Trying to deal with anxiety and loss after relationship break up

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    Hiya Shelby,

    I can definitely relate to the almost one sided effort in friendships.. I do feel like I am definitely the one who reaches out to people more than they reach out to me, with that being said though when I go into withdrawal I shut off completely so perhaps they feel it is an up and down ride with me too? Who knows.

    The loneliness thing really made me think… I, like yourself, seem to always want/need some kind of connection, be it friendships or relationships to kind of keep me happy and content. And I think that’s why sometimes when I go into withdrawal mode I eventually feel more miserable because of the lack of those connections. Although I do recall moments in my life where I distanced myself from people to see if they would ‘care’ enough to reach out to me and then end up disappointed… So I guess my question is, how can one just be blissfully content and completely alone? Not relying on any connections? Is that possible?

    I’ve actually fallen off the exercising a little again, damn! I seem to have no energy these days, but I’m definitely still pushing myself with my daily step count so at least that’s a positive.

    Things with Mr A are same old I guess. I do think we’re kinda both just waiting until we can move out hehe, which is kinda sad right? Strange at the same time as we’re not actually mad at one another or anything, we’re just kinda plodding along everyday. We even manage to squeeze a little laugh here and there but ultimately the larger picture still remains, we are on two different pages, he wants a hypothetical future, I need a real one. So I’m sure with time things will become a little clearer…. or at least I hope!

    On another note though, can you believe we’ve been communicating for nearly a year already?! If I’m not mistaken we started on the 5th of October, a day before my birthday, and it’s nearly that time again. I really did think i’d be in a completely different space by this time… maybe let’s try Oct 2020?! Haha!




    I think fundamentally humans need connection. It’s part of our evolution, so I don’t think any one man is an island. Having said that, I do think it is possible to be content in one’s own company too, while reaching out for connection from time to time. I will never ever be someone who can be in a camp on my own for 3 years and never need anyone. I am who I am, I love connection and I think that’s a good thing. The problem at the moment is that I NEED the connection so bad and find without it, my functioning is not as easy. So that’s what we have to work on I guess, to be happy to make connections and as such create a level of dependency, which I believe it natural, but not that they are the only key to our survival.

    I dreamt about my ex last night. Maybe because I went for a walk with a friend and we mentioned him or things that happened in the past. The dream started with me being happy go lucky and friendly towards him (although we were not together) but then as the dream went on he kept questioning and finding problems and reasons to not be with me, even though in the dream it didn’t appear that I was even trying to reconcile but by the end of the dream….I felt terrible again and was like…’I get it, there are a million reasons not to be with me…you don’t need to keep harping on about it!!!’, so I woke up a little out of sorts. But I only have one more week of work left after this week, so when I get to work these days, I always feel a little lighter!

    I reached out to a couple of people who have flaked on communication lately and was a little more honest by directly asking them is something was wrong, rather than my roundabout way of making inquiries. My best friend explained she had been in hospital with her child and her other child had also been sick, so it made sense and I understood and I felt better knowing that it wasn’t me. Give what you want to get back. It doesn’t have to be everything, just enough and if you get that back, great. If not, then you’ll be more discerning going forward.

    I actually can’t believe its nearly Oct!!!! How naive was I last October, constantly asking the forum…WHEN would I feel better? I didn’t know a year later I’d still be feeling pretty sad and brokenhearted, but I guess we must acknowledge that we’re not in exactly the same place. We may be in no better place, but i think it’s still a different place!

    Keep up the fit bit, my friend uses it and feels amazing!




    Hi all,

    Im struggling tonight. My anxiety is pretty bad, which is usually the case when I’m on bad terms with someone. I had a whopper of a row with my older sister when terrible things were said and we’re not speaking. Well…..she’s not speaking to me.

    I just feel so unhappy and sad and upset. I don’t know if I’m doing things right or wrong most of the time. For all of my years in therapy, have I learned anything or improved? I don’t think so.

