Things That helped for me

things THAT have helped – and are helping – me


I’ve only just realised (Nov 2010) that I haven’t put that down!  Which is really silly given what I am doing.

Blogging has really, really helped.  It’s better than writing it on sheets of paper which no-one else is ever going to read.

I’ve had odd snippets of feedback which have been so touching and thoughtful.  I have been encouraged by others.

So my recommendation is to blog your thoughts as much as you need.  Create your site.  Create your identity so you’re not ‘found’ by those you don’t want to find you or you wish to protect.  And GO FOR IT.

It’s such a great place to rant and rage when you feel the need.  And I have raged so much at the injustices of what I have been through.  It has been a great release of emotion to be able to write it all down and fire it out into the ether for anyone to read.  A feeling that someone  – out there – may read it and give you a ‘virtual hug’ or send you their thoughts has really helped me.

I can’t stress how helpful I’ve found it!

A Notepad & pencil by your bed!

Vital!  Well for me it is.  It means I can jot down how I feel in the middle of the night when I can’t sleep – without having to get up and “really wake up”.  It helps no end to clear the mind. And gives you some pointers during the day to see what’s stopping you sleep.


I now appear to own a large proportion of the Relate publications and lots of other self-help books!!  Not something I thought I would ever do a year ago!

Mostly I got nothing from any of them!!  Some irritated me so much that I threw them at the wall!

However the following books have helped me – for whatever reason!:

“I love you but I am not in love with you” by Andrew Marshall

I became completely obsessed by this book in the first few months!  I bought Alex a copy, I had a copy and I got a third for ‘shared use’.  I encouraged Alex to highlight the parts he felt mattered to him and he related to.  I did the same in mine.  I hoped we could talk about the bits we each felt strongly about.  This has not yet happened.

I had to stop myself buying every copy I came across.  It was as though by buying copies I could solve the problem!

“Tuesdays with Morrie”  by Mitch Albom

What an inspirational book.  I was given it two weeks ago (March 2010) and have now read it twice.  If a dying man can find peace and happiness then I can through living.  A wonderful reminder on what is really important in life.

The Art of Happiness by His Holiness The Dalai Lama

What more can I say – an excellent book – though I did find some of Howard Cutler’s comments a little intrusive.

“The Art of Marriage” by Catherine Blyth

A very enjoyable read with lots of very sensible observations.  I’m back buying two of everything and just sent one to Alex.  Goodness knows if it will help or not…..

“Stop Unwanted Divorce or Rejection” by Nathan C Claunch Ph.D.

This is a download.  I am now working through it (July 2010) and trying to change my behaviour.  I have to admit I can now see I have been doing a lot of things which clearly have not helped and would never help!

Dec 2010 – It was this book which gave me the lead to Life Coaching,  as it is written by a psychologist who is also a Life and Relationship Coach.

As a result I googled Relationship Coaching – and the rest is history!!

(I also downloaded another book “Stop your Divorce” by Homer Mcdonald – which I’m afraid I wouldn’t  recommend.  Firstly it was very expensive – USD79 which is ludicrous for a book of about 50 pages, and secondly the advice in it is very repetitive and very one-sided.  It’s theme is geared to reverse psychology and not much else.

I did actually speak to Mr Mcdonald about what he does and I didn’t believe his “100% success rate” claim – especially as he didn’t want to speak to Alex at all – ever!

He also wanted USD3000 for 10 sessions of 40 minutes! )

“Angels in my hair” by Lorna Byrne

A personal choice.  My father was devoted to it and it really helped him in the final years of his life.  A very inspirational book and it really helped to think there just could be my own ‘guardian angel’ looking after me and helping me make good decisions.  Do I totally believe that.  I’m not sure – I’d like to think so and I have prayed to my Guardian Angel on lots of occasions through these long months.  I do know that Lorna Byrne believes it and that her belief has really helped her and guided her in her life and I found a great deal of comfort from that.

“The pleasures and sorrows of work”  by Alain de Botton

This book really made me think and wonder if when we do experience sorrows at work we could  ‘take it out’ on other aspects of our lives.  I am left with a belief that this is highly possible.  If work, or achievement at work, is hard to change, then  sometimes people change something else in the hope that this will give the happiness we are seeking.  And of course the answer is – it won’t.

“Surprised by Love” by Dr Jay and Julie Kent-Ferraro

I’ve just finished reading this (Jan 2012).  An inspirational read.  Even for those whose marriages have not re-ignited it does give an insight into the issues that trigger breakdowns in relationships.  We may not all get our miraculous ending but I would still recommend reading it as it can help for a new future.


One thing I have learnt over the last year is the value of friends and friendship.  The support and love I have been given is unbelievable.  The hours and hours they have spent listening to me go over and over the same old ground as I try to make sense of it all has amazed me and touched me.  They have given of themselves in such unselfish ways.

They have invited me to their houses.  They have fed me when I couldn’t be bothered to feed myself.  They have included me in their lives and time and again made sure I felt needed, loved and important.


