What comes to mind when you think of breakup mistakes? Have you ever noticed how fresh heartbreak can lead people to make all kinds of poor decisions?
Breakup mistakes are the things to stay away from if you’re struggling with getting over a recent breakup. I’ve done every single thing on this list, so if you’ve already stumbled and made a few of these breakup mistakes, know that you’re in good company!
If you’ve been broken up with, here are 16 things to avoid doing at all costs.
1. Keeping Contact
Trust me, when it comes to breakup mistakes trying to stay in touch with an 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.
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 breakup 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 is a huge mistake. It doesn’t allow you the time and space that you need to heal.
3. Trying to Get Closure From Your Ex
“Romance is like alcohol. It can heal and it can hurt. It can create joy and it can create pain. It’s often responsible for some of the best and some of the worst moments of your life. It can obscure a terrible idea into a brilliant one; it can distort a terrible person into a fate-filled lover.” –Mark Manson
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, B. it will throw you into the pit of bargaining despair.
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.
Later, when the dust settles, you’ll just feel ashamed and embarrassed that you made such a 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 mom.
5. Hitting Them Up for Hook Up
When it comes to breakup mistakes, shooking up 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. The 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 Ex’ Items so That You Have an Excuse to Give Them Back Later…
“Out of sight, out of mind” applies here perfectly.
7. Wanting a Jerk Back
Other breakup mistakes include wanting your Ex 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 an ex who was wrong for you back 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 them back that it would automatically make you feel okay. Learn to recognize the difference between mourning because someone is gone and genuinely recognizing that someone was good for you and want them back in your life.
8. Letting Your Whole Life Slide Because You’re Heartbroken
Wallowing for a while is okay. 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 Heartbreak Turn 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 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 to 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 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 an 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 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 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! 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 workplace 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. Getting 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 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.
What steps have you taken to get over heartbreak? Are there any breakup mistakes that should be on this list that I didn’t include? Tell me in the comments.