    I knew I wasn’t feeling great this weekend anyway for some reason regarding my ex. Just hurting more than usual and missing him so I’m sure that played some part in me exploding today.

    But im so upset because my family is all I have, they’re the most important thing to me and if I’m not happy in that aspect of my life, everything else is a shambles. I fear I could even depart for Oz still not having a good relationship with my sister and that’ll eat away at me.

    Has a breakup really had such a profound, negatively impacting effect on my life as a whole?



    Hi Shelby,

    Sorry to hear that you’re experiencing anxiety again!

    What happened with your sister? The thing about siblings is sometimes things can become unfiltered, because they’re family right? Often we feel we are almost entitled to say things we wouldn’t say to someone who doesn’t share the same blood because they’re bound to forgive us! With that being said, there is some truth in that and I’m sure whatever was said/done WILL be forgiven and forgotten about in a little while. It may be worth thinking whether the argument is worth you two not speaking to one another.. Perhaps be the bigger person and reach out to resolve the issue before you head to OZ?

    The breakup can indeed affect all aspects of your life I think.

    It certainly did mine when me and Mr A split. And although not broken up now the unhappiness is very much affecting all aspects of my life. I am growing more and more unhappy at work, amongst friendships, just generally I’m miserable..




    Morning Kkasxo,

    Last night was tough, twisting and turning – I really can’t stomach being ‘off’ with anyone. It is affecting my concentration and eating today also. I feel the last time we had a big fight, I reached out to mend it and be the bigger person because I didn’t like the uncomfortable feeling, but I fear if I do that again, it’s merely because I don’t like this feeling and maybe I should just sit with it. Maybe I’m meant to. Because at the end of the day, I wasn’t solely to blame and me mending it with her will just be me having to take 100% responsibility and her taking the high road think I’m an absolute cow and she was totally right and vindicated and I think in the long run that causes more resentment.

    Some very harsh words were said and I definitely regret them and am genuinely sorry for my behaviour but she was quite nasty too and I’m not willing to let that go to keep the peace, but this upset if unbearable too – so….rock….hard place….

    My other sister is trying to be the buffer at the moment and says we were both to blame, probably my reactions more so because overreacted. She says it will eventually blow over but at the moment, I feel so upset, angry, hurt, regretful and basically ick.

    I explained to my sister (the nice one!) last night that I’m so unhappy a lot of the time and she suggested increasing my medication again and that honestly broke my heart. The medication was for anxiety and panic attacks. I don’t need medication because Im sad, I think I know why Im sad. I’m not living the life I wanted/want, but at least I’m trying to work on it.

    But look what my unhappiness is doing to me and my relationships with family and friends…I can well imagine it’s affecting your life too Kkasxo in all aspects. I think the only way to change is to explore what WOULD make us happy, we have to stop staying exactly where we are I think.

    I just want to close my eyes and have this situation over. Im ready to be happy now, I’ve been through enough, I’m done with life being such a sh*t show! xx





    Hey both. Or I should say ‘Ola’, I guess, since I’m out in Andalucia now. Very very rural part of spain, last few days has been their local feria so a proper authentic experience all round, love it.

    I didn’t want to disturb the chat you guys have going so will leave you to it – just wanted to say it was good to hear you say you are finally ready to be happy Shelby, I hope you do act on it.  Kkasxo, it’s tough when you are stuck in a situation you want to change – I know you will have the strength to do so when you are ready.



    Hi both,

    Michelle, nice to hear from you from your travels again! Can’t wait to hear the incredible stories 🙂

    Shelby, how are you doing? It’s your last week of work isn’t it? How are things with your sister?

