Breaking up is hard to do

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Ok, for starters, if a relationship involves disrespect or abuse – that needs to be addressed immediately.

Have a look at our Help and support page  for suggestions on what action to take.

Secondly, remember that while you might be able to ‘move on’ from some relationships kinda quickly, others can hurt pretty badly – regardless of whether you dated for two weeks or two years.

If it feels like it’s taking forever to stop feeling sad or confused, that’s okay. Whoever wrote that old saying, “time heals all wounds,” was probably thinking of heartache.

Sometimes you just need to accept that it will take a while and focus on looking after yourself. If you realise that somehow you have gotten ‘stuck’ in this phase, it’s a good time to seek some help , too.

This article is not about whether to stay or go, or how to break up with someone. This one goes out to anyone who’s in a recently-ended relationship.

Before we go on, check out these other tales of heartache and sorrow:

Hopefully, these tales remind you that you’re not the first person to go through a breakup and you definitely won’t be the last. Things will get better.

But, before they do, you need to:

Acknowledge it’s over

Maybe you decided it was over, maybe they did or maybe it was mutual. Maybe you feel like they did something wrong, maybe they feel like you did – the point is, it’s over, and the first step to getting out of that filthy pit of pain, confusion and anger is recognising it’s over. Only then can you get crackin’ towards being a happy human again. Next…

Stop obsessing

Your biggest time-waster will be going back over everything that was said, everything that was done, analysing you-versus-them, and trying to figure out exactly what went wrong and when. Have a good vent to a friend/family member/therapist/dog and then put your phone down and start to look forward! Even if you could figure out exactly what the problem was, it wouldn’t bring back the relationship. Talking constantly about your recent break-up also doesn’t make for great party conversation. So now...

Quit hatin’

If you're the one who has been dumped, you gotta be respectful of your ex's choices. No matter how unfair it might feel, their actions are up to them – you can’t demand financial compensation or a 3-month notice period when the relationship ends. You might’ve heard it before, but it’s true: you can only control your own actions and emotions. And even if it hurts, people are allowed to break up with you.

Oh and make sure you stay classy when it comes to talking to or about your ex, so you can...

Start enjoying

All that time you used to share with your ex? That’s YOUR time now! Go hang out with those people you mightn’t have seen for ages. See those films, watch those sports, listen to those tunes... You do you! Now...

Stay social

Post-breakup warning: do not fall into one of those solo cesspits of Netflix binges, long walks on the beach or going through old photos. Sure, a bit of alone time for self-reflection is all good, but if you catch yourself staring at nothing for too long, dribbling on yourself or speaking back to the TV, it’s time to hang out with some living, breathing human people. Get out there… be free… fly little one, flyyyyy…

If you want more information about dealing with a breakup check out this page at headspace.org.au or, if you want to chat to someone about relationship issues visit kidshelpine.com.au .

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