No matter what your age, whether you’re 13, 33 or 83, you’ve been hurt by someone. Sometimes you’ve been hurt by a friend, sibling, romantic partner, parent or child. Maybe they (he/she/them) acted out of selfishness, greed, anger, insensitivity, or…maybe they don’t even realize they hurt you.
Either way, when you’re hurting, your feelings are real and they deserve to be paid some attention. When you’ve been hurt, no one can tell you how you should feel, example “Ah, don’t feel sad, you’re better off without him” and other unhelpful comments similar to that.
The thing is, when someone hurts your feelings, you have a few options. If you’re able, you can just let it roll off your back, especially if you understand that the person is coming at you from a place of pain themselves.
You’ve got some work to do. Yes, YOU have some work to do. Depending on the depth of your pain, and how deep or serious the issue is- someone made a nasty remark that hurt your feelings a little bit, vs a romantic partner did something to break your trust and/or the vows you made, or you’ve been rejected or dumped by someone you cared for or loved- you have to decide if you think you can forgive him/her. You have to think about why the remark or action hurt your feelings.
Processing Your Pain
When you’ve been hurt by someone’s ignorant or insensitive comment, you have to decide whether it’s a minor level of hurt, or more of a huge blow or complete heartbreak. No one gets to tell you how much pain you’re in. Your feelings are real and you need to work through them in order to understand and heal the hurt so you can move on.
You have to move on. You can’t wallow in the pain. Think on it just long enough to understand what it is that you’re feeling and why. Then take steps to repair your heart. Maybe you’re the kind of person who needs to talk to friends in order to work through your pain. Maybe you prefer to have some alone time in order to process. Either way, speak your feelings out loud to validate them but understand that it’s not good to dwell, and repeat, repeat, repeat without making progress.
I think it’s safe to say that we’ve all felt the sting of rejection at one time or another. Maybe from friends at school. Maybe from a love interest. Maybe from an employer. Rejection hurts, but it has absolutely nothing to do with your value as a person. You must not let it affect your self esteem.
If you’re a young person, you may not have experienced this yet, but as you go through life, you will see how rejection by certain people can turn out to be a good thing. Unfortunately you don’t tend to see that until after; after the rejection, after the heartbreak, after the struggle to get back on track. But you will see it.
Let Them Go
If you’re struggling right now with the pain of rejection by friends or someone you like or love, please know that this is not about you. It’s about the other person. You may not be right for him/her. Therefore, he/she is not right for you. In time, as you go through sadness, anger and possibly a very short (hopefully) stint feeling sorry for yourself, you will see that if a person walks away from you, you need to let them walk. Yes, it hurts.
Don’t spend time looking at their social media, or calling them. Keep moving forward, learning from the process about what you value and what you want. Remember, you have great value, and deserve love and respect. Accept nothing less. Don’t take the rejection personally. It’s just not the right fit for you.
I watched a good podcast on Lewis Howe’s School of Greatness in which he interviewed Guy Winch. The episode is called How to Fix a Broken Heart. In this podcast Dr. Winch discusses how we can work through the grief associated with loss and rejection, so that we don’t get stuck in what he calls complicated grief.
FOCUS ON THE FUTURE~
As I mentioned earlier, you may not realize it until later, but sometimes rejection and heartbreak from losing someone, can be protection from a life that’s not meant for you. I really like the tips that Matthew Hussey shares in this YouTube video. Have a look.
Take Time To Grieve
If you’ve loved someone and he/she leaves you, it has been described as similar to a death. Take the time you need to grieve that loss, but don’t wallow in your pain or you run the risk of getting stuck in that pain. We must progress through our emotions and those emotions will range from sadness, anger, depression, poor self esteem, and back up to anger. As long as you progress over time, spending less and less time thinking about that person in longing, then you’re on the right track. It may take 6 minutes or 6 months, but you deserve to feel your pain when you’ve been hurt.
As Matthew Hussey says, “the pain of loss comes when you go back in your mind to that person.” So keep it short, don’t just remember the good times, be realistic about the not so good times. Be objective. Make sure that you are progressing through that pain. This is a fresh start for you.
Sometimes we feel the need to fill that void. We miss the phone calls, texts and plans. Don’t call or text that person. Fill your time with positive activities that benefit your life, that prepare you for the next person who is worthy of your time. It’s not a good idea to fill that void by immediately dating someone new. You are wounded and you need time to re-group. And “new person” doesn’t deserve to be dragged in to someone’s life who is not ready or emotionally free.
Even If You’re The One Who Left
Maybe you realized that the relationship you were in was not going in the direction you want for your life. Maybe you were the one to end the relationship. It can still hurt you. Sometimes we’re with a wonderful person, but the lifestyle or future plans or chemistry is just not in line with yours. Even if you end the relationship, you may feel pain, loss and grief. Take your time to process it before moving on to another relationship.
Kids Hurt Too!
So, what about our children? A three year old who feels hurt, sad or angry may act “poorly” out of frustration. I ask you to understand that all humans react to emotions according to their understanding of pain, frustration and anger. Be kind to your child who reacts to sadness, and anger. Allow them to feel what they feel, ask them about it, validate it, and help them to understand their emotions. That’s how they will learn. Don’t expect more from your children than they are capable of.
Steps To Heal
When you are deeply hurt by the actions of other people, whether deliberate or not, a good course of action is:
- acknowledge how you feel; validate that
- spend time thinking about the relationship, objectively
- analyze your feelings, the good and bad parts of the relationship
- spend time healing, learning something new, be kind to yourself
- do not try to reconnect with this person. Move on
What someone did to you, is not a reflection of you. It’s not a reflection of your worth. It doesn’t matter why this person hurt you, whether it’s out of his/her own pain, or inability to process feelings or behave appropriately or honestly. It’s not your job to figure out why. It IS your job to take care of you. Grieve the loss, but look to the future. The time that you spent with this person may have been all that God or the universe intended. They have served their purpose in your life. Move toward your new life, your future, with a fresh outlook and hope!
Thanks for reading. Check back next Sunday for another post on Parts Of Ourselves~ Carol Paino