Breakups are the worst. There's no instruction manual for how to navigate the end of a relationship, and even if you're the one who decided to call it quits, it can still hurt like hell.
While it's true that not every breakup turns into a total breakdown, some of them are definitely tougher to deal with than others. And in the aftermath of those really sucky splits, the very least we can do is cut ourselves a little slack. You can (and should!) wallow, eat ice cream, and feel sad and weird. It's all part of mourning what once was and moving on. So, if you're in middle of a rough one right now, read on for a few reminders of things you should absolutely not feel bad about while you work your way through a heartbreak.
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Were you and your partner a pair of social butterflies? If so, your breakup might leave you wanting to crawl back into your cocoon where you can avoid all of those "Where is so-and-so?" questions until the memory of them has faded from your friend group. Throw on your bathrobe and do it. No judgment here.
On the flip side, if you were already the homebody type but now sitting solo on your couch is a little too much to handle, it's perfectly OK to go out and paint the town red. Sometimes a break from routine is exactly what we need to shake off the blues after a relationship ends.
If you're a devoted Sex and the City fan like me, you've most likely seen the episode where Carrie's friends stage an intervention and tell her they simply cannot listen to any more Big talk after yet another breakup. But trust us, that is the exception, not the rule. Your friends want to be there for you. That's the point of having friends! I'm willing to bet you've been there for them in the past and you'll be there for them in the future, so cash in some of that social currency and talk their ears off.
And don't feel bad about calling every single one of them up to tell them all the same details, either. But if you do happen to get to the point of a friend intervention, that's what your therapist is for.
This is not the time to be counting calories. If having grilled cheese, chicken noodle soup, and ice cream for dinner every night for a week makes you feel even the tiniest bit better, you go ahead and indulge in all of that goodness. And let's not forget that chocolate is scientifically proven to put you in a better mood. The phase of the grieving process where you work on your revenge body can wait until next week . . . or next month . . . or never, because you're amazing the way you are, and your body is already bangin'.
Here's some less-than-breaking news for my fellow sensitive souls out there: it's OK to cry. I'll say it again, a little louder for the people in the back: IT'S OK TO CRY. And just when you think you're all cried out, if a sentimental scene in Queer Eye pulls on just the right heartstring, it's OK to cry some more. Let those emotions out, so they can be felt, and then they can be gone.
Let's face it, the two of you had some good times together. If you didn't, dealing with this breakup wouldn't be such a thing right now. Don't beat yourself up if you find yourself thinking back fondly on the fun times. It's totally acceptable to miss the hell out of your ex while you figure out how to do life on your own again. Just remember, this too shall pass.
While you're feeling all of your feelings, the sight of your ex's face might make you cringe, or worse. For this reason, we're oh so thankful that social media has graced us with the "block" button. The ability to virtually erase people might just be the very best thing about the digital world.
And don't give it a second thought if you feel the need to take it a step further by blocking your ex's texts and phone calls. When it's over, it's over, and nobody has time for a 2 a.m. "I miss you" message that really doesn't mean a damn thing in the light of day. Now, if you happen to live near or work with your ex, and are therefore forced to see that person, that's a different (and very unfortunate) story. In that case, maybe you could move or find a new job?
In the best of times, social media can feel like a full-time job. If, while you're nursing your wounded heart, you'd rather sit out from that scene entirely, feel free to keep the details of your every waking moment to yourself for now. I know the internet loves it when we overshare, but someone else can do that while you're on the mend. Your true followers will all still be there when you're ready to rejoin them. Promise.
If in one moment you feel fabulous, like you're ready to take on the world and line up some dates, that's fantastic! But if that feeling passes a little too quickly and you actually find yourself lying in bed on a Friday night watching sappy movies while you cuddle with your dog, that's fine, too. It's probably going to be a bit of a roller coaster as you process the end of something that you once thought was pretty damn great, so just go with it and do what feels right in the moment.
The very last thing you should never feel bad about while going through a breakup is that moment when you're finally ready to move the hell on. After you've done all the hard work to process your feelings and learned the appropriate life lessons, being able to let go is a beautiful thing. When that moment comes, embrace it without a shred of guilt. You're now free to get on with it (and maybe even get it on) with the next lucky contestant in the game of love.