Endings are hard, but so are beginnings! Many people stay in relationships way too long, holding on to what they once had and the feelings they once felt for their special someone.
If both parties are not equally vested in resolving the relationship and the issues that brought the relationship past the point of no return, then the one person who remains holding on, will be the one to get hurt the most.
Communication is a word easier said, than done. One partner may be the one to try and talk out issues they feel the couple is having. The other person may have already shut down due to resentment, anger and hurt. That is why when a lot of people try to salvage their marriage and go to counseling, it is very difficult and way too late because one person has already checked out and is not willing to put in the effort and emotion it would take to revive it.
Each relationship is different but it is usually pretty easy to tell when one party has checked out.
There are signs but unfortunately we tend to not want to see them. I have spoken to so many people that told me they were blindsided that their spouse was unhappy and wanted out of the marriage. They explain to me in detail what was happening at that point in their relationship and once I broke it down for them, they could finally see all the signs. Some signs to look for, for example, is when your partner all of a sudden becomes more independent. They take more time for their individual interests and don’t include you. They stay away from home more often than they used to, or make up excuses as to not coming home. Or they begin to change their appearance or their routine.
So when is it time to finally say “it’s over?”
Usually in a relationship “the giver” is the one trying to save it and keep it alive. They continue on as if nothing is wrong, they refuse to see the warning signs and day to day, their partner is basically sucking the life out of them a little at a time. You know in your heart when it is over. It’s just coming to terms with it that is difficult. It is up to you how long you want to hold on. Some people wear a coat of the past for the rest of their lives and can never move forward basically letting their past partner dictate how their future will go.
Widows and widowers have different issues they need to tackle when thinking about moving forward in life without their spouse. Some had the conversation with their spouse about moving forward beforehand. Once the spouse has passed, they then feel that their spouse gave them their blessing to have a happy life with someone else freeing up any guilty feelings about moving forward. Others grieve while their ailing spouse is still alive so once their spouse has passed, they are usually ready rather quickly to move forward because they have already been through so much agony while their partner was still alive.
Moving on from a past relationship is very hard no matter what the situation is. You will know in your heart when it is time to move on and you will know in your heart when it will be open again for new beginnings.