On Endings.

endings

My boyfriend and I broke up last weekend. I’m going to tell you a little bit about it but want to say something first.

With these sort of situations there is a (very human and normal!) tendency for people to project their personal experiences or hand out unsolicited advice. Even the “don’t worry, you’ll find someone!” is a little tiresome. Honestly, I know I’ll will but that isn’t really even the point because I also know that even if (the horror!) I don’t, I’ll be just fine. I share parts (yes just parts – I share a lot but also keep a lot to myself) here because I think real, raw, unfiltered sharing in this space helps. Furthermore, I know that people can feel invested in my love life and that is just a part of this whole weird being a person on the Internet thing, and I appreciate it, I really do… but that isn’t why I’m sharing.

I share these stories + personal bits because I know how helpful it can be.

If I were a reader and were going through something like this, I know it would help to read that someone else had gone through it too and reading their words would help me to feel a little bit better and to know that I wasn’t going through it alone. And on that note of feeling less alone I also want to say that I read this piece from Garance again and again and again this week. I can’t remember the last time I read something I related to more. It’s really wonderful, especially if you are in your thirties or forties and (gasp!) still single or going through a breakup. I’ve had the exact same conversations with friends, and her bit about how society can make you feel is spot on. She is amazing.

I share the less shiny, unfiltered moments of my life with you here because I think it’s important to be real with you and talk about the lows just as much as the highs.

(Also worth noting: I’m not sharing the details as it involves someone else. If it didn’t, I’d tell you everything but when something involves someone else, I’d rather undershare vs. overshare for obvious reasons. So this isn’t a juicy post but I hope it’s helpful.)

Breakups of any kind suck.

This wasn’t a very long relationship but it was still an important one. My friend Aly once wrote that there’s no hierarchy for grief and that is something that really stuck with me. Something can last five years and you can walk away FINE. Or someone can ghost you after a few dates and you will be devastated. There is no formula for this matters of the heart; it just is what it is. At this age, we are so ruthless with who we date that it takes a pretty special person to even have a breakup.

Does that make any sense? For example: I’ve probably dated 50 people in the past 5 years (this could be way off, I don’t know, I just estimated that there have probably been 10 people every year that I’ve gone out with more than two or three times). Of them, I would say that six of those people actually meant something to me and only three warranted a real breakup talk. With all the bad behaviors that can come with modern dating, actual real breakups are rare. But they still suck.

By your thirties you have (or are supposed to have?) a better sense of yourself and what kind of person you want to date. Endings happen because the relationship or situation (not the person) is wrong. You don’t hate the person, you miss them a lot, but you know it’s not a long-term fit.

So, you go your own ways? And I guess you try to take the lessons you learned from it. I feel shitty right now which is just par for the course but I’m really trying to focus on learning from it.

_

I got a better understanding of what I want and what I don’t want.

One of my yoga teachers told me that I needed to do this and all summer long as I traveled and reflected and ran around, I kept this little list in my phone of all the things I wanted/didn’t want in a partner. This exercise was really helpful but I realize now that the list has changed quite a bit even between now and May when we had that talk.

I realized that I am making progress. A lot of progress.

While not very long, this was the most significant relationship I’ve had in five years. Know that book Attached? I’m a classic Avoidant. Ugh. This is something I hate admitting as Avoidants are the supposed monsters, the “undateable” ones. There are entire books written about how to date (and leave!) us. I am like a secret Avoidant as I am sweet and kind and genuinely do care so much about my friends, family, and people I date. But I don’t like emotions, I get easily smothered or suffocated, I need a lot of time to myself, and I pride myself on being self-sufficient and independent.

So basically I am basically Tyrion?  I have been really working on myself his year and have gotten so much better at a) not just holding in emotions and b) actually letting someone in. Emotions and being vulnerable suck but I have made so much progress. Whenever I cry, I am secretly a little bit happy because it means I felt something.

I realized that I need to think long term from the very beginning.

This is so hard because as I said earlier I’m such an “in the moment” person. It’s always been hard for me to think what things will look like even 5 years from now. But you have to do it.

I feel proud of myself for being honest and truthful and not behaving badly.

