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fairylights's avatar

I've followed all the advice for after a break up, but I still can't cope. What now?

Asked by fairylights (62 points ) July 21st, 2009

My boyfriend broke up with me and I’ve done all the right things- I’ve cut off all contact in order to get over him, my friends are really supportive and I have already filled my weekend with plans with them, and I can be easily distracted by them at school. But at home on week nights, when I’ve run out of homework to do, or when I’m lying in bed trying to get to sleep, I can’t help but think about how much I miss him. I become incapacitated with the pain and have trouble breathing. So now what? What can I do to help me sleep at night? What else can I do to get over him?

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39 Answers

elijah's avatar

Just try and remember that everyone goes through this a few times in life, and you will get through it. It takes time, lots of tears, but day by day it gets easier. Don’t focus on why he was so great. He isn’t as great as your mind wants to remember him. You will be ok, just remember how wonderful you are. The next person you meet will be very lucky :)

RachelZ's avatar

It will take TIME… you will have great moments and weak moments… BUT STAY STRONG… If he left you then obviously there is someone better out there that would NEVER LEAVE YOU even if you told him to.. Just have fun and really make great friends… an even better guy will come along!

CMaz's avatar

I know how you feel. It has been 9 months for me. I still have a hard time sleeping.
I am able to just shut that part of my brain off. Not easy and does not work all the time.
Also, I find it is for the most part getting better, till I look at her pictures. That is a killer and in some ways it is like it was yesterday that she was in my life.
Soooo, I would say, (easier said then done) get rid of the pictures. Ok, keep one or two.
Hopefully and eventually you will find someone, that will help to forget.
I feel for you. We have to believe it will get better. For me, it is a lot better then it was 8 months ago. :-)

ShanEnri's avatar

@fairylights Welcome! Here is my daughter, Sarah…Well first of all, you’re not going to get over him that fast if you really had feelings for him. It’s going to take some time. Just continue what you are doing and eventually, you’ll forget about him and you won’t even notice. you are going to have those memories and the hurt. I still get upset when I think about my ex, but in time all wounds heal. Trust me, you are doing the right thing just keep it up!
And my 2 cents worth. Those times when all you can do is think about him simply find something else to distract you. Read a book or watch a movie.

missingbite's avatar

My parents always tell me the same thing when something bad happens. “This too shall pass.” And they are right. Try to think about what your life will be like in 10 years. You may be married? You may be traveling Europe by rail? Studying abroad? I’m not sure of your exact situation but I am good friends with a few of my Ex’s. It took time but I realized the breakup was for the best and now we are good friends. It’s not for all. Good luck.

MrGV's avatar

Start talking to other guys.

dynamicduo's avatar

It’s cliche and doesn’t really help immediately, but yes, time does heal everything.

So the best approach is to distract yourself so that time may pass without you thinking about your ex. Find a new hobby or an old one you’ve missed and throw yourself completely in it. Do high amounts of exercise such that you fall asleep the minute your head hits your pillow. Surround yourself with friends who will distract you. Et cetera.

MerMaidBlu's avatar

I recently broke up with a guy I had dated for two years, I wanted to marry him, have my kids with him and I thought he felt the same way. We’re back together but I cut off contact with him, deleted his number from my phone, focused on spending more time with my friends and doing things for myself instead of trying to please him. I still went home everyday and cried myself to sleep. When my friends tried introducing me to other guys it made me feel worse (even if the guy did everything right). All I can suggest is try to occupy your time the best you can. Trying a different hobby is good sometimes. Time may or may not heal all but doing nothing is the last thing you should do

sakura's avatar

Welcome to Fluther fairylights x I hope that you are feeling a little better having read the posts above. Time is the greatest healer, it doesn’t feel like it at the moment but you will start to feel better soon. It sounds like you are doing the right thing, filling your wekends and it sounds like you have supportive friends – lucky you! I find colouring helps – as in felt pens and colouring pages! It sounds strange but it really focuses the mind and helps you to relax, I always feel sleepy after colouring!

