Are you in a relationship that's going sour? Did a long-time lover leave you? Or maybe you are the one seeking a divorce. No matter who initiated the breakup, Dr. Robin says it's a painful experience that nearly everyone can relate to. "It is a common affliction, it is something that is somehow pervasive—it knocks on all of our doors at one time or another," Dr. Robin says.
Sometimes you might want to break up with someone, but you don't, even though you know you no longer have the kind of romantic or emotional connection you want. Why don't we want to initiate a breakup? "It is rooted in fear, the fear that you won't be able to begin again, that you won't find that romantic intimate partner, the right person, someone who reciprocates your love, reciprocates your generosity," she says.
Instead of relying on the habitual connection you have with someone who you have been with for a long time, Dr. Robin says you need to be true to yourself. "There are times in which you've got to embrace that when it is over, it is over," she says.
Breakups don't just occur in romantic relationships—Dr. Robin says you can break up with someone who was once a good friend. If there is any relationship in your life that is dragging you down, Dr. Robin says it is time to reevaluate your connection with that person.
"Part of your decision has to be—who is it in your life that is a keeper and who is it in your life that it is time to renegotiate the relationship [with] or simply let it go?" she says. While breaking up with someone may be difficult, Dr. Robin says that sometimes the pain is necessary. "It's a big deal as you start actually understanding that breaking up is … a natural part of what happens as you grow as an individual, as an adult."
Printed from Oprah.com on Thursday, December 5, 2013