It’s easy to ghost or bench or zombie or slow fade someone (why are there so many new terms for bad behavior in dating!? There’s a new one every week.) It’s also easy to take the cowardly route and behave badly until the other person breaks up with you. Or to be mean. I have had traumatic breakups where I still remember the mean things the other person said to me and I think it was, all things considered a very nice breakup where we were both just honest, nice to each other, and told the truth.

It’s hard to admit that you have very little figured out and still don’t really know what you want at this age. (Garance describes her age – 43 – as savage and crucial. Same goes for 37.) These are, indeed, savage times. All we can do is learn from our mistakes, not make them again, get really clear on what we do want, and move forward. And also, to reference Garance again, be excited about the next chapter. I’m not excited right now but I know I will be.

As we parted ways he said, “I wish I met you when we were 25.” Ugh same. As you get older you become set in your ways and less willing to compromise. When you’re younger you can figure things out and grow together. But you can’t roll back time and you can’t wonder “what if” because that isn’t productive at all.

What now?

I tend to like to sit with the sadness. Not in a masochistic way but as someone who is bad at emotions and feelings, it’s good to process them. I cried a lot last weekend and it was cathartic. I felt really lonely. You also get really used to having someone around to do the little things and make dinner with or watch a movie and suddenly I was back to doing everything alone. (This is a funny thing to complain about as I love my alone time!) I was watching The Bachelor on Monday night and there was this thing we had an inside joke about and I couldn’t text him.

I talked to my mom for ages about it and I had long talks with each of my best friends. Everyone’s been so supportive. Bringing candy, telling me dad jokes, aiding and abetting in the eating of carbs. I think the most helpful thing was the friend who told me she was proud of me.

We ended up talking on the phone this week which was really nice. It helps, in a weird way, to both acknowledge the suckiness of the situation. Ugh. It isn’t easy, but it’s the harder times that make us stronger and better and while I am sad right now I’m also optimistic – I know good things are ahead for both of us.

Seriously though, go read Garance’s post if you or a friend are going through a breakup. It’s everything.

Leave a Comment

Comments

  1. You have such a positive and forward-thinking mindset, Grace. I love it! It’s nice to see you looking back and learning from your relationship. The rest of 2019 is waiting for you! 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

  2. Casey says 1.11.19

    Thank you for sharing this. Whenever I go through something tough I revisit Cheryl Strayed’s Tiny Beautiful Things. Hoping it brings you some light.

    • Rachelle says 1.11.19

      I second Casey on that one, Tiny Beautiful things is a great read. I also applaud you on knowing what you want, realize something wasn’t working and ending things. That in itself is very hard to do.

      Rachelle

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      I love that book! Maybe I will re-read. Thanks Casey!

    • Alisande says 1.11.19

      This is a good recommendation- I also recommend reading through Heather Havrilesky’s advice column on The Cut, or picking up one of her books. Sorry to hear this but you are doing it right, Grace!

  3. Casey says 1.11.19

    So sorry you’re going through this Grace. I highly recommend reading Tiny Beautiful Things. It’s helped me through some tough times.

  4. Katie says 1.11.19

    Sorry to hear. I loved Garance’s post and relate to it so much. Be kind to Grace for your courage to put yourself out there. It’s not easy!

  5. Melissa says 1.11.19

    What a wonderful thing to know what you want and move forward in a thoughtful way. I can see why your friend is proud of you. This post is so helpful, Grace. Wishing you lots of good vibes as you move forward.

    xo-Melissa

  6. Becky says 1.11.19

    I’m sad to hear it didn’t work out for you two. The best thing I’ve done after devastating breakups is keep busy, find new hobbies, just do things to distract myself from the pain. I’m going to be 37 this year and while most of my friends are married (or married for the second time) and have kids, I’m still the single one. I’ve been single for a while and lived alone for a long time. There are parts of me that prefer it this way, but on the other hand I’d love to meet someone to do nothing and everything with. Dating is so difficult now. I’m convinced I was born at the wrong time and should’ve lived decades ago. Well anyway, I could go on and on, but hang in there! Things will get better with time (which is the worst because there’s no way to speed the healing up!), I’m just glad you have your friends and family to help you through this. But we are all here also! Sending you a hug and vodka soda! xo

  7. Annie says 1.11.19

    Thank you for sharing this!

