Hi everyone, I hope you’re all well.
If you’re reading this, I’m assuming you are currently trying to get over some form of break up, whether you were seeing each other or in a full blown relationship or even married, or you have had to in the past, or you will in the future. You are seriously fucking lucky if you never have to go through a break up and deal with the emotions that come with that, but also, I think it’s a good thing for everyone to go through, as you end up learning a lot about yourself.
I’ve written a lot about heartbreak, break ups and moving on over the years, but the question I get messaged most is quite simply ‘How do I get over a break up?’. It’s a universally asked question every single day, simply because you feel so shit and so bleak, you want to know how to stop feeling like that as quick as possible.
I did an Instagram Story Q&A the other day and someone asked how to get over a break up, and I put some brief advice on there, and I had so many messages off the back of it that I’ve decided to put together a more thorough list of everything I can possibly think of in getting over a breakup, and I really hope it proves to be, in some manner, helpful to some of you during this quite frankly shit show of a time you’re going through right now.
The break up has happened; now what? What do you do, to begin to piece your life back together?
Your friends will more than likely try to get you to come out with them as soon as possible, maybe even that night, to take your mind off things. It’s a lovely thought, but it’s not a good idea. Alcohol and a fresh break up are not a match made in heaven. Downing double vodka and cranberries, dancing to Fetty Wap and posting Snapchat stories of yourself pretending to have a good time in the hope that they see is not a good idea. You need to let yourself feel like shit.
I have refused to let myself feel the pain of a break up before; I’ve gone about my life, gone out and had fun, kept busy, refused to acknowledge the turmoil taking place inside me, and then some time later, had a complete break down over it. The end of a relationship that you were committed to and were involved in with someone you care about is going to hurt you. It’s not something you can just push down and expect that all those feelings will go away. It’s like an underlying health issue; you can ignore it all you want, but unless you admit defeat and get yourself to the doctors and begin the process of getting better, then it will come back to haunt you, and it’ll be worse than if you’d just dealt with it to begin with.
You need to cry in bed. You need to eat all the shit food you want to eat. You need to listen to Sinead O’Connor and look through old pictures of the two of you, and watch The Notebook on repeat and scream at the screen at the ‘If you’re a bird I’m a bird’ scene. You need to have an absolute meltdown and feel like you will never be happy again, and send your friends 850 Whatsapps in an hour about how you will never love anyone else again, and how your life is now over.
However, the most important part of this process, is knowing that it will end. You will, and I can categorically tell you this, not feel like that forever. You will, more than likely, not feel like that for much longer at all. The human mind and body is amazingly resilient. Have faith in it.
Delete, Block, Remove
I know, I know, I know. You want to keep that person on all social media, because you want them to see you’re living an amazing life without them, and you want them to be able to contact you. Let me give you 4 reasons why this is a bad idea.
- If they start posting stuff about them going out, going on holiday, out drinking, out for meals, with their mates…you’re going to feel SO MUCH WORSE because you’re going to think they’re absolutely fine whilst you’re heartbroken and lying in bed eating Ben & Jerry’s Phish Food, drinking wine straight from the bottle and listening to Dua Lipa on repeat.
- If they post nothing, you’re going to wonder what on earth they’re up to, who they’re with, and why they’re not posting anything. You’ll assume they’ve met someone else, or that they’re having such a good time they have forgotten to even post anything on social media.
- They will contact you, or you will contact them, and then you’ll be left feeling even worse and putting yourself back weeks and weeks when you could have spent that time moving on.
- They will delete or block you first, and you will be devastated about that.
This is why it’s so important to get rid of them on everything as soon as you know you’re done for good. It’s the only way to begin the healing process.
If you have mutual friends that they could be out with, turn off their notifications and mute them so you can’t see any of their posts. If you are friends with their friends on social media only because of them, and they’re not actually your friends, delete them too. You won’t be seeing them anymore, and what’s the point of letting yourself see posts about them that are just going to upset you further?
Personally, I’d delete and block their number too but I know how hard that is because you want them to have a way to contact you. If you can’t manage that (or, of course, if you have children together in which case you need to have their number), delete their number off everything so that you physically cannot get in touch with them, but leave it unblocked if you really have to, so that they could still get in touch with you if they needed to. HOWEVER, if they cheated on you or treated you like shit, BLOCK IT. You don’t wanna know what they’ve got to say. NEXT.
The No Contact Rule
In a break up, you either want one of two things; A) To get over them, or B) To get them back.
The No Contact Rule works for both, and here is why.
The only thing that will ever get someone back, realistically, is by not contacting them. If you break up and you’re constantly messaging them, they don’t get to experience what it’s like to not have you in their life. If you go silent, they experience that, and that is what will bring them back to you if anything does.
The only thing that will ever get you over someone, is by not contacting them, as eventually feelings will fade and you will move on.
Both outcomes require the same action, which is no contact. If you want them back and you don’t contact them, and they don’t contact you, then you’ll move on anyway. Job done.
Stop Trying To Find Shit Out
We’ve all done it, but stop it now. Stop asking mutual friends or people who know them what they’re up to, if they’re seeing anyone, what they’ve been doing, if they’ve asked about you. You’ll never get the answers you want to hear, you’re just torturing yourself, and it’ll probably get back to them that you’ve been asking after them, and no one wants their ex to think that they’re being asked about by you.
