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I am 30 years old Arab divorcee with a child from Libya. Am beautiful trustworthy strong woman, or that is what people are saying about me. When I was 23 I had a traditional marriage.
It is common in the Arab world it is when a man/ woman marries without previous relation with the other party the man hears about a woman and he send his family to see her if they like her they move on. After a year and a half I got divorced and I haven't feel anything about it I just moved on stronger, I can't remember if I shed a single tear over it.
But two years ago I started to work with this man, married with two children, kind classy 37 years old. I knew that he was married traditionally too and separated yet still married. I fell deeply for him and he went through a lot for me.
I wasn't asking for anything but to be loved. We had a lot in common, we understand each other. Instantly we felt like one, taking in consideration that a physical contact without marriage in islam is totally forbidden, we were stealing kisses whenever we have a moment, and as our relation developed he asked me to marry him without his parents and wife's knowing about it.
His father is a very stubborn rock headed man. He made him leave his previous lover and marry the woman he is married to now. My love was the eldest and his father is counting on him in everything. I refused because I wanted to live a normal life with the man I love, also my own father will not allow this at all (I marry a married man with children behind his family's back! No way).
It is almost impossible that we can be together one day. I can't ask the man to challenge his father and destroy his family and lose his children. I switched off my phones and tried to avoid everything can remind me of him, but I admit it I am struggling here, in a lot of pain.
I can't sleep, eat, or even think, sometimes it gets hard to breath. There is a big hole in my heart and it really hurts, the other day I was driving home from work and I was thinking about it when all of sudden I felt a hot steam coming up to my brain and my hands started to shake and I was sweating and my heart was pacing up. I thought I am dying.
I pulled over and caught my breath, hardly struggled to pull myself together, and then I cried like a baby and screamed enough! get out of me!
I am in so much pain. I am afraid I'd die and I have to look after my baby. I can't go on like this. I don't know how am I going to do without him? Am ever gonna fall in love again?
I know I haven't lost him yet, he still loves me, but I want to lose him for his sake. Yes I love him enough to do that. The only thing is how? Is he gonna understand?
Response from Dr. DeFoore
Hello Hana, and thanks for telling your story here. It is clear that you’re in a lot of pain, and faced with a very difficult challenge of letting go. I will try to help.
I think you made a wise choice, as painful as it was. To marry him against the will of so many people, and against your own values, could only lead to heartache. Now, of course, you’re left with your pain and the difficulty of letting go and moving on.
I strongly encourage you to think of this as a grieving process. Learn about the stages of grief here. More specifically, I recommend that you do the following to help with your grieving and letting go:
1) Write about all of the things you love about this man. Be detailed, and don’t hold back. This is what you’re letting go of. This will be painful, and it’s important that you allow yourself to cry during this.
2) Then write about all of the reasons you do not want to pursue this relationship. Again, be detailed and don’t leave anything out.
This will help you clarify your feelings, and hopefully move through your grief. Read the stages of grief page for further ideas.
Your focus needs to be on yourself and your life, Hana. As much as possible, give your time and attention to any and every activity or interest you can find that holds any interest for you at all.
My very best to you on your healing journey.
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