Just get over him! Get into the dating scene. Throw his gifts away. Get involved in a new activity.
We’ve all heard virtually the same advice, and some if it can be helpful, but breakups suck no matter what.
Breakups from any type of relationship can cause sadness, grief or depression whether a woman initiates the breakup or not.
Susan Heitler, a clinical psychologist in Denver, Colo., says that there is a difference between grief and depression after a breakup.
“Grieving is the sadness that comes with any loss, but depression adds a level of powerlessness and negative thoughts,” Heitler said.
She said that powerlessness comes from feeling “that a breakup has been done to us, not that it was a mutual decision.”
Although it depends on how long you’ve been with the person and how deep the feeling of loss is, grieving over a lost relationship usually should last only a little over a week, she said.
After a week, if the woman is still getting “lots of negative self-thoughts,” it might be depression.
“If someone feels like there’s a negative dark cloud hanging over them, then they’ve shifted from grieving into depression,” Heitler said.
When there’s depression involved, it’s best to see a therapist or psychologist, but there are some actions you can do to ease some pain.
Heitler suggests trying to communicate with an ex-partner.
“To be able to say your own thoughts, to share your view, is empowering, so then it doesn’t feel like there’s something done to you, but rather like you’ve had input also,” she said.
When an ex is unwilling to talk over the phone or in-person, an e-mail or letter can help.
Although throwing out gifts and memories of an ex can be cliché, it can also help in certain cases.
“It’s a way to say, ‘Okay, I’m ending that era of my life and readying myself to go onto something new,’” Heitler said. “It gives you a feeling of, ‘I’m taking charge now, I’m in the driver’s seat.’ It’s not essential but it can be helpful.”
However, many people have the opposite reaction and want to keep everything and put it in a safe place.