I read a quote once that said: “Regret is insight that comes a day too late.”
Love brings us great joy but can also be our biggest source of disappointment and regret.
Almost everyone has some sort of regrets of relationships past.
There’s the girl you were too scared to ask out in high school, the guy you wish you’d never accidentally cheated on and of course – the one that got away.
It was recently reported that Relationships Australia has found that in hindsight, around 40% of people regret their divorce.
It’s no wonder. Divorce is a traumatic life event. It scars your heart, mind and soul irreversibly, so if you’re going to put yourself and your loved ones through, it had better be damn worth it in the end.
P left her boyfriend of seven years because she felt there was no spark left in the relationship – everything had become mundane and boring.
Years later, she wonders if she made a big mistake. Perhaps she should have been more willing to work things out with him rather than moving on, she now thinks.
“The effort and heartache that went into moving out, becoming single, getting back on the dating scene… why couldn’t I use that energy to reignite my own relationship?” says P.
Women are more than twice as likely to harbour relationship regrets than men, because they tend to be more emotionally invested in their relationships.
It seems that while the fairer sex can dwell for years on mistakes they made in past romances, men are happier to move onward and upward, leaving the past where it belongs – behind them.
Said A: “My biggest regret is not recognising trivial issues as trivial, and making small things a big deal…. I need to remember not to sweat the small stuff! I ruined my relationship with ‘the one’ because of it.”
Asking around, I thought I would hear a lot more about the elusive One That Got Away.
On the contrary, the most overwhelming response I received was The One That Outstayed His Welcome… it seems there are a lot of women who regret letting a bad relationship go on too long and not getting out sooner.
“Pushing aside red flags thinking they will go away or they will change,” said one regretful lady.
“Letting my first marriage go on as long as it did!” exclaimed another.
I often wonder if it’s the things you did or the things you didn’t do that cause the biggest regrets.
While regret can be a bitter pill to swallow, we should still try and be at peace with the decisions we cannot change, and see the bright side of the whole affair.
For one, you’ve probably learned a valuable lesson.
For another, if you’re smart about it, you won’t make that same mistake again.
Time heals all wounds and once you’ve reflected on what you could have done better in that same situation, it’s time to be thankful for the experience and – taking a leaf from the men’s book – turn to a brighter future, knowing you can only do better next time, armed with your new understanding about what will make your next relationship even better.
Do you have any relationship regrets?
Image courtesy of marin / FreeDigitalPhotos.net