Love After Loss
Losing a spouse can be devastating. Many feel that they will never be able to love again. Eharmony.com has some tips for widows and widowers who are thinking about getting back in the game. These include:
• Beware of the “Rebound Effect”: Someone who experiences loss – either through divorce, death or abandonment – is often left lonely, disoriented and grieving. Avoiding a rebound and its hurtful consequences begins by taking any budding relationship very slowly and deliberately. Each step should be carefully evaluated with both the head (rational thinking) and the heart (romantic possibilities).
• Call for Back-Up: Don’t go it alone. Seek input and advice from people whose judgment you trust. When you’re hurting after a loss, you are vulnerable. A counselor – an actual therapist, close friend or trusted family member – can help. Be open-minded and ask: “What should I be doing differently?” and “How can I protect myself?”
• Guard Your Heart: Take sensible precautions. Keep your expectations on a realistic level. No one is perfect, and every new relationship will have its snags. Keep your options open until you’re sure. There’s no need to make a commitment to be “exclusive” with someone before you’re completely ready.
• Muster Your Courage: If you are considering a return to love after loss, be kind and gentle with yourself. Give yourself permission to work through all the difficult emotions, so you’ll be ready when a wonderful person enters your life.
SMART WOMAN CONTACT:
Dr. Karen Ruskin