    Same old over in Kas world unfortunately. I try to get on with my days as best as I can and oftentimes the distraction of work and the everyday mundane life kinda does the trick, until the important things kick in again and I’m overwhelmed with sadness about how much I am completely not where I want to be in my life. Myself & Mr A are okay, but fall apart everytime we head back in the direction of the goals and wants and hopes for life, so same sh** different day eh! It’ll soon be October, my birthday followed by our four year anniversary a few days after and to be honest it very much doesn’t feel like we have anything to celebrate except for the fact that we haven’t killed one another yet haha! So I’m dropping hints that ‘anniversary’ this year is cancelled..

    I’ve come to the realisation that perhaps I am just one of the unlucky ones in life.

    Whilst growing up I had amazing aunties who never seemed to be in a long-term relationship, or getting married, or having children and I recall everyone always asking ‘hey, when are you settling down?!’. Well now I realise that oftentimes it wasn’t that they didn’t want to, those things just simply didn’t happen for them. And now I’m finding myself in the same boat, it’s not that I don’t want to, it just isn’t happening for me… And yet the questions are being asked.



    Hey Kkasxo,

    Tbh, I was trying to stay quiet since you and Shelby were chatting and my travel stories didn’t seem a great fit at that point….

    Honestly though, sometimes, actually most of the time now I find – simple is both the best and most honest. We’ve not done much apart from walk, hike, eat and drink ( 1.25 for a large glass of good red anyone?!? ) – the place we are in has zero English and it’s fantastic.  The guys in tight pants on horses for the fair were an interesting display too!!


    You know what though, when I read your words – I know what you need to do and I know you know it too. Relationships run their course, you have learned what you were supposed to have learned and your heart knows it is time to move on.

    I actually don’t believe you are destined to be one of those aunties, though I remember feeling the same at the time. You have to make space in your life first before new and better things/people can fill it. You know that. It’s just not easy to cut that last string.


    Bizarrely – and not something I expected to share – I had a dream about my ex few nights back. It was actually amazingly peaceful where I let him go, no blame, no anger, no regrets. Despite being over him for a long long while, it was a good feeling waking up.


    Let the good into your life – make the space and I’m pretty sure you will find you feel more positive, even through the sadness of letting go of old love.


    Take care – you too Shelby.







    <p style=”text-align: left;”>Hi all,</p>
    Yes, this week has been my final week and it has been a blur. Remember that issue I was fighting on behalf of colleagues (and myself at the time), well the conciliation talks were yesterday – 5 hours- it was intense and not positive for our side. My head was fried. But I was determined to keep the momentum going for as long as I could even up to my last day!

    I finish tomorrow and I don’t think it’s sunk in yet. There are flashes of emotion- all linked to my past- my mum- she was around when I got this job many many years ago and was so very proud of me and interested and involved. When I let it go tomorrow in a weird way I feel like I’m letting go of another link to her, another thread to the life I had where she existed.

    Sorry I know that’s fairly….heavy or whatever or weird, but it’s just what’s going on for me, when another person would just treat it like a contract ending, move on to the next!

    I graduated and got my cert yesterday too (after the gruelling work process) so I’m happy now to have that in my back pocket. I’m proud.


    I know what you mean about your aunties. I used to get that a lot before my ex. But the difference with your aunts is that they were single? They at least had the status of availability. You do not have that, so it would seem plausible to think, how is it possible to avoid what my aunts were often questioned about? Are you guaranteeing you don’t end up where you want to be by staying with Mr.A. This is in no way shape or form a judgement, I’m just trying to take away the complexity in an effort to make it simpler. Mr.A is unlikely to give you what you need in a relationship to end up with the happy outcome of your deepest desire, given what you’ve said about him thus far, so maybe your heart deep down knows this. I never want to say things out loud that will cause me sadness. Did I deep down know I wasn’t getting what I fundamentally needed from my ex? Yes. But if it were that simple, my heart wouldn’t have broken anyway. So you have a soul sista here. You’re unhappy. I was/am (?) unhappy. But I’m tired of being sad and the only way I could figure of attempting to change that (though not 100% convinced!) was to change my circumstances. Change something. It might not work but I can guarantee that staying exactly as I was was not going to change my unhappiness one single bit.

