Whether you have left your partner, or she has left you, surviving a lesbian break-up is hard. Sometimes it may feel like you may never recover from the break-up. But you will. These tips might make recovering from a break-up easier.
Time Required: Can Take a Year or More
- Recognize what has happened.
The first thing you might be feeling is, "I can't believe this is happening!" Shock and denial are normal in the early stages of recovery from a break-up. You keep thinking you'll wake up from the bad dream or that your lover will return. This is the first step in the grieving process. Once you begin to believe that it's really over, you're ready to move on to the next step of healing from a break-up.
- Next you might feel anger toward your partner.
Good, this is the second step of grieving. At this time, it is a good idea to get away from your partner. If you live together, move out or go stay with some friends. Too many lesbian couples continue to live together after they break up. If you can't afford to move out, go stay with a friend for a while. You need to separate to get a clear head. Don't drive by her house or ask friends about her new girlfriend, you'll only torture yourself.
- Get support.
Call on your friends. Your friends, not your mutual friends. At this time you need someone who is going to take your side. You don't need a reasonable voice at this time. You need a friend who will nod in agreement at every horrible thing your ex has done. She'll tell you how wonderful you are and how much better off you are without her. There's plenty of time to be reasonable in the future. Right now you need to vent.
- Mourn, but don't wallow.
Feeling sad is normal. Yes, it's okay to cry, scream and feel pity for yourself. But don't allow the situation to turn you into a bitter human being. Give yourself up to a year to grieve. If after that time you're still welling up with tears at the thought of her, it's time to see a therapist. Something else is probably going on to cause your sadness.
- Get Closure.
Say the things to her that you need to and leave it at that. If she won't see you face to face, send her a letter. Beware of e-mail, where you can write something regrettable and impulsively hit send. If you choose to communicate by e-mail, be sure to wait 24 hours before sending off your letter.
- No Rebounds.
It sure can be tempting to enter into a new relationship to help you forget the old one. But if you don't give yourself time to heal and reflect on what happened with the last one, you're bound to repeat the same patterns.
- Let it all out.
Get your feelings out in healthy ways. Write them down, make a painting, write a fantastic break-up song, listen to great break-up songs, go for a run. Let it out in what ever way feels best to you. Avoid turning to drugs or alcohol. They will only make the situation worse.
- Look at yourself.
What went wrong with the relationship to cause it to end? Every relationship is a two-person dynamic. Try to identify what part she played and what part you played. If you take ownership of your role, you'll be less likely to repeat the same mistakes in your next relationship. Beware playing the blame game. Getting angry at yourself for your mistakes will not help. You just want to recognize what you did so the next time you're aware of your dynamic.
- "That which does not destroy us will make us stronger."
Remember this. This is a hard time and you WILL get through it. Look at this as an opportunity for growth and to test your strength as a human being. When it feels like too much, be sure to call on those support systems.
- "Let go and let God."
You can't control what another person does, but you can control how you react. Pray, meditate, read inspirational stories, whatever will get you through. Remember others have been through this and came out on the other side and you will too. Breathe in and out. It will get better.