Imagine that they’re living the most boring, shit, miserable life without you if it helps you to move on, but don’t try and find out what they’re doing. Don’t try and stalk their social media from your friends profiles, because it will become an obsession that’s hard to stop, and a seriously bad habit that you can’t break, so just don’t even start it to begin with.
Don’t Go Where They Will Be
I’m not saying that you should change your entire routine, and stop going to the places you love. However, when you’re hurting and trying to move on, if you know he’s going to be at a certain pub with his mates on Saturday night, don’t go there. I can promise you that 99.9% of the time it isn’t going to work out in your favour, and there is a whole host of reasons why.
- You’ll look like you’ve gone there on purpose. No, you should not care what anyone thinks, but right after a break up, you need to be kind to yourself and not be around anyone who makes you feel bad about yourself, and turning up somewhere where all their friends are going to be, who will probably be making no secret of their opinion of you being there, will not make you feel better.
- They could ignore you. This will result in you either being really angry, or really upset. Weeks or months down the line, whenever you feel completely over them, fine, who cares if they ignore you. But I can tell you from experience, that right after a break up, being ignored by that person…it literally feels like a punch to the stomach, so don’t even put yourself in that scenario to begin with.
- They could talk to you. This will completely halt the moving on process and put you back to square 1. I know you want them to talk to you, and think you look amazing, and want to get back with you, but if it takes someone seeing you dressed up in a bar with your friends to want you back, they’re not worth it in the first place. It shouldn’t take that for someone to want to be with you, they should just want to be with you regardless of any of that. Also, if alcohol is involved, there’s every chance one thing could lead to another, and you could end up going home together which is a big NO, as it will completely set you back and mess your emotions up.
Be Civil But Detached If You Do See Them
If they treated you like shit, did something really terrible, or cheated, you have every right to completely ignore them if you do happen to see them, as you don’t owe them even a civil ‘hello’.
If it was an amicable break up and nothing bad happened, and you don’t want to ignore them, then a simple greeting of ‘Hi’ and continuing with whatever you were doing is perfectly acceptable, at most, you can do the ‘You okay?’ ‘Yeah you?’ niceties.
Obviously, when you’re well over the break up in the future, if you bump into them you can chat as much as you want to, because you’re no longer emotionally invested in the situation. I bumped into a boy last Summer, who I’d been besotted with when I was about 16, and we stood chatting and laughing for about 5 minutes and that was fine, because we had 0 feelings towards each other all those years later, my boyfriend at the time was with me, and it was all very nice and civil.
However, if it’s after a break up and you’re not over them, do not allow yourself to get embroiled into a conversation because I promise you, you will feel worse. You will go over it again and again in your head, get angry at yourself because you should’ve said this or that, or done something differently. You will wonder why they didn’t ask to reconcile, or why they’ve not text you after saying it was nice to see you – and if they do that, even worse, as it’s a mind fuck.
The most simple thing to do is to avoid them, and if you do see them, do not enter into any form of long conversation that could lead to you feeling worse after it.
Bin, Bin, Bin
No, do not keep their jumper that you used to sleep in. The necklace he bought you for your birthday, give it to your friend, sell it on eBay, give it to charity, it doesn’t matter what, just don’t keep it.
Get rid of all the memories that could be around you; framed photos, the drawing you had done of you both on holiday, the stuffed animal they got you; if you’re over for good, what’s the point in keeping them? Bin the birthday and Valentines cards; they serve no purpose whatsoever now except to harm you.
If they have left stuff at your house, bag it up quickly and efficiently, and either ask a mutual friend if they’d mind giving it back, or message them to tell them you’ll be leaving it outside your house on a specific time or day for them to collect, or that you’ll be leaving it outside theirs on a specific time or day, and if they could do the same with your things. There’s no need to be seeing each other for this exchange of goods, as it’s an unnecessary interaction that could be avoided.
Move The F*ck On
You’ve grieved the relationship, you’ve spent weeks crying in bed, turning down plans, staying in your pyjamas all day, feeling like your world is over. I know how you feel, trust me I do, but there has to come a point where you say ‘Enough is enough, fuck this, I’m getting on with my life’.
Even if you don’t feel like you’re over it, you need to pick yourself up and get on with your life, and that feeling of being completely over them, it will come, you just need to be patient and trust that time seriously is the biggest healer.
Don’t be hard on yourself if it’s months later and you’re still hurting and still crying, because each healing process is different, just like each break up is, and you will feel better, it may just take some time, however you cannot let your life fall apart because someone has decided they don’t want to be in it anymore, or it wasn’t working, or you decided they shouldn’t be in it anymore.
You need to remember that you WILL, categorically, 100%, without a shadow of a doubt, move on from that person, and meet someone who deserves you, treats you well, and respects you. Don’t sit around thinking you’re never going to move on, because you will, I promise you. You never know what’s around the corner, so you need to get up and get out there, and not let a break up change who you are in a negative way. You need to try and take something positive from it, whether that’s that you no longer have a toxic person in your life, or that you are now single and ready to meet the right person, or that you can now concentrate on yourself. Whatever it is, you’ll be able to find a glimmer of hope from it, even on the worst days.
I hope you found this post helpful, and I’ll speak to you all soon.
All my love BGP xx