Fresh heartbreak leads people to make all kinds of poor decisions.
Real talk: if you're struggling with getting over a bad breakup AND/OR you want someone back, hear me now. Don't do any of the things I'm about to list. Just don't.
I’ve done every single thing here (regretfully), so if you’ve already stumbled and made a few of these breakup mistakes, know that you’re in good company and you aren't doomed forever. Pick your gorgeous, heartbroken self up and realize that this is a speed bump, not "THE END."
If you’ve been broken up with, here are 16 things to avoid doing at all costs, should you want ANY chance of getting back together-- or, if you simply want to learn your lessons and move on from your breakup as quickly as possible.
1. Keeping in touch.
Trying to stay in touch regularly with your ex is the surest way to keep re-opening the wound, over and over again.
When you’re on the roller coaster of talking to them and then letting them take up your mental space, you’re not getting over it or moving on. When you go no contact with them, you’re giving YOURSELF the time and perspective to heal from the breakup.
2. Trying to hold onto a “friendship” with your ex.
Like trying to maintain contact with your ex, trying to keep them as a friend is a really big mistake. This is because simply demoting them to the “friend” category gives you a reason to see them, wonder how they are, contact them and generally not get over the breakup.
Whether they want a friendship with you or not, in the wake of a recent breakup, maintaining a relationship of any kind with your ex is a huge mistake. It doesn’t allow you the time and space that you need to heal.
3. Trying to get closure directly from your ex.
The simple fact is that you don’t need closure from your ex to move on from your relationship. This is because it is highly unlikely that even if you get your ex to spill all of the gory details of their side of your breakup.
A. Your ex won’t tell the whole truth (which combines both of your perspectives)– either to spare your feelings or because they want to hurt you even more.
B. The very act will throw you into the pit of bargaining despair because they are bound to say something that you either disagree with or is factually incorrect.
It’s important to recognize that for whatever reason, your relationship didn’t work out. You can give yourself closure right now by deciding that the breakup is for the best and that in its final state, the relationship was irretrievably broken. This is enough for you to start the process of moving on.
4. Pitiful begging.
You can’t “talk someone into” wanting a relationship with you. If they decide they want you back, that’s a decision that they have to come to on their own.
If you try to beg for a relationship with ANYONE, later, when the dust settles, you’ll just feel ashamed and embarrassed that you made such fool out of yourself. Avoid begging at all costs! I still cringe at the way I acted after a couple of failed pairings. The best way to avoid this is to stay completely quiet about wanting your ex, but still create a connection with them.
5. Hitting them up for ex sex.
Sex with the ex is NEVER A GOOD IDEA.
Do not call them up at 2 am and say you miss them.
Don’t answer the phone at this time either. Same goes for any time after 9 pm. Don’t “try to get closure” by hitting that one last time. Just stay away.
6. Keeping a few of your exe's things so you have an excuse to see them.
“Out of sight, out of mind” applies here perfectly. Tie up your loose ends. If your relationship is going to work out in the long term, it won’t be because you held his Xbox hostage.
7. Wanting a jerk back.
If your ex was genuinely not a good person or good for you, trying to get them back is just going to get you more abuse. Getting back together with an ex who is wrong for you is clearly horrible for your life as a whole.
While I understand that right now you are mourning the loss of your relationship, that doesn’t mean that if you got your ex back that it would automatically make you feel okay. Repairing a relationship takes time and effort. It doesn't happen overnight.
Learn to recognize the difference between mourning because someone is gone and genuinely recognizing that someone was good for you and wanting them back in your life.
8. Letting your whole life slide because you’re heartbroken.
Wallowing for a while is okay. If you feel your feelings and work through them, you’ll be so much better off in the long run.
However, letting your work and other responsibilities go to the point where you’re on the verge of getting fired is not. Force yourself to follow through with your responsibilities. In a while, you’ll be really glad that you didn’t let everything go to hell because of your breakup.
9. Letting your heartbreak spiral into serious depression.
To stave off depression in the wake of heartbreak, get regular exercise, make sure you get out of the house and see people, start new hobbies and throw yourself into your work. Right now is the time to focus on you by caring about yourself.
10. Turning to substances to numb the pain.
Drinking too much or doing drugs to numb the pain of a breakup is a really fast way to wreck your life even further than the breakup already has. Similar to letting your life go into the toilet, numbing out with drugs or alcohol will make it so that eventually you’ll feel the pain of the breakup whether you’re ready for it or not. You don’t need to have to deal with an addiction on top of that.
11. The dreaded rebound.
The reason for the aptly titled rebound is that you bounce back and then eventually the new relationship ends, leaving you to pick up the pieces and recover from another heartbreak, right on top of the last one.
Rebound relationships can be and exciting way to numb out and feel desirable again, but caution, they are fraught with problems. The largest of which is that they don’t give you the opportunity to air out and figure out what you really want in a partner. Also, the people that you choose to have relationships with at this time are often the stark opposite of your ex, rather than being genuinely good choices for you.
12. Making big, HASTY life changes.
Okay, so you have decided to move to Maine and leave your past behind. That’s cool, but wait to make any huge life changes for 6 months. If you still want to change everything and move to another state, continent or country or get a tattoo of your ex’s face with a line through it, do it after you have had the chance to heal from the breakup.
It might sound good to do something drastic to get a fresh start, but often this is a knee-jerk reaction by the heartbroken in order to gain a clean slate. Wait. If you still really want to move overseas (FOREVAR!!) or shave your head for 6 months, then by all means do so.
13. Cyber (or regular) stalking your ex.
Don’t view anything of your ex’s. Don’t look at their Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, IM or anything else.
In fact, delete their profiles from all of your devices. Unfriend your ex! You don’t need to be looking at their stuff late at night and trying to interpret their nights out. You don’t need to have the wound reopened every with every status report.
Also, don’t “run into” them at places they hang out. Don’t go to their work place or their home. Don’t be a super creeper. You are guaranteed to embarrass yourself big time and later you’ll want to yell at your heartbroken, pathetic self. Just don’t do it.
14. Trying to get revenge.
When you are hurting it can feel like revenge will somehow make you feel better to show your ex the kind of pain that they inflicted upon you.
Don’t, under any circumstances try to get revenge on your ex. It doesn’t matter if they slept with your sister while in the next room. Living well is truly the best revenge.
15. Self isolating.
While it’s understandable if you want to be left alone for a while, keep in mind that contact with other non-heartbroken people like friends and family members who love you is a really powerful way to help you heal.
16. Bitterly giving up on love and relationships.
Just because you’ve been hurt doesn’t mean that there isn’t someone else out there for you in the future. Angrily announcing that you’re giving up and never trying again isn’t the answer to heartbreak. Love didn’t break your heart, the loss did. Swearing off love is like cutting off your nose to spite your face.
Taking some time off to figure out who you are and what you want in a relationship is a healthy thing to do. Just don’t let your heartbreak determine the course of the rest of your life by swearing off people altogether. You can’t gain something wonderful if you don’t eventually try again.
Keep ending up with guys who dump, ghost and pull away from you?
Get to the bottom of why this happens with a free copy of my book, Why Men Lose Interest and free daily email series here now.
Originally published at HavingTime.com. Republished with permission from the author.