Guest Author - Melissa Weise
How do you cope with the days and weeks after a break up? Below are a few situations that often arise after a break up and ideas for how to cope with them.
If you did the breaking up:
You may feel guilty for hurting the other person or wonder if you made the right decision. Many people end up going back to a relationship that wasnít working because of these feelings and this can be a worse choice than the actual break up. If you feel that way, think about the reasons why you broke up with the other person in the first place. Ask your friends and family what they think of your choice (but donít take their opinions as anything except opinions - sometimes friends and family want a couple to get back together for their own reasons and arenít good people to ask advice from). Make a list of the reasons why the break up needed to happen. And above all, give it a little time. These feelings of guilt and uncertainty can be very normal and they will be most intense right after the break up. Try to distract yourself and give it some time before you text, email, call or talk to the person again.
If someone broke up with you:
Having someone break up with you is never pretty. Especially if you werenít expecting it. After all, you wanted to be a part of this relationship because you like the other person and you want this person to like you. And when they break up with you, you can feel betrayed, hurt, and unlovable. You can wonder what you did wrong, if you werenít pretty enough, nice enough or good enough. These are really natural feelings to have, but they donít mean that there was anything wrong with you at all. Sometimes relationships just donít work out and it has nothing to do with how loveable the people involved are. If you feeling this way, you need to surround yourself with people and things that make you feel like the wonderful person you are. Dress in your favorite clothes, get your hair done, do activities that you are good at, and hang out with people who love you.
If your friends and family are pressuring you to get back together or spreading rumors:
It is sad but true, but sometimes people want couples to get back together for their own selfish reasons. This can be especially difficult if it is your close friends or family. ďYou two were perfect for each other!Ē they will say, or ďHe doesnít know what he is missing by dumping you.Ē Sometimes friends and family want you to get back together because they feel like it is reflection on them or their relationships. Or they will harp on you to try and get back together because they want to see you happy. Sometimes it will seem like their intentions are even good, but if a friend or family member is pressuring you to be in a relationship that isnít right for you, it is not good. And people who are spreading rumors definitely donít have your best interests in mind. Only you can know what you need from a relationship and no one should pressure you to be involved with anyone you donít want to be. So, if this is happening, be firm and let the other person know that you just canít pursue this relationship right now and to please stop pressuring you. If they still donít, ignore them. And if it is rumors that are being spread, definitely ignore them. Any attempts to defend yourself or argue your point of view, will only make the rumors talked about even more. Just let rumors die a quiet death and ignore them. If they get very hurtful though, ask a school counselor, parent or teacher to help. Sometimes adult intervention is necessary.
If you are really angry and want to get revenge:
Being angry and wanting revenge is an incredibly natural feeling in a situation where you feel hurt by another person. Thatís why we have so many movies and books about anger and revenge Ė it is a natural human emotion. But, like the heroes in revenge stories, you will discover that revenge is not sweet. It just eats away at you. After all, it wonít change anything. And spreading lies, rumors, or even truths that hurt the person that you used to go out with and care for really wonít make you feel like a very good person. Anger itself isnít destructive. It is how you choose to express it and there are lots of healthy ways to express anger. Anger is a large muscle emotion and so going for a run, taking a kick-boxing class, shooting hoops, or even working with clay will help to get it out. Talking about being angry can also help and so make sure to keep your friends, family, and others whom you trust in the loop about your feelings to help you deal with them.
If you are just really lonely, sad, confused, and hurting:
Again, very natural emotions from a break up. And like anger, it is good to talk to other people about your feelings. But if you arenít the ďventingĒ type of person, you can also journal or draw about them. Listening to music also often helps people, but be aware that you arenít just making the emotions worse. For some people, listening to sappy love songs makes them feel better, but sometimes it just causes other people to sink deeper into depression, so be aware of which type of person you are.
Finally, donít let your break up define who you are. You werenít your relationship and you arenít your break up. You have a lot of other things going for you and you need to connect with those things. Hang out with friends, go to concerts, go shopping, read, write, and do all the things you love to do. The faster you can do that, the better you will feel.