A Practical Guide For How To Get Over Your Breakup And How To Get On With Your Life

A Practical Guide For How To Get Over Your Breakup And How To Get On With Your Life

My friend, Icyfire101, asked me for some advice about how to get over a girl. I promised him that I would think about it. Icyfire101, my good man, here are my thoughts and suggestions for you and everyone else who ever felt their heart break.

You break up with someobody you dated two or three times and it's no big deal, but if it was a serious relationship . . . it is a huge deal! Some people never get over a heartbreak and they join the merchant marine and nobody ever sees them again, or they end up living alone in a house filled with 87 cats, and the local news has a video report on the 11 o'clock news.

If you don't want to turn into some tragically hip, romantic story about somebody who never got over being rejected, here is some advice on how to survive a breakup and start moving forward with your life.

1. Think about why your relationship didn't work. I'm not talking about what led up to the breakup. I'm telling you to think about why you two did not work as a couple. The answer is almost always the same: you did not meet each other's needs in a mutually satisfying way. This doesn't mean that somebody screwed up; it just means that you weren't right for her, or she wasn't right for you, or both.

You might be right for 10% of the opposite sex, but if your partner is a member of the other 90%, it doesn't matter how hard you try; you just aren't The One for her. Why would you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody knowing that you are not the right one for her? Wouldn't that be horribly, horribly tragic? Or . . . why would you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody who isn't right for you?

Almost every breakup involves contributions or fault by both parties. If she cheated on you, that means you selected a partner who was not suited for a monogamous relationship. If he was an alcoholic or drug addict, that's what you chose to be your partner. When all of the warning signs were there, you chose to ignore them. Of course you are angry at your ex but take responsibility for your contribution to the failure of the relationship. If you learn your lessons, you can use the breakup to make yourself a better person.

2. Don't romanticize this breakup in your head. Don't turn it into something even bigger than it already is. You are not the first person on the planet who ever fell in love "this deeply." Everybody falls in love "this deeply." You are not the first guy to catch your girl in bed with another guy. Yes, it sucks, it's awful, it's horribly unfair, this isn't SUPPOSED TO happen. But . . . this has happened to other people and they survived. They have some scars from the experience, but they survived. You will, too!

3. You don't "get over" an ex. You move on with your life. Some of these feelings will be with you for a long time, but the edges on the exposed nerves won't always be so sensitive. Don't expect to find peace and tranquility anytime soon, especially if this was your first love. I am 60 years old and I still have some feelings about the girl who rejected me in high school. Things will fade . . . slowly . . . and one day, you'll realize that it doesn't feel like there's a huge hole in your torso.lousy

So . . . don't sit around waiting to feel better before you start doing anything besides eating lousy bologna sandwiches, drinking cheap liquor, and watching reruns of the Andy Griffith Show. Get out and do something and you will feel better. It doesn't need to be a social activity. Get out and wash your car. Go to the gym, go for a jog. Get out and wash my car!

4. You don't need to forget your ex. Well intentioned idiots will tell you that "you need to forget" your ex. They are idiots, of course, and they are wrong. (When they give you that advice and stand there with a look on their face like they just solved all of your problems, ask them how you can erase the memories in your head.) You can't simply forget about people and there are many parts of the relationship that you should remember. There are nice parts that you want to remember. If you forget the bad parts, you will tend to make the same mistakes repeatedly, right? It is okay to hold on to your memories; that is not the same thing as trying to hold on to the person. Got it? Let go of the person, hold on to the memories.

5. There is no "normal" amount of time necessary to recover from having your heart ripped out. Don't set a time line for how soon you should be in recovery. How long it takes depends on you, the relationship, the reasons for the breakup, and some other variables. Rushing your recovery may be as detrimental as taking an abnormally long time.

6. Remember the good times, but . . .. Remind yourself about all the good times that you had and recognize that this is the part that you miss; what you really want is to have your fantasy of the way you wish the relationship had been. You don't really miss all of the arguments and the nights that you were alone, wondering if he was with someone else. It is normal to miss the relationship.

You had lots of good times and now you are sitting at home alone on a Saturday night. Remember that missing all of the good parts, the companionship, the affection, the sharing . . . that doesn't mean that you are still in love with your partner. Loneliness is not a reason to try to return to a failed relationship. Turn to your friends for some activities to keep yourself busy and to avoid that awful empty feeling.

7. What made the "magic" in the relationship? Think about why you were able to have those good times with your ex. Was it because they had money? A special talent? The place where they lived? Their educational interests and goals? Her cute little foreign accent? It wasn't really "magic," it was something that you should be able to identify. What was it?

Ask yourself whether there are other people in your world who could possibly have the necessary ingredients for you to find the "magic" with someone else. Is it possible that anyone else in the world could fulfill that niche and help you find good times again? Probably! Really! This is the voice of many years of experience talking. You don't accept the idea that anyone else could ever make you happy, but it can happen, and it will.

