You thought he was the one, and then out of nowhere, it was over. Here's how to deal with the shock of a split and successfully move on with your life
For Claire’s 21st birthday, her boyfriend of two years whisked her off to Amsterdam for a romantic mini-break. Sounds all kinds of adorable, right? Um, well, not quite. “While I was asleep one night he went out and rode a prostitute,” she says. “I didn’t find out about it until six months later when he threw it in during an argument. Needless to say, that was the end of that relationship,” she adds ruefully.
Couples break up all the time, but when a relationship comes to a juddering halt the way Claire’s did, it can be incredibly difficult to pick up the pieces. Now 23, she remembers how hard it was at the time. “I moved home so I wouldn’t have to see him. He was constantly calling to my house and work; I just had to get away.” Good call. And no, it wasn’t a case of Claire shutting off her emotions either. “I did mope, I did cry – you have to, sometimes.”
Gradually though, she realised she had to get over him. “It took a little while to stop all contact, when you’re used to talking to somebody every day, it’s hard to just totally cut them from your life.” Her advice? “Stop obsessing over his social media; hide his posts on Facebook; delete him from Snapchat; unfollow him on Instagram. He’ll more than likely be putting up things to annoy you, so don’t give him the satisfaction.”
It can be really tempting to drown your sorrows in booze. Nu-uh. “It’s the worst thing you can do: you’ll wake up feeling ten times worse, and will probably’ve made a show of yourself. Plus, when you’re hungover you’ll want to contact him. Everyone’s needy then,” she points out.
I did mope, I did cry – you have to, sometimes.
So what’s the solution? You’ve gotta start with a bit of self-loving. “Get out and do stuff, climb a mountain, join a team, join the gym,” Claire enthuses. “I used to go get my hair and nails done, anything to make myself feel nice and look good. By all means go out the odd night, but nobody buys a 70cl of vodka for no reason, believe me.”
Most of all, aim to keep occupied. “Surround yourself with your friends and family, even your dog – because when I was alone, I’d want to call him. Have things to look forward to; book a concert, a festival, a holiday – anything! keep yourself busy at all times.”
Two years on, how’s it all looking for Claire now? She’s en route to a new and exciting experience down under, as she preps for a move to Australia. “Oz was something I’d always wanted to do. We’d planned to go together but I’m so, so happy that I didn’t. It would have been a disaster.”
The break up was the best thing that ever happened to me.
These days, she can see the break up for what it was, too. “It was the best thing that ever happened to me, because I learned so much from it. Now I know that, I won’t let anything like it ever happen to me, or any of my friends again.” Sing it, sister.
Picture credit: River Island
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