Advice Needed: My Soulmate Has Lost His Soul!
What should you do when your soulmate’s soul is getting sucked down the karmic drain? Should you throw them a line, let them sort it out on their own, or some combination of both? I received this email last night and it resonated at a deep level. Read on for my take.
“My boyfriend and I were together 4 and a half years. During that time, I got depressed and started seeing a counselor who told me I had to love myself, stop holding on to the past and to stop attaching myself to my boyfriend (I always thought we were like one soul). I threw him out of the house, but I didn’t realise he was depressed, and now he is seeing a counselor too. I look and feel 100%, I’m a new person, and yes I do love myself now, I laugh and love everyday. But then when I see my boyfriend he’s not in a good place, in fact he’s going down. When I had space, I grew, but he won’t. He’s going around with bad company and he says he wants to be with me and change. I was very clingy and jealous when was with him, almost toxic. But I have a new life. I love him, but I’m afraid to love him. … Do I give him more time to find himself? I just need advice. Everybody I know tells me to get rid of him as if it’s nothing in the world. Nobody has listened or knows what we were like.”
YOU HAVE TO SAVE YOURSELF FIRST.
Put your oxygen mask on first before helping others! This might sound selfish but it is not. It is the essence of radical self love! I have extricated myself from several love affairs which had become bleak and were only going to become more so. Of course, we always want to help our beloved with whatever they are going through, but sometimes there is a limit to what you can do. In my case, I left because I knew that if I stayed, I was going to get dragged down with them.
I think the way that we define “soulmate” is inaccurate and dangerous. It is not someone you are tied to no matter what. A soulmate is not a rock around your ankle. A soulmate is someone who holds up a mirror so you can see your true self. That isn’t always fun, but it doesn’t extinguish your joy. It doesn’t suck your energy. It doesn’t feel like hell every single day. That is something else entirely.
I understand how hard it is to break up when you feel intimately bonded with someone else. But loving him from a distance is going to be the safest option for you. And maybe “boundaries” should be your safe-word!
WORDS ARE MEANINGLESS, ACTIONS SAY EVERYTHING.
He says he wants to be with you and change, but the real question is, what has he done to better himself? If he’s truly serious about being his best self, he will proactively — and without prompting from you — detach from his toxic friends and get serious about his emotional health. He is clearly hurting and feels like being with you will solve all his problems, but it won’t. His problems will be right there where he left them. It’s wonderful that he is seeing a therapist but he needs to take consistent action to prove that he is truly changing his ways. Without that, his words are simply well-intentioned nonsense.
Recently, I saw a clip of Will Smith talking about what it takes to make a marriage work. He said, “The most difficult part of a relationship is that it’s really not between two people that makes it work. It’s between you and you. What Jada and I have learned is bettering ourselves individually is how you make a relationship work. If you’re going to have counselling, marriage counselling isn’t always the way to go. In individual counselling, you get yourself together, and present yourself to your partner in a higher spiritual and emotional state. And you’d be surprised how much better things can go.”
Take it from the Fresh Prince. Counselling is a great first step. Now we need to see how he presents himself to you, consistently and over time.
LOOK AT WHO YOU WERE WHEN YOU WERE WITH HIM.
This advice is all well and good, but it’s actually much more simple than that. You said in your email that when you were with your ex, you were jealous, clingy, and toxic, and now you laugh every day and feel good about yourself. What else needs to be said?
We all have a higher and a lower self, and absolutely everyone we come into contact with encourages various facets of our personality. I have some friends who bring out my gossipy, intolerant, judgmental side. But I also have friends who encourage my joy, my creativity, my optimism and enthusiasm. I know that in order to be my best self, I have to limit the time I spend with the first group, and increase the time I spend with the others.
My father once told me that the most important decision you will ever make is who you decide to spend your life with. They will shape your entire existence! Marrying a pessimistic cynic is going to be a drag no matter how optimistic you are. Having a baby with someone who distrusts everyone and always assumes the worst is going to create problems. Shacking up with a lazy, demotivated lump is… well, you get the idea!
You have already proven to yourself that you don’t need him in your life in order to be happy. Mostly what you are dealing with is guilt and a sense of responsibility. But here’s the thing: other people’s happiness is their responsibility, and there’s nothing you can do to solve their emotional problems. It is the height of arrogance to believe otherwise!
One thing that will help you sever the emotional connection that is holding you back is Love Rehab, my 7 day mini-class to help you get over your ex for good! We use a mix of psychology, radical self love and ritual to transform your attachments and reframe your relationship. It is extremely powerful and the women who have taken the class have seen incredible results! Plus, it’s only $33!
All the best to you. I think you know what you need to do. Keep your head high… And your standards higher!
Man, I love talking about relationships. You could say it’s my new obsession. If you want more of this kind of LOVE, SEX AND RELATIONSHIP SMACKDOWN (!!!), Love Bomb is my community where we talk about intimacy, dating, sensuality, healing, and alllllll the rest of it. Click through for more details.
Photo by Janneke Storm via Rock N Roll Bride.