They say that breaking up is hard to do. I was wandering around the website and came across the rather sad query: How do I forget my girlfriend who ditched me after seven years? It's a valid question. Anyone who has read my stuff knows it's a topic dear to my heart. My second husband, my soul's mate, walked out on our marriage rather abruptly ten days after he was revealed to be a using drug addict. Not only did I have a very, very hard time getting over him, (some would argue I'm still not), but I got lots of free advice in this department that I would be only to pleased to share!

From my little 22 year old friend I got the advice that there was no sense at all to crying over a man. In his opinion the answer was to move on to the next available person. In fact, even on Mahalo, one of the other answers was "get a new girlfriend, a better one." It is very tempting to leap into another relationship right away. My own transition from first marriage to second was rather seamless. IF you are a woman with school age children, you know why. Marriage is financially devastating. If you find someone who wants you and is willing to support you, it's sometimes a good idea to get re-married right away. The problem with serial monogamy is that it gives you scarce time to reflect on what went wrong.

I thought I was marrying a man completely different from my first husband. My first husband was a white liberal musician. My second husband was a working class electrician. My first husband voted democratic. My second husband didn't know how to vote, but was rather fond of Bush. My first husband liked eating at California Cuisine healthy food type places, my second husband favored Denny's and Wonderbread baloney sandwiches. My first husband was a New Age Workshop junkie, my second husband was a fundamentalist Christian. My first husband was a very controlling bona fide, diagnosed narcissist. Although it was important to him that he gave the appearance of our marriage being modern – in fact he was very old school in that he controlled via ignorance. I had no access to records he filed of our taxes, I wasn't on his bank account, we even had two different PO Box addresses. With my second husband everything we owned was joint. He put me on his bank account before we were even married which was very flattering.

So I am sure you getting that there is a twist to this story. No matter how many physical characteristics I tried to control and change, the truth is I ended up marrying the same man twice. The REAL problem in my relationships was the lack of intimacy. A narcissistic personality is incapable of sharing and growing in a healthy relationship. The very nature of the character disorder is that they think only of themselves. They are willing to lie, cheat, or steal, to say whatever they perceive they have to say, in order to get what they want to get. Other people are objects to a narcissist. They think nothing of using people to get things. And although my second husband was a lovely supportive person the first two years we were together, his drug addiction turned him into a narcissistic person. The main difference between the two is only that if Howard got clean he has a chance of being intimate with someone, when he's using, it's ALL about him and his need to get junk.

How did I manage to end up with the same man twice? By not waiting long enough and figuring out the real problem. I had a vague idea that my conversion to Christianity was causing trouble in my first marriage. I know now that actually had nothing to do with it. In a loving marriage, a healthy marriage people can grow personally and spiritually without damaging intimacy. It could have been merely a conversation, or maybe he might have joined me at the root cause and understood what made me convert. Instead his own controlling nature caused the split, his complete lack of care for me as a person.

So what is a better way to get over the end of a relationship? Now that I've been three years single I would suggest you get yourself some hobbies. Find things you like to do. Really. So often in life we start doing things only because our friends are doing them, or because the girl we became infatuated with liked doing them. Or worse, we quit doing things because we are "in a relationship now" and suddenly there is no time to go dirtbike riding, or surfing, or writing for info barrel. If you don't have any hobbies, ask yourself what you might like to do. If you have always wanted to learn another language take a class, or join the Sierra Club or volunteer. IF you find you don't like doing these things, it is fine to stop and try something else.

The point is, if you discover you like playing the trumpet, and you meet a new girl at a trumpet playing gig, you are more likely to be well suited for each other than if you find the girl first and try to readjust your life to toward what your new lover likes to do. The other nice thing is, even if you don't meet another trumpet playing girl, you may make some nice friends, and you may enjoy playing gigs and taking lessons. It's a much healthier way of going about forgetting. The truth is no one can replace your girlfriend of seven years anyway. And no one likes to be compared. Who hasn't had the experience of going on a date and hearing nothing but yak yak yak about the ex-husband this, and ex-husband that? It's awful right? So don't do it to anyone else!