8. If things turn too bleak for you. Promise yourself and one other trusted friend or family member the following: if you feel yourself succumbing to depression and you start considering life-ending alternatives, you will alert your friend or family member and follow their recommendation on what action you should take.

9. Don't forget the bad stuff. Remind yourself why you or your partner broke up the relationship and the various ways in which your partner mistreated you and otherwise acted like a selfish idiot. Make a list and develop a habit of reading it once or twice a day. When you get tired of reading the list, you're making progress.

10. You want to see your ex again. You drive by her house, hoping that maybe she just arrived home and you'll see her getting out of her car, or maybe she will be sitting on her front porch. Maybe you hang out way too much at the coffee shop she frequents or the grocery store where she shops. You're smiling because you know exactly what I'm talking about.

What is your fantasy? She will look up and see you, your eyes will meet, she will feel the electricity in the moment, and she will run into your waiting arms. Wake up, dude, you're dreaming! Girl, you think he's going to forget about that 18 year old blonde cheerleader-type he's been banging 24/7 since one month before your breakup? When he forgets her, he'll move on to the next flavor-of-the-month, not you. That's what cheaters do.

If you did get back together, you would have the same problems that you had previously and it would come to an end once again, but much sooner this time, for the same reasons. If you think something like, "Oh, we're different from other couples and I would work so hard that it couldn't fail," well, then . . . join the club. That's what everyone thinks when they reconcile a failed relationship and the result is almost always the same. "Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else." (Margaret Mead)

Any attempt at reconciling will just prolong the breakup and all the awful feelings. Are you enjoying all of this pain?

11. Your duty of loyalty has ended. Quite frequently, family and friends will think they are doing you a favor by openly bashing the selfish idiot that just stomped on your heart. That is understandable. But there is also an urge to defend the person that we chose, even though the relationship is over. And, if we haven't yet accepted that it's really over, we feel that instinct even stronger; it's similar to a mother defending an errant child.

Stop telling yourself that you need to make apologies for your ex. Start being honest with yourself about their shortcomings and stop defending them when others start the criticism. If you feel a need to defend your ex when you hear criticisms, tell others that their criticisms of that ignorant gutter slut are not helping you and ask them to please not express their desire to set her on fire, at least not in your presence.

12. Start dating as soon as you feel ready. What's the advice for what to do when you fall off a horse? Get right back on. As soon as you are ready, start dating. Tell yourself - repeatedly - that you have no expectations for the first date other than having fun. Don't wear your heart on your sleeve, don't tell your date about your awful breakup, but don't deceive them if any questions come up about your status, availability, etc.

When you have the first kiss with someone new, you will be amazed at how good it feels. Someone else finds you desirable! Don't make the mistake of having sex on the first date. Of course you are attracted to your date, but wanting to prove that someone else desires you in that way is not a good reason for your date to have sex with you and you would be "using" your date. Be very mindful of your motivations with the new person and make sure that whatever you do is not motivated by a desire to address a question that was raised by your breakup.

These 12 points do not guarantee a speedy recovery but they should help to shorten the process for you. Good luck!


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Most Helpful Girl

  • Good advice. I actually at the moment am slowly moving on and focusing more on myself at this point. No he will never be forgotten but I will always remember what he did and the cons. Dating will be very tough since I do have expectations but it's only because that's how I now value myself (having standards). It's very hard and I spoke to my friends/ family about it and they just said for me to just keep living life, they said it will be hard to move on but to do my best and eventually I won't think of him anymore. However my issue now is I see him in my dreams and I want it to stop (it's bugging me a lot because I can't move on). I just need that to go and I'll be better after.

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Most Helpful Guy

  • Absolute genius!! If only you knew what my ex has put me through the last 6 months I have actually asked questions on this site about what I should do with her but what you have wrote is brilliant!

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    • would you be able to read this and give me so advice on what to do this is just abit of what has happend in more recent times... So my ex girlfriend who I was with for 3 years came back to me after breaking up 6 months ago. When we did break up she moved on to another guy very quickly her boyfriend constantly cheats on her and has also laid a hand on her in most recent times so she came to me saying she's missed me and wants me back in her life. She told me that she has also broken up with him so I took her back even though I probably shouldn't off after a couple of weeks of messing around and sleeping with each other I find out she hasn't even broken up with him but she saids she's going too when he moves away in a week She told me the reason why she hasn't done so yet is because she scared of how he will react so I believed her and waited till he goes. The day he lives I also find out from other people that he proposed to her so I ask her if that's true and she saids yes then I find

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    • How about this lesson: you have a relationship with somebody and you invest your time and effort and, ultimately, it doesn't work. So you break up. You should never again get involved with that person because you are both the same people; what didn't work the first time won't work the second time. Break up, institute an absolute no contact rule for yourself, and move forward with your life.

    • yeh alright will do thanks!

