07 May Going Through a Bad Breakup? The Road to Recovery
So…you are single again and you are hating it. I already know what you’re asking yourself throughout the day: Why does this keep happening to me? What did I do wrong? What’s wrong with me? Why don’t my relationships last? I’ve been where you are, and I know it’s not easy. You get used to certain things in a relationship: companionship, partnership, intimacy, connection, and a feeling that this person really knows and understands who you are and the best part is this person has accepted you, quirks and all. But what do you do when the connection is severed, and you have to start all over again?
Stages of Grief
Ending a relationship is almost like going through the five stages of grief:
1. DENIAL: Whatever this is I can fix it or we can fix this and get back to where we were. No worries.
2. ANGER: How dare they take me for granted? Don’t they realize how much I have invested into them and this relationship and how much I have sacrificed in order to make this relationship work? How can they not see how much I care about them?
3. BARGAINING: Okay, how about we talk this out. Maybe there is a way to fix this and come to an understanding because maybe there is something I missed.
4. DEPRESSION: I can’t believe this happened? I was happy when I was with them. Now I have to go through the motions of doing things by myself again.
5. ACCEPTANCE: I have come to accept that I will not be with this person anymore and in time I will meet someone else and start all over again. Adulthood is the worst hood ever!!
Starting From Scratch
The best way to heal from a breakup is to start with acceptance. I know it sounds very cliched to hear the when one door closes another door opens quote. I can guarantee almost no one wants to hear that when their heart is broken. Guess what…? It’s true though.
In the course of healing from a breakup it’s important to take time for reflection and ask some hard questions. Keep in mind this is not a tactic to inflict additional pain on oneself. Reflection questions can be used to grow us in order to prepare for the next relationship we will have.
Some of these questions can be:
1. What did I learn while being in this relationship?
2. What did I learn about myself?
3. What did I learn about my partner?
4. What kind of relationship do I want going forward?
5. What is negotiable and non-negotiable? (deal breakers)
As a therapist, I realize clients don’t ask themselves these questions. They just want to be happy in a happy relationship. Additional ways to heal from a breakup are to implement a self-care routine and it should be customized to you personally. For example, I meditate, treat myself to a spa day once a month, and make myself and delicious meal.
Dismiss The Myths
Avoid the “I’ll be happy when”trap. Continue to do the things that interest you and bring you joy. The activities that brought you joy prior and during your relationship should still bring you joy after. Most importantly, recognize you are a whole person before, during, and after your relationship. Relationships are meant to enhance our lives, not to complete our lives.
Have You Recently Experienced a Heartbreak, Are Feeling Stuck, and In Need of Help With Your Journey to Healing?
Therapy can serve as not just a vehicle in that journey but one of empowerment as well. I’m willing to go on the journey with you.