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Maybe your romance began when fate brought you two together. Or this guy showed up and swept you off your feet. Or he charmed his way into your heart. But what happens when Prince Charming turns out to be a two-timing frog, or a wolf that devours your self-esteem? Or he’s a prince who’s constantly riding off in search of greener pastures?

After the magic wears off, reality crashes in and the truth is exposed. You got swept up in his charm, but found out he was charming other maidens as well. Or you had smokin’ hot chemistry, but discovered you had nothing in common. Or you admired his wit, but later became the focus of his belittling.

So what happens to the princess?

Sometimes she still clings to the prince, holding onto the belief that they’re destined to be together. Or she’ll put up with his belittling, believing (being the nice girl that she is) that if she shows enough kindness, eventually he’ll change his bad behavior. Or she’ll allow his late nights, fooling herself that he’s working hard even though her intuition tells her it’s something else. Or she’ll be bored and directionless puttering around his castle, attending to his needs and abandoning her own.

And what does the prince do?

He leaves her for another chick (aka: wicked witch), or decides he doesn’t want her in his castle anymore, or rides off to go find himself, leaving her standing on the drawbridge wondering what the heck happened. Suddenly she wants Snow White’s Huntsman to take her into the woods and finish her off already. But even that doesn’t end well when she ends up sleeping with the Huntsman and he dumps her too.      

So here you are princess, left sitting on a rock, alone and scared. You thought you were destined to be with him forever, but now all you feel destined for is misery and pain.

How could this happen? What went wrong? Let’s look instead on what went right.

You think you’ve lost your One True Love? Think again.

Here’s a reality check (‘cause we’re moving out of fantasyland here): just as this guy was put in your life for a reason, this break up was put there for a reason as well. 

Princes come and princes go. People come in and out of our lives for one reason only: to help us learn and grow. Relationships give us the greatest capacity to learn. You are meant to find out something about yourself from this experience. Whether you were together for six months or were married for six years, it’s about the connection you had with him, how he impacted your life, and how can you both learn and move on to lead more rewarding lives.

When someone breaks up with you, you may feel hopeless, helpless, or not in control of your life. But you’re not. You have a choice, Cinderella. You can be a victim wandering around lost in the woods or you can find your path and emerge victorious.

This relationship served you in some way, but it will serve you more by its ending.

So what if the prince who dumped you actually did you a huge favor? That, in fact, he helped you (even if it wasn’t intentional) because your relationship with him was complete and it was time to move on to someone better?

Instead of being a hopeless romantic, become a hopeful one.

Start right now, princess. Be optimistic about the future, knowing your possibilities are endless. You can have it all. Believe in a new fairytale – one where Cinderella creates the dream life she wants. Make some magic of your own. Do what you love. Love what you do. Have fun with friends. Enjoy your life right now.

Should you give up on the idea of true love? No. Dream on, girl! The most important thing is to be happy, keep an open heart, and be willing to kiss some frogs to get there if you have to. It’s all about the journey, princess. The truth is there are a lot of princes riding around in the forest. If you honor yourself and keep your heart open they’ll find you. In the mean time, you’ll be rockin’ that tiara all by your fabulous self.


 © Debra Rogers. Did You A Favor, Inc. 2013