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What Girls Said 7

  • Good advise it's so hard to let go of him... But i think I'm going to give him time and space And continue on with my life

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  • I really enjoyed this take! Lots of great advice! :)

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  • Loved it!! Thank you so much for your advice

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  • I'm desperately trying not to imagine him meeting someone new. He was completely and utterly devoted to me, yet he was an egotistical, selfish douche in general so it had to end. But it kills me to think of him caring for someone new. Yeah, that's my ego. And it's agony.

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  • This is awesome! I've read a lot of things on this topic but this one was actually useful. Thanks so much :)

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  • This sounds really wise and well-thought. Finally some guide to get over a breakup which is not full of cichés and things that don't make any sense. 2, 4, and 5 are what I am trying to use to move on. Thank you.

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  • Nice take!
    What really helped me get over my ex was 1 9 and 12.

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    • Totally agree - #9 and #12 are the best strategies for me. I have to list out everything I didn't really like in the person, and then list out what it really was that they even did for me that was positive (emotionally, physically, fun experience-wise, gift-wise... although this one isn't as important in terms of making me happy).

      And then I have to get back in the dating scene asap... not necessarily going ON dates asap, but immediately gathering my options (I use the internet). I think about the thing I may have done wrong and the things I want different in the next person, and try to build from there.

What Guys Said 3

  • well great guide but its not that simple. When i lost my ex girlfriend , i didn't just lose her, she miscarried our child and became so mean to me. I tried to cope with it, i tried to save what we had going on but it wouldn't work. She would not listen, she would blame the miscarriage on me, acted indifferent when i showed her how much it affected me, and when i acted indifferent, she would get angry. It left a hole in my heart. I still miss her but in my case, my ex girlfriend wasn't normal. she wasn't sane. concerning serious matters she had the understanding of a 5 year old. thats when i realized she has some serious problems. I think she is a borderline narcacist. and i really loved her but thinking back about it, there were never any good times, only the ones she allowed. the pregnancy was the worst part of my life, i wasn't allowed to be happy about being a father maybe to a child from a girl i love. she was stunning to look at , and i felt special, why can i have this girl and no one else. but i wasn't special, neither was she. i got fired as well and left that area, for weeks / months i had been taking anti depressants and they helped me a great deal. she now works at the place i used to work at, and still a part of me wants to see if she still has these feelings of hatred for me, but i know her, and i think she will always keep those feelings. but your guide , it wouldn't work for me. I tried, and nothing made sense anymore.

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    • It sounds like your ex-girlfriend has Borderline Personality Disorder. Those are very difficult relationships, I know, because I was married to a BPD for 17 years. This guide was intended for the normal breakup, of course, but your situation probably called for professional counseling.

    • ok in a normal relationship, 2 individuals have a grown up conversation , and sometimes remain friends and re invent their relationship. in my case, im absolutely hated by a girl i did everything for.

  • This os good but 10. I did not true in fact me and my ex live close by about 10min by foot. So i pretty much refuse going too Any places I know. She may show up at. Hell its been 1 year later and i won't go any where near her house ending up going too thestoree with my mom right down the street from her house... And sure enough 10pm 4 days ago i seen my ex with he. New boyfriend pulling out a parking lot she would'nt stop looking at me as they pull off... I just turned away after 3-4sec of looking but could see her still looking at me. I even refused going to a good college because she gos through but nos am accpeting the fact icant let my ex girlfriend run my life this is a really good college so i need this my math suck. N my writting is trash after 3 years out of school. Lol Blah i bitch 247 haha moving on. 1. I have thought of why me and my ex didn't work out and ill be honest here 70% of oír fights or problems were all because of her parents. I would go into details buy its too long but All i will stay they were a very very big strainon our relationship so really supposed we dated for almost 1 year. The other half was fscebook and lack of commcation.

    Anyways all i will say is So far i love all of your post and know 100% me and my ex would never work out till she grows up and stops letting her parents run her life. and i hate myself for putting up with all her parents bs, and changing who i am as a person too earn their respected because it was never worth having over the cost of my own sele respected. Enjoy your day and sorry agin about the horrible spelling and bitching. I won't be dating anytime soon still working on myself learn to drive and getting in school went from wanting to be a marines till i wanna be a nurse.

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    • O and 1 last thing just wanna thank you for everything you said here it really helped a lot. Everyone has been telling me too forget my ex and move on too remove any thoughts n good time of her out of my head. Which is good now knowing i everything am feeling is normally that ever know and then ill think of her and may never stop. She was my first real girlfriend besides 1 friends with benefits i had before her.

  • This post deserves a fucking awesome award. I was thinking a lot about this and to write a post like this but you said exactly what I was thinking and more absolutely awesome, thank you:)

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    • You are quite welcome. This myTake came from years of tough experience. Experience, of course, is the greatest teacher in life.

    • Aha I remember reading this, again well written

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