By Lybi Ma, published on August 1, 2005 - last reviewed on November 20, 2015
When you think about it, needing someone's love can be very painful. There's always the chance that that particular love may not appear or that it will be snatched away just when you thought you had it. Then you are commonly left with life-threatening thoughts such as "I will not survive without him."
Our culture is big on the idea that happiness depends on finding "the one." Yet, when you think about it, it's a funny exercise. Take the dating scene, for example. It can be an endless parade of people. You can't help but think that this one is too skinny, that one is too hairy, or that other one smells too much like a dishtowel. And when you finally find the one your life is changed. He's perfect. You go merrily along with the new love of your life.
Then wham, from nowhere: "Honey, I don't love you, I never really did."
None of us can control another person -- not even "the one." He will come and go as he pleases.
When he doesn't give you what you want, it feels as though you've been punched in the stomach. How did it come to this? You were happier than you can remember and then the rug was pulled out from under you. That's when dark thoughts start to cloud your well being, and you decide you cannot live without this particular love.
The thing is: Do you really believe you will not survive? Will you actually die from an aching heart? That's a lot of power you are giving this person -- power over your happiness.
Yet, it is a situation of your own doing. The belief that "I cannot live now that he is gone" is completely created by you -- without the other person's help.
How do you undo these fatal thoughts? Imagine changing your thinking from: "I can't live without her" to "Sure, I can live without her." It's a pretty liberating notion.
So, close your eyes and picture yourself in the future, maybe a few months from now. Go ahead and think your life-threatening thought: "In a few months, I will need her in my life. Otherwise, I will die."
Sounds pretty silly, huh?
The truth is you probably won't be on your deathbed a few months from now. In fact, many scenarios can take place. You might not even want her back in your life. You may even meet someone else. Or, heck, you may even be very happy on your own.
Now that you are thinking with an open mind, suggests Byron Katie, author of I Need your Love: Is That True?, your opportunities seem endless. Anything can happen -- that is, if you let it happen.
But remember, it isn't the other person's job to keep you alive. It's yours.