, was down visiting my parents and then spent yesterday brewing and bottling beer, like you do…it tastes great though, that’s the main thing!  Today we will hopefully get out on the bikes now it looks like the storms have gone – we had hail yesterday! Crazy…

    Hope the gigs went ok, nothing eventful re the ex and a great time for your friend’s birthday. Nothing like live music to make you feel alive I think.

    You know that’s a huge step right, just being able to acknowledge that there are times when you are ok and realise you don’t love him now. Well done you. Eventually those bits just keep getting longer and the other times when you collapse in a puddle again get shorter. And then one day you suddenly realise you haven’t had one for ages.

    A month is pretty standard right. When are you thinking of going – I think you said Sept/Oct so I’m thinking you have a few more weeks before handing it in?  That’s so typical of many companies now, taking their time to replace people who leave and hoping everyone else just shoulders the extra work, just another way of saving costs. Absolutely not your fault they haven’t sorted it and yes, eventually you need to prioritise yourself……ha, is this really our Shelby talking…..I’m very happy to hear you say that you know 🙂  Yeah, it’ll be tough but it should also give them the kick they need to sort out their staffing!!

    I was thinking – is this the weekend Kkasxo is away in Birmingham? Hope that’s all gone well if so.



    Apologising is the same thing.   You wrote yourself “She say she is tired of my heavy content nonsense”. This tells you she also took your apology to be more of the same heavy content. Friends do not repeatedly apologise for things already forgiven. There was no need to apologise – you have already done that before. ISo by apologising again t is just another way of still talking on an emotional level.

    As said, I wish you well.



    Morning JHK.

    I am not surprised. Yet again you broke your promise and talked to her about your problem instead of dealing with it by yourself.

    I actually don’t think she is sulking, I just think she doesn’t want to spend time with you anymore, she no longer wants to be your close friend.  Both her actions and her words are telling you this but I understand you do not want to believe it.

    Therefore I don’t think I can help you any more with this. My advice has consistently been to not talk to her about this and you have consistently gone ahead and talked to her about it. My advice now remains the same – leave her alone and think instead about working on yourself. Learn from this as to how to better handle relationships and social interaction. It may be worth finding somebody like a therapist locally who will be able to better help you through this.

    I wish you all the best in working through it all. Ofcourse I am still here to listen and help if you choose to work on yourself but I won’t keep having this same conversation with you as it doesn’t help you move on.

    Take care.



    Ha ha – have to admit I’m kinda relieved to hear you aren’t waiting around for Mr C and his giant, luxury castle – did seem out of character with everything else you’ve said!

    Yeah, it’s a bit weird, the gap between knowing you are going to do something and not telling people. How much notice do you need to give? It’s even odder when you start handing over work to others or having to say things like “I’d love to help but I’m won’t be here then”. It’s also incredibly freeing though 🙂

    That’s the trouble with a curious mind – I’ve always loved exploring and can find all kinds of places I want to go see!  Travel can be a bit ‘snobbish’ for lack of a better word these days, as in if you aren’t trekking through a desert and sleeping inside a camel or something equally daft it’s just  not “authentic” or “off the beaten path” enough. But as I say many times, who cares what others think – the travel is for me, not them! Each of those places I’m still getting a nice place to stay and a beer within reach, trust me!  It’ll be interesting to see what you think when you go – it can quickly become quite addictive as you realise what you read about in the news isn’t really that true at all and the world is much safer and friendlier than you think.  And yeah, ofcourse I’ll provide updates!

    Kkasxo, hoping Mr A is helping getting you through this time and that you are doing ok. We’re here if you need us, remember that. Take care of yourself, hope to hear from you again soon.



    Morning both,

    Kkasxo, likewise, was thinking about you yesterday and hoping you were getting through ok. Just another day and yes, brains are so unhelpful at dragging up stuff you don’t want to think about. The more you try and ignore it, the stronger they get so yes, acknowledge them but also know they can’t hurt you and move on to something else once felt. I hope you are a little better today, now that the day is gone.

    Shelby – ha, yeah – that’s pretty much ultimate ultimate Disney!! My prince will arrive and whisk me off to his lavish castle eh 😉  Seriously, you never even thought you’d meet a guy and work together for your dream house, just that he’d have it all ready for you? No wonder you are so reluctant to let go of this guy.  But hey, no judgement from me, it’s just a dream after all and I think most people dream of similar easy ways out tbh.  It’s funny you mention one of your options was building your own home, we actually built ours down here, yep, I did brick-laying, insulating, plasterboarding, floors, you name it – if it was labour-intensive and not skilled, we did it! But yes, it was very hard work in our ‘spare’ time whilst holding down my job and I couldn’t imagine have done it my myself for sure.

