Recently, a good friend of mine has been faced with a breakup that she did not see coming, nor was prepared for. Actually, come to think of it, many people I know have gone through this in the last few years. I think it’s because of the age bracket that we happen to be living in. The 28-33 ‘shit or get off the pot’ bracket.
Although it may seem as though I’m talking about marriage, I’m not. What I am talking about however, is whether you and your partner are ‘in’ or ‘out’. Because at this point we start to ask ourselves; could I spend my life with this person? Do I want to spend my life with this person? Should I spend my life with this person? And when fear of the future consumes all emotions, many of us are faced with a breakup that we didn’t see coming. What’s that all about?
Now, because my friend is so strong, and showing a maturity level that I’m not sure I could ever keep up with (I’m beyond proud of her and her classiness!), I’ve decided to write about how to survive a grownup breakup. Because, you see, the same tactics one would have used when they were 20, no longer fly. For example: skipping class for 2 weeks so you can drink at night time and sob during the day just isn’t going to work because you’ll get fired. Why? Because you don’t have class you big dummy, you have a JOB.
- Give yourself no more than 2 days to be devastatingly sad. During these days you need to cry. Really cry. Feel everything. Be irrational, be emotional, just feel everything you can. Go somewhere where you feel the safest, put your pj’s on, be with your closest friends (or mom!!) and eat all the ice cream you can handle or Pillsbury chocolate chunk cookies, that’s my go to!
- Remember that you’re going to have ups and downs for a while and that’s ok…provided that the ups start to outweigh the downs.
- Get up. Get moving. Go to work. Keep your plans. Get going.
- Take the power back. If they come crawling back with half-asked commitments, don’t take it. If they told you they wanted ‘space’ and then contacts you daily, tell them to shove it. Is it in your best interest to respond to the person who just told you that they want space from you? NOPE. Make them wait. Then let them know that you’re focusing on yourself right now, and perhaps later they can try again…if you’re still around that is.
- Focus on yourself and get your shit together. Focus on your career. Pick up that hobby you’ve always been thinking about. Get back in touch with friends. Make time for yourself and put your best interest at the top of your priorities.
- Know your worth. This is important in every aspect of life; careers, friends, love. If you want a partner that makes you their number one priority, then don’t settle for someone who places you 2nd, 3rd…10th. You want someone who wants to be with you as much as you want to be with them. Look back at your relationship objectively and determine if you were in fact, getting what you actually deserved/wanted.
- Know that the pain will eventually go away. It has to. That feeling of loneliness and emptiness will evaporate because you will have been focusing so much on developing yourself. And, one day you’ll wake up and realize that you haven’t thought about your former partner in weeks. That will make you sad for a moment. But only for a moment. Then, well after that, you’ll randomly think about your former partner, and the good memories will bring a smile to your face and you’ll notice that all your longing, resentment, and anger have gone away. That too will bring a smile to your face.
I know I already said this, but just remember that eventually you will be ok. And, if this person comes crawling back to you, don’t take them back only because you miss having them around, make sure that what they are bringing to the table is good enough for you. That they’re going to give you what you need and more. Actually, this goes for any relationship that is on the horizon. Remember…you deserve the best!