  8. Stacey says 1.11.19

    You’re right, this is helpful. Wishing you all good things when you get through the sadness to the other side.

  9. Melissa M says 1.11.19

    Wow. This is such a great post. I relate to all of it.

  10. A Girl, A Style says 1.11.19

    Oh my sweet friend, I am so sorry you are going through this crappy experience and wish I could be there to bring carbs and alcohol. But I also relate so hard to so much of what you write (I think I am an avoidant too; even though I’m married it took me 12 years and I still have a tendency to act like that – haha!), so also want to add that I’m proud of you for having the courage to admit what you want and stick to it (instead of just listening to what society tells you you should do).

    Sending love.

    Briony xox

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      thank you so much briony!! i think, based on conversations you and i have had in the past, that we are a lot alike!!! i miss you – maybe a trip to london needs to be planned soon-ish! xo

  11. Crawford says 1.11.19

    Just want to say that I have been broken up with multiple times by the same person, and one of the times he said “I wish I met you five years from now” and I have never been more frustrated by a comment.
    So – not going to say “don’t worry, you’ll find someone” or anything like that. Just saying that I’m thinking of ya!

  12. Shana says 1.11.19

    “There is no hierarchy for grief” this really resonated with me on multiple levels! Friends who bring candy and encourage carbs are the best 🙂 🙂

  13. Wendy says 1.11.19

    thank you for sharing, and being willing to continue sharing. 40 is also a savage age!
    It doesn’t get easier each time something ends, but you are indeed right that with every ending, you learn even more about what you want and don’t want. I’ve also had shorter relationships that were incredibly meaningful, and I’ve found too, that that sitting with the sad feelings and taking the time to mourn is helpful. Sometimes it takes longer than I’d prefer to get back into the dating game, but it’s also kinder to myself and to others to wait it out.

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      I would say it’s all pretty savage after 35, right!? Haha. It definitely does not get easier but you do just learn so much. Thank you so much for the comment Wendy! xo

  14. briana says 1.11.19

    Times like this just simply suck, so all I can say is I’m sending you all the good vibes and hoping you can have a restful weekend and just keep growing!

    briana

  15. Abby says 1.11.19

    Thanks for sharing this. I’m a fellow thirty something and I just broke up with someone too (a week before Christmas) and I haven’t even wanted to tell all of my friends about it (everyone telling you the right one is just around the corner DOES NOT help :)). Needless to say, I completely understand wanting to keep the details to yourself and I think it’s so wonderful for you to even share anything so personal in such a public place. It helps me to know that this is something so many people can relate to.

    Also, can’t wait to check out the article you referenced – I read the book attached right after my breakup and it really helped me to see my relationship in a new light.

    Sending you a virtual hug and wish we could carb load and drink lots of red wine together!

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      aw, abby i am sorry! that sucks!!! and yes that sort of advice is so unhelpful!

      hope garance’s article brings you comfort! hugs!!!

  16. Gabriela says 1.11.19

    I am sending vibes to you because I have been there (MANY MANY times). I have no advice because I 100% trust you know 100% what is best for you and can get through this difficult time on your own. I really appreciate your honesty and insight – interested that your ex said he wished he had met you at 25. I met my husband at 19 and we broke up at 23…..had no communication for 10 years, and started dating again at 33. Do I wish we had stayed together all that time and I hadn’t dated what feels like ALL THE MEN in NYC for a decade? Yes. But then I we wouldn’t be the people we were at 33 (and trust me, we were different people and that is why it worked the 2nd time around). I am telling you things you already know. Trust the journey. I can tell you’re very loved by people in your life so you’re already winning.

  17. Niki says 1.11.19

    Thanks for sharing Grace! Dating when “older” definitely brings a whole new set of obstacles to navigate. Thank you for being honest about them and writing such a relateable post! It’s so important that we change the conversation around modern dating because “single” doesn’t have to be a four letter word. The world is our oyster whether you’re in a relationship or not! Here’s to your next adventure!

