Starting over (again)

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    I’ve just split up from my husband again after we tried to make it work.

    we were introduced in a cult arranged marriage at 19 but we didn’t actually become a couple until 4 years later when we both decided to be together and be happy. I moved to the uk to be with him and we started our life together and got married within 2 months, struggling to make a life together as we really didn’t know each other and there was also always the obligation to make things work. we had met up a few times and the relationship up to that point was mostly emails and phone calls. I loved him in the best way I knew and he loved me in the best way he knew and there was a short period where we had the same goals and we really loved each other and were happy. but I think the biggest problem was that we both changed for the other, he became what I wanted him to be, and I became what he wanted to be and its just been a chaotic and emotionally draining relationship. we were legally married for 6.5 years but we couldn’t stop fighting as it was getting really bad and separated for 11 months. This was the most difficult period in my life as I left the cult and he left me at the same time. I was so lost and broken to lose both and to have felt so deceived but I slowly made a little life for myself and found nice people to spend my time with and I learned to enjoy my own company and to just accept things. but I ran into my ex just after new year and we spoke for hours and really enjoyed seeing each other and soon after agreed to try things again. I was living in my own flat at the time and he was still living in the same house we lived in for years. but not long after I had to leave my flat as the landlord was selling and he was looking for a roommate so I agreed to move in, thinking that I could maintain my boundaries and get to know each other again slowly. this didn’t happen and we were in a whirlwind romance which unfortunately faded within 6 months. so I spent the next 6 months knowing I wasn’t happy but trying to somehow make things work which was when I started to give up my own interests and started to get really anxious and depressed. it was another 2-4 months of trying to come to some sort of compromise but in our hearts I think we both knew that we weren’t right for each other, and though we both fought to make the relationship work we both knew that we just couldn’t make it work. so now I find myself on my own again and having to start my life over again and i’m doing better than the first time but i’m still struggling with depression and anxiety and what to do with my life as I’ve never really though about it. i’m realising i’m blaming my ex, blaming the cult, blaming everyone around me, and i’m struggling to accept responsibility for my choices and for my own life, and I know time is the healer. but I don’t have a lot of friends I can speak with at the moment, so i’d appreciate being able to talk with people here and hearing what others have to say.



    I am sorry you are in pain. I have been there. well, not exactly but similar concept. I was in love not too long ago. End of June is when my ex broke my heart. I have been in constant pain since than but i have to tell you that its getting better. One of the reasons he broke it off was the fact that we didn’t get along. We fought constantly after a few months into the relationship as he was conservative and i am not. Plus cultural difference and lifestyle difference. I come from a background where i am taught to make things work. to fight for everything that is worth fighting for. I knew our differences were a big issue in our relationship but i tried my best to make it work. at the end, he said that he can’t do it anymore. he is exhausted. i was going to marry this man and grow old with him. we had made promises to never leave one another but at the end, he didn’t even have the decency to break up with me in person. he did it over the phone!

    This is my background story but after talking to many good people on this site and talking to my therapist, i am in a better place. don’t get me wrong, i still cry at least once a day but it is a lot better than before. When this happened, i would cry every hour! and cry myself to sleep. This breakup has done so many amazing things for me. for once, it has taught me to look within. it has taught me to be kinder to myself. it has taught me to be compassionate and understanding. It has taught me that i have a learned pattern that i need to break to be ok. It has taught me to break the image i have in my head of a perfect life because nothing in this life is a grantee, which is what makes it worth living.

    Trust me, i am still a work in progress but i can see some light in this darkness now. i have been meditating a lot. i started with 5 minutes at first but slowly i am getting to 15 minutes. i am also giving myself credit for the small things like 40 days of no contact with my ex. I am also volunteering for different causes that i am passionate about. i am laughing a lot. even if it a fake laughter, i am laughing cause there is something about smiling that makes the brain relax. I am walking and talking to myself. I am also reading positive blogs on this site from people who have gone through a lot of pain and came out on the other side.

    i apologize if i went on and on and on but i know where you are coming from. i don’t have many friends either but i am meeting amazing people through this journey of mine. I wish you courage! and love!


    Buddhist Wife

    Hello L,

    It’s no wonder that you are feeling down, you’ve been through a very difficult experience for the last few years.

    I wouldn’t worry right now about your feelings of blaming others. Others are partially to blame. The cult is partially to blame for what has happened and your ex-husband is partially to blame too. I don’t think it’s healthy to repress that realisation, or you run the risk of losing the lessons you picked up across these years, the lessons about how much trust to put into others and how much control to give others over your life.

    I think Sapnap3 raised a very important point about compassion.

    I think it would be better if you became compassionate with yourself and others. In stead of looking at yourself harshly remember that you are just human being with human frailties. You made some decisions at a very young age and they didn’t work out for the best. That happens to all of us. You are far from being the first person to enter a relationship which didn’t work.

    Perhaps you could try to reframe this situation in a more positive light. You are at a point of great freedom with many choices you can make. It must be somewhat exhilarating to have so many options ahead of you. Try to see it as the beginning of a new adventure.

    If I were you, I would try to spend the next year or so having fun. Use fun as a way of discovering yourself.

    I wish you all the best.



    I agree with Sapna and BW’s insights. I’m sorry for the confusion and loss you’ve gone through, and hope you find peace as you explore and grow. Cults are difficult to endure, because they often propose a sacrifice of the harmony of the one for the harmony of the ideals (or the central guru/figure of the cult). This leads us on a difficult journey, because the more we try, the less it works. Harmony does not come from the submission of the self, but from the radical expression of self knowing.

    Said differently, it is not surprising that you don’t know what to do with yourself now that you are free! Its like someone waking up for the first time. “Wait, there are many people who want me to find happiness no matter where it takes me? Without allegiance or commitment, they just wish me well?” How foreign! But that is precisely what the wise do for us. They help us see who we are, and say “go!” “Launch!” “Follow your inner guide!” “Discover what you like for you!”

    When we follow such heartfelt wisdom such as Buddhist Wife’s, we learn who we are, find what makes us genuinely happy, and discover our special place in the world. You seem like a great spirit, and with some time and courage, you could be anything, do anything. The canvas is blank and the brush is in your hand, so what do you want to paint for yourself? One of my teachers asked me to sit and consider that, then write it down. It helps spark the momentum for seeing that canvas come alive!

    With warmth,


    thank you sapnap3, buddhistwife and matt for your kind words, I will take on board your support and encourgament

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