    I was not ready for a long time. I guess I was ready for this step now. Everyone finds the right time I think when they’re ready to find the right time.

    Hang in there – emotions are tough. They are wiping me lately, I bet for you too. I’m here always. X


    lovely to hear from you as always. I’m hopping on a plane..1.25?!!!! Goodness sake that is how I want to live! Looking forward to hearing more!



    Shelby how did your last day go?! How are you feeling this Friday eve?

    Its interesting that you mention you feel as though letting go of the job is almost like letting go of another link you had to your mum.. Yes that is heavy and deep but it is real and I can very much relate, actually for a long time I’ve questioned whether that is one of the subconscious reasons why I stuck around Mr A for so long…

    &&& congratulations on the graduation! Speaking of, I actually spent the day today watching my sister celebrate her graduation at university. What a beautiful day. Honestly I couldn’t be more proud to watch her in that gown after all of the ups and downs of uni life, I’m so pleased for her!

    Back to the aunties though, I guess from what I remember they were single yes BUT my relationship with Mr A doesn’t seem to be stopping the questions being fired at me the same way. I suppose my loved ones and those who have known me for a lifetime ultimately know of my wants, hopes and dreams for the future so to be in a ‘settled’ (little do they know) relationship for four years is like ‘Hey guys! When are you getting married? When are you having babies? We wanna party at a wedding! Or I wanna be a grandma/auntie’ etc. They probably don’t mean harm but it is extremely disheartening when it is everything I’ve always wanted, everything I hoped to have with him and as you said, he is just not capable of giving me any of that… not now, not anytime soon. I guess that’s where the comparison to my aunties comes in.

    I think this is very much a moment of deep reflection for me, the past few weeks. We’re slowly approaching the time in which we would b able to hand in our two month notice at the apartment and I think with that the tension is definitely sky high. He is adamant still that he 10000000000000% wants this no doubt. And yet he is simply so stuck in his ways that there is absolutely no resolution to my needs/wants having been ignored for the last four years and the expectation for me to keep waiting for the hypothetical thing is still sky high.

    I think a little bit like your ex he is just what I like to call a ‘never ready’ type of man. It’s all one day, no plans, no action plan no nothing just one day surely things will just fall in place right?…

    Who knows eh..



    Hi Kkasxo,

    My last day was emotional and overwhelming I must admit. But it was heartwarming to see the genuine sentiment people expressed to me.

    The cards and gifts and well wishes and phone calls honestly filled my heart. It became public knowledge pretty quickly that I was finishing up in my workplace and I sent a couple of goodbye and thanks emails to contacts, which resulted in 3 calls in the space of a few hours wondering would I be interested in jobs! So while I felt my own bosses reaction to my departure was underwhelming to put it mildly, those calls boosted my professional confidence a little again!

    After a party on Friday night, Saturday was horrific. I’m not a big drinker if I’m honest, but I enjoy my glass of wine. Let’s just say, prosecco is NOT the same as wine and I’m pretty sure I’m allergic to it! I thought I would end up in hospital or a morgue on Sat! Also I was staying in a hotel in the city for the night so I went into complete spiral when I got sick Sat morn. I completely reverted back to that anxious state where I need someone around me at all times. I’ve always had an odd phobia of being sick, but guess what thoughts cropped up….you guessed it….my ex.

    I cant remotely ever contact that man again, we are completely done, not even if I broke my leg outside his house and couldn’t walk would it be appropriate for me to contact him and YET all I wanted for much of that morning was him. He always provided me with such comfort when I was scared and vulnerable. He literally would sit holding my hand, talking to me, reassuring me and taking practical steps and I felt whenever I was with him when upset or ill, that everything would be okay and that he wouldn’t let anything happen to me.

