As Caitlyn (formerly Bruce) Jenner made her photographic debut to the world, many of us examined her images with extreme interest. We analyzed every detail of her appearance, made declarations of who she now resembled, and asked almost everyone we know if they had seen the pictures. I personally wish her well and hope that this new life will enable her to live authentically and full of joy.
At the same time, I find myself thinking so much about Kris Jenner, and what she must be feeling. Even though their marriage is long dissolved, she, the children, and the rest of the world must now officially say goodbye to the person once known as Bruce Jenner. He no longer exists. I’ve been thinking about that feeling of loss, and what it’s like to come to the realization that someone you loved and committed your life to is no longer the same person you married. The face you once knew so well, now seems like a total stranger, the characteristics you were once attracted to can no longer be found.
In my private reflection, it became clear to me that even though few of us will ever have this exact experience, there are times in our marriages where we see our spouse as a completely different person than the one we pledged to love forever. Someone we no longer recognize. Someone who has changed almost overnight. Someone who no longer seems perfect for us.
And we feel as though everything we thought we were creating was for nothing.
As a relationship coach, I’m challenged to help my clients make sense of the things happening in their relationships that defy explanation. I help women find the purpose and the blessing in the challenges they face. I provide strategies and tools to help people transform the way they see themselves, their relationships, and the experiences of their lives.
With this perspective, there are three things I would say to Kris Jenner, or any woman who now feels as though the husband she once knew and loved may no longer exist:
1. You are amazing and worthy of what you desire.
So many times when things go wrong in our relationships, we think that we have failed or that there is something wrong with us. We wonder how we didn’t see the problems coming, or why we ignored the signs when they first appeared. It’s important to remember that you are doing the best you can. There is nothing wrong with you. If you can really believe that you are amazing, and worthy of what you desire, you will believe it’s possible to have the type of relationship you want. And once you believe it’s possible, you will see the steps you need to take to get the outcome you want.
2. Focus on the one thing within your control.
Most of the time, how other people act has nothing to do with us. Even if they blame you, ignore you, or dismiss you, that behavior says more about how they feel about themselves than you. As women, we constantly seek the approval of those we love. But the reality is, you will never to be able to control how someone reacts to you. It’s much more productive to focus your time, energy, and attention on the only thing that is within your control – yourself. Are you doing your best? Are your intentions in the right place? Are you finding ways to work on yourself?
3. Everything is unfolding as it should.
This is often one of the hardest things to see. We fight with reality and want things to be the way they used to be, or wish our life was more like the way we imagined. In doing so, we fail to live in the moment, and learn the lesson or grow in the ways our very situation is trying to get us to do. If we can accept that “it is what it is” and that what it is, will work out for our good, we can rest in peace and know that we will end up better and stronger. And we can do the work required to become the person we were created to be.
I’d love to hear what you think! Leave a comment, or email me at email@example.com.
If you could relate to this post and need some help making sense of the challenges in your own relationship, I’d love to support you. This month, I’m offering a free 30 minute Marriage Makeover coaching session. No obligations. No strings attached. I hope you’ll take advantage!