If you are a single Muslim woman over the age of 30 the chances are you have an ex. And and “ex” can mean anything from a guy you were once engaged to, to a guy you were meeting for the purpose of marriage, to a husband to a full blown boyfriend . And let’s not be naive. It happens. It’s always happened be it 1917 or 2017!
One of the problems you might experience as a single Muslim woman over 30 is a greater sense of regret when you consider your ex. You may forget that he is an ex for a reason whether he ended it, you did or you both decided to call it quits.
He and the relationship were not right for you and that is why you are not in it anymore. However, as time creeps on and you find yourself meeting more and more unsuitable men, timewasters and players it’s only natural to look back to what was.
Maybe the ex symbolised a time when you felt you were nearer to the marriage “goalpost” than now . Maybe you feel like if you could just pick up where you left off it will be as if nothing has ever happened.
Or perhaps it’s because the uncertainty of what the future holds is too frightening and it is safer and more comforting to look back on what was. Before you know it you’ve sent a seemingly innocent text message to see “how he’s doing” just for a little bit of comfort. After all, better the devil you know right?
The danger however is two-fold.
On the one hand you are overlooking what made him an ex in the first place. Was it that temper, neglecting your feelings, not being fully present emotionally or maybe his refusal to commit ?
By overlooking these things you bring yourself to problem number two in which you’ve accidentally put him on a pedestal. As far as your are concerned he is the man that brought you closer to marriage than you have ever been and therefore this make him a kind of benchmark.
You believe that if you can find another guy like him you will get to that almost-married point again but without the same mistakes as last time
As a result you miss out on the opportunity to meet many amazing guys. You consciously or subconsciously turn away anyone who is different from the pedestal version of the ex . And when you do meet a guy you are always measuring him against the ex instead of on his own terms as his own person.
However, from his pedestal the ex has much more power than you realise.
The hurt he caused you has never left you. Somewhere deep down you have catalogued his bad behaviour, his cruel words and his negative attitude and when meeting new guys you look for signs of these and freak out if he so much as loses his rag when the waitress bring him the wrong meal for the third time.
We are not robots, we cannot just switch feelings on and off.
But if there is someone from the past who is still dictating your actions in the present then it’s time to detox him. Remove his number from your phone, delete his old messages and emails, delete the photos, learn to think of him objectively as just another man you once knew and get him down from that pedestal otherwise he will hold you back from that happy ending you dearly desire and deserve.