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by Jennifer Brown Banks

How to Cure Your "Love Jones"
(A 12-Step Recovery Program)

He’s on your mind and in your system.

What you shared together was meaningful… magical.

He was your rock, your world, your future.

He was the love you’d been waiting for.

And now he’s gone.

Taking with him your sanity and sense of security.

You find yourself calling his answering machine just to hear his voice.

Every song on the radio brings back memories of times spent together.

The mere mention of his name puts you in a tailspin.

Things you used to do no longer give you pleasure.

Friends provide little comfort.

You’ve been afflicted. You got a love jones! And that ain’t good.

But before you resort to anything rash, know that there is a cure, and that

“This too shall pass.”

First things first: Get a grip.

Get to your nearest bookstore and purchase Peter McWilliam’s book “How to Survive the Loss of a Loved One” (co-authored with Harold H. Bloomfield, M.D. and Melba Colgrove, Ph.D.). In it are strategies for dealing with any type of loss, be it death or dysfunctional men. And McWilliams is, coincidentally, my most favorite poet!

Note to Peter McWilliams: If by some remote chance you are somewhere in the universe reading this column, please contact me for possible marriage.

Forgive me for digressing.
Anyhow, here’s an excerpt from the book:

I wanted to
spend the night with you
eat with you
take you to meet my friends
make you one of them
take you to bed
make you one with me
say I love you
hear you say the same
meditate, with your heartbeat as
my mantra.

I wanted the sun,
And a goodly portion of the moon.
All I got was this poem,
Which I wanted to be a happy one.

I don’t know
Whether I’m being
Or forgotten

Is indeed
fabled, cliched
roller coaster,
I have written
Poems of its
And of its
But what
words can
I use to
describe the
total desolation
of being forced
get off

Now for the core components of the Recovery Program:

1. Have a Pity Party!
That’s right, take time to feel sorry for yourself. Sip some wine and contemplate the complexities of life. Agonize about how unfair love is. How he was a jerk for leaving. How you’ll miss his silly laugh or his skillful touch. But give it a time limit and then vow to move forward. As the author of “He’s Just Not That Into You” states “Don’t waste the pretty.”

2. Don't Pick Up That Phone!
Desperation is unattractive. And some times men need time away from us to appreciate what they had. If he didn’t offer an explanation for the breakup, you’ll have to find a way to bring closure yourself. Unfortunately it happens to the best of us.

3. Stop Romanticizing the Relationship.
Often When a relationship has ended, we have a tendency to reflect only on the good things. In reality, if he was such a “great guy” would he have done a “disappearing act” that Houdini would envy?

4. Don't Try to do it Alone.
Seek the support of close friends or join the millions of online bloggers. There is nothing shameful about loving and losing.

5. Keep Busy.
Pursuing other things can definitely be a challenge. But truth is, more than likely, he’s not losing sleep over you. He’s moving on and you should too! Immerse yourself in work, make more money, or work out at the gym. Channel your energies into pursuits that pay off.

6. Never Lose Sight of How Special You Are.
It’s okay to have a broken heart, but never let a man break your spirit.

7. Expect to Have Setbacks.
A Love Jones, like any other addiction, can be tricky. Just when you think you’ve got it licked, you’ll run into a mutual friend, or find a love note he once wrote in an old purse, or find yourself flash-backing to previous times. It’s okay. The recovery process takes time, and it’s different for each of us.

8. Don't Wait By The Phone.
He may or may not ever call again.

9. Try to See the Lesson.
What is your pain teaching you? To make better choices? To save sex until you’re ready? To never date older men? Assess and apply. Remember, “those who fail to learn from the past are destined to repeat it!”

10. Thank Your Lucky Stars that you didn’t waste more valuable time and emotions on someone so undeserving.

11. Get Back on "the Horse" Again.
Don’t stop believing in the possibilities of love just ‘cause you’ve been hurt. What he didn’t see in you, the next man likely will. Start off dating slowly and casually until you get your groove again. . But be sure not to indulge in a rebound relationship where no one really wins.

12. Remember that God Never Closes One Door Without Opening Another.

> - The best approach to find the one. <

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Jennifer's Gems is a weekly column written by award-winning poet and writer, Jennifer Brown Banks. It is published every Wednesday. Click here to read her welcome letter.

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