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I once knocked a small figurine off my desk. It had some sentimental value, so I was upset when it shattered into hundreds of pieces. It had been broken and fixed a couple of times before, but this time, the damage was beyond repair. So as much as it meant to me, I had to face the fact it couldn’t be fixed.

The figurine became a metaphor for some of my past relationships; some became too broken to be fixed. No matter how many attempts to repair, they kept getting knocked over.

A Course of Miracles teaches that relationships will naturally end when the maximum amount of learning has occurred. It took a while to understand the meaning of this concept. Growth in this context means removing all the internal barriers to love. It means letting go of anger and guilt and facing the underlying fear. It’s fear that causes people to treat a relationship recklessly and cause it to break.

When relationships are crumbling, love can be confusing. Trying harder versus letting go is the ultimate challenge. There’s only so much each person can do to keep a relationship alive. If one person is committed to love and the other person is committed to fear, the relationship can never stabilize.

No relationship is perfect, and there’s growth in finding one’s voice and speaking the truth. And since “I am not a victim of the world I see,” your voice, when spoken with love, is the courage to be vulnerable. Transparency means you are able to express what’s troubling you and listen to the other person so that you can truly know one another.  In a loving relationship, honesty is the fiber of trust, and forgiveness is the glue that cements the fractures.

But when someone is committed to destroying every block that is built, it’s not loving to keep picking them up. You aren’t here to waste your life on reassembling someone else’s destruction. Sometimes, it’s best to gather the pieces of your heart and walk away.

It takes two people committed to growth for their relationship to blossom and grow. I once heard a beautiful offering, “I love you, I bless you, I set you free.”

When someone is more committed to destroying a relationship than constructive problem solving, that person must be set free. You can wish the other person well and move forward. Better to go through the pain of loss than to keep getting knocked down.

Eventually, the heart will mend, and as time passes, the alignment of wills to let love replace all else may return. Then, when both people have time to reflect on their actions and what they could do better, their intentions are better aligned. At that point, it is possible to restore a loving connection in whatever form it takes — family, friend, or lover. It doesn’t matter the form; so long as there’s an opening, love will find itself.

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Dr. Donna Marks has been an author, consultant, public speaker, and psychotherapist for over thirty years. She was licensed as a Mental Health Counselor in 1987 and then certified in Addiction, Gestalt Therapy, Hypnosis, Sex Therapy, and Psychoanalysis. She currently has a concierge psychotherapy practice in Palm Beach, Florida.
She has appeared on numerous podcasts and local television. She is the author of two books, Learn Grow Forgive – A Path to Spiritual Success, and Exit the Maze: One Addiction, One Cause, One Solution (revised), and winner of multiple book awards. Her next book, The Healing Moment: Seven Keys to Turn Messes into Miracles, will be released in 2023.

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