Love is the most complicated emotion. When you fall in love, it feels like your world revolves around them. But when things aren't going well, the situation quickly gets out of control.
The hard truth, though, is that no matter who breaks up, the heartbreak you feel over a failed relationship isn't any less. And like any other grief or traumatic episode, there are seven stages you need to go through before you're finally at peace. Even if it is a mutual breakup, you'll go through the stages; the process is just quicker. Ahead, we talk about the seven stages of dealing with a breakup that you'll go through if you have said goodbye to your partner!
"What just happened?"
The length of this stage varies for most people. Some get over it quickly, while others take time. You're in disbelief over what has just happened and to shield you from pain, your brain does not accept the incident as quickly, especially if the breakup was unexpected.
To do: Calm yourself down - take a long walk, a relaxing bath and accept it.
Not to do: Panic. It'll only make things worse.
"It's not real."
The next thing your brain does is reject the breakup to avoid facing your feelings about it. In a weird, twisted logic, if you don't accept it, it's not real. During this phase, you'll find yourself going back and doing things you did in a relationship like constantly calling them or talking to them like nothing is wrong.
To do: Open up to a friend about what you are feeling. The more you talk about your feelings, the more you'll be able to accept them.
Not to do: Pretend that this is all going to go away. Deluding yourself and avoiding your feelings will help no one.
"I need to be alone and sulk."
By now you've accepted that it's happened and the pain is overwhelming. All you want to do is shut out the world and be with yourself, wallowing in self-pity. You keep replaying the relationship over and over in your head and just cannot get yourself to do anything else.
To do: Pick yourself up and find reasons to function every day like family and work.
Not to do: Indulge in self-pity and constantly tell yourself you've failed.
"I hate him and everyone for making me go through this."
You'll suddenly find yourself going from sad to angry in a matter of minutes. This is the phase where all the shit-talking happens. How dare he not realise how amazing you are and who the hell gave him the permission to break up with you? If you're angry with yourself, you'll be putting yourself down and pointing out your own mistakes. The only thing you want to do is place blame on something or someone.
To do: Embrace your anger by talking or writing about it.
Not to do: Don't act on the anger. Don't go about ruining his things - if he gave you a gift, that's okay but going to his place and messing up his car may be too much.
"What can I do to get him back?"
This is all about getting back your ex. You try and make crazy deals with anybody you can - god, your ex, yourself - and promise not to do things and be yourself. This stage is only about making the pain go away.
To do: Indulge in some self-care activities. Focus on things that make you who you are and another of the things you want in the future.
Not to do: Do not include your ex in the list of things you want.
"I will never find love again/This will never get better."
In this stage, the feeling of loss can be overwhelming and you find yourself unable to deal with it. You find yourself in a state of deep sadness and the pain can manifest in your physical body also. Sometimes, your feeling of loss can be so great that it renders you unable to function. This stage lasts the longest.
To do: Be around positive people who raise your spirits.
Not to do: Do not indulge in addictive activities like drinking too much, chain-smoking or binge eating.
"It's all a part of my journey. I will be fine. No, I am fine."
Now, you're on your way to recovery and healing. You can see the light at the end of the tunnel and know that there is hope for you after all. This is the stage you finally accept that you deserve better and someone who loves you just as much. Life feels good again.
To do: Congratulate yourself for getting through it!
Not to do: Do not let the temporary moments of sadness, which will come, ruin all your hard work.
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