Breaking Up 101

       I have gone through two breakups in my life and through them I have learned some very valuable lessons.

       Here are a few things to keep in mind when you are going through a breakup…

       The first thing that you have to realize is that it’s going to suck big time. This is not an exaggeration. Even if you didn’t really love the person, or things ended on bad terms, it’s still going to suck. You’re going to feel it in your heart. You’re going to feel it in your gut.

       Sometimes you’ll see a friend right after a breakup and they look fine. They seem upbeat. “It was for the best” they’ll say ,“It wasn’t the right time”, “We’ll both be happier this way” I’ve heard all these cliches before. I’ve said all these cliches before. And while there is truth to all of them in many situations they do not reveal how you really feel.

       Even though you know it was for the best it still makes you feel like you lost a best friend.

       Even though you know it wasn’t the right time you wonder whether you could have worked things out.

        Even though you know that you will both be happier this way you still feel distraught.

       Don’t think that my message is that you should get attempt to get back together with your ex. That is not what I am saying. I am saying that no matter what you say or what you show to other people emotionally you are still going to hurt. It’s ok. That’s how it’s supposed to be. It’s not a bad thing and it will pass. You won’t be the same ever again, but you will become stronger. If you approach your recovery in the right way you will become a better person. That should be your goal upon breaking up with someone that you love. How do I become a better person? How do I grow from this? 

       It isn’t cool to pretend that you didn’t care about your significant other. It isn’t cool to call him/her names and highlight their faults. It may make you feel better in front of your friends for about 5 minutes, but after that when you allow yourself to spend a few minutes in silence the same bad feelings are going to bubble up again.

       You’ll feel like a loser, like an idiot, like you aren’t ambitious, as if you didn’t try hard enough. Let these thoughts come into your mind. Don’t stop them. Let them come in and then allow them to slip away because they are all lies.

       You aren’t any of those things. I don’t like the fact that breaking up insinuates that you are broken. You aren’t. You are experiencing growth. This is not something that is comfortable. My good friend Matt told me that when he broke up with a girl he always gained a new perspective on life. He always became wiser. He always learned something new. I think that this is some of the best advice that we could ever recieve. 

       This is my first real point on breaking up with someone. Be pragmatic. Pragmatic means that you “deal with things sensibly and realistically in a way that is based on practical rather than theoretical considerations.”

       This is not always easy, as breaking up with someone can be and usually is extremely emotional. I am a pretty emotional guy. I try to hide it under sarcasm and frivolity but beneath the surface lurks a big baby. I had a hard time with my last breakup and I found the more I let myself get emotional the less sad I felt. I would suggest initially allowing yourself to be sad. Don’t try to fight it, but try to spend some time pragmatically thinking about the situation. 

     Realize that breaking up with someone isn’t just an ending. As cheesy as it sounds it is a new beginning.  The more I looked at my breakup from a rational perspective the more I realized that this was an opportunity for me to grow. It was a time for me to reflect on my behaviour and on the type of man that I had become. It was a time to make neccessary changes and move forward.

       If you really loved someone you won’t wish bad things upon them. Facebook makes it really easy to see them with new partners and this can be hard. I would suggest being happy for them. It isn’t easy but if you really love someone you will want them to live a life that is fulfilling whether that includes you in it or not.

       Stop trying to get them back. It’s not going to work. And if it does it’s not going to last. Let them go. Be happy for them. Grow.

Good Luck.

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