As for the pain you are feeling there is no magic cure that will make it go away I wish I could say some magic words that will make you feel better, I can only say that when you are feeling really upset take big deep breaths and make sure you exhale just as deeply, this should stop the tight feeling.

Good Luck and remember It takes both sun and rain to make lifes rainbows xx

JLeslie's avatar

How long ago did you break up? All of the feelings you describe are very common. I had a bad break up when I was in college. I would start shaking for no reason, and had dry heaves every morning for days, no appetite. More than anything I wanted to feel physically normal, I could deal with being very sad. It does take time, so give yourself time. Don’t let anyone make you feel like you should just get over it, and there is something wrong with you. My girlfriends were tremendous help, the made sure I wasn’t alone, came by to play cards or watch tv with me, just hang out. If you feel out of control for weeks you might want to talk to a counselor. Also, I read a book that really helped me, I cannot remember the name of the book, but it helped me understand the breaking up process and grieving, you could look in the book store if you like to read.

Have you told your parents or an adult in your family you trust like an aunt or older cousin? Let them help you.

One thing to know. The next serious relationship I had a couple of years later was not working out after 6 months and I was very afraid to break up, afraid of feeling horrible again. But, when I broke up with him I was fine, glad it was over. Don’t let this experience make you afraid of relationships and break-ups later in life.

fairylights's avatar

Thankyou all so much for such kind responses and warm welcome.
It has only been a week for me, and I am exhausted just thinking about what it will take to get over him, and how long. I like the exercise idea, I will have to put more effort into that so I can fall asleep. And the colouring! Sounds like fun :)
Thankyou again. One of my new distractions might just be this website :)

JLeslie's avatar

Let us know when you are feeling better :).

PandoraBoxx's avatar

@fairylights, that is still very current and your emotions are still very raw. Even though feeling blue is no fun, it’s better to get the emotions out. There are five stages to getting over a break-up:
1. Disbelief that it’s happening to you; lack of control of what’s happening.
2. Anger—how dare he/she break up with me?
3. Bargaining—I will change myself/be a different person in order to get the person back. (This never works, btw)
4. Depression—It’s really over/I can’t salvage it/why wasn’t I enough?/what now?
5. Acceptance—It really, really is over, but I’m going to be okay. Life is still good.

It’s hard to be interested in new people until you hit the last stage, so plan on doing nice things for yourself. Get a new haircut, pedicure, buy new shoes, rearrange a room, make small changes.

Hang in there, and just know that on Fluther, someone’s on here talk to, 24/7.

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

Don’t take anything to try and force yourself to sleep, just let your body work itself out and re set, it will after you get exhausted enough.

Rotate your distractions, whatever you can be it talking to friends, music, games, movies, etc.

Exercise to tire yourself out better for some sleep but also to give yourself some physical payback. Lose in some areas, gain in your health or form, might as well.

Talk back to your phone if texts or calls come across but don’t answer them.

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

You need to get really angry with him for breaking up with you. Hate is easier to deal with than broken heart. Where are you on Fairylight’s list? I always skipped #4 and held onto hate until the guy didn’t matter enough to me to waste any more emotions on him.

filmfann's avatar

The longer and deeper you hurt validates your belief that you were in love.
I am sorry. I know how that feels. Your heart will scar, and you will never feel this so deeply again.
Remember that there are so many good feelings ahead, that it is good to be alive, even when you feel this way.

fairylights's avatar

I am angry- I’m really angry, but I’m also very hurt. You see I doubt I’m going to go through #3 on the list but it’s just that I feel so worthless because I guess this person sort of caused me to change myself a bit, and then he didn’t want me, which makes me feel like shit I guess, and also now I must find myself again, if that makes sense. I know that you shouldn’t have to change for anybody, but I thought this would be for the better. Obviously not, I suppose. And another element to add to the hurt is that we lost our you know what to each other… so that makes it hard I guess because he’s my first real love. I know there will be many more to come but I guess that doesn’t make me feel any better right here right now.
I like the idea of getting a makeover though, haircut and the like.
Thankyou everyone.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

Oh gawwwwd…

Get to know yourself. That’s what you do… get to know yourself. Don’t worry about being with the “right person”... Concentrate on being the right person. Everything will work itself out from there, and better than you could have ever previously imagined.