I have found music very important.  As background music so I don’t feel alone, as music to cheer me up when I am low, as a means of escape, the list goes on!!

Schubert Impromptus played by Radu Lupu – This CD gives me a real lift – I listen to it a lot in the car.  And I discovered today (1 Nov 2010) that it HAS to be by Radu Lupu – no one else playing it ‘does it for me’.  I was going to add a YouTube of the one that I adore – Op 142 No3 in B flat major, but there isn’t one of him playing it and all the other pianists either play it too fast – or too slow!

I Dreamed a Dream by Susan Boyle – Inspirational and very uplifting.  The tracks really do tell her story

Flanders and Swann Collection –  3 CD set of their famous songs from the late ’50s.  To make me laugh – but then there are also tracks on The Bestiary which are just lovely melodies!

I also listen to the  Classical Piano music CDs my late father  produced which I find relaxing and calming – and so very special.

Post Its

Those wonderful sticky pads.  I use them for writing positive thoughts on and also reminders on my ‘don’t do’ list.  I often read them through in the middle of the night when I can’t sleep:

Act Happy

Remove Stress

Think Positive

Nurture yourself

You can only change you – not anyone else

No one can take away your memories

He loved you once

Stop doing what isn’t working

Stop pointing out the obvious

Stop repeating yourself


“What if’s” don’t work

Only you can write your future

Take life in small steps

Keep going or you will never know the end

He will only come back if he wants to

Only he can decide what he wants

Making him feel guilty won’t work

Be at peace with yourself

Remember YOU ARE special

Your memories are yours to keep

No one can kill the past – only the future

His views are as valid as yours



The Future’s  a blank canvas for you to paint.

You can be who you want to be

You are in charge of your future

Be true to yourself

Hugs are good!


E.F.T.  – Emotional Freedom Technique

I have been taught to do this by a psychologist.  It is unbelievably helpful.   I would suffer a lot more sleep deprivation without it.


Yes good old simple talking.  Use anyone and everyone you feel you can trust to listen.  And don’t worry what you say.  What garbage comes out of your mouth.  Ramble if that’s what helps.  But definitely open your mouth!

Very early on I sat and talked to one friend – actually – for about an hour all I said was “I don’t know”

After several cups of tea and gentle queries to which all I replied was “I don’t know”, she finally asked “Is that all you are going to say?”

“I don’t know”  I replied!


Silence and quiet. Away from as much noise as I can.  I walk.  Round a lake  near to where I live – often very early in the morning.  Often I won’t even acknowledge the one or two others I meet.  These amazing moments of quiet have become very important to me.  I have wept – just letting the tears run down my cheeks without bothering to wipe them away.  I have sat on a bench looking across the lake and just let the emotions envelope me.  And with this comes peace and calm.  The space you give yourself is so important.


And no you don’t need to join a meditation class if that’s not your scene.  A reader of this blog sent me this to practice (click here) on a day when I was so hyper I was ‘bouncing off the walls’.  It really helped.


Help actually does help – when you are ready and have the courage – get help.

Life Coaching did it for me – in more ways than I ever thought possible.

Going Out or Away!

And I’ve only added this piece of information in December 2010 – 22 months after my catastrophic meltdown!  Mainly because I didn’t think it was relevant.  But it is.

Actually in the end  – it really does help to go out. To see people. People who know you and care about you!  Do things.  Even join things.  Try new hobbies.

But this bit I have found very tough to achieve.

I had odd moments when I threw myself into things.  Shook myself out of my comfort zone.

I went to India last February on a 17 day Tiger Watching holiday.  The reason I went so far away was I knew I wouldn’t be able to bolt with any great ease!  I had a brilliant time.  The group took me under their wing so I was looked after incredibly well.  The tour guide was sexy, kind, very understanding and sympathetic and really looked after me –  sadly he was only 27!!  Or it could have been a different story…….  It could have been a different story too if one of the others hadn’t kept a maternal eye on me the night the guide and I got drunk!!!

Other things I tried:  I went to a dining group for singles – which was horrendous.  Full of people who were either bitter, angry or hyper about their single status.  And the whole experience was overpriced!  So although I’ve put this on the Things That Help page it wasn’t that brilliant.  The point is – it’s important to try out these things.

Going to stay with close friends for a couple of days or so is also good.  A change of scene never hurts!  As long as you feel safe.

5 thoughts on “Things That helped for me

  1. Hi Caroline – my life coach gave me details of your site, it is really helpful. I am sorry you have had such a hard time. My husband left 7 weeks ago so still in early stages, but it has been hell – I am falling apart at times. He is not with anyone – but has really deep emotional problems and background that came out when we were in the process of adopting children – anyway good luck with everything and stay strong

    • Hi
      Thank you so much for your comment. I am so touched you have found my site helpful. My thoughts are with you. It really is hell but there is a light at the end of the tunnel and finally you will find it. Well done you for finding help so swiftly – I only wish I had instead of spending 18 months so desperately lost. I truly and honestly didn’t believe there was anyone who could help but there is and it does work. Good luck – lots of hugs from me and you stay strong too. xxxx

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