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A Dater’s Guide to Overcoming Breakups

Man lamenting over his breakups
Breakups aren’t fun, but you can recover from them.

There’s no way around it: breakups are terrible experiences. Regardless if they’re amicable or not, they’re just not fun. They can be clean and civil or chaotically messy.

More often than not, you will hear these lines (and their variations) when someone initiates a breakup:

Yeah, I’m breaking up with you.
It’s not you—it’s me.
I’m sorry. I don’t see this going anywhere.
We’re not right for each other.

A person breaking up with their partner isn’t something new. But the fact remains that they can be hard to navigate. First-timers will especially have difficulty dealing with them; the breakup alone is hard enough, what more the wave of intense emotions that come afterwards.

How can you overcome a breakup when each situation is unique? Look at these painful truths and healthy tips to help you recover from heartbreak.

The Ugly Truths Behind Splits

Sometimes, you need to face the harsh realities of breakups. The sooner you accept these truths, the better you’ll cope.

Healing from breakups takes time

Sometimes, going through a breakup makes you want to make time move fast. Some of us simply can’t wait to get over an ex. Unfortunately, recovery doesn’t happen in a snap. Healing takes time to process, and each individual has his/her own pace in coping with heartbreak.

As much as some try to avoid the pain, it’s an inevitable feeling. You will need to grieve and heal.

Rebounds aren’t the best idea

Some enjoy their return to singlehood, while some fear the idea of being alone. Worse, there are others who become vengeful, wanting to make their ex jealous. And with that, they often turn to rebound relationships.

Are rebounds tempting? To some, they are! Fortunately, only a few go down this route. They know it takes time to get over a breakup, so they go out with someone to make their ex feel jealous. However, if you decide to take this route, you may end up hurting yourself more. That’s why it is best to focus your effort on healing, so you can move on at the earliest possible time.

Don’t use someone else as a tool for getting over heartbreak. No one deserves to be taken advantage of so you can make yourself feel better. And going for a rebound will only prolong your misery. The sooner you can heal, the better!

You may just be missing the thought of your ex

Crying woman getting over heartbreak in the mirror
Getting over heartbreak doesn’t have shortcuts. Brace the pain in its fullest form.

It is not unusual for you to miss your ex after a breakup. Understandably, you’ve gotten used to having them around, so they might still linger in your mind.

Missing your ex is not necessarily wrong. You may just be missing the great vibes they brought or the memories you had together. Relationships can leave a mark, especially if you used to share a healthy and loving connection with each other.

However, you may just be craving that secure feeling of being in a relationship rather than your ex.

You’ll feel lost

When you are in a relationship, you often find yourself fixated on the idea of always having your partner around, be it in good times or bad. Having each other makes you feel safe. When a breakup happens, you can’t help but feel lost as you’ve become attached to the idea of “us”.

At that point, you ask yourself: what are you without your partner?

This reality is why maintaining your identity is important in committed relationships. Your relationships shouldn’t define who you are as a person.

Reunions may just be fantasies

When you’re going through post-breakup grief, you may experience fantasizing about you and your ex giving each other a second shot. Can that become a reality? Yes. However, these reunions are rare cases.

Even when you and your ex get back together, things are more likely to go sideways. There’s a reason your relationship ended. We know accepting a breakup is hard, but putting your energies on your healing is much better than hoping for a comeback.

Stages of Breakups

Processing a breakup doesn’t follow a linear and strict process. Why? Getting over one depends on the person. Some recover quickly, while others need more time to grieve and heal.

Although a breakup varies from person to person, it has relatively predictable stages. Let’s discuss each one in detail:


This first stage is especially relevant for surprise splits. When a breakup happens, your sudden return to singlehood may not sink in immediately.

The shock can leave you confused and disoriented. Unfortunately, it also comes with a lot of pain. You’ll ask yourself how and why the breakup happened, which is normal at this stage. You’re looking for answers because you don’t understand your situation.


Girl going through a breakup
Going through a breakup can be draining. Arm yourself with knowledge to safely navigate through the experience.

Denial is expected to come after shock. You’ll find yourself hyper-focusing on things like your ex’s promises. You may also try to convince yourself that your ex was only making a rash decision, and that they’ll realize their mistake and come back to you soon.

As much as you try to make sense of your breakup, this stage makes things nonsensical. All you can do is absorb the shock and pain as best as you can because there’s no running away from them.


Your desire to fix your situation may lead you to bargain with your ex or yourself. Questions like “What do I need to do?” or pleas like “Please, come back” make us feel haunted by the what-ifs, leading to self-blame. Your yearning may make you tolerate your (previous) non-negotiables.

While you’re experiencing this stage, it’s best to avoid contact with your ex. Much like the shock and denial phases, you aren’t in your most logical state of mind. Trust us when we say you’ll need the space.


When the reality of breakups sets in, you’ll notice anger rising. Maybe you’re mad because of your ex’s infidelity. Perhaps you’re pissed at yourself because you didn’t put more effort into your relationship.

You may need to brace your anger before processing other feelings. Getting it out of your system is cathartic. However, just make sure you don’t take it out and hurt other people in the process.


As your anger dissipates, you’ll finally be able to properly grieve your breakup. At this point, you’ve come to terms with the fact that your relationship has come to an end.

Even if you had a healthy breakup, grieving that lost relationship is normal behavior. Not only did you lose a partner, but you also lost the identity you had while you were with them.