    Good to hear the exercise/diet combo is paying off – the boost is nice right when you can start to notice the difference and especially when others do. The gigs sound fun though I get the worry about potentially seeing him there – and even worse than not dead but with someone else. It does seem very unlikely you will see him and yeah, it shouldn’t stop you going. It sometimes helps me to think ahead about what I’d do if the ‘worst’ does happen just so that I can try to avoid dissolving into a teary mess in front of them, given that’s not the impression I’d want to leave!

    Travel plans sound amazing…..Oz, NZ, Fiji eh…..funnily enough think I’ll be in Kuala Lumpar next year when we do our post winter Christmas escape. Thinking so far is Thailand ( Chiang Mai, Krabi ) down to Langwai island, Maylasia, onto to KL, down to Bali then back up to Vietnam. But who knows, lots more fun research to do yet!  Boots’n’all is a good website for RTW travel, has a free eplanning book(?) you can get, may help. Cor – starts to sound real proper exciting eh!



    Morning both,

    First – big virtual hug for Kkasxo – whilst I know you don’t need it and you will get through today just fne, just wanted you to know we’re here supporting you through.  You have come such a long way, it’s ok to be scared of slipping back. But just the fact you can recognise the possibility, that you can see the difference means it won’t last. The day will go on and finish, just like any other day and then you can hopefully take some time out to say to yourself, there I did it again, I’m ok still, I’m still here. Take care and see you on the other side soon. I’m glad your family are still around for now.

    Shelby. Ha, was just winding you up about the old thing 😉   It’s great to hear about your friend from Oz – she sounds perfect to have as support in place, awesome. Yep, travel planning really is just a long list of stuff to work through, a bunch of practical problems that can all be solved.

    I’m also happy (?) to hear your therapist wants to talk about your mum with you. I know it’ll be scary to open up and revisit such hurt but I also know you trust them to guide you through it safely so you can realise you are ok. Losing your mum and then again losing your best friend/dad’s second partner was a huge impact in your life, impossible for me to imagine but I can’t see anything but good coming from dealing with the pain, anger and loss of trust it likely caused you, in a safe, secure, trusting environment. You know they would both want you to be as happy as you can be and if this step helps you towards it, nothing but admiration for you in taking it.

    It is also amazing it is to ‘hear’ you talk about quitting your job in a few weeks now, just being able to say/write it is a huge step I think.  I absolutely get the not being able to let go of being broken. As I remember it, it’s like you don’t know who you are without it, it defines you so much, it’s all you’ve taked or thought about for ages and you don’t quite know what to do if you aren’t that person. It’s also scary to imagine letting go as it means admitting that part of your life is really over – I remember finding that especially hard, as it meant giving up on the anger at him and somehow letting him off the hook, so to speak.  As well as giving up on the hope that it’d somehow magically work out in the future. Neither of which was helping me obviously but at the time, it was all I had to cling to as letting those go meant I had to face forwards and get on with it all. So yeah, I get it, and eventually I imagine that like me you’ll reach a point some time where holding on just seems stupid too.  I actually then felt guilty about being happy for a while – how crazy is that?!

    I don’t think the thing with your Dad is weird at all – quite the opposite. It’s literally you shouting out “but hang on a minute, you do know this isn’t where my life goes right”. Look at it as confirmation of you wanting different.  Curious though, and no need to answer as ever, but haven’t you ever been tempted to have your own place at all? I know it’s harder financially but it can be done. Else I can see why your ex became an escape route for you, a safe way out to the life you wanted. Is that how you think about it – that the only way out of your current life is to find a partner? As you know that’s not true, right?



    Hey, less of the really old eh 😉  But funny, yeah – that’s pretty much how it sounded in my head too!

    I get the guilt thing.  I suppose the trick of it is to work out where your limits are before you reach them so you know when you have to look after yourself for a while before you can help again. There’s only so much of Shelby to go around after all.

    No, I don’t think you are a terrible person for wanting to start from scratch re kids – it’s pretty much how everyone imagines it I think. But yes, as ever, reality is not always in line with our thinking. Likewise I’ve seen the struggles of blended families – some have ended up in a great place but it was a lot of effort to get there.  Hence it’s good to know if it’s a total ‘no’ or a ‘not my first choice but I could see it’.  It’s not about accepting second choice though, just that sometimes it seems life gives us what we need, not what we think we want.

    And is that practically a decision about travelling I hear there………?!?!? Go Shelby! Absolutely we’ll be here wherever you are – be it home or away. It’ll be funny if you’re telling travel stories same time as me – double entertainment for Kkasxo!

