Not too long ago I was chatting with one of my cousins... she had just ended a long-term relationship (over 9 years), and I could tell that she wasn't in her "happy place". Her significant other had personal issues to sort out, so they called it a day. She and I kidded around in an attempt to bring levity into our online conversation, but I knew it was nothing more than a band-aid with which to alleviate her pain. The only thing that will heal her is time (and plenty of booze).
Many a time I've found myself in relationship hell... I've spent many a tossy-turny night in tears over something either he or I said or did (which has caused anger of incredible proportions) or by something external, something out of our control (which has caused anger of incredible proportions). But as bad as things would get, if there was something worth saving, I'd fight to save it. However, if things were beyond help, if the relationship was becoming toxic and exhausting to us both, or if there simply was no more love to fight for, the call would be made: it's time to move on. In as much as it would be the right decision to make, it was never ever easy or painless. At times, I felt I just wanted to die.
I don't know that I was able to impart any grain of wisdom to my cousin on that online chat besides the perfunctory "you'll be okay, just give it time." Sometimes I feel I'm so full of shit when I say something like that; there wasn't anything I could say to really make her feel better. But one of us did say one thing that rings true in every relationship: if it's meant to be, it's meant to be. I guess only time will tell if that'll hold true for her and her love... if they do get back together, I'm sure it'll be for a lifetime. You just never know what the future will bring.
I remain engaged... I have a feeling they'll be right back where they started.