How to Get Over a Breakup

 

I’ll start with this: N and I are just fine. But since I’m fairly certain (ahem, positive) that I won’t be needing these strategies in my future, I’ve decided to share how I got over past break ups. Though I wish I could tell you that occasionally I was the dumper, I was always (yes, always) the dumpee (dumped?). Whatever, I was the one who got broken up with. It happened.

heartbreak

I think it’s pretty obvious to anyone whose been through one that break ups are the worst. If you’re anything like me (i.e. human), somehow emotional pain feels so much like physical pain. The only way to put it: it sucks. Sure now it feels like it was all meant to happen that way. Now I’m glad it happened. But then? Then I was a devastated, broken person who needed to figure out how to put herself back together. Naturally I devised a method that I’m certain no doctor would recommend, but alas, might help all my 19 year old readers out there. So here we go…

1 | Figure out your food. You’re either an eater or a starver. That’s just the facts. Under stress, some people over eat and some people just can’t have an appetite. I lose my appetite. During my worst break up I lost 12 pounds. I don’t advocate doing this but it does help you feel fabulous when you return to the real world. So if you are an eater, buy some snacks. If you’re a starver, well, sip on some wine. Although by no means is this the time to get belligerently drunk. We’ve all done that and it helps you feel better 0% of the time and is a guaranteed way to be the crying girl at your sorority formal. Got a little too specific there…moving on…

2 | Get a Netflix subscription. Actually who the hell doesn’t already have one? Find a comedy or heartwarming drama and get hooked. Lay in bed and watch many, many seasons in a row.

Dear How I Met Your Mother,

You saved me. And for that I am always grateful.

Sincerely,

Girl who is no longer Broken

3 | When you’ve hit a low point, write a list of all the things you don’t like about him. Listen, I didn’t say this was a list of mature ways to get over a relationship. While it may be tempting to just write “he’s a douche-lord” (thank you Khloe Kardashian for making this phrase part of my vocabulary), try for the meaningful, real reasons.

Why didn’t it work? Did you have different long-term goals? Were you never going to be at the same maturity level? Could you just not live the rest of your life with a man who thought it was his calling to start a revolution in a third-world country even though he was a frat boy with a trust fund? Whoa, again, got a little too specific there.

Write it down and save it. Save it for that moment when he comes crawling back. Save it for the moment when you run in to him and your heart feels like it’s going to fall out of your chest. Go home and read it. Re-read it. And never be tempted to get back together.

4 | Read a good book. Between seasons of your chosen show, dive in to some easy reading fiction. Keep your mind busy. Become a reader and let the stories take you somewhere else.

Love Smart

5 | At your next low point, turn to self-help books. Love Smart by Dr. Phil helped me tremendously. Yeah, there’s something I never thought I’d admit to. Now it sits on my bookshelf, mildly embarrassing me whenever we have a visitor but as it provided guidance and love when I needed it, will now stick with me for life. He even makes Sex and the City references. That’s how you know something is legit.

6 | Know that it gets better. Chances are this isn’t your first time being heartbroken and there’s a good chance it won’t be your last. Remember how you feel about the last guy now? You’ll feel the same way about this guy some day. Keep telling yourself that.

givesashit

You do, girl, you totally do.

7 | Move 3,5000 miles away. I realize that this is not a possibility for 99% of people but I left California heartbroken. And by the time we crossed the state line in to Arizona, I was over it. Just. Like. That.

This entire list is assuming that, like me, you aren’t super rich. If you are, by all means get a proper therapist and a new wardrobe.

How do you get over break ups? Someone reading this is heartbroken. Your words, and mine, might help them.

 

rachelandbear

Today I’d like to introduce you to someone who won’t need this post at all, cause she’s a happily married lady. Rachel writes over at The Random Writings of Rachel.