    You know, Mark’s suggestion is a good one, it’ll help with those rose-tinted specs. It’ll be interesting to see how your list shapes up.  I suspect a few of the things you miss are as much about the lifestyle you had with him rather than him the person, e.g. the travel, the nights out.

    Kkasxo – how we doing there? Get through the weekend ok? Still on a bit of an up/down emotional time? I was thinking, it can’t be long until your family leave now – I’m so glad you are settled in your new home at least to make that a little easier, got to be tough.





    Shelby – no worries, you know if I’m out and about, will get back when I can. Your life is not a mess, you are just working through a lot of what you really want, which is more than most people do.

    So – let’s see…putting others before yourself because you enjoy the payoff is fine and I get that – after all it’s why I now spend time volunteering online. What isn’t ok is if you start to find you do it because you are afraid otherwise they won’t like or need you. Feeling needed is an especially powerful emotion, especially when you’ve been through rejection and you need a self-esteem boost.  Where does the guilt come into though – as in you feel bad if you don’t help others because you “should”? Is that an ingrained growing up thing?

    One thing to remember, it’s a bit like those safety videos on airplanes  where you have to fit your own mask before being able to help others without injuring yourself. If you try and help everybody and take on every responsibility going, it helps no-one when you end up burned out and resentful when you have no life of your own.  You need to look after yourself first and that’s not selfish but just what helps everyone the best in the long run. After all, you don’t want to hit 50 and be in the same place, helping everyone else and having had no life of your own, right??

    Ha, some 70 year olds can be very attractive you know….! But yes, I figured as much. Just be aware how often you will find people with similar values/backgrounds/understanding in the unlikeliest of places, not just familiar ones.  Re kids, so basically “I didn’t really think about it before but now with the right man I think I do”.  What would you say to a man with existing kids, a potential reality given I’m assuming you are as uninterested in a toy boy as a pensioner?!?

    Whilst I agree with Kkasxo there’s no point trying to second guess the future about if travel will help or not, I do think it’s possible to be pretty certain that if you choose to work on yourself and grow, you will, whichever route you go. Travel will make some of the growing easier, some of it harder. It will make you face some of your fears and develop your confidence but it won’t do much about helping you not feel guilty at having healthy boundaries and it won’t do much about sorting out how to be confidently assertive without feeling bad.  (Though practicing haggling in the local markets is actually pretty good for that….!)

    If it makes you feel any better, I still got teary leaving my job that I’d planned on leaving for ever. No job is all bad, you miss (some of) the people and the good things about it even when you know you are doing the right thing for you. Whilst I was excited to go since it meant starting my travels, I still knew it was going to take a while to get used to it. Leaving a safe and comfortable routine is not an easy thing for most people, even when it’s good for them.

    An event about dating sounds like a total nightmare – why do you think about doing these things to yourself?! You really know you are in no fit state of mind to meet anyone else, however panicked about time you are. If you dive into another relationship chances are pretty high it won’t end well either unless you take this time out to be ok by yourself first. Less haste more speed and all that.

    I am full of pragmatic tips and no offence at all at how you use or don’t – the whole idea is for you to consider what feels right for you after all.

    Kkasxo – there’s no “should be” excited, just what is. I’ve found the harder I try to enjoy something because I should be, the worse it gets. So just go for it, no expectations/control, see how it goes and be proud of yourself for doing it when you didn’t feel like it. You are honestly so much stronger sounding it’s wonderful even in this tougher time for you. Besides, be good for Mr A to miss you!

    The sun is back here so I shall be cycling out shortly, doubtlessly for a few chilled beers in our local taproom as they have some bands playing. Enjoy your weekends both!



    Hey, it’s not a list competition! Yours is honest, brave and heart-felt – and more importantly – the only one that matters. So nice job there, it’s a good list. How did you feel at the end of it – just exhausted with the thinking or an obvious winner?  Tbh, mostly what it screams out to me is someone who needs to prioritise herself for a bit, either with or without travel. A lot of fear. And a tiny bit of excitement but a lot of guilt at wanting to do something for herself that will let others down.

    If I work through it…some things are entirely practical to solve, the harder ones are the emotional ones, unsurprisingly. Plus some of these things you can achieve without travelling and some of them will continue to be a ‘con’ even if you don’t.

    For example, you can leave your job with travelling and you can work on bravery/less responsibilities, though it’s harder.  You can make travel as expensive or cheap as it needs to be. Technology these days makes staying in touch way easier, especially Skype/video calls. Not the same, but pretty good. If you don’t like somewhere when you arrive, you change your plans and move on.

