I want to start off with a disclaimer that this is tailored towards heterosexual women. Sorry! I am a female who only has relationship experience with men.
So you either just realized your boyfriend is the absolute worst (good for you for getting out! That takes a lot of guts) OR you were just taken off guard and are unexpectedly single. Either way, you probably have a hard time thinking back to when you were single. Here is a little guide on how to behave post-long term boyfriend.
1. Don’t talk to him.
First, you seriously have to stop all means of communication. This sounds harsh, but you cannot be the girl that still talks to her ex-boyfriend or occasionally hooks up with him or still isn’t over him. No guys like those girls and no girls have respect for those girls, so don’t be one! A break-up means just that, you are done.
2. The Mourning Phase.
It is perfectly normal to be upset over a break up. Pile your hair on top of your head, slip on your sweatpants, play “Wrecking Ball” on repeat, eat a ton of chocolate (or some people eat less, whatever your preference is), or watch the Notebook. Do whatever you gotta do. Call your best friend, your mom, your sister, whoever will listen to the story, but don’t turn to social media. You don’t need boys from your grade school, moms you babysit for, or anyone else knowing you’re hurting.
Once you finally stop crying uncontrollably at any given time, you are ready to get some craziness out of your system. Some girls like to go home with random guys, or others like a few public makeouts. Whatever your preference is, go nuts and never talk to him again. Get all of that out of your system and do all the things you couldn’t do when you had a boyfriend. Now is the time.
4. When to know you’re over him.
Once you stop comparing every guy to the ex, you’re probably ready to start talking to guys beyond meeting them. Be careful though. Be picky. It’s okay to be selfish sometimes. You don’t have to settle, and there’s nothing wrong with being single. Finding your next boyfriend could take five months or five years. But it doesn’t matter. If you’re the type who can’t be alone and rushes into relationships back to back, then you really need to take time to yourself and be independent. Don’t date anyone just because you’re lonely. Make sure you actually like the person. I would say on average, if you find more than three flaws (big or small) in a guy, move on.
5. Ex-talk is taboo.
When you meet a new guy, DO NOT talk about the ex. Never ever ever. Unless they ask something like “when was your last relationship”, you can then say something along the lines that you recently got out of a long term one, but nooooo details. You never want to come off as someone who is not over her ex.
6. You can’t do this alone.
Work on your friendships. A lot of people are prone to neglecting their friends to make time for the boyfriend. Rekindle those old connections and reach out to old friends. It won’t hurt and you won’t know if there’s still something there until you try. Make lunch dates, Skype friends in other cities, or go on road trips to visit friends. Boys come and go, but you’re always going to want to have your girlfriends. They keep you together in between the relationships (or during). Even if you find the love of your life, you have to have good friends. Seriously. You never want to have to rely on a boy for advice, for a listening ear, or to have someone to hang out with. It is fantastic if you find a boy for these things, but you need backups and a sense of balance between friends/boyfriend. Plus you don’t want to have to resort to distant relatives for your bridal party someday…
7. Don’t act girlfriend-like too soon.
It might be instinct at first to expect things from a guy that you would expect from a boyfriend since that is what you are used to, but remember in the beginning of something to take things slow. Don’t get jealous. Don’t get mad if he doesn’t call you, just don’t answer next time. Don’t give any guy the satisfaction that you’re clingy to him/need him/are mad at him. Don’t start that shit early on; just get out while you can.
8. Do what makes you happy.
Basically, life is short in the long run, and you have to make the most of your time. Being unhappy is a waste of this precious time we have on earth. If being single for indefinite period of time is what you need to be happy, then DO IT! If you love life and love as much as I do, than you deserve to be happy. No one, and I mean no one is allowed to make you feel inferior without your consent (yeah, that was an Eleanor Roosevelt paraphrased quote and yeah, she’s the shit). So while you are figuring out who you are as an individual, reflect on your past relationship and realize the problems. Instead of becoming angry every time you think of your ex, be thankful that he showed you exactly what you want from a relationship next time around. Also come to terms with things you did wrong, too, because that will help you in achieving a healthy relationship somewhere down the line.