What on earth is she doing posing with a bear? It’s a funny story that turned in to a blog series. Check it out!  Want to cheer someone up while amusing yourself? Rachel shows you how. She also shared something I’m certain most bloggers will find blasphemous: she isn’t impressed by Target. When you see why, it will all make sense (kind of, I still love Target!).

I also loved reading about her experiences with changing her last name to one that is challenging for English speakers. I’ll need to take notes on that one! Want to see more of Rachel? Head over to The Random Writings of Rachel and tell her I sent you.

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  • I was just nodding my head and everyone. Although I do tend to fluctuate between the non-eater and the eater.

    I also bought that book. Is there a reason why I met my future husband within six months of buying that book? Maybe, maybe not. All I know is that his book has a lot of truth in it. Especially the 80/20 rule.

    If there any heartbroken ladies out there, look at my “letters to my former single self” series.

  • Laura

    I have to disagree on the not getting belligerently drunk part.. I think it can be crucial on temporarily getting your mind off things! Just make sure to take his number out of your phone before you go out. If it’s too hard to “forever” get rid of his number, give it to a friend who won’t cave in to you and then delete it from your phone. She can give it back sober. 🙂 Of course if you have his number memorized, you’re screwed..

    To elaborate on the list of bad qualities about him, your friends can aid with this. Chances are if you’re breaking up, you’ve complained/cried to them over him and they likely hate him at this point. They’ll love to open your eyes to his bad qualities or go overboard in agreeing when you start naming things you don’t like.

    One thing that really helped me get over a very bad breakup last year was “allowing” myself time during the day to think of him and be sad, then not thinking about him the rest of the day. Like, “I’ll let myself cry over this for an hour, and then I don’t get to think of him until tomorrow.” This actually helped me for the times I’d be sitting at my desk holding back tears. Eventually the time you need to think of him will diminish!

  • I’m definitely the loss of appetite person. I’ve lost 20 pounds since Jon broke up with me. And I’m definitely going to have to take the “write a list” advice. I could definitely use a chance to write down every single fucking thing I hate about him right now. 🙂 It definitely makes it harder when I still have to see him every so often when he wants to see Travis, especially when he’s driving his new girlfriend’s car because she’s a stupid bitch that let him drive her car after dating for two fucking months.

    But excuse me. I’m obviously still bitter, and you definitely didn’t ask to be vented to. 😛 Thanks for this post.

  • When I would go through breakups or really any time I am super stressed, I’m a starver. I don’t mean to be, it just happens. Usually, I would just go out with someone else that following weekend haha.

  • I’m a starver. I don’t even notice it really until my mother sweetly pointed out I looked skeletal. I’m also a wallower by nature. I have to force myself to go out and do things. Random drives around town with my mother, taking Boomer to the movies.

    I also give myself a finite amount of time. Like…ok Whit you have Pearl Harbor, and The Last Samurai to sob through and then you’re going to get up and do something, anything else. Or The length of one CD, ect.

    I wish moving 3500 miles away was an option. Lol for him too….

    Divorce is a sucky sucky thing, but at the end of all that the thing on your list I most agree with is that IT. GETS. BETTER.

  • Get over your ex by getting under someone else. No, but seriously one of the best parts about being single is being single! I’ve been happily dating my man friend for 2+ years, but if we were to break up the next stop would be heading out with my girlfriends to the bar with all the hotties. 🙂

    • Anon!

      Or on top! (I just had too). Well that’s what I did. And it was fabulous. May I just add that that was the first time I had sex twice in a week – which didn’t even happen the two years I was with my ex. Sad times lol. BYE FELICIA!

  • sometimes you really cannot get away. you have to see them ALL THE TIME. that is the worst. I’m an avoider, so i had to get over that. my advice is fake it til you make it. one day you’ll start smiling again.

  • When I went through a break-up as the dumpee I was blindsided and immediately devastated. For awhile I was convinced we’d get back together and aimed all of my efforts into that direction, but I’d tell my former self to get real so that I could begin processing faster. Writing a list is a good idea (because they always seem to come back in the long run). Writing in general is a good idea. It helped me process/document all of my feelings regarding him and the situation at hand. Ironically, How I Met Your Mother and Pretty Little Liars were the two marathons that helped me pass the time post break-up.

