Do you love him? Or do you just hate to lose?

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Katherine, who is 24, is desperate to get her boyfriend back. He broke up with her over the summer, and although he still keeps in touch with her via text and Facebook, he’s already moved on to someone else. Katherine has spent multiple days on my coaching couch crying, while desperately trying to form a plan to reconcile their relationship. She cannot accept it is over between them. The interesting thing is, their relationship was far from perfect. In fact, Katherine complained about her ex constantly when they were together. He didn’t share her interests, he wasn’t affectionate enough, and he spent too much time playing video games. On several occasions, she was publicly embarrassed when he made comments that showed his obvious lack of understanding on current events, and he would become insensed whenever Katherine pointed it out to him. Naturally the question I posed to her was, if they didn’t get a long very well when they were together, why was she so intent on getting him back? Did she really love her boyfriend? Or did she just hate the thought of losing him to someone else?

In my younger years, I remember asking myself that very same question. When I learned my high school boyfriend, with whom I had broken up with, began dating someone else, I too began reconsidering my decision to end things. Looking back now it’s clear to me though, that I didn’t love him, I just hated losing him to another girl. A girl that I worried was prettier, smarter, or just generally better than me. The thought of them being happy together, while I was alone and miserable, made me angry. Not because I loved him, but Continue reading

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