Tips for Dealing with a Break Up
Posted by Bridget Fox on November 20, 2009 at 12:39 PM
After a night of sulking on the couch drowning myself in Ben and Jerry's ice cream while watching Sex and the City DVDs ignoring the influx of calls and texts from my family and friends I woke up to an email from my ex. Normally I would reply right away but instead I decided to search for tips on how to deal with a break up. I came across this list and tried my hardest to follow it.
It's now 5 months later and I'm happily single, over my ex and feeling better than ever. Of course, I have my weak moments where I think about him or miss him, but I always look at this list to remind me to let it go. I hope that if any of you are dealing with a break up that this helps you as well.
- Cut off all unnecessary communication: don't talk to your ex unless it is absolutely necessary (such as you have children together or you have financial issues to settle); delete/erase phone numbers on your speed dial, e-mail addresses from your address book, IM addresses, etc.; don't look up online profiles or seek out your ex in any way, shape or fashion. This will help keep you from the urge to contact them. For God’s sake, do not do quickies or bootie calls at their request or their convenience (late at night after he has been drinking with friends) or out of your neediness (what feels good in the moment will feel worse later when you find it really doesn't make him stay). Do NOT pick up the phone when they call for any other reason than necessary communication! Also, if you tend to hang out at the same places, try to find other venues. If you share the same work setting (God help you!) try to stay as professional as possible and in your own space.
- Get rid of any gifts, notes, letters, etc. that are sentimental to you and remind you of your ex.: don't give them back to your ex. Give them away to Goodwill or sell them if they are valuable (of course, check with your state law first, as many states regulate the resale of engagement rings and other high-valued items not deemed as mere gifts). Do not keep them. Let go.
- Hang out with friends. You can lean on them during this time. Also, if you are feeling particularly weak, like you may want to go over to your ex's house or call or do any other things on this list, give this list to a friend and have them help police YOU (the buddy system).
- Don't jump into another relationship. It's okay to go out and meet people; perhaps casually date. But another relationship? Immediately? No way. Not only is this unfair to a new partner if you are not over your ex, it is also unfair to you. During this time it is good to spend some alone time to learn about yourself more: self-reflection is the key.
- Do something active/fun/creative: run, exercise, go see a movie, go shopping, take a pottery or drawing class, salsa dancing course, or try anything else that interests you that you did not make time for before.
- Try to think about all the things you did NOT like about your partner. People break up for a reason. Often, when we go through a break up that is not at our desire, we think of all the good times. Make a list titled “Good reasons why we are no longer together” or “Things about my ex I did not like.” This will help put things in perspective. Do not dwell on the negative. Use it as a catalyst for your inner change toward him and the relationship.
- Write down your thoughts and feelings, either in a journal or write a letter to your ex. Do NOT give these writings to your ex or share with your ex in any way. Writing down your thoughts and your feelings (anger, hurt, betrayal, sadness) can be very constructive and invaluably cathartic. Some people like to make a ritual out of their writings: you may want to have a ceremonial fire and burn the letter to your ex while with friends. But do not share any such writing with your ex. Do not call him to read it to him, or send it in an email, or tape it to his front door. These are your feelings as a person, and since he no longer values the relationship, sharing your feelings and thoughts with him will not bring him back.
- Remember, do not be afraid to be alone. It's not the end of the world and you will always find someone else down the road. It is OK to be alone. Why not take the time and do some self-reflection on why you do not want to be alone.
- Do not try to be friends with your ex UNLESS you are really over him (or her). Once you are over him, THEN you can think about being friends. If you are not over your ex, and you continue with contacting him, you will not be able to get over your him (a classic vicious cycle). Letting go is necessary for healing. Further, it will be especially tough to get over your ex if your ex is dating someone new and you have to hear about it because you are "friends."
- Do not wallow in alcohol or food or promiscuous sex or any other self-destructive device meant to quash the pain. It will only make you feel worse. Try to do something constructive, such as reading on the particular relationship issue that you are experiencing.
- It takes time to heal; be kind and gentle and patient with yourself. Do not blame yourself for the break up. This is a time for self-reflection, not self-flagration! Sometimes, you may not even get a reason for the break up, so you will have to find closure on your own.
Article source: http://tinyurl.com/y99fery
Ladies! Please feel free to add you own tips to this list.... I'm sure there are plenty more pieces of advice in addition to these.