Once, after one of my first loves broke my heart in high school, I spent every day driving past his house for, like, a year. I even sent him a Valentine's day present, even though we were very much not together anymore. His dad emailed me like, "Hey, can you stop, you complete psycho?"
Sometimes, it feels impossible to recover from being dumped, and it can feel like you'll never figure out how to get over your first love. It's a pain unlike anything else, mostly because you've yet to experience anything like it. If you're in the same boat, remember you're going to be OK first and foremost. (Unless you're driving past your ex's house every day. Don't do that!) And when you're really feeling hopeless, here are some strategies you can use to mend your broken heart after losing your first love.
1. Unfollow Them On Social Media
There is nothing wrong with a social media blackout. It's a form of self-care and maturity, and it's the best thing to do to get over your very first love. You don't need to know what your ex is eating for brunch! That is insane.
Unfollow them on Instagram, block them on Twitter, unfriend them on Facebook — do whatever you have to do to erase them from your life, and make sure you can't stalk them when you are feeling bored, sad, or you're spiraling. I would even go so far as to delete their number from your contacts. If you truly want to move on, then erasing their memory from your life from a bit helps.
2. Try To Stay In The Present
After a breakup, we tend to fantasize and glorify the past. Somehow, that terrible ex we had doesn't seem that bad anymore. Those huge fights? They were just silly arguments. And our significant other wasn't mean and scathing! They definitely just had a sharp sense of humor.
Once we break up with someone (or once they break up with us), it's important not to focus on who we wanted our partner to be but, instead, to remember who they actually were in the relationship. If things were truly perfect, and your relationship was great, then you and your SO would still be together. After all, it's called a breakup because something is broken.
So do your best to stay in the present and keep moving forward. Don't harp on a past that most likely didn't exist, other than in your imagination.
3. Stay Active
Working out is incredibly good for you both physically and mentally, as the endorphins released during a workout can help fight negative emotions and even depression. (So I have heard and read. I do not know personally. I've never worked out before.)
When you are suffering from a broken heart, it's easy to go all Bridget Jones on your couch, hiding under a blanket and drinking an entire box of wine. I can't emphasize this enough, though: You have got to get out of the house. Find the sunlight, and get your body moving. You absolutely won't regret it.
4. Remember That Some Ignorance Is Bliss
When it comes to getting over an ex, don't try to keep tabs on them. And this goes for letting your friends know that if they hear any information about that person you used to date or if they see them IRL, you don't want to know about it. I like to pretend my ex doesn't exist anymore, but that's just me!
One of the worst things in the world is when you get that text from your friend saying, "OMG, I saw John at dinner the other night. He was with a girl. I'm not sure if it was a date or not!" This can cause you to spiral into a web of negative thoughts — big time. So if your heart is broken, a little ignorance is bliss in this case.
5. Practice Self-Care
When your heart has been broken, it's very important to prioritize self-love and self-care. Of course, it can be easy to direct your attention everywhere else other than yourself after a breakup. You might download every dating app on the planet, online shop until you're broke, or order Domino's pizza every single night. Maybe you splurge on an expensive vacation or watch so much Netflix that your computer spontaneously combusts.
Instead on focusing on outside sources for happiness, though, it's important that you direct your attention inward. Meditate, journal, see a therapist, and learn from your mistakes. Take plenty of time to sleep, drink water, and eat healthfully. Clean your apartment and go through your closet. Have a spa day. The more energy you put into yourself and your personal space following a breakup, the more confident and healed you will feel.
A broken heart is bad news, and I wouldn't wish one upon my worst enemy. If you're trying to heal from losing your first big love, remember the love of your life is actually you. As long as you practice self-love, stay active, and put yourself first, you'll always feel joy and stability, no matter what is going on your life. Celebrate yourself, and you'll get over your ex in no time.
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