When people are going through the trenches of a breakup it can get ugly. No matter how happy you once were together, if it doesn’t end in happily ever after you may find your fairy tale has turned into a horror story. Breakups can bring out the worst in people. You find yourself saying things to each other that hurt and push buttons that only you know are there. When the battle lines get drawn and the shots get fired, is there any way to really come out unscathed?
How do you survive it? The first days after a breakup are the absolute hardest. You find yourself mentally torn between remembering and clinging to the good memories to crying about how things ended to screaming at each other and saying horrible things out of anger.
Those good memories are probably your beacon in the storm, your happy place and your ultimate downfall. Obviously the relationship is over because the good times were not the norm, but if you keep mentally replaying the highlight reel in your mind instead of remembering the reasons you decided to break up, you are just going to send yourself into a deeper state of depression and doubt yourself if breaking up was the right decision.
It is easy to fall in love with the image of the person you made in your mind. Loving, attentive, supportive, not one flaw at all, but no one is perfect. There is no fairy tale. Prince Charming isn’t real and if he was, you wouldn’t be where you are.
After the happy memories, you are going to hurt. You are going to cry. You are going to blame yourself for not being good enough and you are going to nitpick all of your personal flaws and your self-worth is going to drop if you don’t have a strong support system around you to remind you just how wonderful you are.
Then you get angry. You start throwing digs back and forth at each other. There was a time that you loved that person and you know them better than they probably know themselves and you know what to say to trigger emotions. You call out their flaws, they call out yours. It’s just painful.
Now that the emotional processing of the break up is done, what is next?
You will survive. You will get through it. It is going to hurt like hell. You just need to remind yourself that you will come out stronger and more self-aware in the end. You had a life before this other person came into yours and you will have one again after them. It is time to move on. So send them love and wish them the best because at one time they meant the world to you. Maybe people come into our lives to teach us about ourselves. Some are meant to stay and some are meant to teach you something and then leave, but just remember, you are strong enough to move on and grow.
Melissa Hughes is a 30-year-old single mother of one. Girl Talk started as a telltale horror story of the city’s most epic dating disasters and evolved into a column about love, life experiences and growing up. Melissa has a weekly TV segment on PA Live, WBRE, discussing activities in Weekender and a Girl Talk radio segment every Wednesday on 98.5 KRZ.