Oh, you know me, cynical me, the one who said that she would never read another book about dating...I broke my pledge.
The full title is: When Love Ends and the Ice Cream Carton is Empty: What you need to know about your new beginning by Jackie M. Johnson.
Something about this particular book changed my mind. It's not some pie-in-the-sky advice book that tells you exactly what to do to find a perfect Godly man. It's a book that deals with the realities of the other end of the dating spectrum: the breakup.
There have been few Christian books (if any) about the breakup part of the relationship. Really, it's about time. This book acknowledges what's frequently bothered me about the relationship books. This one actually says it's OK to mourn a relationship that didn't happen, a relationship that barely happened, and the usual long term relationship. Our losses, even apparently small ones to some, are important to acknowledge.
I like that this book doesn't demonize men. A dating book I read recently was titled, All Men Are Jerks Until Proven Otherwise. Another popular book is titled, He's Just Not That Into You. Another one was called Why He Didn't Call Back. (Really?? Who cares?) These attitudes remain completely unhelpful. However Jackie Johnson's advice says you still have value in God's eyes. Don't lose hope. Though, I have to say, dating in the modern world seems far more difficult than the early 60s.
This book also cuts across multiple age groups, unlike my least favorite dating book of all time, I Kissed Dating Goodbye. You may find Jackie Johnson's book helpful whether you are 16 and dealing with your first big breakup or at 46 and dealing with more breakups than you can count thinking it should be a pain you're used to. The key points are that it's OK to acknowledge the pain, forgiveness is an important step in healing your heart, and not to lose hope in the Lord.
The author also offers tips on "waiting well" without getting completely cheesy or promising you that the reward is that you will have some awesome, perfect man at the end of it. Or if you prefer more worldly words, as I often do, "Just hang on, suffer well. Sometimes it's hard, hard to tell..." Depeche Mode style.
A highly recommended read whether you're waiting well or suffering well.
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