    As to the ‘settle down’ thing/ delay finding someone/having kids, unless you have your eye on someone locally I honestly don’t see how travel either helps or hinders that one. Do you intend to only want to find someone locally, is that what you mean? And not to sound depressing but if so, I suspect you already have a pretty good idea of the “available pool” and aren’t interested in them? So if anything it helps as you’ll meet more people and you can be in places or find groups of travellers/expats who speak english pretty much everywhere.

    As to the age thing, yes, it’s a legitimate pragmatic concern from the kids perspective, I get it.  I’ll just repeat there are many,many ways to be a great mother. If you are fixed on the idea that only your own biological kids will do, then yes, nature dictates you are time-limited. There are ways to extend the time, like my friend storing her eggs.  It can help to work out what your priority really is, your own kids or the family dream.  E.g. which would you choose – biological kids by yourself through artificial means ( i.e. no partner ) before nature does it’s thing and then perhaps a relationship or wait longer for a relationship later and accepting it means no biological kids but perhaps either inheriting an existing family or adopting together?  I realise ideally you want kids with the imaginary partner ( shall we call him Mr B, since Kkasxo has nabbed Mr A….) but since we’re both pragmatic people – one way to take the pressure off is to recognise nature’s reality but also recognise that there are still options where you end up in a good place for you, whichever one is more important to you.

    Back to the “To Travel or Not To Travel” , there is also obviously a third way through all this – have you thought about asking your work for a mini-sabbatical? I’ve (unsurprisingly) used these before and it’s win/win for both. You get extended, all be it unpaid, time away to make a trip long enough to unwind and think clearly. They get to keep a valued employee and not go through the hassle of trying to hire someone else.

    So instead of thinking it’s a major life decision and you have to quit your job and life and go for half a year or whatever – instead perhaps plan out something for 4 – 6 weeks, whatever feels right. It’s plenty of time to get the benefits of travel without the bigger risks/commitments involved in anything more major.  If they don’t go for it – you also have the option of quitting and going for those job opportunities you mention, it’ll take that long to get a start date and they usually honour pre-booked travel (again, something I have unsurprisingly done…!)

    Perhaps a decent half-way house to getting the break you need without feeling like it’s all or nothing. Hope it all helps – and yes it’s tiring to have to think – but you end up in a better place for it. Just don’t overthink it…….



    To be honest, no, I don’t think it is possible to repair this friendship.

    Perhaps, if you are lucky, she will reach out at some point and you can try to be a better friend from there. But if she does not reach out, I would leave her alone.



    Awh, it’s you guys doing all the hard healing work, I’m just here to remind you there is light at the end of the tunnel ( and no, it’s not a train…. ) whilst sharing irritatingly happy tales of travel :-). But yeah, it’s a good journey together.

    Kkasxo – hope the anxiety has lessened a little. Whilst I know it’s tough, if you look back on where you were this time last year, you’ll see just how much more resilience you have for getting past another anniversary. You’ve done it before, it’s not going to hurt you and you’ll be ok, just a bit more emotionally up/down for a while. So you know, maybe not the best time to decide about Mr A or anything major and yeah, if you are emotionally stretched what you would normally consider ‘easy’ becomes difficult. I’ve lost count of the number of things I’ve said I’d do when in a good state and then have dreaded when they came round – but once you get there it’s so often “oh, actually, this is ok and you know what, I’m enjoying myself”. And if not – you just come home!

    Shelby, Shelby…, eye-rolling…..never……  It’s funny actually, you thinking travel may impede finding the life you want whereas how I think about it, you are far more likely to find the life you want by breaking out and doing something different. It’s hard to see how staying put and doing the same things is going to result in anything different to the last what, 15 odd years? Likewise it’s hard to see it as running away given you are more terrified of doing it than you are of staying put. Defn more of a choosing to do something different and let yourself try a different way of life than running away from reminders. I do get what you mean by the “done thing” though and yeah, it can be hard to separate out what you want to do from what you think you should do. I suppose I come at it all from a “what’s the worst that can happen”, which is you try it, hate it, hide from being open to the experience and come back wondering what the hell next. Which is pretty much where you are at anyway right?!?  So how’d that list go?



    Only foolish if you don’t learn from it and only foolish if you repeat the same mistake again. Mistakes are just part of being human. No point beating yourself up about them but use them to learn.

    Practicing social skills for sure would help you understand others better. It would have helped you to know that breaking your promises to her and talking about heavy emotional topics again was not going to be a good thing. Without understanding why you thought it would help, you can’t learn to avoid such mistakes in the future. If you are honest with yourself, I suspect you really thought that having this conversation would help bring you closer again? If you are not honest with yourself, you will not learn.

