How To Survive The First 7 Days Of A Breakup (Even Just Barely)


Day One:

Don’t try to process everything today; do not try to understand what happened, or to call them instantly to tell them you miss them. Today is just about surviving; don’t worry about analyzing or fixing. Today you just need to get out of bed – even if all you do is go to the couch.

Try your best to leave the house. If it’s a work day, good. Being at work will be awful, but it’s better than being at home and having only your dark thoughts as company.

Embrace every rom-com cliche you’ve ever seen. Buy all of the ice cream. Get a bottle of wine if you need to. Cry as much as you want. It’s also okay if you don’t cry; don’t try to force anything.

Reach out to the people you trust the most, and tell them how vulnerable you’re feeling. Know that they will do everything they can do help you, and tell yourself that even though you’re feeling incredible lonely, you’re not alone.

Day Two:

Accept the fact that you’re going to feel very, very sad today and there’s no way of getting around it. You might want to eat everything in sight, or you might not have any appetite at all.

Today will possibly be worse than yesterday, because you’re a little less in shock. It’s a little more real. It will start to sink in in a more tangible way.

Find a friend or a family member to talk to, especially one that you can say good night to. Because the minute you try to go to bed is most likely the minute you will miss them the most.

Day Three: 

You will feel like shit on day three. But in every breakup situation, day three is almost always better than day one. Day one is like a horrible, real-life nightmare. But on day three, even though your sadness feels like physical pain, you will at least feel like yourself.

You won’t feel like a zombie anymore. You’ll just feel like a really, really sad person.

Day Four:

Today is the day you’ll probably start trying to imagine your new life without that person. You’ve probably made it through the surreal, nightmare-esque, denial phase. And now you’re just trying to come to terms with the fact that you are by yourself again.

As much as you want to, do not look at their social media profiles. You might think you want to because you miss them and just want to see their face, but most likely, you’re subconsciously doing it because you want to make yourself hurt even more. That secret message you’re hoping for, that they miss you or they’re miserable too, will not be there.

So when you’re tempted to look, do something else: turn on a show, call your mom, beg your friend to come over, whatever. Just don’t go down that road of online stalking, because it’s a slippery slope.

Day Five:

You’re starting to get used to this. By no means are you at all close to being over it. But you’re at least getting used to the fact that your life is going to feel a little weird and foreign for the time being. You’re sad, you’re lonely, you’re always tired. That’s okay. Don’t wallow in self-pity, but be gentle with yourself.

Go to bed early if you want. If it’s a weekend day, sleep in. If it’s not, wake up and promise yourself you’ll sleep in when it is the weekend. Allow yourself to feel weepy and unsteady, but don’t let that become your excuse for no longer putting effort into anything in your life. Being kind to yourself, but not letting that turn into laziness or complacency, is one of the best things you will ever do for yourself during this breakup.

Day Six:

Maybe you thought that after a few days, you’d feel back to normal, with some sadness mixed in. But you woke up today and that wasn’t the case. Even though you know you’re still “you,” you somehow simultaneously feel like a shell. Alive, but very much tired of anything and everything.

You might have woken up with the thought How is it ever possibly going to get better than this? It’s honestly just too hard to imagine ever loving another person again. But don’t let that thought drown you, because almost every person who has ever went through a breakup has had that exact same thought. But they still got over it. They were still okay, eventually.

You can never truly understand how something is going to work, how it will be possible to feel happy again, until you actually experience it. Just hang on, and remember that you’re one of an infinite number of people who have woken up feeling this way. And, like them, you will get through to the other side of it.

Day Seven:

Try doing something social, even if it’s just for an hour. Go to dinner with friends or try out a happy hour. If the thought of socializing completely exhausts you, just ask someone to go see a movie with you. That way you’re still around people without having to actually talk to them.

Socializing right now might feel weird and unnatural, and like you’re not all there. It doesn’t matter. Just keep forcing yourself to live, to function without them, to have an existence outside of your ex. And soon enough, you’ll start actively doing it without even realizing it. The sadness will ebb and flow, and nothing will happen overnight. But each day, it will get just a little bit easier. Just hang in there, and keep getting out of bed. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

I’m a staff writer for Thought Catalog. I like comedy and improv. I live in Chicago. My Uber rating is just okay.

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