Friday, January 29, 2010

Break-Up Rules


Make a playlist
It's good to absorb the media out there that can comfort you and put your thoughts into words. Here's a handful of suggestions for you to get started: Welcome to Heartbreak (Kanye West), So Sick (Ne-Yo), Lost One (Jay-Z), Valentine's Day (Linkin Park), Nothing Left to Say but Goodbye (Audioslave), Lonely (Akon), Love and Memories (OAR), Nice to Know You (Incubus) and U Don't Have to Call [Remix] (Usher ft. Ludacris).

Get wasted
It's fine to go out one night (or two) and get sloppy with your buddies. It can take your mind off of her temporarily if you choose to hit the town. On the other hand, you can stay at home and invite some friends over to vent. This is great if you have trouble speaking freely or emoting in front of your boys, use the booze as an excuse for your tears. If you do go out, make sure you stay far away from bars you once frequented as a couple and the club she goes to on girls night. You're moving to a new phase in your life, so why not try out a new pub?

Some men are criers, some aren't. Neither one of these is right or wrong, it's up to each guy and his level of comfort in shedding tears. Your level of sadness is not defined by how sweaty your eyeballs get in the weeks following the break up. If you do cry, try not call people when you're whining, because no one really wants to talk to you when you're in that state.

Talk it out
Go ahead and call your best bud, or grab some coffee with your brother. It's healthy to let all the things you are feeling right now. You may be angry, you may be sad, confused, lost or any other combination of emotions. Pick someone close enough to you that knew enough about your relationship so you won't have to waste time going back over everything the two of you did together.

Veg out
If you're not a drinker, another option for you is throw in some DVDs or check out what's on HBO. Early on, feel free to watch some great break up movies to remind yourself that you are not the only person in the world who feels the way you do (The Break Up, Swingers, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, High Fidelity). Once you move past that phase, go ahead and watch some manly movies that you wouldn't have been able to watch with her. Titles like Predator, Rocky, Snatch, Beerfest and The Departed are not very friendly to the fairer sex, so take advantage of your new found singledom and cue these up.

Hang out with the boys
You might have neglected your good friends over the past few months or years while you were spending time with her. If you haven't called them already to vent, give them a ring, apologize for falling off the face of the earth and make plans to get together. Check out a movie, play some pick up ball, go hiking, try something new. Just don't take up all their time and have their girlfriends get pissed off enough to put them in the same situation as you.

Change your style
Grow a beard, shave your beard. Get a 'break up' haircut, ladies do that all the time. It can be freeing and relieving to cut off some hair, especially if she liked it a little long. Did she beg you to wear khakis until you were hanging out at Banana Republic on weekends? Go nuts and throw on your favorite jeans – the ones with the holes in them that she wouldn't let you wear out of the house – and go buy a new shirt or two.


Blame yourself
Unless it really is your fault. The break up is probably more her doing than yours. Beating yourself up over this won't help you get better, it will only dig you deeper in the dumps. Remember, it takes two people to begin a relationship, but only one to end it.

Call her
If she's on your speed dial list, take her off. Deleting her number from your phone might help, even though you probably have it memorized. This ensures you won't see her name when you're scrolling down your address book looking for the pizza delivery number.

Try to get her back
Even if you think that's the only thing that will make you happy, don't do it. You may try to woo her back or reason with her, but it just plain won't work. This isn't a reasonable situation, so reason will not work in this case.

Get drunk every night
This can be a slippery slope into bigger problems. It's fine to go out and get ripped the first couple of weekends with the guys, but be careful. This is a sensitive time for you and it's very easy to lean on the bottle as a replacement for the leaning you used to do on your girlfriend.

Expect to get back with her
It probably won't happen, so don't hold out hope that you and your former love will one day be reunited. It may help you accept the separation in the short term, but it will only prove to extend the hurt as you try to move past it.

Call her friends
This is along the same lines as not calling her. If you want to hold out any hope of getting back with her, then don't be the guy who is calling her friends, checking in on her. Sure, you may have been tight with them if you dated her for a while, but they are more loyal to her and are not on 'your side' of the situation no matter what you think.

Throw everything out
It's fine to toss a few t-shirts or little trinkets she bought you in the trash, but don't go crazy. She got you an iPod last Christmas? Don't toss it. Bought your car per her suggestion? Do not put it on eBay. Moved into a loft because she liked it for you? Stay there. By getting rid of some of the major things she's purchased for you or advised you on, you are only going to create more problems for yourself.

Look at old pictures
Pictures say a thousand words, you're already whining about not being with her, either in your head or to your friends, so save the words and save the hurt. Flipping through a bunch of old pictures or videos is only going to prolong the pain your feeling. If you've got a screensaver full of photos, adjust the settings. If you've got framed pictures on the wall, take them down. There's nothing worse than seeing reminders of all the wonderful times you and her had over the years.

Forget there are people off worse than you
You've got your health. You've got a job (hopefully). Remember that there are billions of people in a worse place than you. There are hundreds of thousands of people dying every day in wars, because of starvation, thirst, cancer, AIDS. Pick yourself up, look in the mirror and tell yourself you'll be OK.

Remember that you are your own person and it is possible to grow and move forward from a painful situation like the one your currently embroiled in.

“The only difference between giving up and not giving up is if you take her back when she wants to come back. See you can't do anything to make her want to come back. You can only do things that make her not want to come back.” - Swingers

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