JLeslie's avatar

I hate hearing that you feel worthless. Don’t punish yourself like that. You are being too hard on yourself. If you changed, because you thought it would be for the better, then your intentions were good—intentions count. If it wound up being a mistake in your opinion, now you will change it again. Nothing wrong with that.

Phobia's avatar

You shouldn’t feel you’re worthless. Why bring yourself down for what he did? Yeah, it hurts, I know, I was in a similar situation. We were together for a while and were engaged. We were talking about children and would start looking for a good house soon. But, I walked in on her cheating on me. It sucks, just don’t beat yourself up.

This is a time for you to love yourself. Do things you like, buy yourself something you’ll enjoy. All the time you wasted on him, make it up to yourself. If you are done with him, then it’s all about you. Be you, enjoy you, love you.

RachelZ's avatar

whenever it was an end of a relationship I SPENT $$$$$$$$$$$$ got cute new perfume, nails, hair, clothes… AND WAS READY TO RUB IT IN HAHA… look for a nice guy that will love you all done up and with NO MAKEUP ON & BREAKOUTS! That is a keeper

Alleycat8782's avatar

Hey I totally know what you are going through. I went out with my first boyfriend for four years and he said he didn’t have feelings for me like that anymore. We have been broken up for about 3 weeks now and trust me it still hurts and like everyone else says it’s going to take time.

Do things for yourself. Last week I chopped all of my hair off (I mainly left it long because my ex liked it so much) got highlights and had it colored darker and I love it! I am so glad I did it. I have also been keeping myself busy like working out, hanging out with people, and yes fluthering has been a great distraction for me.

Take care of yourself. I know you don’t want to hear this right now, but you are going to find someone great someday. Someone who will treat you better. Hang in there and if you need someone to talk to feel free to private message me.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

@fairylights, well, if nothing else, at least one good thing has come out of the experience—learning that it’s not worth it to change yourself to “be” something someone else wants you to be. Be true to yourself. Only change when you want to change, for yourself. And, conversely, if you find yourself dating someone that you have the urge to “remake” that’s a sure sign that things will end badly.

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

My first question is how long ago did this relationship end? Because time heals a lot. I got dumped too. About a month ago. The first couple weeks, it’s going to hurt like hell. I can promise you that. It’ll feel like the worse thing that’s ever happened to you. But it gets better. Almost everyone I know has gone through some sort of bad break up and they think the pain will never stop. But if you ask those same people a few months after the breakup how they’re feeling, 9 out of 10 times they’ll feel almost completely healed.

I would get some books from the library. Start reading some self help books or books on happiness. I highly suggest “Live in the Moment” by Julie Clark Robinson. That book got me through the toughest times of my life. It’s very uplifting and really makes you think about how to better your life and make the most out of everyday.

Don’t let this breakup ruin your life sweetie. Everything happens for a reason and as much as it hurts right now, you’ll eventually see why it happened. There is a guy out there for you.

deni's avatar

i dated someone for 2 years, from the time i was 17 to 19. we were young but we were together constantly and we lost our virginity to each other and we were both positive we would get married and have kids and be happy forever. but people change. he broke up with me january of 2008 and i cried and cried and cried and screamed and yelled at him and he didn’t care and we basically hated each other for a few months. then i would run into him every once in a while and it was still unpleasant but it was getting better.

now we’re really good friends. we hang out alone, or with other friends, and it’s like there was never bad feelings. it’s really nice.

so obviously i really do know how you feel. but looking back i regret wasting so much time crying because that didn’t do anything to help it. just don’t think about it. maybe that isnt as easy as it sounds but take your mind off it any way you can, go talk to your mom about any topic thats just out of the blue. do whatever. read a book. it’ll help! good luck!

fairylights's avatar

It’s been 2 weeks now and it doesn’t feel like it’s getting any easier :(

JLeslie's avatar

@fairylights it can take several weeks, so don’t feel like it is never going to end. I know it is very difficult.