  18. Taylor M says 1.11.19

    Love love love this, Grace. I understand that there are many parts in your life you do not share online, but sometimes understanding the vulnerabilities like this that make us human really help myself as a reader feel so much more connected to you than any other post would. What I took away from this post is seeing your growth as a person, especially emotionally. I think being able to look back on your life and relationships especially and see how much you’ve grown is so so important – but way easier said that done.

    Thanks again for opening up and sharing with us, Grace! Here’s hoping this weekend and the next few weeks bring you peace of mind, acceptance, and a few bottles of wine!

    xo, Taylor

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      aw taylor, thank you so much for the thoughtful comment. much appreciated.

      and yes to all of that especially the wine. 😉 have a great weekend and thank you for reading and commenting! xoxo grace

  19. Allie says 1.11.19

    Sending you lots of love Grace! Indulge in all the fun self care things today 🙂
    Allie
    modbroadco.com

  20. Haley says 1.11.19

    As a perpetually single 35-year-old from a small southern town, I often have to remind myself that my relationship status does not define the joy I have in my life. Your confidence in yourself and the way you handle your relationships is inspiring and I thank you for sharing this post! I loved that Garance’s friend congratulated her breakup. It’s such a refreshing way to look at things. So, congratulations on taking this next step in your life and cheers to the good things that will come from it! xo

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      THANK YOU! And yes – it’s hard. It’s hard in New York so I can’t even imagine being in a small southern town!!! Thank you so much for commenting, Haley… have a great weekend!

  21. Helen says 1.11.19

    I really do appreciate you being so real and honest on this blog. I think in reading this piece there were many parts I could relate to (I’m avoidant too), and there were parts that got me really thinking about how I could reflect on my past breakups/heartbreaks. Again, thank you for sharing.
    http://www.sweethelengrace.com

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      Thank you so much Helen 🙂 that’s exactly why (as hard as it can be) I do share here!!!

  22. Janet says 1.11.19

    I’m sorry to hear this. I’m pretty sure if I had met my husband at 25 I wouldn’t have even gone out with him (he had a hard time getting me to go out with him at 44). People give lots of unhelpful advice (I remember feeling that if one more person told me how the small town I lived in was “a bad place to be a single woman” I would kill them). I think it’s pretty great that you found someone you liked even if it didn’t work out – you had all those people saying that you weren’t going to meet someone because you were traveling too much and they were wrong.

    I always like to think about all the unsolicited advice Amal Clooney probably got over the years before she married the worlds most eligible bachelor at age 35.

  23. McKenzie says 1.11.19

    Thank you. This is extremely helpful. I love your insight on: “As you get older, you become set in your ways and less willing to compromise. When you’re younger, you can figure things out and grow together.” That is spot on and made me really sit back and evaluate a change I’m going through right now and adjusting to.

  24. Gillian Calley says 1.11.19

    I LOVE this post. We can all learn from a break-up whether it’s intimate, friendly or professional. I do appreciate your thoughts and reflections on this topic.

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      I completely agree – all breakups are shitty (I’m DMing with someone right now who was just laid off which I think can be even worse!) Thanks, Gillian… have a great weekend!

      • Gillian Calley says 1.12.19

        I ended up going through a break up this week that was WAY harder than I expected. We had to let our nanny go (our 2 girls are going back to school full time) and she ghosted us and didn’t work her final few weeks. I felt so betrayed and hurt that that was her reaction after being with us for 3 years, but I remembered your post, re-read it and realized how I can learn from this. Again, thanks for sharing and reminding us all that we are not alone in break ups or hard times and it’s OK to be sad.

  25. Millie says 1.11.19

    I just wanted to say a big thank you for being so candid and honest and talking about such a difficult situation in such an eloquent, truthful and graceful way. I am currently in the process of a divorce (to be finalized next Friday) and I’m yet to find a blog that manages to be both “glossy” and “fun” but also real and helpful in a very practical way. When people are afraid to broadcast anything outside of perfection, it can be really isolating for those going through tough times. So thank you for sharing

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      Aw thank you so much, Millie. And congrats on your next chapter – sending hugs.