The grieving stage may trigger post-breakup depression. You may feel tired, empty, lost, guilty, and hopeless at the same time while wanting to shut everything out. Moving through this stage is hard, but giving yourself space to grieve paves the way for moving on.

Don’t block out your friends and loved ones; allow them to comfort and support you as your sadness sinks in.


Woman dealing with a breakup
There’s no manual for dealing with a breakup, but it doesn’t hurt to listen to a little advice.

There is a light at the end of this dark tunnel.

Accepting your breakup makes things feel a lot lighter and more pleasant, making you realize your relationship wasn’t meant to last. According to certified clinical social worker Jordan Aura-Gullick, this acceptance can range from “apathetic surrender to true hope and moving past that person.”

How can you tell if you’ve accepted your breakup? You’ll know you’ll be alright if you’ve finally let go of all thoughts of your ex. You’ve learned to put yourself first, giving you a renewed sense of hope.


Healing isn’t just accepting the breakup. Moving on means truly disengaging from your ex. You stop stalking their social media profiles and you begin to wish them the best—even if you’re not part of their future.

These stages don’t follow a sequence, so there’s a possibility you’ll experience some earlier than others. You may also find yourself unexpectedly returning to stages after you thought you’d gotten past them.

All this is frustrating, but the good news is there’s no standard for dealing with a breakup. You heal at your own pace.

Silver Linings of Breakups

In a society that believes in love conquering everything, it can be hard to see the silver linings to a breakup. But the truth is, there are upsides to a split. Let these hopeful notes remind you that there are better things out there, waiting for you.

You gave all your effort

There’s only so much you can do to save a relationship. No, you didn’t give up. Instead, you’re admitting that you and your ex weren’t meant to stay together longer than you did.

Don’t be too hard on yourself. You did your best and you’ve come out as a better person—that is the silver lining. Being honest is a lot better than deluding yourself.

Your ex didn’t want to change

You can’t force someone to do what they don’t want to do. In the case of unwilling partners, there’s nothing you can do to make them budge and become better people. Only they can make that change for themselves. Simply put, you might be better off without someone who isn’t open to changing for the better.

Things were going nowhere

You know a breakup is on the horizon when you feel like your relationship has run its course.

Person walking away
Breakups suck, but they’re mostly for the best.

For example, let’s say you and your ex repeatedly fought over specific issues with no resolutions. If that applies to you, your breakup may have been a sign that you were walking in circles. Moving on allows you to develop yourself, instead of being trapped in an unending cycle.

The relationship was hurting you

What good is staying in a relationship that’s hurting you? Love is supposed to make you happy instead of torturing you. When the negatives outweigh the positives, maybe splitting up is for the best.

You stayed together for the wrong reasons

Some people tolerate bad relationships for several reasons. One of those is the fear of loneliness. Another possible reason is the fear of being unable to find someone better.

Are those reasons understandable? Yes. However, they’re red flags. Singlehood may not always be pleasant, but it’s a lot more enjoyable than being miserable in a relationship.

How to Love Yourself after a Breakup

Mourning your breakup is perfectly okay, but there comes a time when crying and moping gets tiring. Does recovery feel like bitter work? Sure. However, you don’t have to feel burdened.

Building small post-breakup habits can go a long way to healing. Let the process begin by practicing these healthy breakup tips:

Take care of yourself

Feeling unattractive after a breakup is normal. However, you need to look after yourself if you want to feel better. A simple shower or change of clothes is a good start.

Do you want to feel a little fancy? Go on a spa day! Have a glass of your favorite wine and have a long bubble bath if you’re up for it. Self-care may seem basic, but it does help in nursing a broken heart.

Find new hobbies or interests

You’ve got a ton of time on your hands now. What can you do? Keep yourself occupied by trying new things! Whether it’s an artistic or athletic one, go ahead and find something new that fulfills you.

Catch up with friends and family

We know pushing people away while you cope with your breakup is tempting. The thing is, you don’t have to suffer alone. Interact with people in your direct circles, such as family members and close friends.

Spending time with loved ones motivates you to feel present in the moment. They’re also a reminder to be grateful for the great people around you. There’s always a time for venting, and quality time with your loved ones isn’t the best avenue for that.

Keep track of the times your ex crossed your mind

This may sound counterproductive, but hear us out. Tracking the times you’ve thought about your ex can help you keep them out of your mind.

Seeing those instances on paper will help you see your progress. You’ll realize they aren’t occupying your headspace as much as they previously did.

Get over the guilt

When breakups are fresh, it’s not unusual to wonder what went wrong in your relationships. If you’re feeling guilty about your split, reframe those thoughts into hopeful and healthier ones. See your takeaways as lessons for future relationships.

If the guilt is overwhelming, we recommend seeing professionals for help. Forget the stigma surrounding therapy. Asking for help is the best way to deal with things you can’t handle alone. Therapists will always work in your best interests, and they will not judge you for expressing your feelings.

Final Takeaway

Breakups suck, and there’s no changing that reality. Although they vary, we hope this guide will help you understand how they work to help you navigate through them, should you experience one.

Newest, beautiful, single women now added for week of Wednesday, 12 June, 2024 - Tuesday, 18 June, 2024
Your opportunities here are truly worldwide. Explore our site deeply to see how you can realize that!