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

2 weeks seems like a long time when you’re spending all your nights crying over a guy but it can take longer than 2 weeks to let your heart heal, depending on how long you guys were dating. Keep your head up. It’ll get better. In the mean time just keep surrounding yourself with friends and family. Fill up your day with fun things. And at night, when it’s hardest, find something you can do as a little ritual before you fall asleep to keep your mind from wandering…Maybe write a journal entry about your day. Maybe read a chapter from your favorite book. Try yoga or meditation. Do what works for you. Eventually you’ll train your mind to stay away from those sad break up thoughts at night.

filmfann's avatar

Have you heard about plateauing?
What happens is you break-up, and you fall to your lowest point.
You begin to improve a little each day, but every few you fall back. Not as far as when you bottomed, but down.
You improve a little more each day, and each time you fall back, you are better than you were when you last fell back.

filmfann's avatar

@fairylights btw, welcome to fluther. lurve.

ram201pa's avatar

You received some great advice here. We have all been through it. Most importantly:

1. Time REALLY heals all wounds.
2. Take care of yourself.
3. Success is the BEST revenge.

Peace. We are all rooting for you.

fairylights's avatar

It’s been a couple more weeks now and it feels like it’s getting harder instead of easier :(

Alleycat8782's avatar

@fairylights I know what you are going through and it’s still going to be hard. I have been broken up with my bf for a little over a month now. Are you still keeping in contact with him? because if you are, it’s going to be that much harder. Take the time to do things for yourself and hang in there girl. I have found that going out and partying with friends is a great cure. If you ever need someone to talk to you can always private message me (like I mentioned before).

villathelma3's avatar

Think patience is everything in this situation. Wait for great things happen in your life.
Go day by day or even make hour by hour the best you can by being the best you can on each hour. Be involved in some activities or skills. Think what the other person liked to do. Learned that skill for example, did he/she like eating learn how to cook. Did liked dance learned how to be a great dancer. etc.

ram201pa's avatar

@fairylights is correct. If you are still in contact with him, just STOP. You need a clean, clear break from him. Get him out of your contacts in email and your phone. Get some exercise…pop in your iPod and start walking. You will feel and look better. Exercise stops the rumination (been there done that).

Trust me, it does get better. Good luck! You can do it!

bean's avatar

I know it’s very hard, the first time me and my boyfriend had a very bad fight he went away for a week, every night I slept maximum of 5 hours a night and dropped a few kg because my heart hurt so bad every day. My boyfriend and I have broken up now for a couple of months. All i know is, if he doesn’t contact you, or make sure your ok he’s not worth the trouble, and what ever you go through at the moment, in the end you always feel better and what pain you go through now will defiantly make you a stronger person! and well done with not contacting him, I know its very hard and then you think about them too much and begin to miss them. But don’t give up, and keep yourself occupied!

fairylights's avatar

Hi all, I just thought I should come back and update you guys. Everything is just fine now. It took a few months before I talked to him, and the first time was a little scary, and I still felt a bit… weird I guess. But the next time was better, and the next time better after that. Now, I don’t have any reason to go and start a conversation with him, we’re not bosom buddies or anything, but if I see him I will stop and chat without hesitation and there is no lignering feelings or awkwardness at all. I just wanted to say thankyou to each and every one of you for answering this question. Those who said “time heals all” were basically right, haha. And I am basically the confident, happy, independent person I was before I started to feel like I had to change for him. So it’s all good :)

JLeslie's avatar

Fantastic! Thanks for letting us know. :)

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