Everyone has dealt with broken relationships. Whether you’re knee-deep in an addiction, in recovery, or never had an addiction in your life, we’ve all been there. Maybe it’s your parent or best friend or spouse. People hurt each other – whether intentionally or not. And when we hurt each other, shit tends to hit the fan. We create our own stumbling block and often don’t know how to get up from it. We often question if these broken relationships can even be healed.
There is a light at the end of the tunnel, though. These can be mended, as long as you go down the right path.
- Communicate. Any relationship in life requires communication. This means openness, honesty, and truly listening to the other person. Let him know why you’re upset, listen to why he is upset, and discuss the situation to led to this. (Reading more about using your words for tips of effective communication.)
- Own your faults. Maybe you disagree with the blame that the other person has laid – that’s okay. Whether or not you agree with him, at least acknowledge what you truly believe you have done to contribute to this mess. When you can recognize that you had a part in this, it will be easier to avoid making the same mistakes. And once you have voiced your own part in this, ask for forgiveness.
- Forgive. This is just as important as asking for forgiveness. You have to forgive the other person for his mistakes so that you can move past this. Let’s be honest – forgiveness is tough. But the anger you hold does nothing to the other person; it only weighs you do. When you can forgive, you allow yourself to move forward.
- Plan for the future. Maybe he broke your trust and need more honest communication in the future. Maybe you ignored his boundaries and he needs you to be more mindful of his needs. Whatever is required to keep this relationship going in a healthy manner, discuss it and make a decision to be respectful of the other.
- Avoid repeating the past. Did you lose something that was valuable to the other person? Figure out a way to keep things safe going forward. Talk about whatever needs to happen to not only mend the broken relationship, but to also prevent a reoccurance.
In some cases, the other party may not want to heal this relationship. It is absolutely that person’s right to make this decision. Unfortunately, that means that you have lost that relationship. So what do you do? First and foremost, you still need to forgive the person – and yourself. Once you have forgiven, make note of what you need to do so that you can avoid any other relationships crumbling because of the same issue. When you can acknowledge this, you can keep on keepin’ on with others and not have the worry of this becoming a problem again.