Some events are so painful that we often cannot imagine ever getting over them

By Nina Steele 

Childless African womenI have been in email conversation with a lady for a few months now. She is African and her husband, whom she loved dearly, left her because they were unable to have children. Every time she feels really down, she reaches out to me. She still cares deeply for him, even after all the humiliation and pain he put her through. Recently, he was made redundant and even though she could see karma at work, instead of gloating and feeling that revenge has been served, she feels sorry for him and wonders how he is going to make ends meet.

Talking of karma, when she first reached out to me, one of the things I told her was that, because every action has an equal and opposite reaction, her husband would eventually pay a price for his betrayal, and that it was only a matter of time. Nothing ever happens in a vacuum, whatever we put out we get back. Unfortunately, most people don’t understand that, and live their lives in ways that create pain for themselves. What I also told her was that, even though it does not feel like it right now, she will eventually heal and become a stronger person because of this experience.

Of course when you are hurting after an event as life changing as this one is, you don’t often believe that things could ever get better. It is generally true that time is a great healer but unless you yourself make a conscious decision to heal and move on from whatever caused you great pain, you will keep hurting time and time and time again, every time you find yourself reliving some of those events.

What I have noticed from my own experience is that, beneath the surface, the pain from the past is as raw as the first time it materialised itself. All it takes is enough attention being given to it, especially if that attention is negative. If you still feel resentment about what was done to you, then every time you ‘go there’, you will hurt.

To stop hurting, you need to make a conscious decision to overcome the pain. Time alone is not going to make it go away. In order to overcome the pain, you have to attach a new narrative to the story. Instead of continuing to see yourself as a victim, start seeing the event as something that was meant to be. Like I said before, everything that happens to us has a purpose, nothing ever happens by chance. Once you see a painful event as something that was meant to be, you take away the power that it has to hurt.

Having said that, you have to constantly keep an eye on your mind. That’s because fear is the emotion that guides it, and so it will always try to remind you of the event as a negative occurrence. Every time that happens, you have to keep reminding yourself that nothing happens that wasn’t meant to be.


  1. therinkydinklife says

    That poor woman! My heart goes out to her. “Time alone is not going to make it go away. In order to overcome the pain, you have to attach a new narrative to the story” is very good advice, and not just with regards to divorce but really any sort of loss or tragedy. Thanks for posting Nina.

    • I agree that, that advice does indeed apply to other life events as well. From what I can gather from our conversations, this woman has a good heart and would have stayed loyal to her husband, no matter what. In short, she is the type of partner that are often difficult to come by. Yet this man took her for granted and abandoned her at the first sign of trouble. People just don’t understand the nature of life and that no one can get away with inflicting such pain on another human being, particularly someone who has your best interest at heart. I was not surprised at all to hear that he was made redundant. How much more pain and suffering will he endure before finally getting it?

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