  26. Ellen says 1.11.19

    You are such an exceptional person, Grace. And at the risk of sounding trite, the most aptly named person I know. As evidenced in this post you are grace personified. I’m lucky to know you.

    So when are we having dinner?
    Xoxo e

  27. Haley says 1.11.19

    Thank you so much for writing this and sharing Garance’s post! Even as someone in a healthy long term relationship at 28, who is (gasp) not yet married, society places so many stigmas on us. If I had a dime for every time I was asked “when are you getting married?” Or, my favorite, “WHY aren’t you married yet?” I would have zero student loan debt. But, I love the closing remark about sending congratulations as my sister-in-law and her fiancé just split up and I’m truly so proud of her for making the right decision even though it was the hard one and I’m so happy for you to get to experience life after this break up and everything it has to offer with your new found clarity. Love your blog and can’t wait to see what comes next for you 🙂

  28. Ellen says 1.11.19

    Ugh I just cried reading this because I’m hormonal and PMS-ing and BEEN THERE. Sending you lots of love and prayers for strength!!!!!! Love you lady!

  29. katherine says 1.11.19

    really feeling for you right now <3

  30. Devon says 1.11.19

    During a breakup last year, I found the app “Mend” (described as self-care for break-ups) and found it to be super helpful. I really benefited from starting my day with the daily check-in and short audio nuggets. xo

  31. Kristen says 1.11.19

    Thanks for sharing Grace. It’s so hard in your thirties because there’s so much pressure from society to be in a relationship. Breakups always suck but it sounds like you both handled it in a mature and respectful way.

  32. Anne F says 1.11.19

    Sending so many good thoughts your way. Thank you for sharing.

  33. Pat Schwab says 1.11.19

    Grace, Sending you hugs. You are such an amazing woman. It is better to be alone than lonely in a relationship. I love that you have such a great group of caring friends to feed your soul and such independence. Pat S

  34. Julie says 1.11.19

    oh man, I hear you. You can’t rush the grieving process, it’s different for everyone. Hugs. I’ve been there, and you process your feelings at whatever speed you process them. Try to make sure you get out and have fun with friends, even if you don’t feel like getting of the couch. And if you just need a binge worthy Netflix show, I have been loving Dear Black People, it’s SO good. And The Marvellous Mrs Maisel on Amazon Prime. Good luck!

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      Ooooh thank you so much for the suggestion! I loved the Marvelous Mrs Maisel but will add Dear Black People to my list! xx

  35. Alysia Richardson says 1.11.19

    That was beautifully written. Wishing you the best Grace! ❤️

    Side note- when I opened up the link to read this, a freaking engagement ring ad was on the top of the article. How. Does. That. Happen?!? Ugh, so twisted. Maybe humorous way down the road but come on algorithms- do your job! ‍♀️

  36. Rebecca says 1.11.19

    I’m so sorry you’re going through this Grace, but I have to admire you’re positive attitude and forward thinking mindset! 🙂 Best of luck to you, and remember; it’s only January meaning we have a whole year ahead of us! I’m sending a big hug your way!

  37. kim says 1.11.19

    what a wonderful, honest post grace. you are definitely right; once you get past 35 relationships and breakups get even trickier. i’m in my mid-40s and while i’ve been in long relationships, people just assume something must be wrong with you if you’re not in one at my age. dating is so challenging—everything is over text and you worry about people looking at your social media, ghosting, etc. why can’t a guy just call you on the phone? haha

    every relationship is an opportunity to grow and learn more about yourself, what you are willing to accept, where you are willing to compromise, and how you can be more flexible. i have found myself reading and re-reading garance’s post because it resonates so much and what you wrote is an excellent reference for dealing with a breakup—be honest, don’t behave badly, realize you’re making progress, and allow yourself to sit in the sadness (and eat all of the carbs!)

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      Thank you so much Kim.
      I don’t know if you listen to podcasts but I love the Girls Gotta Eat podcast – they are hilarious and provide such a refreshing take on modern dating. U Up is another good one.