    It’s easy to be remorseful now because now you can see instead it has made her angry and now you are worried you have ruined the friendship for ever, which is very much a possibility. What you need to do is work out why you broke your promise to not discuss these topics with her. How can she be your friend if she can not trust you to keep your promises?  And no, this isn’t something you should discuss with her or apologise for – that is just breaking your promise again.





    Hmm, I would let her be the one to reach out if I were you, but your choice.

    Why do you think you did tell her you couldn’t face her if you understood it would not end well? It will help to understand so you do not do so again.



    Morning gals!

    Ah Shelby, the ever-giving Shelby 😉  I figured work had kicked off again, hope you are surviving!  Yep – everyone will be expecting you to be well over him by now so rant away here. Mad and sad is a pretty accurate description of this time. It’ll pass but go with it for now.

    You will love Kate’s blog I think, despite she is irritatingly fit and pretty, she talks a lot of sense whilst being inspiring with it.

    So – “should she stay or should she go”, to quote an old Clash(? I think?) song and show my age.  I have a view but it doesn’t matter, it’s what you think that does. When I get stuck on something like that I try to make a list of pros/cons, logically writing out why and why not. And then often there’s a logical winner that I sometimes ignore because by doing the exercise it’s become clear what I really want to do and why I’m not doing it.  For example, if I was back in your shoes, it’d look something like this perhaps;

    If I go:

    – I get to escape the grim weather. I will be free from the job I do not enjoy. I will see and experience some amazing sights and events. I will have some awesome stories to tell my friends and family, my TinyBuddha gals, my future husband & kids.. I will be so proud of myself that I overcame my fear. My self-esteem and belief in myself to be able to handle problems will rise exponentially. I will meet a bunch of new people and see first-hand how different life can be. I won’t get in touch with my ex through desperation. I will be able to tell everyone how heart-broken I am as they don’t know me. I will be able to be the person I really want to be as they don’t know me. I will come back and see my life differently. I will have less money/more debt. I will have to face my fears.

    If I stay:

    – I get to enjoy a Scottish winter. I will carry on with the stressful job and covering for everyone. I will see the same sights and have similar experiences. I will have nothing new to share with my friends and family, myTinyBuddha gals, my future husband/kids.. I will be disappointed in myself that I did not overcome my fear. I will not develop new ways to handle problems. I will not meet lots of new people and see how life can be different. I may well get in touch with my ex once I am no longer mad and instead desperate to try again. I will continue to rant on TinyBuddha about my heart-break and failed attempts. I will continue being the same person as it is hard to break out when in the same routine. My life will remain the same. I will have more money/less debt. I will not have to face my fears.

    You get the idea. Not that I’m saying travel is a “fix-it” , more that like we’ve discussed before, if you don’t change something, then nothing changes.  Just imagine yourself six months from now and which version you’d like to be – the one who stayed or the one who left and came back changed.

    Yeah, it’ll be scary and uncomfortable at times – you know you don’t grow as a person without it – it’s why you are plateauing at therapy. Figure out your worst case and tackle those fears into pragmatic solutions. E.g. will I be safe, yes, if you pick somewhere easy to stay safe. Will I be lonely, no if you pick somewhere easy to meet other travellers ( they are a very friendly bunch ) and join in activities/tours when I am struggling. Etc etc.

    Hmm….I honestly tried hard not to be biased in the above! I just thought about the difference between the two options. Hope it helps!



    Hi ImJWL.

    I see you have now created your own post and are getting helpful answers there, which is good.

    I think you have actually answered your own questions – you know this guy is using you. Especially as you are probably afraid if you stop having sex you would not see or hear from him again, right? So yeah, time to stand up for yourself and put yourself first. You are going through a tough time with the divorce and it is not unusual to have valued being wanted by this guy. But yeah, seems highly likely it’s going nowhere apart from more hurt and disappointment for you – something you can do without for sure.

    You could simply break it off with the guy. Or half-way house, try being unavailable next time you are supposed to meet, keep him waiting. And keep sex off the table – have a proper date. If he’s interested in you at all – you’ll find out pretty quickly. I’m not into game-playing, so I don’t mean like that but by being less available on his terms, you’ll probably get the confirmation you’re looking for to dump him.

    You know you deserve better and you will find better. Don’t let your fear of not thinking you will find someone else hold you back. But do look at this as a way of learning why you accepted so little in this relationship and work on your self-esteem, which has probably taken a real battering through your last relationship/divorce, right?

    Hope helps – best of luck.


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