Mail. We Get Mail on “Will I Survive This?”

I appreciate the emails I’ve gotten about re-running some of the Mail posts. Here is another one that addresses some concerns of some of you.

Hi Susan,

First, I would like to say that I have read your book and I really felt like you knew my life. It’s a very intense book. I’m sure you get thousands of emails like this and I really hope you get to read my email.

My fiancé and I broke up 4 months ago and I don’t know how I’m going to survive. I feel like I’m slowly dying. Even though I broke up with him I never really thought that he was going to let me go. We have broken up in the past and we always make up but this time he said that he needs time to fix himself. He has an anger issue and this is why I broke the relationship even though he never got physical with me his actions (hurting himself, punching the wall, screaming at me and etc) were really scaring me and my two kids.
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Are You Clinically Depressed?

Most of my posts assume that if you are working through painful stuff and/or a painful breakup, you are feeling down and upset. There might even be a hint of depression there and some days when you don’t feel like getting out of bed.

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The Blame Game: Help Yourself Out Of It

Dad would start blaming, as if it were important to establish once and for all who was responsible for every peccadillo.” ~ Sharon Wegscheider-Cruse (ACOA/codependency expert)

The latest group of comments in the Check in Thread talks a lot about being blamed for things we didn’t do.

Needing someone to blame whenever something goes wrong is a hallmark of a dysfunctional family. People who want to blame others do so to shift the focus onto someone and lay the responsibility for whatever went wrong squarely at someone’s feet.

It doesn’t matter if someone really IS to blame or not (sometimes stuff happens and that is life), someone WILL be blamed.

Usually the family has elected the most culpable person to the role of black sheep. This person will be blamed whether or not they had anything to do with it or whether or not ANYONE had anything to do with it. This person will be blamed for both commissions (“you did this”) or omissions (“why didn’t you do something about this?”). It doesn’t matter. Continue reading

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Mail. We Get Mail When We Are Replaced in a Very Public (FB) Way


I wrote this post in 2008 but have re-run it several times since. Why? Because it keeps coming up as an issue. If you recognize yourself in this, ask yourself: “Does it hurt when I do this?” and answer “MAYBE I SHOULDN’T DO THIS.”

Second question:

Whenever you hear yourself say “It’s not about this…” Chances are: Yes it is. That’s exactly what it’s about.

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Would You Still Love?

If you had a crystal ball and knew it would end badly, would you still love?

Psychology Today Blog: Would You Still Love?

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5/19 Check in Post

Green Check MarkHow is everyone doing?

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Life Isn’t Fair. Deal With It.

Grief is an important part of moving on. It’s important to feel as bad as you really feel. It’s important to give credence to your grief and your hurt. But it’s also important to take time out (especially as the process goes on) and live your life.

But the other thing is that gratitude for what you do have is important.
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Learning What We Need To Know

Learn“I am always ready to learn, although I do not always like being taught.” – Winston Churchill

When I first started my journey toward wholeness, I spent a lot of time wishing that someone would feel sorry for me, take pity on me, see that I had been through a lot.

My first therapist did not feel sorry for me but told me what I needed to hear. My support group could be brutally honest as well.

One dear friend told me if I was looking for sympathy I would find it “in the dictionary between sh&% and syphillis.” Harsh words but ones that helped me to realize that there was no prize in getting sympathy. There was only a prize in hearing the truth about me. And if the truth is told with love and caring, it is a great truth indeed. Some of the greatest truths are harsh to hear.

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Mail. We Get Mail.

E-mail on white background. Isolated 3D imageWe used to have a feature called Mail. We Get Mail on ….. and the topic would be one that multiple people wrote to me about or would be in comments. This is one that was asked to be rerun a few times including recently…so here it is.

Hi Susan,

I’m going through bouts of depression…. I feel I have some of the warning signs of it.. I just need to talk to someone who can give me some solid advice about my particular problem.

I’ve been reading some of your post and others… and I must say, it has been somewhat of an eye-opener…

This is my story….

My relationship ended over 2 months ago…

I was in a 2 yr relationship… or maybe an affair, as I see it now. I met him at work. When we met, he had a live-in girlfriend. He mentioned how things were going downhill long before we met and wanted to break up with her (said they’re living like roommates and she has a drinking problem). I told him not to rush into things and was also doubtful b/c of our differences (different ethnicity and religion).

First of all, I want to suggest strongly that you have a depression evaluation. And I suggest strongly that you go to therapy and very very strongly suggest doing affirmations. This is not your fault. You sound like a good person who got involved with a real jerk. Some of the things I am going to say may sound harsh but I was once in your spot and I needed to hear things said straight up.
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Step Out of the Dance NOW

Young beautiful dancer jumping into blue powder cloud

When my ex and I first separated, he would take the kids for “visitation” and go to his grandmother’s and call me. Although he was supposed to be visiting with the children, he would call me almost the minute he got them back to his grandmother’s house.

He would tell me everything that was wrong with me and how horrible a wife and mother I was…how he abused me and cheated on me because it was my fault, I was so wretched. If I tried to argue or hangup he would tell me that if I did, I would never see the kids again.

Most of his harangue was to justify his cheating and his involvement with someone before we even separated. Had I been a better wife/mother/human being he wouldn’t have strayed. Three times. And I listened to this. For hours. Each week.

I would listen to his tirades and endless castigations against me (complete with every name in the book, including ones I haven’t heard since leaving him). I would cry and beg him to stop.
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