Write about a time when a relationship ended.
Other than breaks up with ex-boyfriends, none of whom I dated long, I have very few relationships that have outright ended. Rather, there have been more instances of friendships evolving and my growing apart from people I used to feel close to. I realize that this is normal, for various reasons, and during different seasons of our lives we tend to connect with certain people that we might not otherwise befriend.
Though I understand rationally that not all relationships last, it is still bittersweet for me when those I once considered a dear friend and I slowly stop spending as much time together and eventually rarely hang out or chat as much as we used to, if at all.
This is something I have struggled with throughout my life, as a child, teenager, young adult and now being in my late thirties. I do my best to focus on the relationships in my life that are strong and consistent. I try to “feed the feeders,” as my mom has encouraged me to do, as opposed to dwelling on the “eaters,” those friends who don’t give us the time, attention and care that we crave, and/or the ones who no longer seem interested in having a close relationship.
That said, it is bittersweet for me to see and think about friends that I used to feel close to and to hear about social gatherings they are a part of in which I am no longer invited/included. I don’t know which is worse for a friendship to break up over a disagreement or when the relationship just slowly seems to fade away. Both scenarios are painful in their own ways. There are no easy answers when it comes to what makes relationships stand the test of time.
I do feel grateful for the close friends in my life that I can go days, weeks and even months without connecting and then be able to pick up where we left off the last time we talked or were together. I also get that relationships take work, whether it is a marriage, a friendship or a parent/child relationship. I take responsibility for the fact that when relationship ends or a friend and I grow a part that in most cases we both had a hand in the reasons for going our separate ways.
I will leave you with a poem I really like about relationships. You may have seen it before. I tried to determine who the author is, but haven’t been able to confirm who wrote it. Though it is sometimes attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt, so will go with unknown for now.
Reason, Season, or Lifetime
People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. When you figure out which one it is, you will know what to do for each person.
When someone is in your life for a REASON, it is usually to meet a need you have expressed. They have come to assist you through a difficulty; to provide you with guidance and support; to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually. They may seem like a Godsend, and they are. They are there for the reason you need them to be.
Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time, this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end. Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away. Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand. What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done. The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.
Some people come into your life for a SEASON, because your turn has come to share, grow or learn. They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh. They may teach you something you have never done. They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy. Believe it. It is real. But only for a season.
LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons; things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation. Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person, and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life. It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.
Tell me about a time when a relationship ended in your life.
Kathy Benson is a bereaved and blessed mom, writer and group fitness instructor trying to live mindfully and find joy in the journey after dealing with secondary infertility and loss for five years. She lives in Chicago, Illinois with her husband and two living children.