      Thank you for the thoughtful comment – I agree so much with everything you said!!!! Also: CARBS!

      have a great weekend. xoxox

  38. Jen says 1.11.19

    Grace, I’m so sorry to hear you’re going through this. I was engaged 5 years ago after a 4 year relationship (we amicably called it off) and I feared my expectations were too high (everyone settles, right?) or that I had been unable to compromise (which I think women feel pressure to do way more than men). Calling off an engagement was the hardest thing I ever did but I learned so much about myself because of it that it led to having a much happier, more authentic life for me.

    2 years ago I clicked with someone – it was the first time I felt a flicker of anything again on the relationship front. When that ended after a few months I was devastated because it felt so promising. I was depressed for quite awhile and eventually began focusing on working out (on nights I would have been moping at home drinking wine), hobbies (sports leagues, cooking classes, music ensemble) and positive friendships. While I continued to be single, I felt so grateful to be involved in activities I loved from growing up that I’d abandoned. It felt like rediscovering myself in a way because as we grow up we get so focused in our careers.

    I did meet someone this year and I’ve realized a few things. 1. I’m so grateful to be around in this day and age because if I’d been born in a different generation I probably *would* have settled and gotten married — my boyfriend and I would not have both been simultaneously single and never married in our late 30s if we’d met in a previous generation, for example. 2. I’ve dated enough people and know myself well enough to know what I need (a man who supports my career as much as I support him, a man who likes to travel!) and that I’m not settling. 3. I see some friends who settled and got married and I would rather be single and happy rather than married and not quite happy, even if it’s socially much easier to marry and have kids.
    Even if this current relationship doesn’t work out, I know I’m perfectly happy on my own and financially independent (thankfully). I love Thank U, Next by Ariana Grande and it’s totally my anthem.
    Just wanting to say I’m feeling for you right now and can absolutely relate to everything you wrote in your post. Breakups can be devastating, even though they are like chess moves that position us in the long run.

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      Thank you soooooo much for this thoughtful comment Jen! Completely agree with everything you have said especially about if we’d been in a different generation and the bits about friends who have settled.

      Really appreciate the note, have a great weekend! xoxo

  39. Camille says 1.11.19

    Sending you lots of love and good wishes, Grace. I’m going to repeat the advice you gave me a few months ago when I was having a hard time right after my breakup: read (or reread in your case) Orlando Soria’s book ‘Get it Together’. I found it super helpful to laugh and commiserate about how rubbish life can be sometimes with him!

    Thank you for sharing and for taking the time to help others when they needed it.

    -Camille

  40. Kate says 1.11.19

    Thank you for always sharing! And congratulations on being in such a good place with yourself you can make the hard but right decisions for you <3

  41. Tawny says 1.11.19

    Congrats, Grace. 🙂 For living your life in the sadness and in the joy, the way you know it should be.

    You may have read this one already, but it is funny and real and AMAZING for deconstructing the way ‘society’ views singles, especially single women. I bookmarked it and re-read it all the time!

    https://www.refinery29.com/en-us/2018/10/213027/single-in-your-30s-acceptance?utm_source=MSN&utm_medium=rss

  42. Margaret says 1.11.19

    I really love your reflective posts lately. I’ve been relating strongly to them and it’s helped me with some self-reflection, especially around dating. I hadn’t heard of the book Attached but Avoidant sounds like it fits me perfectly. I’d love to read some of the ways you’ve managed to overcome or work with that aspect of your personality if you’re ever comfortable sharing.

    I hope you’re able to take the time to heal. Thank again for being so open with your readers and creating such a great community.

  43. Leela says 1.11.19

    Thanks so much for sharing Grace! I am an avoidant as well (even though I just learned the term, ha thanks!) and it can make my relationship hard, but trying to work on it as well! Sending you love xxxx

  44. Betsy says 1.11.19

    Thank you for sharing such an honest and heartfelt post with us, Grace. I’m so sorry you are going through this. It’s really generous of you to share this way and I can only imagine how many people with find this post helpful. You really do personify your name! I got married at 38, and I relate to so much of this (especially annoying remarks disguised as “advice”.)

    If it helps, please know that my 6 year old daughter says about you, “She’s the prettiest person on your phone. I love her clothes and her cat.”

