Hello, my loves. Today, we’re going to talk about what to do when you’re going through a breakup.
No matter what, breakups are always tough to talk about…even if you’re the one who did the breaking up. But there’s a better way to move through these losses, and whether you’re currently going through a breakup or not, it’s going to be sooo fucking valuable for you to have this knowledge in your back pocket.
Let’s get right into it, shall we?
First thing’s first: if you are going through a breakup right now, you are not alone.
Breakups happen all the time…even during the holidays. But just because they happen all the time doesn’t mean they don’t hurt. So if you’re going through a breakup right now, or you recently experienced a breakup, or even you had a breakup from a long time ago that’s still lingering, know that I’m sending you so much love…and the permission to feel that pain.
There’s a lot of messaging out there around breakups that focuses on moving forward. There’s a lot of “Get over it!” and “Live your best life!” and all that, but we can’t skip to that step right away.
We have to acknowledge the pain. Because whether you’re the one who called it off or they called it off or it was mutual, it’s still fucking painful. It’s still really hard, because your brain doesn’t actually understand that you’ve made this decision yourself or that you’ve both come to this conclusion on your own.
I read this in a book once, and it’s not an exact quote, but I want to share anyway, so I’ll paraphrase: the brain doesn’t know the difference between someone actually dying and someone choosing to leave a relationship. It just registers massive loss.
This person that you loved was once here, and now they’re not. That’s all the brain knows.
All that to say, it’s okay to feel what you’re feeling. That doesn’t mean you need to swim in it forever, but it’s actually really important that you validate your feelings for yourself instead of trying to sweep them under the rug.
Give yourself time to grieve the relationship. Let go of how long you think it should take—or how long the people around you think it should take. You’re going to feel how you feel for as long as you feel it, regardless of whether the breakup was for the best or if it was your choice or whatever the case may be.
Also—I want to get this out of the way right now—it doesn’t matter how long you’ve been in the relationship. I’ve been in connections where we weren’t even in a relationship that lasted about two weeks, and when they called it off, I was devastated.
I’ve also had relationships that lasted two years, and the second he walked out the door, I was totally over it.
How does that work? Because I had already grieved the loss of the relationship while in the relationship, which is not something that people often speak about.
Sometimes when there’s so much disconnect in the relationship before it ends, you mourn the relationship and the person you’re with even while you’re still in it. So when you actually break up, it doesn’t feel so jarring.
So it doesn’t matter how long you’ve been together. Your process is your process.
There is a better way to handle going through a breakup—whether you were the one broken up with or not. I want to teach you how to tackle a breakup in a mature way, regardless of who initiated it.
Here’s the thing about going through a breakup: when anyone gets broken up with, their shit is going to come up. Their shadows, their abandonment wounds, their self-righteousness, their self-absorption…all of it’s going to wriggle its way out into the open. And a lot of people don’t know how to navigate that.
One thing we can do to navigate this better? Stop getting together with your friends and bashing your ex.
We need to cut this shit out. I’m so serious. I don’t care if he’s your ex. I don’t care if he’s you’re fucking enemy. I’m not here for man-bashing, because how is that going to fucking support your relationship with men moving forward?
And, listen…I get that it comes from good intentions. You love your best friends, and they love you. If one of your friends is going through a breakup, of course you want to be there for them. Of course you want to gas them up and tell them how shitty he was and how they can do so much better.
But the truth is, hating on their ex is not supportive to them…nor is hating on your ex supportive to you.
You obviously had a relationship. You cared about this person. You had a lot of love for each other, and that can still stand when you’re going through a breakup. You don’t have to trash them just because the relationship didn’t ultimately last.
This applies to stalking people’s social media as well. Like…be honest with yourself if that’s what you’re doing. Is making a fake account to stay glued to your ex’s stories really in your highest alignment? Is it really going to support your healing? If the answer is no, then maybe don’t do that.
However, though we don’t want to be bashing our exes with all our friends, it’s still really important for you to seek out community after a breakup, just like when you’re going through any major loss.
Pause for a sec. When I say that you should reach out to your friends, I don’t mean you should reach out from a space of emotional dumping constantly. I don’t mean that you’re still picking up the phone and sobbing to them about how unfair it is three fucking months later. I mean calling and asking, “Hey, are you available for me to talk about this? Can I have ten minutes where I just vent to you?” or “Hey, can I get some advice on this? I’m really struggling to get clarity on my own.”
Always check in before dumping unsolicited emotions on your friends, but don’t be afraid to reach out and get that support when going through a breakup.
Next, like I mentioned before…intentionally let yourself feel the pain of that loss.
People get really afraid that when they start to feel all of their stuff, they’re never going to be able to stop feeling. They think that once they allow grief in, they’re going to be stuck in it for the rest of their fucking life. But that’s not the case at all.
In reality, yes, some people do tend to wallow in their grief. But you absolutely can hold the duality of feeling grief, abandonment, and loss while still living your life. You can still create and make decisions and be a functioning human while grieving.
You’re a lot more capable than you give yourself credit for; that I know for sure. It’s something I see over and over and over with my clients, my friends, and myself.
This is far from a complete overview of what to do when you’re going through a breakup. But to hear the rest…you’re going to have to listen to Episode 128 of Unf*ck Your Relationships. And you should listen, because it’s pure fucking gold.
That said…if you’re going through a breakup, my heart is moved for you. I’m holding you in so much love and so much reverence. And I know, without a doubt, that you will get through this.
As one of my mentors, Melanie, always says: “I have no fear for you.” That’s what I want to say to you. I have no fear for you. I promise you will be a phoenix, and you will rise from the ashes of this grief.
I love you. Have a beautiful Christmas, my loves.
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I get it, girl. I’ve been there too. For years, I was going through the same experiences with men over and over again that left me feeling confused, anxious and pissed off.
I silenced myself in dating and relationships because I was terrified of being judged, rejected and abandoned. It all changed when I went through a break-up and thought “enough is enough. I cannot continue to repeat the same relationships with different men! Something HAS to change!”