Humans do their best when they’re in relationship. Unfortunately, the only way to be in relationship, whether with your lover, your children, your employee, a friend means you’re going to have to show up as you really are way more often than you’d like. You’re going to have to be messy, imperfect, moody even, and vulnerable.
If you’re still dreaming about your ex or desperately wanting your divorce to be done with or you’re ready to move on to peace and acceptance but you’re still thinking about them, dreaming about them or wanting sex with them, here are 3 ways to help you purge them out of your life once you’ve grounded some things about being human.
Acceptance of who you are and how you’re made.
Too often we think we can be Superman and override our innate wiring! No, you can’t fly and no, you can’t remove your past. I like to say, “welcome to the human race!”
You’ve got a mind that remembers the good times and a memory that remembers the bad times. Which includes, the good sex, the not so good sex, the fighting, the romantic evenings; the time they gave you that amazing smile, the time they hurt you. You and your mind, minus a serious brain injury or a lobotomy, are going to remember who you loved and what you did long after the union has ended. It just works that way.
You are way stronger than you give yourself credit!
What makes you think you can’t override your thoughts? Oh, and while we’re on it, why do you believe all of them anyway? In other words, are those thoughts and fantasies even true?
I have clients who tell me they dream of having sex with their exes all the time and swear if, given the chance, they would! It takes a moment or two of me reminding them that they’re in fantasy mode lying to themselves because in truth, usually, most of the time, given the chance to jump their ex’s bones, they don’t. And they haven’t.
It’s all tricks their minds are playing on them. Which is fun and exciting - I mean, there are a few celebrities I’d like to curl up with in my mind, in my fantasies. But for some idealized perception, we don’t think we’re supposed to be imagining sleeping with the person who hurt us. It’s simply not true. It’s also way too much pressure.
Of course, you’re going to remember having sex with them. Of course, you’re going to use them going forward to feed your fantasies and your sex life. And especially if you’re not with another person. (I’m not even discussing what happens when you’re with another person and you’re still fantasying about them… )
When it comes to dreaming at night, do you think you can control dreams too?
Slow down, my friend… seriously, when was the last time you were able to control your hair on your own without product, a few tools, and a great hairdresser? Now, back to dreaming… do you really think you have the power and ability to control your sub-conscious dream state? Didn’t think so.
What are dreams? I did some research before writing this article and found that dreams are as confusing to those who study them as for those having them. Apparently, dreams do everything from helping us manage stress to remembering stuff dealt with during the day. Dreams are dreams and for those who are really into them, only the dreamer can define what they mean to them.
Which means. Stop fretting! You’re going to dream about your exes until you don’t. You’re going to think you want to have sex with them but you won’t (or you will and then you’ll deal with that in reality) and you’re going to miss them.
Missing them is the worst part of dreaming and thinking about our exes. It’s the thing that hurts our insides.
Congratulations, you are not a worm or a bird or even a dog. No offense to dogs! You are a human being and you experience being vulnerable, imperfect, and at times, even broken hearted. 💔
It hurts when we remember our exes especially if we only recall the fond, fun or sexy moments. It hurts until you're able to focus on yourself and your future. It hurts until you’re ready to love someone else or you can remember the entire story - the good parts and the bad parts.
We remember reality in strange ways too.
We dismiss details, minimize information, delete the stuff we’d rather forget. Which I suppose is why the dream state is so important, it helps keep us on track.
After breaking up with one of my lovers, I was told he was a user of certain drugs I wouldn’t want around me and my children. I couldn’t recall a single time I had seen him using and was stunned by the revelation. Then slowly, over the course of the next 3-months (maybe longer… I can’t remember 😉 ) I recalled how other people had tried to tip me off. Certain scenes started coming back to me.
We traveled a lot and I remembered how there were these moments when I felt as if I had witnessed something being packed in a bag I shouldn’t have seen. And then I recalled the day I was in a pool looking up at the balcony forty stories up and seeing a man - my friend - on his balcony smoking.
I was told it was a cigar.
When we broke up months and months later, it took a long time for me to work through all the good memories, my sadness, my missing until I finally stumbled upon the reality that I had been living. I had been lied to over and over and over again. He was a user and I knew it once I put the pieces together. It all came back to me as if I was going through the file cabinet of my mind. Image after image, memory after memory. I had loved a person I could never have had in my life. It was all a lie.
The revelation came to me in my dream state and it began the healing portion of my breakup.
I share this with you, not as a condemnation of users but because I had completely blanked out the memories until I was asleep or in that dream state just before waking. It took my dreams to help me come back to reality.
If you’re dreaming about your ex and wanting to purge them, may I suggest a few ways to begin the purging?
1) Be sure you’re ready to let go. There may be something inside that’s not quite ready to let go. A lesson, a thought, a feeling you need to become grounded again in your intuition and higher power. You’re not a fool for ending or letting go of someone who doesn’t love you. You need to know what the lessons were.
2) Ask for help. Before going to bed, say a prayer or have the thought that for tonight, you’re asking your higher power to release them from your dreams. Ask your higher power to watch over your ex and to take care of them. Then ask to be watched and guided as well.
There were many times during my breakups that I asked for an ex to be granted some dignity that I couldn’t give, while bargaining for a little help myself!
3) Keep looking forward. Too often we stay fixated on our past lovers out of fear of being hurt again. We shield our hearts from being vulnerable, we imagine going on a date as being given kryptonite. None of that is true. If you don’t wish to be in a relationship, you don’t have to be. But one of the best ways not to dream about your ex is to be in a new relationship with someone who adores you.
We pretend we can handle being alone with our cats and our dogs. We worry about caring for our children and not letting them get abandoned. We imagine that we’re better off alone than with someone who could potentially hurt us. Only you get to make that decision for your life. But you are human and as humans, we do best in relationship.
Laura Bonarrigo is a Certified Life Coach and a Certified Divorce Coach at laurabonarrigo.com. Laura's a writer, public speaker and the founder of doingDivorce School an online coaching program for those ready to shed the pain of divorce. For empowering and practical ways to lose the identity of your past, visit www.doingDivorceSchool.com and laurabonarrigo.com.