7 Pieces Of Breakup Advice You've Heard Before That Actually Aren't Helpful At All
Hookups and breakups are two things that I am quite terrible at. (Am I in love with him? Am I not? Why is my heart exploding?) However, hooking up is certainly more pleasurable than breaking up, because duh. Breakups suck, and don't let anyone tell you otherwise. And oh, they certainly will try to. During a breakup, you'll be pelted with pieces of breakup advice that are meant to comfort you, but are more likely to enrage you.
When I get dumped, all I want is a great movie, a great blanket, and a great snack. (A great bottle of wine doesn't hurt, either.) What I do not want is a great quote from a refrigerator magnet. The last time my heart got super broken by a dude, my friend took me for my favorite frozen margarita, even though it was December. I cried into it, and it felt great. A public cry is, in fact, quite refreshing (as was the margarita). My friend didn't try to speed up my sadness timeline or tell me "this is a good thing." She just listened and helped me craft a feelings email to send later. Friendship goals.
If you are feeling broken after a breakup, but don't particularly want to look on the bright side just yet, I feel you. Anger and rage and sadness are all fantastic feelings to feel, and if you move past them too quickly, you're only doing yourself a disservice. In order to move forward, we have to feel all of our feelings. You know, like when you cry for 10 minutes at the end of a bad day, and then, you feel a whole lot better. Now, let us rage against some oft-spoken, totally silly pieces of breakup advice together, so that when a friend tags you in an inspirational Instagram post telling you "time heals all wounds," you won't murder-suicide them.
1. "You Deserve Better"
THEN WHY DIDN'T YOU TELL ME THAT DURING THE FIVE PLUS YEARS I SPENT DATING THEM? The problem with telling someone they "deserve better" after a breakup is three-fold. One, the advice giver seems like a liar who just pretended to like your SO. Two, this saying is so trite, even if it were true, I wouldn't believe it. And three, what does any human even deserve?! How does one quantify this? OK. Rant over.
2. "When One Door Closes, Another Opens"
But I wanted that first door! It was nice, and even though it creaked a bit when I opened it and its lock was broken, I was really comfortable with it. This piece of advice drives me nuts because, sometimes, a breakup leaves you so sad, the immediate thought of moving on is not a comfort. It only makes the end of the relationship seem more permanent and depressing. Woof.
3. "Now, You Can Prioritize Yourself"
I already have to listen to my own thoughts 24/7, and I'm sick of myself. Even though the person saying this means well, this "self-positive" advice does not make me feel better immediately post-breakup.
4. "If It's Meant To Be, It Will Be"
Here's the thing: There are 7 billion people on planet Earth. Even with the advent of social media and airplanes, I don't anticipate that "fate" will bring me to London where an ex moved for work. Rekindling only happens when two people who really still love each other take action to try things out again, and when you get broken up with, you don't want to be reminded of how your ex is definitely not trying to make things work with you.
5. "You're Going To End Up In A Great Situation"
I really despise this advice. I extra despise this advice when it comes from someone you have dated and recently broken up with. Please don't remind me how wonderful I am. Your actions speak louder than words, and you didn't pick me.
6. "Living Well Is The Best Revenge"
Sometimes, yes, this is true, but that doesn't mean it's going to mend your broken heart and bring the love of your life back. I agree that the post-mortem of a breakup should involve lots of self-care and keeping busy, but don't fool yourself into thinking that parading your new boyfriend around or getting written up in the Times is going to bring your ex back. That's not how life works, unfortunately.
7. "You'll Get Over It"
Even when this is said in the warmest of tones, there are truly some people you never actually get over. Of course, you move on, and the pain ceases, but there will be certain people whom you aren't able to be friends with, or even follow on social media, because you loved them, it didn't work out, and the pain of that reminder is too much to bear. Remind yourself that that's OK. And that even though you may never be completely over it, you'll stop hurting eventually.
Now that you've read my rants, I want to come full circle and mention a cheesy piece of advice that I actually do believe in: "Time heals all wounds." OK, so simply sitting around and waiting for the pain to go away does not mend your heart forever — that's fair. However, no matter how bad of a loss you suffer, the only thing guaranteed to at least mute the pain a bit is time. Eventually, you'll fall apart less. Eventually, you'll have to focus on other people and things. Eventually, you won't cry yourself to sleep every night. Hang in there, friends. Breakups are tough, but you're going to make it through.
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