  45. Kelly Golightly says 1.11.19

    I’m sorry, Grace. That sucks.

    I spent New Year’s with a good friend who recently with through a very public breakup. We were all sharing our words for 2019… One friend’s was Restore…mine was Share. His? F*ck It!

    It made us all laugh + it’s now become the “word of the year” for all of us.

    Like, that’s the best word for 2019 + maybe for life.

    I thought you, of all people, would appreciate that.

    Societal pressure? F*ck it!

    Sending hugs + an open invitation to Palm Springs.

  46. Amanda says 1.11.19

    Are you and I the same person? Pretty sure we are. Wish I could give you a hug (and I hate hugs). Reading your posts (and the things you recommend) always gives me all. the. feels. You’re wonderful!

  47. Jelena says 1.11.19

    Beautifully said…. I love the part about the grief, it’s so true… there’s no time constraint or obligation on grief, you just have to let yourself heal. You are smiling more in your posts, and whether it’s smiling thru pain or feeling something different, there’s a certain radiance to you!!!

  48. Sherri S says 1.11.19

    It sounds like a decision you were ready for… kudos on following your heart. And remember, the most exciting thing about being single is knowing that your life will be filled with surprising moments that can change things at the blink of an eye! You could literally meet your husband in 10 minutes or 5 years from now, it doesn’t really matter but, it’s so fun to think about the possibilities. And most importantly, it’s more time for yourself, knowing exactly who you are, what you want, and what your future should look like! Enjoy!

  49. Allison says 1.11.19

    Grace,

    I’ve followed your blog for years and this is my favorite piece you’ve written. My heart broke over your ex’s parting comment; it’s so easy to get caught on the ‘what ifs’ of broken relationships and wistful about what could have been had you met at a different place, time, etc.

    Thank you for being so vulnerable, especially about grief. On a personal note, my most painful breakups have been over short but meaningful relationships. It was difficult to express the sense of loss I had. Fearing that given the brevity of these relationships, my grief was somehow not valid, I was ashamed at feeling the profound and lasting sadness I did.

    Thank you for validating the pain I felt and even now sometimes still feel. I don’t need to tell you things will be ok because I know you know you will be ok.

    I loved this piece and resonated with it deeply. Thank you again.

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      Thank you so much Allison!!! It definitely is easy to get caught on those what if’s!!!
      I’m so glad it resonated. Have a great weekend! xoxo

  50. Ashley says 1.11.19

    I just want to say thank you for sharing! As a new blogger myself, I am trying to figure out that balance between sharing to make my blog “mine” and not oversharing so that I am left exposed or potentially hurt/offend the people in my life who know me. It is definitely hard to share this part of your story, but I really do appreciate it and enjoyed learning more about you.

  51. Raquel says 1.11.19

    This might cheer you up. I’m sixty and going through it. It is the right thing to do for me. But still ….. I’m sixty.

    • grace at the stripe says 1.11.19

      your misfortune would never cheer me up. i’m glad you are doing the right thing for you though! sending a big hug. xx

  52. Helena says 1.11.19

    Oh, Grace! Here I am texting you and tagging you on things on IG and you’re going through a shitty time. Ugh, I am sorry. Whenever you’re ready to reemerge be a little social, lets plan that dinner we spoke about. Plans always help, but like I said, whenever you’re ready. Now, you just take time to do you.

    xo,
    Helena

    • grace at the stripe says 1.12.19

      Oh my gosh never apologize for tagging me in things, I love it!!!! Yes let’s get that dinner soon! xo

  53. Lisa says 1.11.19

    Grace, I’m so glad you can share more personal details of your life with us! (while still remaining respectful of other parties, of course).

    These kinds of posts really help. They also make your other posts more human 🙂

    I’m kinda in the same situation, funny enough though – this post kind of showed me how similar we are! Props to us for taking risks, growing, and learning!

    PS: Sending you hugs. Breakups are always tough, but in a way, it’s nice knowing that they can bring out your emotional side (and show us that we are capable of feeling) – sorry, really poor sentence but I think you know what I mean!

