The Breakup Manual

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to deal with a breakup.
by Ines Bautista-Yao   |  Jan 30, 2010
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Drive Yourself Crazy

After a breakup, it's so easy to lose your sense of reason. So it won't be too much of a shock if you actually want to do any of the following steps. Just remember that if you do, check yourself into an asylum immediately because you will surely bring yourself to the brink of insanity.

  1. Insist On Being Friends Right Away. Do you really think you can handle it? This is the guy whose thoughts ended where yours began-this is the guy you thought the world of. And now you have to limit yourself to being just friends? Can you take not knowing where he is all the time yet still see him and talk to him over the phone once in a while? Can you take hearing about the cute girl in his bio class whom he can now ask out while you cannot breathe a word of the jealousy that's corroding your insides? And can you take it if you ask to see him and he says no-can-do because he has to watch a soccer game? You need to let go first, honey. You need to give it time before you can be friends again.
  2. Love Him From Afar. aka Stalk Him. Since you've been cut off from his world, the world you lived and breathed 24/7 for the past few years/months/weeks/days, you will definitely experience withdrawal symptoms. So you call up his friends and ask how he is under the guise of concern. You start hanging around the bball courts (which you used to avoid like doing your trig homework!), you drop by gadget stores, you even call his landline and hang up when you hear his voice (how juvenile is that!?) All your friends are on the alert to report whatever they hear, see or even just feel he is up to—just for your sanity. Now, really.
  3. Crank Up The Memories. Dig up all those aww!-provoking pictures of the two of you with your arms wrapped around each other with big happy smiles and love-struck gazes. Plastering them around your room isn't enough. You need to post a collage in your locker, on your notebooks, and in your wallet! And who could forget all the photobooth pics that have warranted their own album in your laptop? Or all his love letters you used to swoon over that you can now use as bookmarks? What about those lovey-dovey Wall messages you leave each other on Facebook? Those will definitely assure you of a permanent heartache. Tearsville, here I come!
  4. Give It A Go Again. This emptiness has got to be wrong. And you're positive that if you're feeling this way, he's got to be too, right? So why can't you just get back together again and end all the hassle you're going through? Fine. Get on your knees and beg him to reconsider. Or better yet, accept when he asks for another chance. Who cares about the reason why you broke up in the first place? What's important is that you stop hurting now-never mind if you hurt again later, right? (You are so wrong!)

Let's Get It On

Let's get to the real deal. When you split up with someone you love, you leave a gaping wound in your soul, and ignoring it won't make it better. You need to heal. Nympha Banzon, guidance counselor at Assumption High School, tells us how it can be done.

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  1. Accept That It's Over. You can only move on once you've accepted this fact and have gotten some closure. If you need to sort things out for your peace of mind, then have that last talk with him. Just make sure you keep it as rational as possible—the last thing you want to do is grovel for one more chance. Have some pride, girl!
  2. Do Your Mourning Now. It's okay to cry and be depressed. Don't postpone your pain for later. You don't always have to be strong. Once you allow yourself to feel the sorrow, the anger, and the frustration, it will be a lot easier to let go, and get him out of your system.
  3. Find Your Support System. Your friends are there to pump you up, listen to you, keep you company (as much as possible, try not to be alone), and even keep you in line if you slip up and fall into that stalker trap. Don't be afraid to lean on them when you can't stand on your own. Call them up every day if you need to, tell them how you feel, and bawl your eyes out. If you've taken any of them for granted in the past, now is the best time to make it up to them! And when things get really tough, make a pact with your closest friend to call her any time you feel like breaking down or worse—calling him up!
  4. Spend Time With Your Family. Rediscover how wonderful it is to bake a pie with Mom, go shopping with your younger sister, or play bowling with Dad.
  5. Reach Outside Yourself. The best way to feel better is to make others feel better. And since this is the season of love, volunteer to make others happier. This is an instant pick-me-upper, I guarantee it.
  6. Get Gorgeous! You don't want to bump into him in the mall looking like you just got caught in an unexpected typhoon! Make an effort to look fab wherever you go. How to do this? Pamper yourself! Get a manicure and a pedicure! Take a yoga class or a nature trip to Antipolo—anything to make you feel and look better! Your tears are reserved for the confines of your room, your smiles are for the world (and for him) to see.
  7. Write In A Journal. When I need to sort my thoughts by myself, writing is where I find my solace. All psychologists I've interviewed say it is great therapy, too. So pick up a pen and start writing.
  8. Pray. Your friends, mere mortals, can only give you so much hope. What you need is someone All-Powerful by your side to believe that things are going to get better and that yes, you will be happy again.
  9. Think About It. When you aren't hurting as much anymore, think back on what went wrong. What can you learn from all this? Everything happens for a reason. What is this experience trying to teach you? But remember—do not blame yourself. That's the last thing you need. Instead, forgive yourself. And forgive him. Once you've done that, you have already let go.

Just steel yourself for the ups and downs of healing. And know that as jarring as they can be, you're definitely on your way to being happy again!

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About the author
Ines Bautista-Yao
Former Editor in Chief, Candy
ines@candymag.com
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