All good things come to an end
When we lose someone we love; be it the end of friendships, romantic or familial relationships, the pain of having to live with these losses can sometimes be excruciating. Often after having experienced such pain, we can become tentative and cautious; we thread carefully or we vow never to over invest in them because we don’t wish to hurt again.
Losses may be temporary or may manifest in more permanent ways; sometimes they may also be imagined or anticipated. The impermanence of life implies the definitive ending of all relationships; the entering of every relationship also automatically comes with the risk of that relationship ending. This begs the question why start something if there is a possibility it will end; is it better to have loved and lost, than not loved at all?
Is the return worth the risk?
Sometimes even though a significant relationship has ended, it can continue to touch and alter our lives in infinite ways beyond what we are consciously aware of. That is to say, the relationship, irrespective of its duration continues to play a role and impact on the individual that goes beyond the present existence of it.
When someone is gone from our lives, their absence is present. The person(s) and the memory of whom can be kept alive and continue to live in the minds of others; these may come in the form of an image, thoughts, dreams or even in fantasy/phantasy. Just as a drop in the ocean can create a ripple effect, that person’s absence can maintain their presence by creating a continuous interactional process in one’s life. The void is painful because it contains all that is gone, all that is missed; it is painful because you have loved, the pain is real because you have lived.
I am a clinical psychologist with over 8 years of experience working with adolescents and adults across a variety of Government and Community settings in Western Australia and Singapore. This includes individuals within in- and out-patient hospitals, rehabilitation centres, and in prison settings. I work primarily from dynamically oriented and attachment based approaches, where my focus is on addressing underlying issues that often mask as problematic symptoms. I believe in the value of attending to core issues and the context with which one’s distress develops, lest they remain under- or unprocessed, creating other problems that can manifest in various ways later in life.