    So these thoughts let to thoughts of criticism of myself for needing people, for not being enough of an adult to look after myself in such circumstances, like normal people. Then I got scared about travel….what if I get sick abroad, so far away from support… you can imagine, Saturday was not fun lying on a bathroom floor wanting to die and aching with pain at the loss of my ex and anxious as hell about being alone and my future. I managed to make it home (dunno how!) and I didn’t leave my bed until Sunday.

    On Sunday I was better and even did a charity walk for a local charity which helped my mum. Also my mood was fine on Sunday, but my need for my ex spooked me and I just felt sad that I’m finding it so difficult to let him go. It seems so silly given that he has let me go a long time ago, so I’m holding on to something that’s not even there, but if it were simple, then there would never be anything to see therapists about!

    In relation to your new place….what did you mean by two month notice? Is that like a trial period? What do you think the immediate future holds for you? The one thing I do know is that you won’t do something before you’re ready. People felt I should have ended it with my ex lots of time when I wasn’t getting what I needed. I knew I should have left my job years ago but I wasn’t ready. I became ready a month ago, I don’t know why, I just did it. I’m trying to change my outcome I guess. I’m trying to make decisions, I don’t know if it’ll work, but staying as I was didn’t seem to be making me happy so……



    Hey both.

    Brr, bit chilly back here isn’t it?!

    Shelby – congrats on your last day – must have been pretty emotional, I know mine was. Even when you want to leave, it’s still a big change. I’m really glad to hear you are going with the changing things option – nothing was going to change by remaining where you were. Well done on going through with it and yeah, it’s another nice ego boost when you already have job offers coming in.

    It does sound like your ex played quite a strong parental-like role for you so I guess it’s not surprising that’s who you wanted when you felt so bad the next morning. Yes, one of the tougher parts about growing up is learning to self-sooth as I believe it’s called. I just call it being able to pick yourself up when you have to. Each time gets easier and it’s an important part of any future healthy relationship. The difference in a strong, balanced relationship is that you don’t NEED the support, but it’s very appreciated. Huge difference.

    So what is the plan now – still thinking of going ahead to Oz or tempted into one of the new offers?

    Kkasxo m’dear – how goes it? I’m guessing by the two month thing you mean that was the minimum period you guys had to stay before being able to give notice to leave if you want to. Would you be able to keep the flat by yourself/with another house-mate. Or even stay in it with Mr A but declare the relationship part over? Complicated, that last one but I have seen some friends go that way purely for practical reasons until both get sorted.

    Curious though – if Mr A is 10000000% committed to the relationship……then how does that tie up with not wanting to move forwards yet? Just having too much fun as he is? It’s not like getting married changes that part at all – kids, yes,for sure but marriage is no real difference if already committed? So I’m guessing the two come as a package deal for you, get married and start trying for kids? Out of more curiousity, if he did agree – do you think you guys are in the right place emotionally to start a family?

    Thinking about it – I’m suspecting it’s always going to be this way. It’s just who he is and you you can’t expect him to change that.  Like with the flat – it was only when you gave him no choice on the timing that he came through. I suspect it’s going to be the same with marriage & kids – it’ll have to be you deciding it’s May next year ( or whatever! ) and he either goes with it or not. What do you reckon?

    Take care both.



    Hi Michelle,

    Sorry for the delay in response, work has been way too much for me recently! Some real ag between myself and my bosses currently and so my emotions are an absolute rollercoaster.

    To answer your questions, I have no clue lol. He is 100000000% committed, so he says, but not in a rush to get married or have children. I think it ties in closely with his hypothetical approach to everything else in life and that those things will simply just happen to him at some point down the line. The issue with that is, he seems to be under the impression that one day (sometime in the future) will be a better day to approach all of these things. Now whilst he may be right that there is a time for everything in life, I do also think he is being extremely naive to think there will come a day where he will feel like he is mature enough/old enough/ has achieved enough/settled enough to proceed with this future… He’s waiting for an epiphany in a nut shell.

