This Is the Worst Kind of Breakup and You Know It

And science agrees with you.
by Ysa Singson for   |  Sep 13, 2017
Image: Unsplash
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Unless you've never had a boyfriend before, you can probably attest that there are different types of breakups; there are ones you spend weeks, months, or even years mourning and there are those you get over after a ton of junk food and a great movie marathon. 

When you think about your past relationships, which one stung the most? If the one that comes to mind is when your asshole ex left you for another girl (or guy, hey it happens), it totally makes sense. 

A study from Cornell University found that this type of rejection hurts the most; it even hurts more than just being rejected period. The researchers conducted four experiments on 600 participants.

In one experiment, men were assigned to a group with two women who were secretly working with the researchers. One woman was given a puzzle to solve and she had to pick one more person to help her. Sometimes she chose the other woman and sometimes she chose to work alone. The other three experiments were all about working in a larger group involving rejection scenarios. 


The authors of the study found that in every experiment, it hurt more to be rejected over someone else: "This may be because such rejections lead to an increased sense of exclusion and decreased belonging."

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And those who were rejected needed to know why. They felt better when they found out it wasn't because of someone else; otherwise, it would have been a "double rejection." This is probably why when a couple is breaking up, one of the first few questions asked is, "Is there someone else?" 

Source: TIME

This story originally appeared on

* Minor edits have been made by the editors.

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