    I fluctuate between eater/non-eater – erring on the side of non-eater when I hit an unbearable low. One night I just stayed in my room and began to cry. I cried for hours…the hard ugly tears. The type of crying you probably only do a handful of times in your life. It was scary how much I cried and how not much seemed to help. Naturally, I’m a bottler. I hold things in, so that type of crying was probably a result of putting on my brave face for too long and not allowing myself to process properly. Having good friends helps so much. They took long walks with me and never pushed me to ‘just get over him.’ I’d say everyone deserves one good drunken night, but don’t ever hide out in alcohol or substances as a solution. In the long run, hurting yourself isn’t the same as hurting him. It took me a long time to realize that.

    Thanks for this post! SO many valid suggestions.

  • Samantha

    I don’t think my comment saved before, boo, but great tips. He’s Just Not That Into You and Better Single Than Sorry saved my life. My roommates found me crying in my room and listening to our song over and over again… low point. But I only went up from there 🙂

    And having a friend take my phone away when drinking and out… lifesaver.

  • America’s Next Top Model was my show of choice when I went through a bad break-up in college. Thank goodness for the Oxygen network.
    Before that, Dr. Phil helped my 20 year old self work through an awful break-up with a cheater. Yes, it took Dr. Phil to make me realize that cheating was, in fact, NOT okay. I also read (and loved) He’s Just Not That Into You.

  • First off, you got me VERY nervous with this title. Second, I have actually thought of moving!

    xx
    Kelly
    Sparkles and Shoes

  • “Remember how you feel about the last guy now? You’ll feel the same way about this guy some day. Keep telling yourself that.” So true. I had an AWFUL relationship/breakup and I always told myself after that, if I could survive it I could survive anything.

  • I went out with a guy for five years, and when we broke up (twice actually) it sucked. More so the first time, we got back together after two months apart and then it was just kinda obvious it wasn’t working.
    Anyways, I LOVED the book It’s Called A Breakup Because It’s Broken, by the people who wrote He’s Just Not That Into You! Super helpful. Also, getting my butt to the gym like every day helped so much. Endorphins are our friends even more so in this case. Plus, looking hot is definitely key to feeling good when going through a break up.
    ALSO, I kinda did the list thing except in reverse. I made a list of what qualities I wanted in someone I could spend the rest of my life with. As I wrote it out, I realised that my ex was not this guy, however much we cared about each other.
    A few months (seemed a bit soon to some people but what can you do) after we broke up for good, a guy friend quickly revealed himself to be everything on my list. We started dating and are now married!

  • Ummm was this directed towards me? (ugh, I think so!!!!) Kidding but I completely agree with all of these. Each month it gets easier to get over them but just know it takes time and you are much better than some scum ok great

  • Staley

    1) Work-out. A lot! I mean really work-out, run, lift weights, sweat like crazy. It is cleansing for your emotions. Also, sit in the sauna–also cleansing and no one can tell whether its sweat or tears running down your face:)
    2) Spend time and bond with onscreen females like Bridget Jones and the whole SATC cast of course. It is so helpful to see them have broken hearts too!
    3) Chic lit-Running in Heels, Good in Bed, I personally find the Brits hilarious while trying to mend a broken heart:)
    4) Another good heal yourself author is Iyanla Vanzant. She doesn’t allow you to wallow in self pity. She’s really, really good!
    5) Buy or download whatever song it is that is absolutely the hardest to listen to bc you know you don’t want to hear it while shopping in Kroger and then fall apart right there in public!! Listen to it so many times that it no longer has that impact on you. ie:desensitize
    6) Write about your heartbreak. Say everything you want/need to say. Then build a fire and burn all those letters one day when you feel stronger!!
    7) Just know that YOU deserve more and never, never settle.

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