The 1 Thing To Post On Instagram After A Bad Breakup Is Not What You Think

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Let's walk through just how much a breakup sucks for a second, shall we? Two people part ways, one heart is at least a little bit broken, and sobbing under some blankets is requisite. There will be anger, as well as booze. Friends become lifelines, and eventually, after a lot longer than you anticipated, happiness becomes less of a mirage and more of an inevitable actuality. Which brings me to the question at hand: What is the first thing you post on Instagram after a breakup?

My answer: a big, fat nothing. I promise I'm not just trying to be polarizing for the sake of being polarizing. Hear me out for a moment. OK, so of course you will eventually craft a perfect Instagram post again, but I want to talk about the immediate aftermath of the breakup. If the breakup was terrible, there is no need for you to race to post a thirst trap showing yourself having a blast on the beach in your bathing suit! (I can call this out because I've done it.) I would also caution against an immediate Instagram story-spree featuring many adorable boys, as it is equally transparent.

Why Not Post A Thirst Trap?

One, because everyone who knows you — including your ex — will see right through it. Two, because getting caught up in accumulating likes and whether or not your ex will miss you is less productive than taking some time to be sad, feel your feelings, and cry. Three, because we should all stop projecting false happiness on the 'gram for the good of society.

OK, OK, you eventually do need to post an Instagram because, you know, you finally just want to post about your excellent trip to Tulum. (A great way to treat yourself post-breakup.) When it comes to the naturally timed Instagram post, I think that a "thirst alert" — which I just made up — is actually the route you should go.

What Is A "Thirst Alert"?

Great question. A thirst alert is less than and not equal to a thirst trap. Thirst traps are too much for your first post back from the land of Netflix and ice cream. While you think that photo of you living your best life on a beach with your cleavage lit just right says, "See what you're missing?" it actually broadcasts a message closer to "I'm not over it at all."

Similarly to my belief that couples who over-post on social media tend not to be the happiest in life, the ratio of thirst traps posted to post-breakup happiness achieved is definitely an inverse relationship. A thirst alert could be a plandid, or even a true candid of you and some friends where you look very happy and may even be laughing (how lovely!). Ideally, you are in a casually hot outfit, but overall the thirst alert paints a relatively chill picture of your sweet life.

The fact that you haven't posted in a while makes this an "alert." Think of your post as something to remind your ex how lovely you are, but not at something to trap them because you do not need that BS anymore. Remember, you are over it (even if you're not). You will have been missed on social media, by the internet and by your ex, and thus your post will garner many likes and emoji fire comments without you needing to display all of the goods.

Thirst alerts aside, I want to say one last thing: Dealing with a terrible breakup is incredibly difficult and painful thing, so if you decide to heed none of the above advice and immediately post an Instagram Story of you hanging out with a new fling, I still applaud you. As long as you are prioritizing taking care of your heart and making yourself feel better, who cares what I, your ex, or anyone else on the internet, thinks. Quite simply, the post-breakup period is the ultimate time to do you.

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