top of page

Break-up Challenges

By Mirjam Grupp

On the dance card of my love life, there are three significant romantic relationships and four partings – one with each of my men and one with an almost lover. We had never been a real (life) couple. Except in my longing. And yet, this parting was harder than the other three, and it took me a different approach to go through it.

“Real” break-ups

All of the “real” break-ups were unique. My first man left me for another woman after four years. It hurt a lot—but in a certain way, it was easy because it was definite, there was no choice, his door was closed. The second relationship ended after three years because what I actually felt was friendship. My third boyfriend and I went through our parting together. After three plus shared years, we realized that we were heading in different directions in life. We had both given our best to make it – or us – work, and when it didn’t, we knew for sure that we had exhausted our possibilities in real life.

What hurt was: remembering all the good moments, passing by our café, listening to a first night’s song, not having physical contact with someone you deeply trust, the missing sound of a key in the apartment door.

None of that – except a song – existed when I went through the fourth parting. My almost lover and I had spent the short amount of time shared in places that were neither his resident city nor mine. He had never been part of my everyday life. So nothing should have been missing in it. Yet, there were huge black holes, filled with pain and emptiness.

Unlived possibilities

Opposed to a real romantic relationship, an almost love story ends before it really begins. You are left being in love, with a heart wide open—and a clear vision of your possibilities, of the life you wanted to live with this other person.

Breaking up with your dreams

You are living now with what-ifs, with woulds, shoulds, coulds. You are living in a gap. All moments that you will never share with the other person hurt, all parts of you that the other person will never see are crying. All the beautiful feelings that the other person has evoked in you are going nowhere—and this feels like dying.

Abandoning the most alive version of yourself

It feels so good to be in love, to be inspired, open, and excited about life. It feels so good to be this version of yourself. Below the fear of letting the other person go is the fear of losing precisely this elevated state of being. Looking at it this way, holding emotionally on to an almost lover - a person

who does not want to be with you - makes perfect sense. Because what you are holding on to, too, is experiencing life as an elevated you.

Finding the end alone, within yourself

Almost love stories are often lacking evidence of how well the two of you would have mastered everyday life as a couple. Also, you often do not know the other person’s reasons for not wanting to be with you. Based on your deepest insecurities, you make them up yourself.

Meaning: you have nothing external to come up against. You might resent the other person for different things, but the main blame is that they do not want to be with you. And the blame underneath is that they deprive you of the life/ moments/ possibilities that you had wanted to share with them.

So what do you do with this situation?

Take it as proof that you are unlovable? That a life filled with inspiration and beauty is only for others—that love is for others? Silently hoping, waiting, that one future day love will notice you and decide that now it is for you, too? And until then listening to longing songs, dating around a bit with people who are meaningless to you?

Is this perspective really an option?

Could you consider trying on a different one?

Nobody can evoke in you what is not within you.

What if this situation is here to let you feel and experience how you can be-how you are? What if this situation is a reminder for how inspired, open, in love, and excited about life you are? What if it is here to help you see and release your deepest insecurities?

What if this situation helps you to deepen the vision you hold for your future partnership? What if you now have access to a vision that comes straight from your open heart and not from your head?

If you choose it to be so, this story is about you.

What can you do today, right now, to be more of you—for yourself, the people that surround you and for your future partner? What can you do, to turn the end of your almost love story into a beginning with yourself?

About Mirjam Grupp

Mirjam Grupp is a writer. She explores femininity today, and what it takes to open yourself up to romantic relationships and real love. With Wearable Poetry, she creates feelings to wear. As Mira Roth, she writes crime series. Since 2011, they are frequently televised across Europe. Her episodes are love stories in disguise. Mirjam currently lives in Berlin and loves Paris, especially in August when it is empty. When in nature, she follows the smell of pines and the sound of the wild sea. Eager to truly learn through living life, her main interest are transformational processes. With her work, she contributes to the creation of a world where people can live with open hearts. Mirjam Grupp is working on her first non-fiction book An Almost Love Story – that is about how and why one-sided romantic relationships help us to develop real love stories with ourselves and our lives – if we let them. More at


bottom of page