    Lisa
    http://www.theeverydayelevated.com

    • grace at the stripe says 1.12.19

      Thank you Lisa. I’m sorry you’re going through that too! And never worry about your sentence structure over here – ha! xo

  54. Lenel Brown says 1.11.19

    Thank you for this Grace! Well said, as strange as it is as a follower I do feel apart of your life and I appreciate the honesty, wholehearted written post you’ve given. Thank you for opening up to us. I haven’t been able to put into words for awhile what you said about matters of the heart and time—it’s nice to know someone else feels the same no matter the time. I look forward to reading the articles you linked take care and give Tyrion lots of snuggles!

  55. Suzzane says 1.11.19

    Breaking up is hard. Even the worst relationships aren’t 100% bad. So your lonely, disoriented and not sure which way to go. But the answer is going … just do you and opportunities will present themselves.

  56. Amanda says 1.12.19

    Thank you

  57. Jen says 1.12.19

    I’m married now, but I will never forget the pangs of disappointment I felt every time a relationship ended. I also hated being told I’d find someone, or that there were other people out there. Sometimes it just sucks and that’s it and that’s ok! It’s ok to grieve for things. I used to buy my favorite ice cream (Ben and Jerry’s Americone Dream), my favorite wine (Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio), fill the tub, light some candles, and blast a playlist of some good, sad songs (Let Him Fly by Patti Griffin, Silver Springs by Fleetwood Mac, Both Sides Now by Joni Mitchell – you get the picture) and just let myself feel what I was feeling. It is important to move on, but first, it’s important to take care of yourself and let yourself feel what you feel without having to pretend like it’s ok all the time. Thank you for being honest and for sharing yourself with us!

  58. So well-spoken as always, Grace! I really loved this post. Even though I’m married, I really resonated with the need to feel your emotions. While I have a lot of them, I tend to avoid situations that will bring them out….until I’m alone and can cry in the bath tub (lol). I used to hate crying but now I love it, which is probably a weird thing to love, but I love the release I feel during and after. Crying has helped me both accept things about myself or acknowledge things I need to change, and I think it’s made me a better wife and human in general.
    So here’s to crying!! In the good and in the bad.
    xoxo Logan

    http://www.habitsandhues.com

    • grace at the stripe says 1.12.19

      yes! It’s so important to acknowledge them!!! Thanks so much Logan, hope you had a great weekend!

  59. Kim says 1.12.19

    Thank you for sharing your love life with us. I feel like I am going through a breakup with seeing/hearing you saying “my boyfriend” – ugh – I had just gotten used to it! (And I mean that in the best way. Can you tell I’m weird about change?) Two other thoughts:
    1. I can totally relate to this being an important step. I do not let people in very easily, and I did that with the last guy I dated, and even though we’ve now gone our separate ways it was a huge step.
    2. I can see both sides of the “I wish we met when we were younger” thing. I have a number of girlfriends who have straight up told me they could not have been with their husband when he was 22 or 26 or 30, but that now they are happily married. It goes both ways!

  60. Jen says 1.12.19

    You have such a great perspective on learning through these painful experiences. Pain and sorrow can be the pathways to such growth and transformation. Something that really helped me with being single was the awareness that trying to force myself to fit another person — when it wasn’t right— was as lonely and anxious as I have ever felt. Sending you peace and healing.

  61. Alesya says 1.14.19

    Reading his comment, “I wish I’d met you when we were 25” was a punch in the gut…for me! Can only imagine how you feel. Sending you shrimp and grits from Charleston.

  62. Theodora says 1.14.19

    Thank you for being real, though I’m sorry you have a reason in this case to be real. Proud of you for sitting with the feelings. I feel all the things in every other situation but am also a HUGE avoidant romantically, something I’m also trying to work on.

    • grace at the stripe says 1.14.19

      Thanks Theodora, I appreciate it!!!! I hope all is well with you! Saw you just launched a podcast, I will have to check it out! xo

  63. Kimberley says 1.15.19

    So sorry to read about your breakup, they really do suck. But this is a really lovely, thoughtful and helpful post. So well written and considered!
    Wishing nothing but good things for you going forward.