    For me, I’ve always been quite an organised person. I love putting my ideas into action, my goals into plans and working hard on things to achieve my dreams. No matter how long it will take me, I know if I am working towards those things I am happy, because I will get there in the end. So when we were having one of our discussions some few weeks ago I made a point about the fact that if we remain together, I would like to be in a position in which I am ‘not trying but not preventing’ pregnancy at around the end of 2020/ beginning of 2021. I will be 27/28 at that point, I have had my fair share of partying, holidaying, I now have a settled job, a ‘long term relationship’, there isn’t really anything else that I would like to do with my life before I welcome children but I would like the next year/ two years to enjoy my free time and enjoy the flat, if we remain together. Well he freaked out to say the least, ‘my goodness, that’s so soon! You’re in such a rush?! How will we raise children in this flat?! I am not having children until I have a mortgage, I am not having children until I am married etc etc etc.’

    So soon? Two years is soon? Would’ve been together 6 going on 7 years at that stage… I will be approaching my thirties, more than reasonable if you ask me.

    There is also that that i’d always dreamt of being married by 30. And yes granted life doesn’t always go to plan but if i am to be in a 7 year long relationship with no significant sign of commitment then i’d rather be by myself in all honesty.

    We just cannot agree on it to be honest and its come to a point where it isn’t a compromise for me anymore, it is a deal breaker and he is aware of that. I had ‘waited around’ the last four years in the hope that we were both young and stupid and eventually things will naturally progress. I am not throwing that in his face as it was my choice BUT as time goes on, you grow older, you grow up and your priorities change, different things become important to you and those are the things that are important to me, if he cannot meet me half way then he will just have to continue without me.



    Hey Kkasxo.

    No worries, hope work settles down – been there, done that – it’s tiring stuff, battling through.

    So, Mr A…..I see…..yeah, that’s pretty much what I was getting at – if you put a timeframe around your hopes/expectations, it very quickly helps to see if you are both thinking the same way.  Two years is a pretty reasonable thought – apart from having fun you’d also want to make sure you guys are back on track and happy too before getting into marriage and kids. His reaction says it all right.  That much freaking out suggests he is a lot less ready for marriage/kids. It’s really helpful in one way for you, if not what you want to hear. At least you know where he is at.

    Funnily enough allegedly my mum had to pretty much push/persuade my dad that it was the right time for kids, he was a bit more like your Mr A, hey, what , already?!  Though they were already married for 4 years and in those days you were deemed past it at 21!

    You’ve got an amazingly good, clear view on it – exactly right. It isn’t anybodys ‘fault’ if you now want different things – or even if you want the same things but at different times. If you could get him to think through when he would see it happening and compromise, then great. If not, sad but ok, you can deal with that too. Better than waiting till you are 30 and it still doesn’t happen. As we’ve always said, you can’t change people and you can only deal with the reality in front of you.

    Take care, it’s tough, but you sound like you’re doing ok working your way through it.



    Hi Michelle,

    Regarding your father, yes I think generally the majority of men do need a little push sometimes. I think its just their relaxed nature, perhaps a lack of the ‘ticking time clock’ that us women have that leads them to believe they have all the time in the world, because they actually do. Whereas women are a little more under pressure, if a family and children is what you want then there is going to come a time where sooner or later we will all have to say okay we’re running out of time here, now’s the time.

    But it is definitely one thing having to give someone a push and another when they are straight up saying ‘No this is not the way I see things for myself’. Either way, like I say it is okay for him to feel the way he feels. It’s just at this point in time it isn’t okay for me, for us so to speak as I am on a different page.

    I think I am okay Michelle. My heart obviously breaks at the thought as it would but I just keep reminding myself that I have lived through something that near enough killed me, I have been through the worst and I am still alive and breathing. it may hurt, tear me apart etc but if that isn’t proof that I can get through it all then what is?  I HAVE to be okay.

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