Guest Post: Heartbreaks Versus Whole Hearts


Hi everyone! I hope you’re having a great weekend! I want to thank Deb Riako from Deb was Here for today’s guest post. Deb is a 30-something who blogs about her life experiences. Deb’s already gone through many highs and lows in life. She’s even thinking about writing an autobiography. Today, she shares her thoughts about love and heartbreak here on Life of an El Paso Woman. 

Heartbreaks Versus Whole Hearts 

By Deb Riako

I’ve never had my heart broken. This isn’t the easiest thing to say when you are in your 30’s. This basically translates to…I have not loved. What a sad little world I must be living in. Growing up, I had dreams like everyone else…to one day meet that special someone who would sweep me off my feet. He would love and treasure me the way the heroes in the novels treasured and loved their heroines. In our meeting, we would complete each other to the extent we would need no one else. Our absence from each other would be felt by every fiber in our beings. Separation would be something we only did when we had no choice. At some point, we would be ready to share this overflowing love we felt for each other with another being so we would have a child. The route to happily ever after would be paved. See, these were my dreams. This was what I envisioned for me.

Then I saw my parents, and their relationship. I knew my dream was not necessarily going to be a reality. I think the first crack to my dreams happened when I was 14 and my oldest sister had a baby. It was like a bubble burst. I realized it wasn’t always love and chemistry. A baby didn’t only come into the mix when the two of you were overflowing with love. Watching my sister go through what I assume was her first heartbreak broke me too. Maybe it broke me a little harder than it broke her. When you are 14 and helping raise a kid in a household where everyone wants to look at the kid as a disappointment, you tend to lose a big chunk of the faith you had in a dream. Over time, other things happened all around me but never to me. I  watched my sisters and friends go through boyfriends. Some managed a few every year. A few months later, I sat with these same sisters and friends as they cried their hearts out after a heartbreak. I saw the damage it did to them and me. With all of these experiences, my heart has hardened.

When things are good with my friends who can freely love, I envy them. They enjoy spending time with a significant other. I imagine watching a simple TV show is a lot different when you are watching it with someone you love. I envy those moments when you feel the butterflies in the pit of your stomach, getting random text messages during the day that make you smile, having a gift on Valentine’s Day (or any other day for that matter). I miss these moments and envy those who have them. When things go bad, I watch as I see the happiness turn into grief. I see a small gesture that used to produce a smile on her face turn into curse words. I see the heartache and I am happy I don’t have to go through that. These are the times the words ‘don’t fall in love Deb, it’s stupid’ are likely to be uttered. I look at that and think I’m lucky I don’t have to go through that. But am I? See, the thing with living through other people’s heartbreak is… all you see is heartbreaks! When people are going through the happy moments, I am not invited to the party. I see them as they pass through. If I’m willing to be a third wheel, I mostly end up feeling like crap. I don’t get to experience the happy moments but my heart has hardened from all of their heartbreaks.

My heart may be whole, but it is hard. This isn’t a win, it’s a big loss. The person who said ‘it is better to have loved and lost than to have loved at all’ knew what they were talking about. I have not loved and I have not lost. In moments like now, I wish I had at least one of these. How does one get over a heartbreak? I wish I could tell you it was easy. I wish I could tell you all you had to do was harden your heart and not love and you would be safe. I have told myself that for many years. It turns out I have been wrong. My advice to you is to cry when it hurts. It hurts that the forever you envisioned is no more, the love you thought would be with you is no more. Clutch your stomach and cry, let it all out.

It takes a lot of effort to dream. When those dreams come shattering down, it takes a lot of effort to sit back and watch it all happen. At some point, (this will take even greater effort) you are going to have to stand up, wipe off those tears and start on building another dream. Once in awhile, you will pick up a piece that will drag you right back to your old dream. You will cry some more because it will still hurt and that’s OK! The good news is…YOU have loved! You know how to do it. Even though it may seem like you are doing it wrong this time, you’re not! You loved…and you lost. Tomorrow, you will love again. You might lose again or you may hit the jackpot. For those of you who know how to love…LOVE. Because there are some of us out here who don’t know how to do it.


  1. Learning how to be a part of a team after being the whole team takes some getting used to. It does take work, relationships aren’t always mountaintop moments. Sometimes they are stumbling through the dark valleys and that is where you need to hang onto the love you have for the other person and not let go.


  2. I had a horrible relationship with my son’s dad. I was with him for seven years. It was unhealthy and abusive. I hope this one works out too. It’s a lot of work to be with someone. I’m learning to chill though.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I can understand why you want to be single now. I’m reconciling now. I’m taking it a day at a time. If this doesn’t work, I’m done. I’ve been hurt a lot in my life.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. No there isn’t anything wrong with not being in a relationship, especially if you’ve been hurt a lot. I know some people who aren’t in a relationship and some who can’t be without someone. I’ve considered not being with anyone anymore. It’s nice to share things with someone. At the same time, it takes work. It just depends on what the person wants in their life.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I don’t think there is a thing wrong with going through life alone. I am happy not being in a relationship. I don’t feel like I am missing out on anything. I have friends that feel like they aren’t complete unless they are a part of a couple and I think that is so sad. To jump from one relationship to another to try to feel whole and validate their existance. They need to find out who they are and valuse them selves first. But, they don’t see it and tell me I don’t know what I’m talking about.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thank you for reading this post and your comment! 🙂 Happy Valentine’s Day to you too, Ms. Whitmore. I’m sure the right person will come into Deb’s and your daughter’s life when the time’s right.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Deb, love is going to sneak right up on you. Our daughter, 23, has never had a true love, either, maybe because she’s like you — bright, interested in the world, engaged, curious, adventurous, and not going to settle for just anyone. You’ve learned a lot about what doesn’t work, which means you also know a lot about what does. May the right one come, at the right time. Happy Valentines day to you and host Lisa. Cheers —

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Great post. Thank you Deb for your honesty and your thoughts on love and loss. I can add that I have plenty of gray hair from wrestling with love and figuring out how to do it properly. I’m not an expert but it will be 10 years this year since I said “I do”.
    Thanks again to Deb and Lisa. Be well.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I believe there are many who think they have loved, but really they haven’t. Certainly, modern relationships, where there seems to be no commitment, I do not consider to be love. Also, there are millions of long standing marriages that may, not necessarily, be true love. Those who married because it was the thing to do, or it was expected of them.
    Do not despair! You have plenty of time. Love yourself first of all. Love life, love nature, love animals, love the air you breathe, and your own, and everyone’s very existence.
    Love will hit you when you least expect it and, when it does, embrace it!

    Liked by 5 people

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