Getting over a breakup when you still love your ex can feel impossible. As painful as it is, it is possible to move on when your heart is still pining for someone. It just takes discipline, kindness, and patience. Here’s how to get over a breakup when you still love your ex.
- Allow yourself to feel sad. Unfortunately, there’s no quick-fix answer when it comes to getting over a break up. The bad news is this can be one of the hardest things you’ll do in your life. And it’s often a very painful process. The most important thing to remember is that it’s okay to feel sad. Don’t beat yourself up for not being over the breakup by the time you think you should be over it. Everyone heals differently and it might take you more time than expected. If you still feel sad, the only thing to do is to embrace those feelings. If you have to, cry it out.
- Get out of the house. Distractions can be a major help when it comes to getting over a breakup. You might feel like staying in and crying, and that’s okay to do sometimes. But if you’ve been stuck at home for multiple days in a row, it might be time to bring in some distractions. Try getting out of the house, even if it’s to just go for a walk. Ideally, you should plan to do something that will make you feel good, like seeing a movie or going out to eat at your favorite restaurant. You’ll likely feel better when you get out and start living again.
- Find other sources of love. Just because your ex isn’t in your life anymore doesn’t mean you have to live without love altogether. Instead of pining that lost relationship, focus on the other sources of love in your life. Nurture your relationships with your family and friends. And if you don’t have many other sources of love, it’s time to find some. Foster new platonic relationships or even look for love in other places. Fall in love with a new hobby, find a new passion, or even adopt a pet (only if you can commit to looking after it properly for the rest of its life—not a temporary source of love).
- Remind yourself why it didn’t work. Sometimes, thinking logically about things can really help you to feel better emotionally. To get over your breakup when you’re still in love, write a list of all the reasons why it didn’t work. Focus on those instead of romanticizing the past. It won’t make you fall out of love overnight, but it will help to cement in your mind why you can’t go back to that person, and why you’re better off without them.
- Surround yourself with the right people. In the weeks following a breakup, choose your company very carefully. You’re likely to be in a fragile state and should only have space for people who enhance your life. Don’t spend time with people who will make you feel bad about yourself. That can make it harder to get over a relationship that’s already hard to get over. Spend your time with positive people who will encourage you to feel good and move forward.
- Avoid happy couples. It’s not happy couples’ fault that they’re happy. But still, you don’t need to surround yourself with all that happiness when you’re trying to get over a breakup. If you do, you might be tempted to make things work with your ex so you can have that happiness too, when you should be moving on. Rather than hanging out with your friends who are in couples, spend time with those who are single just until you don’t feel so fragile.
- Get off social media. You should also be selective about what you choose to look at on social media. Looking at happy couples, or even your ex, will make you feel worse—not better. Sometimes, it’s safer to just ditch social media altogether. Instead, focus on living your life, being present, and hanging out with people who genuinely care about you.
- Give it time. You can’t rush your emotions. If you still love someone, you still love them. No matter what you do to make yourself feel better, the only real answer is time. After a certain amount of time—and that amount is different for everyone—you will feel better about things. You will see clearly and you won’t feel so desperately in love with someone who’s not good for you. But you can’t rush it. Time works in its own way and you just have to be patient.
- Work on your self-love. Until time heals your wounds, you should work on loving yourself. As cliched as it sounds, self-love will help you to get over a breakup because it will remind you why you deserve to be happy. Spend time loving yourself and you’ll start to feel deserving of real love rather than what you were receiving in your former relationship.