1. Total paralysis.
As the credits roll after the final episode fades to black, you stare at the screen in a complete stupor. For several minutes, you don’t move. Your fingers have become so accustomed to clicking on the next episode that you currently do not know what to do with yourself.
Perhaps the drama from your show is seeping into you, but whatever the case, you are convinced that you’ll never feel happy ever again.
3. Mourning over the death of your “friends.”
Finishing a show and having to go back into real life feels like having multiple friends of yours die all at once. You find yourself reminiscing on the good times you guys had together – meaning the times you sat on your couch and watched fictional characters have lives.
4. Loss of direction.
You spend a good deal of your time just thinking “WTF do I do now?” over and over again.
5. Social anxiety.
You quickly realize you’ve forgotten how to socialize like a normal person because for the past few (hours? days?) you’ve just been sitting on your ass watching other people talk.
You bring up your precious show to anyone who will listen, and when someone says, “Oh yeah! I’ve been watching that the last couple months!” you refrain from telling them that you inhaled it in 56 hours.
7. Lack of motivation.
After realizing that you no longer have something to look forward to when you’re trying to get through a slow work day or are bored at a social event, you suddenly have no desire to do anything.
In the panicked aftermath of searching for a new show to give your life temporary meaning, you turn on ABC Family, because you know there’s an 86% chance they’re showing one of the Harry Potter movies. And you can watch that while you try to figure out your next move.
Eventually you beg one of your friends to come over and give you a pep talk about how you will find
love a good show again.
10. Reconciling with the past.
You keep thinking of the times you said “Yes, I’m still watching” when Netflix got passive-aggressive with you. And how you shouldn’t have felt embarrassed, because you didn’t realize the good you had right in front of you – until it was gone.
11. Living vicariously through others.
You become incredibly jealous when you think about all the people in the world who haven’t yet discovered this show, and desperately wish you could temporarily trade brains with them to experience this magic all over again for the first time.
12. Refusing to let go.
Somehow you find yourself doing research on the show (read: falling down a Wikipedia black hole) and learning everything you can about it, because you’re just not ready to say goodbye yet.
13. Projecting your anger onto others.
At the peak of your grief, you text the friend who got you hooked on this show in the first place, and tell them that you feel like an empty shell of your former self and it’s all their fault for introducing you.
14. Processing what you’ve done.
At some point you start calculating the number of hours of your life that you spent watching this series, but you stop halfway through because the number gets too high/depressing. And then, you move on to a rebound show and instantly forget about all the hours you’ve wasted so far. Because that’s what we do now.